You’ll likely feel the need to yee-haw and unconsciously talk with an old western slang when you visit ‘The Cowboy State.’
Wyoming embodies the old west at every corner of the state. And with a land size ranking in the top 10 out of the US states yet landing last for state populations, the vast landscapes come calling everyone to explore the frontier.
Discover Wyoming attractions that take you to some of the country’s most unique landscapes and learn about its wild west heritage by traversing trails set by early pioneers or trotted by migrating wildlife.
You’ll find many things to do in Wyoming that immerse you into the state’s culture, history, and nature. Find out the best places to go and see that let you relive the old west era.
Without further ado, let's get started with the top tourist attractions in Wyoming.
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From its captivating landscapes, an abundance of wildlife, and unusually active geothermal grounds, Yellowstone National Park’s beauty led it to be the first national park established in the world in 1872. Now attracting millions of visitors every year, it’s one of the most visited Wyoming attractions.
The expansive Yellowstone National Park includes regions crossing the borders of Idaho and Montana.
Visitors have nearly 3,500 square miles to explore the breathtaking sights that have inspired presidents, artists, and adventurers worldwide.
Geothermal wonders like the famous Old Faithful Geyser shooting over 100-ft in the air and the vibrant colors outlining Rainbow Basin are evidence of the park sitting atop an active volcano.
Go on an excursion of popular park trails like the North Rim Trail winding around the ‘Grand Canyon of Yellowstone,’ or trek through Bison Basin to witness the country’s largest herd of buffalo.
Address: Yellowstone National Park, WY 82190
With more than 200 miles of hiking trails winding through the Grand Teton National Park, each one competes to give you the best views in the park.
Of course, many would claim hiking to the summits of the Grand Teton Mountain, peaking at more than 13,000-ft high, and providing the best views on a clear day of the diverse landscape that contains plains, woodlands, alpine lakes, etc.
But while this is one of the most challenging hikes, there are other views, perhaps even more picturesque.
Go for a hike around Amphitheater Lake, tale the Paintbrush-Cascade Canyon Loop Trail, or admire the views from Inspiration Point.
These favorite hikes provide views of the snow-capped Grand Teton Mountains in the backdrop of stunning landscapes.
Address: Grand Teton National Park, WY
Devils Tower National Monument dominates the skyline in the Black Hills. This massive butte rises 867-ft above the forested grounds at its base, but you never get a true sense of its size until you see it up close.
Plan a trip to the first national monument in the US to admire the distinctive columns made of igneous rocks that run up the butte’s walls.
It’s one of the best Wyoming attractions for outdoor recreation, thanks to the numerous hiking trails.
If you’re up for a challenge, take a hike to the summit of Devils Tower National Monument, where you’ll reach a flattop peak spanning approximately the size of a football field.
The sacred grounds around the landmark are an archaeological site used by Native Americans with forest hiking trails.
Address: WY-110, Devils Tower, WY 82714
Relive one of Cody’s most iconic figures at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West. Sitting on 7-acres, this museum complex shares everything you need to know about the local legend that became famous in Wyoming and the region’s history.
Buffalo Bill Center of the West opened in 1917 and included five unique museums filled with information and engaging exhibitions.
The complex features the Buffalo Bill Museum, showcasing exhibitions about the life, career, and success of Buffalo Bill.
Enter inside the Whitney Western Art Museum to see masterpiece artworks created by Western artists or about the scenic landscapes found in the area.
History comes to life inside the Plains Indians Museum and the Draper Natural History Museum, where you’ll see the land’s original inhabitants and how it developed into the beauty it showcases today.
Address: 720 Sheridan Ave, Cody, WY 82414
For more than a century, the hot springs located outside present-day Thermopolis have been one of the favorite destinations in Wyoming to visit.
The state is full of outdoor adventures, but this is one of the best Wyoming attractions if you’re looking for a place to relax.
Whether you’re visiting during the summer or the winter, your body will warm to the water’s 100+ degree temperatures as soon as you dip into the natural pool.
Hot Springs State Park offers multiple ways to experience the warm sensations of the waters.
Every year, nearly two million visitors arrive at the hot springs, visiting the State Bath House, Star Plunge, Hellies Tepee, and other natural pools. If you’re lucky, you’ll get to see bison roaming by during your bath.
