Summers in Boise are absolute magic! Access to the great outdoors, epic patios, and live concerts in the beautiful gardens are what make it so special. I created this Ultimate Boise Summer Guide so that you will be in the know about Boise summer events. Every person should experience a Boise summer at least once in their lifetime! I’ve included so many amazing activities so that every person will be able to find what they are looking for.
I’m an avid adventurer so I included all the river rafting, hiking, biking, and exploring. I definitely included the best outdoor activities to find in Boise. Not into outdoor activities? I also included fabulous food spots, delicious drink locations, and more. Honestly, this is the ultimate guide to all things summer in Boise. Showcasing the must-visit places in Boise during summer. Cheers to summers spent with great company, good food, and endless memories being made.
There are so many things to do in Boise during the summer. I am here to share with you an easy way to find all of it! Be sure to check out the full blog so you know where to go.
Boise Summer Bucket List
Summer in Boise, the capital city of Idaho, offers a wide range of activities and events for residents and visitors alike. Here are some highlights of spending summer in Boise:
Boise is surrounded by natural beauty, and the summer season provides ample opportunities to enjoy outdoor activities. The Boise River Greenbelt, a scenic pathway that follows the river, is perfect for biking, walking, or jogging. You can also go hiking in the nearby foothills or enjoy water sports such as paddleboarding, kayaking, and tubing on the Boise River.
Parks & Gardens
Boise is known for its well-maintained parks and vibrant gardens. Julia Davis Park, located downtown, offers a peaceful oasis with rose gardens, a duck pond, and walking paths. Ann Morrison Park and Kathryn Albertson Park are also popular choices for picnics, strolling, and recreational activities.
Boise River Floating
Floating the Boise River is a beloved summer activity in the city. You can rent inner tubes or inflatable rafts and leisurely float down the river, enjoying the scenic views and cooling off in the water. The float typically begins at Barber Park and ends at Ann Morrison Park.
Boise hosts a variety of cultural events during the summer months. The Boise Art Museum features exhibitions showcasing local and international artists. Alive After Five, a free concert series held on Wednesday evenings in downtown Boise, offers live music, food, and drinks. The Idaho Shakespeare Festival also takes place during the summer, presenting outdoor theater performances.
Boise boasts several farmer’s markets where you can explore and purchase fresh produce, artisanal products, and local crafts. The Capital City Public Market, located downtown, is one of the largest and most popular markets in the area. It offers a vibrant atmosphere with food vendors, live music, and a wide variety of goods.
Summer in Boise brings a range of festivals and celebrations. The Boise Music Festival is a major event featuring live music performances across different genres. The Western Idaho Fair offers carnival rides, livestock exhibits, live entertainment, and delicious fair food. Other festivals include the Boise Pride Festival, Boise Brewfest, and the Boise Goathead Fest.
Patio Dining & Craft Breweries
Boise has a thriving food and craft beer scene. Many restaurants in the city offer outdoor patio dining, allowing you to enjoy the pleasant summer weather while savoring delicious meals. Additionally, Boise is home to numerous breweries and taprooms, where you can sample locally crafted beers.
These are just a few highlights of spending summer in Boise. The city’s vibrant atmosphere, natural surroundings, and cultural events make it an enjoyable destination for outdoor enthusiasts, art lovers, foodies, and families alike.
I love to create & share on Instagram, TikTok, and Pinterest. If we aren’t friends over on these platforms, let’s change that today!
Boise Summer Events & Attractions
I have to say hiking Table Rock is one of the bucket list trails in Boise. Definitely, one that you should do at least once so you can check the box. Table Rock is fully exposed so this trail should be hiking in the early morning or late evening to avoid high temps. Explore this 3.7-mile loop trail near Boise, Idaho. Generally considered a moderately challenging route, it takes an average of 1 h 59 min to complete. This is a very popular area for birding, hiking, and horseback riding, so you’ll likely encounter other people while exploring. The best times to visit this trail are March through November. Dogs are welcome but must be on a leash.
