Kalispell, Montana, US: Scenic street view with shops and restaurants. Kalispell is the gateway to Glacier National Park. Editorial credit: Nick Fox / Shutterstock.com

7 Cutest Small Towns In Montana To Visit In 2024

Montana is a state known for its mountains. While many people rush to visit Bozeman, there is more to Montana than the big cities. The small towns are one of the best ways to experience the state. They possess a charm that isn't found in the big cities. In Philipsburg, for example, you can dig around in the dirt for your own sapphire at a local jewelry shop. In Terry, you can see the geological wonder of Montana's badlands. While these towns have very different scenery, they have one thing in common: they are cute towns. Explore seven of Montana's cutest towns that you should visit this year.


High angle view of downtown Walkerville Butte, Montana, United States.
High-angle view of downtown Walkerville Butte, Montana, United States.

Butte is an old mining town with a rich history and picturesque landscape. It is sometimes called the "richest hill on Earth," because of its history of the gold rush, miners, and ghost towns. You can explore the town's history on a historical adventure tour. The tour takes visitors to historical attractions such as the City's underground tunnel system, a vital transportation passage during the prohibition era. The town's mining history is well documented at the World Mining Museum. This is a great spot to learn about the local mining lore, from the gold rush to the ghost town.

Berkley Pit is one of the town's biggest attractions. It was one of the largest open-pit copper mines in the world. Today you can see the remains of the mine from remains of the mine from I-90. Beyond the town's history, Butte is surrounded by the wonder and beauty of the Rockies. This makes the town an excellent place for outdoor enthusiasts who want to enjoy hiking, fishing or biking.


Aerial view of Broadway Street in Philipsburg, Montana, the county seat of Granite County, United States.
Aerial view of Broadway Street in Philipsburg, Montana, the county seat of Granite County, United States.

Another cute town with a rich history in the mining sector is Philipsburg. The town flourished in the 1880s and 1890s because of its abundance of silver. However, the success didn't last, and eventually, many people abandoned the mining town. Remains from the old mining town are at the nearby Garnet Ghost Town State Park. There, you can see the Granite Mine Superintendent’s House.

The people who stayed in Philipsburg discovered that the town had hidden gems and sapphires. There are so many in town that some visitors try to sift through the dirt themselves to find one. A great spot to find sapphires effortlessly in town is Gem Mountain in Philipsburg. The jewelry store has a spot where you can sift through gravel to try and find a sapphire.

For those more interested in nature than gems, check out the stunning Georgetown Lake, just 10 miles from Philipsburg. There you can enjoy a walk in the beautiful mountain scenery.


Kalispell, Montana, USA: Scenic street view with shops and hotels. Kalispell is the gateway to Glacier National Park.
Kalispell, Montana, USA. Editorial credit: Nick Fox / Shutterstock.com

Kalispell is a stop people often make on their way to Glacier National Park. However, the cute town deserves more than a stopover. There are incredible things to do around the town from enjoying landscapes of Glacier National Park to exploring the town's history. You can learn about the town's western frontier at the Conrad Mansion Museum. The Northwest Montana History Museum is another excellent historic spot in town to learn about those who fought to live on the region's soil. Those who love art should pay a visit to the Hockaday Museum of Art. The museum showcases local artists and artists who use Montana as an inspiration for their art.


Aerial view of Terry, Montana.
Aerial view of Terry, Montana.

While most people go to Montana for the mountains, the badlands are another scenic spot in the state. One of the towns that shows off the badlands with unique charm is Terry. In Terry, you can see the geological wonders of the badlands. Drive down Calypso Trail Drive into the Terry Badlands Wilderness Study Area. On this stretch of the road, you will see impressive spires and rock structures. Be sure to check out Chimney Rock in town. The natural rock structure looks like a chimney and has long sandstone spires extending towards the sky.

Beyond the badlands, Terry has a unique history to explore. The Prairie County Museum And Evelyn Cameron Gallery explores the town's history. The museum has exhibits about Terry’s railway past and even an old red caboose. If you are looking to stay overnight at Terry, pay a visit to the Kempton Hotel. This is Montana's oldest continuously operating hotel, dating back to 1902.


Saint John Vianney Catholic Church in Belgrade, Montana.
Saint John Vianney Catholic Church in Belgrade, Montana.

Belgrade is a town in Montana often overlooked because it is so close to Bozeman. However, Belgrade has a small-town vibe that cannot be matched. You can enjoy the perfect picnic in town at Lewis and Clark Park. The park also has a skate and waterpark to enjoy. Belgrade's proximity to the mountains also makes it an excellent destination for hiking. The Valley Center Trail is one of the most popular trails around town. In the winter, the snow attracts those who love outdoor recreation with the Bridger Bowl Ski Area.


Anaconda, Montana, USA: Welcoming signboard at the entry point of the preserve park.
Anaconda, Montana, USA. Editorial credit: Cheri Alguire / Shutterstock.com

Anaconda is a town that isn't as scary as its name. Today, Anaconda is a charming, historic town near the mountains. Once home to Montana's largest copper smelter, Anaconda has a lot of history to explore. You can visit the remnants of the copper smelter at the Smelter Shack. The town also has a Historic Bus Tour that shows off some of the most unique historic attractions. Some of the stops on the tour include Washoe Theater, the Stack Interpretive Center, Old Works Golf Course, Discovery Ski Area, and the State Fish Hatchery.

The Copper Village Museum is a great spot in town to learn more about the town's history. Besides history, Anaconda has some pretty views to enjoy. One of the best places to enjoy the views is on the Pintler Veteran’s Memorial Scenic Highway. The drive takes you from Anaconda 64 miles past Georgetown Lake, Philipsburg, and concludes in Drummond.


Polson, Montana on a sunny day.
Polson, Montana, on a sunny day.

The lake life in Montana isn't to be missed. Polson is one of the cutest small towns in Montana, known for its lakeside vibes. The town is on the southern shores of Flathead Lake, the largest freshwater Lake in the United States. Learn about the history of the area at the Flathead Lake Museum. The museum has original artifacts dating back to the 1800s. If you are visiting Polson in the summertime, be sure to check out the annual Chery Festival. The festival takes place the last week of July and features local cherries, art vendors and pick-your-own opportunities at some farms.

Discover Montana's Cutest Small Towns

All the towns on this list are charming towns with a quaint, small-town vibe. Whether you are looking to plan a road trip to enjoy some history or see the mountains, these towns are worth visiting. The mountain air and outdoor scenery will make for an unforgettable trip.

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