Address: 220 Park St, Thermopolis, WY 82443
Also Read: 25 Best State Parks in the US
Witness one of the most impressive natural attractions in Wyoming when visiting Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area.
This large park combines sightseeing with recreation as more than a dozen hiking trails help you discover the most scenic parts of the park.
Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area sits on the Wyoming-Montana border, with many interstate trails inside it.
Hike the Mouth of the Canyon Trail for perfect views of the Bighorn and Pryor Mountains.
Sykes Mountain Trail is another park favorite, giving you views of Bighorn Canyon and Wyoming’s Horseshoe Bend along the way. Other routes take you to the historic ranches, such as Mason-Lovell Ranch.
If one day isn’t enough to appreciate the park’s incredible sights, nearby campgrounds let you stay overnight.
Address: 20 Highway 14A East, Fort Smith, MT 59035
Celebrate Cheyenne’s western heritage, past and present, at the Cheyenne’s Frontier Days Old West Museum.
Located in the state capital, the museum spotlights the best of Wyoming, its societal and technological feats, and more.
Frontier Days is an annual festival in Cheyenne that brings out locals and tourists to relish in the golden eras of the old west and pioneering days of the old frontier. It’s the largest western and rodeo festival in the world!
The Cheyenne Frontier Days Old West Museum preserves the festival legacy with more than 400,000 objects.
Learn about the early days of life of the frontier in Wyoming, see authentic vintage cars that were first to arrive in the state, and more.
Address: 4610 Carey Ave, Cheyenne, WY 82001
Imagine the verdant plains deep below the Fossil Butte once filled with water to form Fossil Lake.
This ancient lake dates back more than 50-million years and left behind plenty of evidence of its history.
Can you believe that Fossil Butte National Monument has the world’s most abundance of fossils? The lake environment preserved fossils uncovered from the lake floor that scientists have traced back to the Eocene Period.
Stop by the visitor center to browse the exhibitions of several fossils collected at the site. It has fossils of marine life like fish and turtles, plants, and even small mammals.
After, explore the monument’s hiking trails to see if you encounter fossil discoveries of your own.
Address: 864 Chicken Creek Rd, Kemmerer, WY 83101
Set against the backdrop of the Teton Mountains, Teton Village is a quiet mountain town with a population slightly higher than 300.
Still, it receives significantly more than that in tourists every year. But what does this town have to offer that makes it one of the best places to visit in Wyoming? Skiing!
Teton Village is set at the foothills of the mountains, an ideal place to make basecamp at one of the nearby ski resorts like Teton Lodge and the Jackson Hole Resort. Enjoy shredding the downhill slopes or cross-country skiing treks through the snow.
The summer also offers plenty of fun. Explore trails designed for hiking and horseback riding. Or rent bikes and go for a cruise through Bike Park.
Address: 3200 West McCollister Drive, Teton Village, WY 83025
The college town buzz of Laramie turns into the prehistoric age the closer you get to the University of Wyoming Geological Museum.
The paved pathway will soon cross paths with the life-sized t-rex in front of the museum, the first of many model dinosaurs that bring these prehistoric creatures back to life.
Multimedia exhibitions and a collection of 50,000 fossils and geological facts have made the Geological Museum one of the top in the nation—especially for dinosaurs.
It offers two floors exhibiting the diversity of geology and wildlife in Wyoming. Inside, you'll see a skeleton recreation of Brontosaurs, triceratops, and Big Al, watch videos and even play in the sandbox to see how the topography projection alters.
Address: 1000 E University Ave, Laramie, WY 82071
In less than an hour's drive from Jackson Hole, you can find yourself high in the Teton Mountains at the Grand Targhee Ski Resort.
It's one of the top places to visit in Wyoming, with over 2,500-acres of the skiable area yet not as big of crowds as you'll find in neighboring resorts.
Your wintertime fun meter will shoot off the charts while you take the plunge down several of the 72 ski trails leading down the two mountain peaks.
Its ski season begins in November when the ski lifts start up and expedite the trip to the top of verticals as high as 2,270-ft to maximize your time at the resort.
Address: 3300 Ski Hill Rd, Alta, WY 83414
Wyoming was a critical section for many of the early US historical trails.
Early pioneers traveling west, communities sharing trade and messages, and much more, many have left their footprints in the history of Wyoming.
A visit to the National Historic Trails Interpretive Center is what to do in Wyoming to gain insight into its rich history and the role of famous trails across America.