Grab some tickets to the Idaho Botanical Gardens. A summer music series live from the Idaho Botanical Garden on the historical Outlaw Field. Come experience musical performances from your favorite internationally-known artists in Idaho’s most unique and scenic concert spot! One of the Garden’s biggest fundraisers of the year.
This is an incredible opportunity to grab tickets and enjoy a show at the Idaho Shakespeare Festival. The perfect place for the whole family to enjoy. Grab a group of friends and go enjoy the artistic abilities of the actors. Great food and drinks are served at the festival, another reason to go!
The Festival’s mission is to produce great theater, entertain and educate. To realize this mission, the Festival seeks to:
Develop an artistic home for theater artists that supports emerging actors, encourages new regional and national playwrights, promotes sustained employment opportunities for artists, and attracts the very best artistic staff;
Educate through a range of programs, including programs and tours for K – 12 children and teachers, ongoing adult education, interpretive programming, affiliations with universities and cultural organizations, as well as residencies and training opportunities for actors;
Illuminate human nature and our rich cultural heritage through a repertory that includes the plays of William Shakespeare, the richest and most complex in the English language, together with other works from a variety of dramatic periods and genres; and
Promote cultural understanding by highlighting diverse traditions and supporting artists and audiences of all ages, ethnicities, and backgrounds.
The Western Idaho Fair is an event that every person should experience at least once. Since 1897, the Western Idaho Fair is a celebration of agriculture, ranching, and life in the state of Idaho. Nothing says summer like a day at the fair. The people, the animals, and the food are what make summers memorable and family-friendly summer activity in Boise.
Idaho’s #1 Large Outdoor Rodeo and one of the Top 5 Large Professional Outdoor Rodeos in the entire US. The Caldwell Night Rodeo is an event that should not be missed. Offering so much fun, food & entertainment for the whole family to enjoy. Get dressed up in your best cowboy attire & get yourself to the rodeo!
Now in its 98th year, Caldwell Night Rodeo is one of the largest and longest-running annual events in Canyon County, drawing rodeo fans in excess of 45,000 over 5 action-packed nights. Listed among the Top 20 Professional Rodeos AND Top 5 Large Outdoor Rodeos in the nation, Caldwell Night Rodeo features the best professional cowboys, cowgirls and animal athletes in the world and is an annual stop on the professional rodeo tour.
As the first rodeo in the Pacific Northwest to ever be held under the lights, Caldwell Night Rodeo offers a true rodeo experience unlike any other. With over 600 world-class contestants and 7 action-packed nightly events, the excitement in our arena is electric. Equally divided by the infamous “Rowdies” and “Civies” – the CNR crowd plays an interactive role in the excitement of this one-of-a-kind rodeo.
In 2015, 2016 & 2017 CNR was voted the #1 Large Outdoor Family Event in Canyon County, one of the Top 10 Rodeo’s in the US by Real Time Cowboy Magazine, as well as one of the 101 Best Events in the West by American Cowboy Magazine. In 2016 & 2017, CNR was once again nominated as the Top Large Outdoor Rodeo in the US by the PRCA – a prestigious award it has been nominated for over 8 times in the last 17 years.
I grew up with a major-league baseball-playing dad so a great baseball game brings me back to my childhood. I love being in the stands and enjoying salty peanuts with a cold beverage. There is nothing like it and I always have a Boise Hawks game or two on my summer schedule. Be sure to check their schedule and see the special events they have. They even have evenings that your dog can join for the game, “Waggin Wednesdays.”
I love a great drive-in movie! I remember being so excited to pack treats, sleeping bags, and pillows as a kid. It was one of my favorite summertime things to do. I would never make it through both movies but I would try haha. There is something about the warm summer air, the smell of freshly popped popcorn & listening to the movie on your car radio. It’s totally nostalgic just writing about it let alone going and enjoying a drive-in movie. Be sure to take a look at their schedule and get a summer movie on the calendar.
Alive After 5 (AA5) is Boise’s longest-running, all-ages, FREE outdoor summer concert series produced annually by Downtown Boise Foundation. Celebrating its 36th Annual Alive After 5 season, this is the place to be for live music and fun for all. So many incredible artists lined up and ready to play all summer long. Be sure to check out their schedule and get yourself downtown to enjoy.
