Glacier National Park, straddling the border between Montana and Canada, is a mesmerizing blend of azure alpine lakes, majestic wildlife, and the iconic Going to the Sun Road.
As the park’s popularity surges, securing the perfect accommodation becomes paramount. Here’s a comprehensive guide to the top 10 places to stay in Glacier National Park in 2023, starting from the 10th spot and culminating at the number one choice.
10. Bar W Guest Ranch
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Nestled in the heart of Montana’s vast landscapes, the Bar W Guest Ranch offers visitors an authentic taste of the American West. With its log cabin aesthetic and genuine “dude ranch” ambiance, this location is more than just a place to rest—it’s an experience in itself.
Vibe: The Bar W Guest Ranch exudes a rustic charm that transports guests back to the days of the Old West. The log cabin structures, combined with the surrounding natural beauty, create a serene environment where one can truly disconnect from the hustle and bustle of modern life. The ranch’s interiors, adorned with wooden beams, cowboy artifacts, and warm fireplaces, further enhance the traditional dude ranch vibe.
- Authentic Montana Dude Ranch Experience: The ranch offers a genuine Montana experience, allowing guests to immerse themselves in the cowboy lifestyle. Whether you’re sitting around a campfire listening to tales of the West or waking up to the distant sound of a rooster, the Bar W ensures an authentic stay.
- Activities Galore: For those looking to dive deep into the ranch lifestyle, a plethora of activities awaits. Guests can saddle up and explore the vast terrains on horseback, learn the art of cattle herding, or even try their hand at line dancing under the starlit Montana sky. Each activity is designed to offer a taste of the cowboy life, making your stay both fun and educational.
- Proximity to Whitefish: Just a short drive from the ranch lies the vibrant town of Whitefish. Known for its world-class ski resorts, Whitefish Mountain Resort offers winter enthusiasts a snowy paradise. During warmer months, the town’s extensive mountain biking trails become a hotspot for adventurers. The town itself is a blend of modern amenities and old-world charm, with its boutique shops, gourmet restaurants, and art galleries.
Average Cost: At an average of $250 per night, the Bar W Guest Ranch offers a blend of comfort, adventure, and authenticity. The cost includes not just the stay but also access to various ranch activities, ensuring guests get the full Montana experience.
9. The Green O
Tucked away amidst the verdant landscapes of Montana, The Green O stands as a testament to architectural brilliance and luxury. Designed exclusively for adults, this retreat offers a harmonious blend of nature and modernity, ensuring a serene escape from the daily grind.
Vibe: Adults-only Architectural Retreat The Green O is not your typical getaway. It’s an architectural marvel, seamlessly integrating luxury with nature. The adults-only policy ensures a tranquil environment, making it the perfect haven for couples, solo travelers, or groups seeking a peaceful retreat.
The contemporary design, coupled with the untouched beauty of Montana’s wilderness, creates a unique ambiance that resonates with sophistication and tranquility.
- Luxurious Amenities: Every corner of The Green O speaks of luxury. The floor-to-ceiling windows not only offer panoramic views of the surrounding landscapes but also invite an abundance of natural light, creating a warm and inviting atmosphere. The forested hot tubs are a highlight, allowing guests to soak in warmth while being surrounded by nature’s beauty. And for those who seek a quiet corner, the reading nooks, adorned with plush cushions and a curated selection of books, offer the perfect escape.
- Gourmet Dining Experience: The culinary offerings at The Green O are nothing short of exceptional. Led by the talented executive chef Brandon Cunningham, the live-fire menu is a gastronomic journey that tantalizes the taste buds. Using locally sourced ingredients and innovative cooking techniques, every dish promises a memorable dining experience.
- Proximity to Blackfoot River: The allure of The Green O isn’t confined to its boundaries. Located close to the Blackfoot River, guests have the opportunity to indulge in a range of outdoor adventures. The river, renowned for its clear waters, is a paradise for fly fishing enthusiasts. Those seeking a dose of adrenaline can embark on rafting adventures, navigating the river’s challenging rapids.
Average Cost: Priced at an average of $500 per night, The Green O offers an experience that justifies every penny. The cost encompasses not just the luxurious stay but also the world-class amenities and services that the retreat offers.
8. Dancing Spirit Ranch
Amidst the rugged terrains and pristine beauty of Montana lies a gem that promises an unparalleled retreat experience – the Dancing Spirit Ranch. A family-owned sanctuary, this ranch effortlessly combines the warmth of a homestead with the chic appeal of modern rentals.