Hear tales and see the routes of the Oregon Trail, Pony Express Trail, California Trail, and the Mormon Trail.
The interpretive center does an excellent job presenting details about each trail, artifacts, and their importance in the context of America.
Be sure to check the museum’s program schedule for a chance to attend events with guest speakers, historians, and more.
Address: 1501 N Poplar St, Casper, WY 82601
Depending on who you were, seeing the Fort Laramie National Historic Site while trekking through the Wyoming region could mean good or bad news.
It meant good news for many emigrating on the historic trails west or supporting its thriving fur trade commerce.
However, for Native Americans, it meant that resistance was unlikely at the fortified structure. As for tourists, it's one of Wyoming's best historical sites to visit.
Fort Laramie National Historic Site was strategically built near where the Laramie River and North Platte River meet.
Visitors can see many preserved structures, like the adobe walls that replaces the original logs used when it was built in the 1840s.
Before leaving, stop by the site’s visitor center for its noteworthy bookstore.
Address: 965 Grey Rocks Road, Fort Laramie, WY 82212
You’ll nearly be a dinosaur expert by the time you walk out of the Wyoming Dinosaur Center.
It’s one of the many archaeological-themed museum attractions in Wyoming that holds a unique collection of dinosaur bones and other artifacts.
With more than 200 eye-catching displays, you’ll have plenty to gawk at.
See life-size skeleton models of a wholly mammoth and raptors, see bones and dino prints that were buried nearby, or visit the source of all these discoveries at one of the 13 excavation sites just a short drive away.
Beautifully-deigned exhibitions present information and displays via diorama or information plaques, detailing more than 145-million years of history in Wyoming.
Address: 110 Carter Ranch Rd, Thermopolis, WY 82443
The scorching red colors of the rocks surrounding the Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area rightfully give it its name. And as the sun provides a glowing allure to the scenery, it's a must-see in Wyoming.
Nestled in the Ashely National Forest, the 91-mile gorge has parts in Wyoming and Utah.
Visitors can visit the site for outdoor recreation when the weather is nice. Climb into a boat and explore the surface of the Flaming Gorge Lake or zip across the water on waterskis.
Backpacking trails through the monuments take you to views of the canyon, trekking through the forest, and carving out your own path in the wilderness area.
Address: 25 Utah 43, Manila, UT 84046
Covering more than 3.4-million acres, the Bridger-Teton National Forest is the third-largest forest area in the continental US.
Yet, only a fraction of these lands has been discovered because more than one million acres are still designated as wilderness.
You’ll have an easy time accessing Bridget-Teton National Forest thanks to its convenient location adjacent to Yellowstone National Park and Grand Teton National Park.
Views of the mountain range surround the forest landscape, which features lakes sitting beneath towering pine trees.
Outdoor recreation is one of the top pastimes when visiting the Bridger-Teton National Forest.
Hikes like the Snow King Summit Trail provide stunning views or make the journey to local landmarks like the Clear Creek Natural Bridge.
The castle-like building of the Wyoming Frontier Prison Museum is anything but a fairy tale.
Opened in 1901 as the state’s first prison, it operated for 80 years, providing a place for prisoner rehabilitation or being served the ultimate punishment.
Visit Set aside an hour for the guided tour through the Wyoming Frontier Prison Museum.
The tour takes you inside the cell blocks where prisoners were kept and frequently held riots, walk the penitentiary grounds to experience the only bit of freedom prisoners received, see the cafeteria where they ate meals, and make the last walk to the Death House.
The onsite museum holds artifacts of the prison's dark past, including a rope used in hangings and a model of how the gallows worked.
Address: 500 W Walnut St, Rawlins, WY 82301
Views of the lush valley with towering cliffs from the Grand Teton Mountains shape the iconic scenery at Phelps Lake.
Sitting more than a mile high in the mountains of Grand Teton National Park, it’s a sight to behold.
The picturesque landscape reflects off the expansive water surface when the waters are still.
Glaciers carved out the entire region over thousands of years, and you can still feel the cold temperatures when you go for a swim during the summer.
You can also choose to stay dry and enjoy the lake just the same. Hike the mile-long trek to Phelps Lake Overlook for a viewpoint 400-ft over the lake before circling back down for the mile trek back.
Address: Grand Teton National Park, WY
There are endless ways to encounter the diverse wildlife in Wyoming.
