The rugged mountains, swift-flowing rivers, deep canyons, evergreen forests, and pristine lakes of Idaho will make your Memorial Day weekend getaway unforgettable. Paired with festivals, patriotic parades, and exiting outdoor activities, you’re in for a real holiday treat. Book a stay at one of many incredible Idaho vacation rentals for your upcoming trip. Take a look at the best Memorial Day weekend getaway locations in Idaho.

1. McCall

Source: Flickr/Frank Fujimoto

The resort town of McCall lies on the south shore of Payette Lake in the midst of the Payette National Forest at the base of the Idaho Panhandle. Memorial Day weekend initiates the start of summer activities around the lake. Rent jet skis, pontoon boats, and ski boats for water sport fun on the lake at Cheap Thrills Rentals. If you want to go slower, acquire canoes or kayaks from Backwoods Adventures, and paddle your way around the lake. Payette Lake Cruises offers tours of the lake in a comfortable cruise ship with drinks and dining. Gravity Sports supplies the bicycles you need to take advantage of the miles of lakeside trails. Head for Burgdorf Hot Springs for a relaxing soak after all the recreational activities. Enjoy fine dining with a superb view of the lake at the Anchor Restaurant.

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2. Coeur d’Alene

Source: Flickr/Charles (Chuck) Peterson

Located on the western side of the Idaho Panhandle near the border with Washington State, the city of Coeur d’Alene offers a wide range of Memorial Day weekend recreational activities. The ROW Adventure Center helps you arrange equipment and itineraries for kayaking and fly fishing on Lake Coeur d’Alene and the Coeur d’Alene River. Take the family to the Silverwood Theme Park and Boulder Beach Water Park to enjoy gigantic roller coasters, awe-inspiring water slides, and other thrills. Timberline Adventures offers you an exciting tour of multiple zip-lines and sky bridges from tree to tree over magnificent wilderness. Play 18 holes at the Coeur d’Alene Golf Course with its emerald fairways and unique floating green. When you’re hungry, try some Italian cuisine along with a terrific view on the outdoor patio at Tony’s on the Lake.

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3. Bonners Ferry

Source: Flickr/Tyler M. Yates

The beautiful city of Bonners Ferry is at the northern end of the Idaho Panhandle near the Canadian border. Nearby is Kootenai National Wildlife Refuge, where you can observe moose, elk, deer, bear, and many species of birds. Contact 3 Heart Outfitters to help you arrange guided trips to the refuge or fly fishing for rainbow trout on the Kootenai River. Be sure to take a hike to visit the spectacular nearby waterfalls such as Snow Creek Falls and Copper Falls. The Rusty Moose Tavern and Grill serves great steak and burgers with a pleasant and friendly rustic atmosphere. Don’t miss the annual Bonners Ferry Memorial Day parade.

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4. Sun Valley

Source: Flickr/Miguel Vieira

The resort city of Sun Valley is in central Idaho in the Wood River Valley near spectacular Bald Mountain and the Sawtooth National Recreation Area. Sawtooth Adventure arranges guided mountain bike rides through the Sawtooth Range and whitewater rafting, kayaking, and fly fishing on the Salmon River. Sun Valley Stables offers scenic horseback rides. If hiking is your thing, Sturtevant’s Sun Valley Mountain Guides take you from trailheads to such magnificent locations as Kane Lake, Surprise Valley, Summit Creek, and Norton Lakes. Take the time to peruse through the many exhibitions at the art galleries in town, and at the end of the day enjoy live music and fine dining at the Limelight Lounge.

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5. Boise

Boise, the state capital, lies in southwestern Idaho with the foothills of the Rocky Mountains as a backdrop. The 25-mile Boise River Greenbelt runs through the city, providing scenic paths for walking and cycling. The amazing Boise Whitewater Park allows you to practice surfing and kayaking right in the middle of the downtown area. Enjoy observing exotic animals and fascinating marine life at Zoo Boise and the Idaho Aquarium. A visit to the Idaho Military History Museum to view the displays and artifacts on Idaho involvement in various branches of military service is an absorbing Memorial Day activity.

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6. Lewiston

Source: Flickr/Michael B.

Vacation rentals in Lewiston on the western edge of the Idaho Panhandle provide convenient access to the awesome Hell’s Canyon Recreation Area, the site of the deepest river gorge in North America. River Quest Excursions takes you for rafting and steelhead fishing in the canyon. For a bird’s-eye view, take an aerial tour with Kiwi Air Helicopter. Take a tasting tour of the numerous wineries in Lewis-Clark Valley with Twisted Vine Wine Tours. The Nez Perce National Historic Park highlights the fascinating history of this iconic Native American tribe, and the Lewis and Clark Discovery Center offers insight into the amazing journey of the explorers who first crossed the North American continent. For a great steak meal, try the Quay Restaurant on the Snake River in Clarkston.

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7. Idaho Falls

Idaho Falls is on the Snake River Plain in the Rocky Mountains in eastern Idaho not far from Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Parks. Take a relaxing drive to view these scenic wonders. The city has a beautiful miles-long River Walk along the Snake River that is ideal for strolling and cycling. Be sure to visit the Museum of Idaho, the state’s largest museum, which has exhibits on local history and ecology, space exploration, dinosaurs, and many other subjects. Enjoy fine dining at the Copper Rill Restaurant on the River Parkway. The Idaho Falls Exchange Club hosts an annual Field of Honor Memorial with 1,000 American flags set up in Freeman Park over the Memorial Day weekend.

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8. Pocatello

Source: Flickr/Edgar Zuniga Jr.

Known as the Gateway to the Northwest during the era of the Oregon Trail, historic Pocatello lies in the Rocky Mountain foothills in southeastern Idaho. The Portneuf Greenway, the City Creek Trail, and other recreational areas around the city provide hundreds of miles of trails for walking and cycling. Spacious Ross Park includes the Pocatello Zoo, which displays animals from the Rocky Mountain area, the Fort Hall Replica and Pocatello Junction Town Site, which focuses on local history, and the Aquatic Complex, which has a water slide, a lazy river, and a children’s pool. Visit the Idaho Museum of Natural History at Idaho State University for an amazing look at the paleontology and ecology of the region. Try the Sandpiper Restaurant in Pocatello for some excellent prime ribs, steak, and seafood.

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9. Twin Falls

Source: Flickr/Dave3006

Twin Falls is in south-central Idaho adjacent to the awe-inspiring Snake River Canyon. Idaho Guide Service takes you on exciting white water rafting adventures along the Snake River. For a more leisurely view of the river, take a dinner cruise aboard a luxury ship with 1000 Springs Tours out of nearby Hagerman. For an unforgettable thrill, take a base jump off the Perrine Bridge into Snake River Canyon with Tandem BASE. After all the activity, have a swim and soak in soothing warm water at the Miracle Hot Springs.

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