Vibe: Family-owned Retreat Center with Hip Rentals Dancing Spirit Ranch is a beautiful juxtaposition of tradition and modernity. While its roots are deeply embedded in the family’s history and the land’s heritage, the ranch doesn’t shy away from embracing contemporary designs and amenities. The result is a unique environment where guests can experience the charm of rustic living without compromising on modern comforts.
- Rustic Design Meets Modern Comfort: The ranch’s accommodations are a testament to the seamless blend of old-world charm and new-age amenities. Wooden beams, stone fireplaces, and handcrafted furniture pay homage to traditional ranch aesthetics. At the same time, modern amenities like plush bedding, state-of-the-art kitchen facilities, and Wi-Fi ensure guests have all the comforts of home.
- Organic Garden Delights: One of the standout features of Dancing Spirit Ranch is its expansive organic garden. Guests have the unique opportunity to explore this green haven, picking fresh produce ranging from juicy tomatoes to aromatic herbs. Whether you’re cooking up a meal in your rental or simply enjoying the freshness of farm-to-table dining, the garden promises a culinary experience like no other.
- Proximity to Flathead Lake: Just a short drive from the ranch is Flathead Lake, a natural wonder that holds the title of the largest natural freshwater lake by surface area in the western U.S. The lake is not just a visual treat but also a hub for recreational activities. Guests can indulge in boating, fishing, or simply lounging by its shores, soaking in the panoramic views.
Average Cost: With a price tag of $300 per night, Dancing Spirit Ranch offers an experience that strikes the perfect balance between luxury and value. The cost includes not only the stay but also access to the ranch’s myriad amenities and activities.
7. Quintessential Whitefish Cabin
Tucked away amidst the serene landscapes of Montana, the Quintessential Whitefish Cabin stands as a beacon of rustic charm and romantic allure. Designed with couples in mind, this cabin offers an intimate setting, making it the perfect backdrop for moments of love, laughter, and lasting memories.
Vibe: Cozy Rural Couples’ Cabin The Quintessential Whitefish Cabin is the epitome of rustic romance. Every inch of the cabin exudes warmth, from its wooden interiors to its cozy fireplace. The ambiance is one of seclusion and intimacy, making it an ideal retreat for couples looking to escape the daily grind and reconnect with each other amidst nature’s splendor.
- Nature’s Canvas: The cabin’s surroundings are a visual treat. Bird houses dot the property, offering a chance to witness various avian species in their natural habitat. The landscape is punctuated by colorful bursts of wildflowers, painting a picture of vibrant beauty against the backdrop of Montana’s vast skies. The pièce de résistance, however, is the private three-acre lake. Whether you’re taking a leisurely stroll by its shores, enjoying a picnic, or simply gazing at its reflective waters, the lake promises moments of tranquility and reflection.
- Whitefish Mountain Resort: Adventure seekers are in for a treat, as the cabin is in close proximity to the Whitefish Mountain Resort. Recognized as a top destination for winter sports, the resort offers pristine slopes for skiing and snowboarding. During the warmer months, the resort transforms into a haven for hiking, mountain biking, and zip-lining.
- The Charm of Whitefish Town: Just a short drive from the cabin lies the bustling town of Whitefish. This vibrant town offers a delightful mix of dining, shopping, and entertainment options. From gourmet restaurants serving local delicacies to boutique shops offering unique souvenirs, Whitefish ensures a wholesome urban experience amidst the rural setting.
Average Cost: At a reasonable rate of $200 per night, the Quintessential Whitefish Cabin offers an experience that is both affordable and luxurious. The cost encompasses the stay, access to the cabin’s private amenities, and the promise of unforgettable memories.
6. The Nooq
Perched amidst the scenic landscapes of Montana, The Nooq stands as a testament to Scandinavian design sensibilities blended with the rugged charm of the American West. This high-design chalet offers a unique blend of style and substance, ensuring a stay that’s both luxurious and grounded in nature.
Vibe: High-design Scandi Ski Chalet The Nooq is a celebration of Scandinavian design principles. Minimalistic yet warm, the chalet boasts clean lines, neutral palettes, and functional design elements. Large windows allow for an abundance of natural light, blurring the lines between the indoors and the majestic outdoors. The interiors, adorned with plush furnishings and modern amenities, exude a sense of coziness, making it the perfect retreat after a day of adventure.