Visiting the National Museum of Wildlife Art is one of the unique Wyoming attractions to see animals artistically represented by local and international talent.
The National Museum of Wildlife Art opened in 1987 with a collection from Joffa and William Kerr.
Decades later, it holds more than 5,000 works of art representing 550 artists, including Carl Rungius and Bob Kuhn.
The museum features works arranged in 14 galleries, bringing the wildlife from nature into a cultural viewing experience.
After browsing the museum galleries, go for a walk on the sculpture trail to see 20 life-size sculptures of your favorite Wyoming animals.
Address: 2820 Rungius Rd, Jackson, WY 83001
Dress up in your finest cowboy boots and giddy up to the annual Cheyenne Frontier Days Festival.
This festival is one of the best things to do in Wyoming to experience the state’s rich western heritage.
The folks in Cheyenne and beyond have celebrated their old west lifestyles since 1897, and it continues to be one of the most festive events of the year. So much that it packs exciting activities and events over 10 days.
You’ll be mesmerized by trained cowboys twirling their rope at the outdoor rodeo in an attempt to lasso steers or see who has the fastest steed at the pony races.
Then, you can join the fun at one of the live country music performances filled with dances.
Address: 1210 W 8th Ave, Cheyenne, WY 82001
You won’t even reach the end of the 1.2-mile-long hike on the Mystic Falls Trail before you hear the rushing waters of the Little Firehole River cascading down Madison Plateau to form the 70-ft tall Mystic Falls.
It’s one of the following spots in Wyoming after seeing Old Faithful in Yellowstone National Park because you’ll only be a couple of miles away from the trailhead.
The Mystic Falls Trail starts at the Biscuit Basin Boardwalk, quickly turning into a nature hike through a dense coniferous forest. But in the end, you’ll get to enjoy the eye-level sights of a scenic waterfall.
To see the falls at the true force and have the best hiking conditions, visit between May and October.
Address: Yellowstone National Park, Teton County, WY
For more than a century, elk have used the plains adjacent to the Grand Teton National Park as a winter getaway to graze in the grasslands.
However, it wasn’t until 1912 that 24,700 acres of these lands were officially designated at the National Elk Refuge.
The refuge’s mission of protecting the elk population and environment has proven successful since it still draws one of the world’s largest elk herds.
Go sightseeing at the refuge during the winter to see upwards of 7,500 elk who migrate to the area.
The large antlers poke above the crowd as you see the herd standing against the backdrop of the snow-covered mountains.
The refuge even offers horse-drawn carriage rides for an up-close look at the animals.
Address: 675 E Broadway Ave, Jackson, WY 83001
A few hours inside the Jackson Hole Children’s Museum (JHCM) will feel like seconds as kids have some of the most fun here while visiting Wyoming.
The JHCM is one of the best kid-friendly things to do in Wyoming that lets them experience a new way of learning.
Education has never been so fun. The JHCM creates a space for kids of all ages to play, discover, and be inspired by new ideas.
They’ll get hands-on experience in STEM subjects and have plenty to keep their brains active during the visit.
Browse each of the museum halls to see what exciting activity awaits. Kids can explore their artistic side with finger painting, become problem solvers with mind-jogging puzzles, and use their pent-up energy on the playscape.
Address: 155 N Jean St, Jackson, WY 83001
You’ll find much more than natural pools in the Hot Springs State Park.
While some venues leveraged the heated springs to create a spa experience, other places like the Star Plunge Water Park turned these same waters into a world-class water park experience.
Go for a splash in the Star Plunge Water Park, where you’ll find water slides, indoor pools, and outdoor pools. It’s provided fun for families since opening in 1900 and has added upgrades throughout its years.
The highlight of the park is the record-breaking Super Star 500 Water Slide, which is the longest in the world at 500-ft long.
And the best part is that all of the water is naturally heated at a comfortable 90-degrees year-round.
Address: 115 Big Springs Dr, Thermopolis, WY 82443
Walking through the Old Trail Town feels like walking through a movie set of your favorite western.
This recreated town shows visitors what a frontier settlement looked like, set in an authentic setting of mountains, grasslands, and dusty trails.
Old Trail Town started in 1967 with five buildings but has since expanded to an entire homestead.
Its 27 buildings dating back to 1879 have been relocated to the current site where you’ll immerse in the old west heritage.
