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Whether you are visiting The Cowboy State for business or pleasure, you’ll enjoy a wide selection of attractions in Wyoming. Famous for Yellowstone National Park, the first national park in the country, the state is also known for unique landmarks like the Teton Range, Bighorn Canyon and Devils Tower. You’ll feel like you’ve traveled back in time as you visit legendary places like the Oregon Trail, the Pony Express Route and the terrain traversed by pioneers heading west.
Wherever you travel in the state you’ll have an opportunity to view important historic sites. Medicine Lodge State Archaeological Site is a short drive from Thermopolis and Bighorn National Forest. View huge sandstone cliffs adorned with Native American petroglyphs and pictographs. The etchings were made by some of the earliest inhabitants of the area. The Oregon Trail Ruts in Guernsey State Park are listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Located northeast of Wheatland, the carefully preserved wagon ruts were made by travelers on the Oregon Trail during the period of 1841-1869. The Campbell County Rockpile Museum in Gillette displays Native American artifacts, rifles, and spurs from early cowboys, plus vintage farming and ranching tools.
History and architecture buffs will enjoy a visit to the Sundance State Bank in Sundance. Also known as the Bid Building, the handsome sandstone structure was built in 1914 and it’s listed on the National Register of Historic Places. On the corner of Third and East Cleveland Streets, you’ll see a statue of Harry Longabaugh, the outlaw who became famous as the Sundance Kid. The Wyoming Territorial Prison in Laramie was used from 1872-1903. Now preserved as a historic site, the buildings include prison cells, the warden’s house, and an industry building. Nearby attractions, the Fort Sanders Guardhouse, East Side School and Ivinson Mansion, are all listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The Jim Gatchell Memorial Museum in Buffalo displays several wagons used by settlers. View Native American exhibits and artifacts from pioneers and military personnel including apparel, weapons, and commonly used essentials. Fort Phil Kearny State Historic Site offers living history demonstrations and exhibits on regional history. Take a self-guided walking tour of the fort built in 1866 and tour Fetterman and Wagon Box battlefield sites.
With its wide-open spaces and stunning scenery, it is no surprise the state has been the backdrop for over 120 movies. Close Encounters of the Third Kind, Rocky IV, Flicka, Django Unchained, Star Ship Troopers and Shane are just a few of the movies filmed in Wyoming. TV shows like Longmire have also been filmed at various locations in the state.
While Wyoming is best known for its action-packed rodeos and epic outdoor scenery, you’ll want to sample some of the local cuisine and beverages. Favorites include bison ribeye steaks, Rocky Mountain oysters, and huckleberry-infused cocktails. Keep an eye open for handmade chocolates at local gift shops and peruse restaurant menus for regionally crafted brews and spirits. Wyoming’s growing number of distilleries and breweries often use recipes passed down through generations. Quality ingredients combined with 115-degree heat in summer and sub-zero temperatures in winter provide ideal conditions for aging bourbon barrels. Wyoming Whiskey Distillery in Kirby offers tours on weekdays from 10am-3pm. There are more than 24 beer breweries in the state and many are earning national acclaim. Cody, Jackson, Pinedale, Evanston, Caspe,r and Cheyenne are all home to local breweries offering tours and tastings.
While major cities throughout the state offer shopping malls, outlet stores, and nationally known chain stores, you’ll enjoy perusing some of the locally owned shops for handcrafted, uniquely Wyoming goods. King’s Saddlery in Sheridan is stocked to the brim with boots, hats and western wear, but you’ll also want to visit the adjacent museum displaying historic cowboy memorabilia. Browse Wyoming-made wares in big cities and small towns. Find handmade gemstone jewelry, rustic décor for your home, quality leather goods, and unique gift items and souvenirs. The Aladdin General Store near Devils Tower Monument and Hulett offers everything from antiques to western wear. Cool off with a glass of lemonade on the inviting front porch. Art enthusiasts won’t want to miss the National Museum of Wildlife Art in Jackson. See paintings and sculptures from early Native American tribes and creations from modern day artists. The WYO Theater in Sheridan was built in 1923 and it’s the oldest operating vaudeville theater in Wyoming. See concerts, plays, dance performances and special events in the carefully restored venue.
Cheyenne is the state capital and it’s also known for its action-packed rodeos and historic railroad attractions. Tour the Cheyenne Depot and Museum and discover why it’s considered one of the most beautiful railroad stations of the 19th century. Don’t miss a visit to the Terry Bison Ranch. Spread over 30,000 acres, the ranch offers motorized tours that take you close to bison herds. After the tour enjoy horseback riding or a meal at the Old West-themed restaurant and saloon.
After a busy day of sightseeing, soothe sore muscles at the natural mineral pools at Hot Springs State Park in Thermopolis. Save time for a tour of the Hole-In-The Wall Saloon and the Hot Springs County Museum and Cultural Center. Meeteetse, a short drive away, is known for its small-town charm including wooden boardwalks and buildings from the 1890s. Stop by Meeteetse Chocolatier for delicious candies flavored with prickly pear cactus, sage, and beer.
Outdoor adventures are never far away. Curt Gowdy State Park, near Laramie, is a prime spot for watersports and Vedauwoo Recreation Area offers gorgeous scenery, hiking and mountain biking. Casper Mountain is a fun place to engage in winter sports. Enjoy cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, and snowmobiling or opt for downhill skiing and snowboarding at Hogadon Ski Area. Ice fishing is an option at Boysen State Park.
No matter which region of the state you visit, you’ll find friendly locals eager to point you in the right direction and offer suggestions on other things to see and do.