You might be scratching your head wondering where in Boise are you surfing waves. Luckily, I attached the link to the Boise Whitewater Park which has a live stream to see where to go. This is an epic spot in town for people to come and enjoy incredible surfing in the river. Definitely, a place to sit and watch for a while if surfing isn’t your thing. Or just pop onto the website linked and enjoy an entertaining scroll watching people surfing the wave in real-time. The perfect spot to be during the really hot, triple-digit summers that happen in Boise. Go for a swim, surf, or just dip your toes in on the side of the river.
I absolutely love Quinn’s Pond. It is a fabulous place to walk around, sit and watch the baby geese, or go for a paddle around the water. It is THE* place to be to cool down and have some fun during the summer months. Be sure to get it on your radar and head on over to have some fun. Not only is Quinn’s Pond home to Boise’s oldest paddling shop Idaho River Sports, but it’s also the venue for many events, new and old. From Hull-o-Ween event in October to the Fall Paddle Classic for SUP, canoe, and kayak in September, and daily SUP and SUP Yoga classes, and kayak roll clinics, Quinn’s Pond is the center stage of Boise’s new urban surf and paddling activities!
Bogus Basin has so much to offer year-round. Summertime in Boise means long days of sunlight, heading to the hills to beat the heat, and of course, staying active. The Bogus Basin team over recent years has designed their mountain landscape into a paradise of summer activities for everyone. Summer temps can get hot in the valley, escaping to Bogus Basin allows for the temps to drop and fun to be had. I love heading up for a mountain bike ride, live music, and yoga on the weekends. Be sure to check out their current calendar to know when to go.
- Glade Runner
- Scenic Chair Lifts
- Sourdough Slider
- The Launch Pad
- The Stack Rock
- Shaffer Butte Mining Co.
- The Mineshaft
- Disc Golf
Camel’s Back is definitely another Boise Bucket List trail that needs to be done at least once. This iconic large hill situated in the north end of Boise offers unbelievable views of the valley. It is a climb to get up but once at the top, you will realize it was worth the climb. I love to hike this trail early in the morning with a warm cup of coffee in hand or late in the evening for an epic sunset watch at the top. A 1.7-mile loop trail near Boise, Idaho. Generally considered a moderately challenging route, it takes an average of 50 min to complete. This is a popular trail for hiking, running, and walking, but you can still enjoy some solitude during quieter times of the day. Dogs are welcome but must be on a leash.
The perfect place for family-friendly summer activities! Roaring Springs offers more than 20 water attractions for all ages, including thrill rides, a wave pool, an Endless River, and a Bearfoot Bay kid’s play area. With the triple-digit temps that hit Boise mid-summer, this is the place you want to be to stay cool. With so many water attractions to choose from, food, and drinks, Roaring Springs is definitely a summer bucket list spot.
The STIL is one of my favorite ice cream spots in town! They create seriously delicious ice cream that everyone can enjoy! With flavors for kids to 21+ and over adult ice cream flavors to choose from. This is definitely the spot to grab a scoop or two to help you cool down on a hot summer day. Reinventing the Ice Cream Experience!! We set out to create unique flavors made from real ingredients. No artificial flavors, colors, or additives. The STIL crafts small batch ice cream from Idaho dairy, creative and creamy vegan options from coconut cream, and our famous booze-infused creations. Pair your scoop with our wide selection of local beer and wine for an experience unlike any other, create your own ice cream sandwich, or try yours as an affogato with fresh local espresso.
One of my favorite spots to stop and enjoy a sweet treat! Goody’s has everything you could ever crave. Every person can walk in and find exactly what they are looking for. Filled with stuffed animals, a case full of handmade chocolate, delicious caramel corn & freshly made ice cream. You can’t go wrong when you stop in at this darling spot tucked in the Northend. Goodys Soda Fountain is an ice cream, chocolate, and candy store in the heart of Hyde Park. We specialize in handmade ice cream, chocolate, and famous caramel corn. “Only too much is enough” is their store slogan & you can see it in the size of the scoops of ice cream that come out of their kitchen.