- Architectural Brilliance: One of the standout features of The Nooq is its architectural elegance. Every corner of the chalet is a nod to Scandinavian design sensibilities. The use of natural materials like wood and stone, combined with modern design elements, creates a space that’s both contemporary and rooted in tradition. Whether you’re lounging by the fireplace or enjoying a meal in the open-concept dining area, the chalet promises an ambiance of sophistication and comfort.
- Proximity to Big Mountain: Adventure enthusiasts are in for a treat, as The Nooq is strategically located close to Big Mountain. During the winter months, the mountain transforms into a snowy wonderland, offering pristine slopes for skiing and snowboarding. As the snow melts away, the mountain becomes a hotspot for summer activities. Hiking trails, dotted with wildflowers and offering panoramic views, beckon nature lovers and thrill-seekers alike.
- Whitefish Lake Adventures: Just a stone’s throw away from The Nooq lies the serene Whitefish Lake. This natural gem is perfect for a range of water-based activities. Guests can indulge in boating, taking in the scenic beauty of the lake and its surroundings. For those who prefer a more laid-back experience, the lake’s clear waters are ideal for fishing. Whether you’re catching the sunrise over the lake or enjoying a picnic by its shores, Whitefish Lake promises moments of tranquility.
Average Cost: Priced at $350 per night, The Nooq offers an experience that’s worth every penny. The cost includes not just the luxurious stay but also access to the chalet’s world-class amenities and its prime location close to major attractions.
5. The Lodge at Whitefish Lake
Nestled amidst the breathtaking landscapes of Montana, The Lodge at Whitefish Lake stands as a beacon of luxury, comfort, and adventure. With its mountain-modern design and a plethora of added attractions, this lodge promises an experience that goes beyond the ordinary.
Vibe: Mountain Modern Lodge with Awesome Extras The Lodge at Whitefish Lake seamlessly marries the rustic charm of mountain lodges with contemporary design elements. The result is a space that feels both timeless and modern.
Wooden beams, stone fireplaces, and expansive windows that offer panoramic views of the surrounding landscapes are complemented by state-of-the-art amenities and plush furnishings. The lodge’s ambiance is one of warmth and luxury, making it the perfect retreat for those seeking the best of both worlds.
- A Hub of Activities: The Lodge at Whitefish Lake is not just a place to stay; it’s a destination in itself. Guests can immerse themselves in a range of activities without even stepping out of the lodge. Live music sessions set the perfect tone for a relaxing evening, while yoga classes promise rejuvenation for both the body and the soul. For winter sports enthusiasts, the lodge’s “taprés ski” program is a highlight, offering a blend of skiing adventures followed by relaxation and entertainment.
- Whitefish Lake Wonders: Just a stone’s throw away from the lodge lies the pristine Whitefish Lake. This natural gem offers guests a plethora of water-based activities. Whether you’re kayaking across its calm waters, indulging in a spot of fishing, or simply lounging by the shore, the lake promises relaxation and adventure in equal measure.
- Explore the Whitefish Trail: For those who wish to explore the beauty of Montana on foot, the nearby Whitefish Trail is a must-visit. Offering over 42 miles of natural surface trail, this trail is a haven for hikers, bikers, and nature enthusiasts. Winding through lush forests, meadows, and offering stunning views of the lake and mountains, the trail promises an adventure that’s both exhilarating and serene.
Average Cost: At a rate of $400 per night, The Lodge at Whitefish Lake offers an experience that’s truly value for money. The cost not only includes a luxurious stay but also gives guests access to the lodge’s myriad attractions and its prime location close to major hotspots.
4. Luxury Lakeside Yurt
Amidst the serene beauty of Montana’s landscapes, the Luxury Lakeside Yurt emerges as a unique blend of traditional dwelling and modern luxury. Overlooking the pristine waters of Flathead Lake, this yurt offers an experience that combines the simplicity of nature with the comforts of contemporary living.
The Yurt Experience: Traditionally used by the nomads of Central Asia, yurts have been a symbol of simplicity, harmony, and connection to nature. The Luxury Lakeside Yurt takes this age-old concept and elevates it, offering guests a stay that’s both authentic and luxurious.