Walk the barren streets lined with buildings where you’ll see vintage horse-drawn cars.
Also, visit the Museum of the Old West to see preserved artifacts and memorabilia from the frontier era.
Address: 1831 Demaris Dr, Cody, WY 82414
The five-year project on the Shoshone river created the world's largest dam at its time when it was completed in 1910.
But, although the Buffalo Bill Dam has surpassed its height, its 325-ft statue remains one of the must-see Wyoming tourist attractions.
Buffalo Bill Dam is built on land once owned by Buffalo Bill himself, just outside Cody.
It’s a stunning architectural feat in the past and present as it was the first arched concrete dam built. It holds back the mighty river, creating a reservoir.
Start your visit at the Buffalo Bill Dam Visitor Center. It’s a seasonal attraction open from May to September, offering views peering down into the gorge and information about its architectural wonder.
Address: 4808 N Fork Hwy, Cody, WY 82414
A clearing in the Bighorn National Forest reveals the Bighorn Medicine Wheel, a historical landmark left behind by Plains Indians.
Local tribes, including the Cheyenne, Dakota, and Shoshone tribes, used this wheel and other similar wheels in the region for ceremonies and science.
Bighorn Medicine wheel isn’t the oldest wheel discovered, but it’s one of the most well-known, largely kept intact since being constructed in the mid-1800s.
Interpretation of the wheel is still being explored, but you can read the onsite information plaque to learn about its structure and use.
An aerial view of the Bighorn Medicine Wheel provides the best look to see the meticulous arrangement of the white limestone. It forms 28 wheel spokes, each likely having an important meaning.
Address: Lovell, WY 82431
Weary travelers passing through Buffalo, Wyoming, can always count on “The Ox” to have a cozy space to lay their heads.
It’s a tradition that continues today as the Historic Occidental Hotel Museum offers a living history museum experience for your accommodation.
The “Ox” looks good as new after the interior and exterior renovations. The newly painted letters stretch across the red-brick building while the inside preserves its antique charm with furnishing and ambiance.
Each suite features period décor, giving you a taste of old western hospitality.
You’ll be in a prime location in Buffalo when staying at the Historic Occidental Hotel Museum, nearby many fun things to do around Wyoming.
It sits on Occidental Row, where you’ll find saloons full of old west nightlife vibes.
Address: 10 N Main St, Buffalo, WY 82834
You’ll have approximately 875 square miles of grasslands to explore when you head to the Thunder Basin National Grassland for outdoor recreation.
These expansive fields are the third-largest national grassland in the US.
Venture to the northeast region of Wyoming, where you’ll find the vast mixed-grass prairie landscape sitting between the Black Hills and the Big Horn Mountains.
There’s plenty of space for tourists and wildlife to roam together and occasionally cross paths in an exciting moment if you get lucky!
There are miles of hiking trails through Thunder Basin National Grassland. Keep your eyes up for a chance to see animals like prairie dogs, foxes, deer, ferrets, and tons of birds. Backcountry camping is also permitted.
Address: 2250 E Richards St, Douglas, WY 82633
You can see Gannett Peak towering above the valleys of the Bridger-Teton National Forest.
But have you ever considered just how high it goes? Gannett Peak is the highest point in Wyoming, with an elevation of more than 13,800-ft tall.
Hiking to the summit is possible, but not for the everyday hiker. So many people simply admire views from its base.
Gannett Peak sits right on the Continental Divide as part of the Wild River Range.
Its glaciers from the largest in the Rocky Mountains, and why you’ll always see it decorated with snowcaps even during the summer months.
For the brave heart, hiking to the peak can take as long as a week to complete the round-trip journey. And you’ll need plenty of gear for climbing, camping, and staying warm during your ascent.
Wyoming’s picturesque nature sights and rich frontier history makes it a unique state to visit.
You’ll spend plenty of time outdoors with year-round activities like hiking, boating, and skiing.
Alternatively, there are several attractions in Wyoming that reveal its storied past of cowboys, early pioneers, Native Americans, and even dating back to the time of dinosaurs.
Whether exploring the capital Cheyenne or national parks like Yellowstone and Grand Teton, there are tons of things to do in Wyoming for all ages.
From kids to elders, there are museums, hikes, and festivals that you don’t want to miss. Whether visiting in the warm weather or wintertime, Wyoming is a state that will impress you with its natural and historical beauty.