We take great pride in our Goody’s handmade chocolate. Each individual piece is made by one of our trained chocolatiers with no artificial colors, no artificial flavors, no preservatives, and no wax. We make chocolates in-store at Goody’s twice a week to ensure freshness and top quality. At Goody’s, we strive to create the best ice cream flavor and experience possible. Our ice cream is made multiple times each week right in our store in Hyde Park, Boise. We always use rich, high-quality cream and premium ingredients. When you take a bite or lick of Goody’s ice cream you taste 33 years of ice cream-making experience.
I absolutely love starting my weekend at the Boise Farmer’s Market. I love being able to walk the aisles and pick what I want to fill my plate with. There are so many vendors offering up delicious fresh produce, handmade pastries, and more. There is no shortage of goodness at the Boise Farmers Market, it is a must-go while in town.
The Boise Farmers Market supports a regenerative, healthy food and agricultural system by operating a vibrant marketplace featuring locally grown and crafted products. At the Boise Farmers Market, you will find fresh local seasonal vegetables and fruit, many types of locally raised protein, bread and pastries, honey, jams and sauces, fresh-roasted coffee, and a delicious selection of ready-to-eat foods. We always have the best of what is local and in season! Please join us at the Boise Farmers Market, where you’ll find farmers you can trust and food you can trace.
The Capital City Public Market is such a special place to be in town. This market is filled with farmers and artists showcasing what they have grown & made. I love being able to connect to the people behind my favorite food, crafts, and art. It is a must-visit spot on a Saturday morning in downtown Boise.
Welcome to Boise’s downtown Saturday market! The Capital City Public Market has been in operation since 1994 and our 29th Market season is now open in downtown Boise! Every Saturday, you can enjoy the sights and sounds of the public market, meet the producers themselves, and feel confident you are buying a product made in Idaho, from someone who knows the product they sell. We are open from mid-April to mid-December and are proud to provide natives and tourists alike the chance to eat fresh, shop small, and experience the Local side of Boise, Idaho.
Floating the Boise River is one of my favorite activities to do during the summer months in Boise. There is nothing better than grabbing a group of friends and heading out for a day of floating. There are so many ways to enjoy a great day on the water for any length of time. I have connected the Float The Boise website so that you have a resource to know everything before you go. The water is very powerful and it’s so important to put the proper items in place to ensure your safety. Be sure to go check it out before heading to the water to make sure you have all you need for a safe and fun day on the river.
Summer in my mind literally means being by a body of water to cool down during the hot temps. Lucky Peak is close to Boise and the perfect place to hop on a boat, kayak, paddleboard, or just sit on a sandy beach and enjoy. It is so easy to get here and even easier to lose track of time as you splish splash in the water. I have gone to Lucky Peak many times and have a blast every time I go,
Lucky Peak State Park is the perfect place for swimming, picnicking, fishing, boating, or biking. Sandy Point and Discovery Park are a 10-minute drive from downtown Boise or a 30-minute bike ride on the scenic Boise River Greenbelt. Springs Shores Marina is a 40-minute drive. Ride your bike to the park and enjoy a cool dip at Sandy Point Beach. Bring your family and your dog to Discovery Park for a picnic, or bring your water toys to Spring Shores, which offers boat ramps, ample parking, a full-service marina, watercraft rentals, and a convenience store.
Three distinct day-use units make up Lucky Peak State Park. Discovery is a popular roadside park that is a great place to host a company party or family reunion. Sandy Point, at the base of the Lucky Peak Dam, is popular for its beach and clear, cool water. Spring Shores offers lakeside access for water enthusiasts by providing two boat ramps, parking, a marina, watercraft rentals, and a convenience store.
That’s A Wrap!
I will continue to add to this Ultimate Boise Summer Guide as I do more fun things around town. If you have favorite things you love to do that aren’t on this list please let me know in the comments! I love hearing from you and would love your personal recommendations, so please don’t hesitate to reach out.
Be sure to check out my personal Boise Summer Bucket List Reel on Instagram & while you are there let’s be friends if we aren’t already!