Nestled in the heart of the Gem State, Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, offers a captivating blend of natural beauty, outdoor adventures, and cultural experiences. This charming city on the shores of Lake Coeur d’Alene has become a sought-after destination for those seeking a mix of relaxation and excitement. Whether you’re a nature enthusiast, history buff, or someone who simply appreciates a picturesque setting, Coeur d’Alene has something to offer for everyone. Let’s dive into the best things to do in this hidden gem of the Pacific Northwest.
Cruise Lake Coeur d’Alene: Kickstart your visit with a scenic cruise on Lake Coeur d’Alene. The crystal-clear waters surrounded by lush greenery provide a perfect backdrop for a leisurely boat ride. Several cruise options are available, from narrated tours sharing the area’s history to dinner cruises for a romantic evening under the stars.
Explore Tubbs Hill: Nature lovers will find solace in Tubbs Hill, a 120-acre natural area offering hiking trails with stunning views of the lake. The well-maintained paths wind through forests and along the shoreline, providing an ideal setting for a relaxing walk or a more challenging hike.
Visit the Coeur d’Alene Resort: The iconic Coeur d’Alene Resort stands as a symbol of luxury and elegance. Even if you’re not staying overnight, explore the resort’s amenities, including the world-famous floating golf green. Enjoy a meal with a view at one of the resort’s restaurants or treat yourself to a rejuvenating spa experience.
Take a Stroll in Downtown Coeur d’Alene: Immerse yourself in the city’s charm by wandering through downtown Coeur d’Alene. Lined with boutique shops, art galleries, and local eateries, the streets are alive with a vibrant atmosphere. Don’t forget to snap a photo with the city’s unique public art installations.
Experience Silverwood Theme Park: Just a short drive north, Silverwood Theme Park awaits thrill-seekers and families alike. Boasting roller coasters, water slides, and live entertainment, this amusement park guarantees a day of laughter and excitement.
Visit the Museum of North Idaho: Dive into the region’s rich history at the Museum of North Idaho. Located in Coeur d’Alene, the museum showcases exhibits detailing the area’s Native American heritage, mining history, and the development of the city.
Cycling on the Centennial Trail: Grab a bike and hit the Centennial Trail, a 24-mile scenic pathway that winds its way through Coeur d’Alene and the surrounding areas. With breathtaking views of the lake and easy access from downtown, it’s a favorite among cyclists and pedestrians.
Sample Local Cuisine: Culinary enthusiasts will delight in Coeur d’Alene’s diverse dining scene. From waterfront restaurants with panoramic views to cozy cafes offering locally sourced fare, there’s a flavor for every palate.
Scenic Drive on Coeur d’Alene Scenic Byway: Embark on a picturesque drive along the Coeur d’Alene Scenic Byway. This 35-mile route takes you through dense forests, charming communities, and offers breathtaking vistas of Lake Coeur d’Alene. Pack a picnic and make stops at designated viewpoints for a truly immersive experience.
Fishing on the Spokane River: Anglers will find paradise on the Spokane River, which flows through the heart of Coeur d’Alene. Cast your line for a chance to catch rainbow trout and enjoy the serene surroundings. Local outfitters can provide equipment and guided fishing tours.
Visit the Old Mission State Park: Dive into history at the Old Mission State Park, home to the Cataldo Mission. This beautifully preserved mission, built in the mid-19th century, offers insight into the region’s early days. The park also features walking trails and picnic areas for a leisurely day outdoors.
Golf at the Coeur d’Alene Golf Course: Golf enthusiasts shouldn’t miss the chance to play a round at the world-renowned Coeur d’Alene Golf Course. Known for its floating green, this course provides a unique and challenging golfing experience with stunning views of the lake.
Winter Sports at Schweitzer Mountain Resort: If you’re visiting during the winter months, head to Schweitzer Mountain Resort for a winter wonderland experience. Skiing, snowboarding, and snowshoeing are popular activities, and the resort offers cozy accommodations with panoramic views.
Art Galleries in the Arts District: Explore Coeur d’Alene’s thriving arts scene by visiting the Arts District. Wander through galleries showcasing local and regional artwork, attend art events, and immerse yourself in the creative spirit of the community.
Day Trip to Spokane, Washington: Coeur d’Alene’s proximity to Spokane makes it easy to plan a day trip to this vibrant city. Explore Riverfront Park, visit the Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture, and stroll through the historic districts for a change of scenery.
Horseback Riding Adventures: Saddle up for an equestrian adventure through the scenic landscapes surrounding Coeur d’Alene. Numerous ranches and outfitters offer horseback riding experiences suitable for all skill levels, allowing you to connect with nature in a unique way.
Attend Festivals and Events: Check the local calendar for festivals and events happening during your visit. From the Downtown Street Fair to the Coeur d’Alene Resort’s holiday festivities, these events showcase the city’s vibrant culture and community spirit.
Relax at the City Beach: Unwind at Coeur d’Alene City Beach, a sandy oasis on the shores of the lake. Swim, sunbathe, or simply enjoy the tranquility of the water. The beach is a perfect spot for a family picnic or a romantic lakeside escape.
Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, is a destination that seamlessly blends natural beauty, outdoor adventures, and cultural experiences. Whether you’re exploring the shores of Lake Coeur d’Alene, hiking through Tubbs Hill, or indulging in the local cuisine, the city offers a myriad of activities for every traveler. Plan your visit to this hidden gem in the Gem State, and you’re sure to create lasting memories amidst the stunning landscapes and warm hospitality of Coeur d’Alene.