Five Things to Do on the Way to Glacier National Park

five things to do on the way to glacier national park

Before you get to the excitement and wonder of Glacier National Park, there are a few things you can visit and do on the way to the park. That’s what I love about slow travel, it has really given Mr. Misadventures and I the ability to widen the ground we cover when visiting a specific spot. I know that most times we are on a timeline, but if you have an extra few hours on your way to or from the park, consider doing one of these activities.

Huckleberry Patch in Arlee

things to do on the way to glacier national park huckleberry patch pie in arlee

I promise you, the bears have not gotten to all the huckleberries!  You can find a great many of them in the items sold at Huckleberry Patch in Arlee, including their famous huckleberry pie. In the summer, the huckleberry milkshake are also a big hit. There is another Huckleberry Patch in Hungry Horse which is closer to the park, but I prefer the one in Arlee.  Whichever one you visit, you won’t regret a slice of pie!

Garden of 1000 Buddhas

Five Things to Do on the Way to Glacier National Park garden of 1000 buddhas

If you want to pass a few moments of peace and quiet reflection before visiting one of the most popular (and crowded) national parks, then there is no better place to get your inner zen on than at the Garden of One Thousand Buddhas.  The gardens are FREE and open to the public. They sit on about 10 acres of land among the rolling hills of Arlee near the Flathead Indian Reservation.  The main monument features a statue of Tara and there are 1000 Buddhas surrounding her.  It is a very beautiful place.

National Bison Range

I was really disappointed to learn that unlike Yellowstone, there are no bison in Glacier National Park. Thankfully you can still see these majestic creatures on the way to Glacier at the National Bison Range. We saw about 2 dozen including babies while driving through the park along with pronghorn (closer than we’ve ever seen) and mule deer.  They have a nice picnic area connected to the park where we enjoyed a meal as well.

Ninepipes National Wildlife Refuge

five-things-to-do-on-the-way-to-glacier-national-park-ninepipe-wildlife-refuge

Photo credit: Jonathan Irish, National Geographic

We went to Ninepipes National Wildlife Refuge looking for white pelicans, the ones we spotted were too far out to photograph, but we did see quite a few swans and blue heron (along with deer). It’s a great place to take a leisurely hike or go fishing and watch the birds enjoying the rustic 4,000+ acre space. If you get to this park, don’t miss the Ninepipes Museum of Early Montana in the nearby vicinity.  We weren’t able to visit it, something I regret!

Flathead Lake

five-things-to-do-on-the-way-to-glacier-national-park-flathead-lake-orchard

Photo credit: Jennifer Langley

We drove completely around this gorgeous lake! Besides all the beautiful lakeside views there are national and state forests to visit. And orchards. Lots and lots of orchards where you can find apples and cherries as well as peaches.  There were multiple spots where we pulled over to look at the pristinely clear water and I wished I had my bathing suit to jump in!

Whether you have time for one or all of these things to do on the way to Glacier National Park, I promise, you won’t regret the extra few hours out of your schedule.

What about you? Have you done something on the way to Glacier National Park that I missed? Do tell! Have you visited Glacier National Park? Did you do any of these five activities?

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five things to do on the way to glacier national park

Opening photo credit: Roman Romanenko

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About Andi Fisher

I'm a lifestyle blogger focused on travel and food. A marketing gal who gave up my job to travel around the United States in an RV with my hubby. I'm now settling into the Portland area where I'm looking for my next career adventure! I love to travel via my stomach. Eating, seeking out local artisans and features to share. I've got more than 26 years of experience in marketing focused on content, social media, and direct marketing and I've mentored many bloggers, old and new.

Comments

  1. Great ideas! Sometimes we get so focused on the destination that we forget to stop and smell the flowers — or huckleberry pie — along the way. 🙂

  2. Oh wow! This looks like an absolutely GORGEOUS place to go visit. I want to head there someday.
    Alicia recently posted…Get $2 Off in Sunday’s Newspapers on Sept 25 & Oct 9 for Luvs Diapers

  3. I haven’t been to Glacier National Park but I so want to go now! The journey there alone sounds and looks amazing.

  4. Wow! That looks so beautiful! It would be awesome to go there!

  5. I have never been to Glacier National Park, but your pictures are gorgeous! That pie made my mouth water, and I don’t even know what huckleberry tastes like! lol. I had no clue there was a park of 1000 Buddhas.

  6. We were in Alaska two summer ago and did not make it on land in Glacier Nat’l Park. This look amazing and such a great part of the country.
    maria @closetohome recently posted…Storks Movie Is for Adults and Kids

  7. I would love to see Glacier National Park some day. I am all about visiting National Parks for sure and this one looks worth checking out I love that there are things to do along the way too, makes the trip worth while 😉

  8. Nicole Escat says:

    Wow, this is a must-see national park. We have a national park here in our place but not as beautiful as that!

  9. That huckleberry pie looks amazing! I would love to go to Glacier Park one day! We have beautiful glaciers here in Norway and I love to explore around them!
    Carrie recently posted…The Startling Truth Why Gut Health is Really Important

  10. Gorgeous! Someday we have to visit this place!

  11. Your beautiful pictures pale in comparison to the real thing, I’m sure!

  12. Geri Sandoval says:

    What place to visit, not just for the huckleberry pie. I don’t know they was a park of 1000 Buddhas, amazing. So much to see, would love to go there one of these days, thanks for sharing.

  13. Olivine Eyes says:

    More bison photos, yes. I’d love to visit the Garden of 1,000 Buddhas.

  14. Love all the photos

  15. Sara Theissen says:

    Love this list! All great ideas.

  16. Thanks for the ideas! These look like awesome places to visit on the way to Glacier. I’ll have to check them out!

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