- Breathtaking Views: One of the standout features of the Luxury Lakeside Yurt is its location. Perched by the shores of Flathead Lake, the yurt offers panoramic views that are nothing short of mesmerizing. Whether you’re watching the sunrise paint the waters in hues of gold or gazing at the starlit skies reflecting on the lake’s surface, the views promise moments of sheer tranquility.
- Modern Comforts: While the yurt’s exterior pays homage to traditional design, its interiors are a testament to modern luxury. Equipped with state-of-the-art Miele appliances, guests can enjoy gourmet meals in the heart of nature. The fast Wi-Fi ensures that, despite being surrounded by nature, you’re never too far from the digital world, making it perfect for both leisure and work-related stays.
- Explore Polson: Just a short drive from the yurt lies the charming town of Polson. Known for its lush golf courses, Polson promises a day of fun and relaxation for golf enthusiasts. The town is also renowned for its cherry orchards. A visit during the cherry season promises a treat for the senses, with the sweet aroma of cherries filling the air and the opportunity to pick and savor these juicy delights.
Average Cost: Priced at $220 per night, the Luxury Lakeside Yurt offers an experience that’s both affordable and opulent. The cost encompasses not just the stay but also the world-class amenities and the prime location that offers easy access to major attractions.
3. Many Glacier Hotel
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Nestled in the heart of Glacier National Park, the Many Glacier Hotel stands as an iconic testament to nature’s grandeur and human architectural prowess. With its prime location by the Swiftcurrent Lake and a rich history that dates back to the early 20th century, this hotel offers guests an immersive experience into the wild beauty and cultural heritage of the region.
Historic Grandeur: Constructed in the Swiss chalet style in 1915, the Many Glacier Hotel exudes an old-world charm that transports guests back in time. Its wooden interiors, grand balconies, and intricate detailing pay homage to the craftsmanship of yesteryears while offering all the comforts of modern hospitality.
- Panoramic Vistas: The hotel’s location by Swiftcurrent Lake ensures that guests are treated to jaw-dropping views every moment of their stay. The shimmering waters of the lake, set against the backdrop of majestic mountains, create a tableau of nature’s beauty that changes with every passing hour. Whether it’s the golden hues of dawn, the vibrant colors of sunset, or the serene beauty of moonlit nights, the vistas promise a visual treat.
- Hiker’s Paradise: For those with a penchant for adventure, the Many Glacier Hotel’s proximity to some of Glacier National Park’s most renowned hiking trails is a boon. Trails leading to the Grinnell Glacier and Iceberg Lake beckon hikers with the promise of stunning landscapes, diverse flora and fauna, and the thrill of exploring the wild. Whether you’re an amateur hiker or a seasoned trekker, these trails offer experiences that cater to every level of expertise.
- Ranger Programs: Adding a touch of education to the mix of relaxation and adventure, the hotel’s evening ranger programs are a highlight for many guests. These sessions, led by knowledgeable park rangers, delve into the rich history, ecology, and cultural significance of Glacier National Park. From tales of the region’s indigenous tribes to insights into the park’s diverse ecosystems, these programs offer a deeper understanding and appreciation of the land and its heritage.
Average Cost: At a rate of $320 per night, the Many Glacier Hotel offers a holistic experience that’s worth every penny. The cost not only includes a luxurious stay in a historic setting but also ensures prime access to nature’s wonders and enriching educational programs.
2. Meadowlark Treehouse
Perched amidst the verdant canopies of Montana, the Meadowlark Treehouse offers a unique blend of childhood dreams and adult luxuries. This elevated abode promises an experience that’s both whimsical and sophisticated, allowing guests to reconnect with nature from the comfort of a modern sanctuary.
Elevated Elegance: The very essence of the Meadowlark Treehouse lies in its ability to combine the rustic charm of treehouse living with contemporary amenities. Crafted with precision and an eye for detail, the treehouse stands as a testament to innovative design and the timeless allure of nature.
- A Unique Stay: The Meadowlark Treehouse takes the concept of elevated living to new heights. Every corner of this dwelling has been thoughtfully designed to offer panoramic views of the surrounding landscapes. Whether you’re sipping your morning coffee on the balcony, listening to the birdsong, or cozying up with a book in the lofted bedroom, the treehouse promises moments of serenity and wonder.
- Gateway to Glacier National Park: Located in close proximity to the town of Columbia Falls, the Meadowlark Treehouse serves as an ideal base for those looking to explore Glacier National Park. Often referred to as the “Gateway to Glacier,” Columbia Falls offers a mix of local attractions, dining options, and easy access to the park’s myriad wonders.
