Road-tripping through Montana’s Glacier National Park region is something out of a postcard. As you cruise along, you’ll soak in expansive mountain views, incredible wildlife, magnificent sunsets, and quaint towns like Whitefish, Montana. It is quite possibly one of the most charming mountain towns I’ve ever seen. If you find yourself in downtown Whitefish, don’t miss the opportunity to stroll around and pop into the local shops, eateries, and pubs in town. Here are some of my favorites.
You’ll need a strong cup of Joe to perk you up for a day of Glacier National Park adventures. For that, look no further than Montana Coffee Traders, brewed fresh at the Whitefish Coffeehouse on Central Avenue. Montana Coffee Traders brewed their first cup out of an old Montana farmhouse back in 1981. Today their coffee is brewed across Montana and is hailed for being one of the best cups of coffee in the state. I started each day with a delicious soy cortado. The coffee shop is also a great spot to pick up local Montana-made treats for your friends and family at home.
This idyllic little ice cream shop on Third Street had me at huckleberry. Huckleberry ice cream, that is. Don’t skimp on this delicious, vivid lavender ice cream that uses Montana’s famous local wild berries to create its signature flavor. Huckleberry treats are all over Montana and it’s not just ice cream. Keep your eyes peeled for huckleberry candy, jam, and even pie!
For one of the most breathtaking rooftop views in all of Whitefish, head over to the Skybar at Casey’s. It’s the only rooftop hangout in town, and it definitely delivers on al fresco atmosphere. Cozy up for happy hour around their unique fire tables as you watch the sun sink behind the Rocky Mountains.
Viewfinder Tip: For a taste of Montana, order Casey’s Huckleberry Margarita!
If you’re searching for the local dive bar scene, this is the spot. The building housing the Bulldog Saloon is over 100 years old and survived through the Prohibition by selling everything from batteries to fishing tackle. Today it is a favorite watering hole for locals and tourists alike, but out-of-towners get an extra kick out of the racy bathroom decor. If you are with kids, be forewarned! It wouldn’t be a Montana eatery without something with huckleberry on the menu. Here, you can indulge in some deep fried huckleberry wings.
The Great Northern Brewing Company
When Minott Wessinger was searching for the perfect place to start a brewery in Montana, one of the reasons Whitefish bubbled to the top of the list was it’s incredibly clean water source. In 1994, doors to the Great Northern Brewing Company opened and today have an award-winning operation. Their Wheatfish lager won awards in the 2013 and 2014 Great American Beer Festival, and yes, they also brew Wild Huckleberry beer. A perfect souvenir from your Glacier Country vacation.
What’s your favorite hangout in Whitefish?