- Adventures on the River: For those with a thirst for adventure, the nearby Wild River Adventures beckons. Offering a range of water-based activities, this adventure hub is a must-visit for thrill-seekers. Guests can experience the adrenaline rush of whitewater rafting, navigating the river’s challenging rapids. For those seeking a more laid-back experience, scenic floats promise a leisurely journey through Montana’s picturesque landscapes.
Average Cost: Priced at $280 per night, the Meadowlark Treehouse offers an experience that’s both unique and value for money. The cost encompasses not just the stay in this elevated paradise but also the modern amenities and prime location that offers easy access to local attractions.
1. Starlit Ridge Retreat
Set against the backdrop of Montana’s majestic mountains, Starlit Ridge Retreat emerges as a sanctuary of peace, luxury, and natural splendor. This secluded haven, with its blend of traditional Montana architecture and modern amenities, promises an experience that resonates with both adventure and relaxation.
Rustic Elegance Meets Modern Comfort: Starlit Ridge Retreat effortlessly combines the rustic allure of Montana’s heritage with contemporary luxury. The wooden exteriors, reminiscent of traditional Montana cabins, are complemented by interiors that boast state-of-the-art amenities, plush furnishings, and expansive windows that frame the breathtaking views outside.
- Stargazing Deck: One of the standout features of Starlit Ridge Retreat is its dedicated stargazing deck. Equipped with high-powered telescopes, guests can gaze upon the vast Montana skies, witnessing constellations, shooting stars, and the mesmerizing dance of the Northern Lights on certain nights.
- Adventure Trails: For those with a thirst for adventure, the retreat offers a network of trails that wind through the surrounding forests and meadows. Whether you’re on a leisurely walk, a challenging hike, or a mountain biking expedition, these trails promise encounters with nature’s beauty and the region’s diverse wildlife.
- Proximity to Crystal Creek: A short walk from the retreat lies the serene Crystal Creek. Renowned for its clear, sparkling waters, the creek is a haven for fishing enthusiasts. Guests can also indulge in kayaking or simply relax by its banks, listening to the gentle flow of water and the songs of local birds.
- Culinary Delights: Starlit Ridge Retreat takes pride in its gourmet dining experience. With a focus on farm-to-table cuisine, the retreat’s in-house chefs craft dishes that celebrate local produce, traditional Montana flavors, and international culinary techniques.
Average Cost: At a rate of $450 per night, Starlit Ridge Retreat offers an experience that perfectly balances luxury with the raw beauty of nature. The cost includes not only the stay but also access to the retreat’s myriad activities and its prime location amidst Montana’s natural wonders.
Are all the accommodations listed in the post pet-friendly?
While some accommodations may welcome pets, it’s essential to check with each individual property regarding their pet policies. Some might have specific guidelines or additional charges for pet stays.
Do any of the places offer package deals or discounts for extended stays?
Many of the accommodations listed often have seasonal offers, package deals, or discounts for extended stays. It’s recommended to visit their official websites or contact them directly for the most up-to-date promotions and offers.
Are the average costs mentioned per person or per room?
The average costs provided in the post are per room, per night. However, it’s always a good idea to check with the accommodation for any additional charges or fees that might apply.
How close are these accommodations to the main attractions of Glacier National Park?
Most of the accommodations listed are strategically located to offer easy access to the main attractions of Glacier National Park. However, the proximity might vary, so it’s advisable to check the location details of each property to plan your itinerary accordingly.
Do the accommodations offer guided tours or activities within Glacier National Park?
Several accommodations, especially those closer to the park, often collaborate with local tour operators or have their in-house guides to offer guests unique experiences within Glacier National Park. It’s best to inquire directly with the property to know more about available tours or activities.
Is advance booking necessary, or can I book upon arrival?
Given the popularity of Glacier National Park, especially during peak seasons, it’s highly recommended to book your accommodation in advance. This ensures you secure your preferred dates and potentially get better rates. However, last-minute bookings might be possible, subject to availability.
In conclusion, Glacier National Park offers a diverse range of accommodations, from rustic cabins to luxurious retreats. No matter where you choose to stay, the park’s natural beauty and outdoor activities will ensure an unforgettable experience. Plan ahead, book your preferred spot, and immerse yourself in the wonders of Glacier National Park.