The H.D. Rossiter Building, a historic general store in Sheridan, Montana, United States.

7 of the Quirkiest Towns in Montana

In the western U.S., Montana is a state with plenty of gracious small towns that are quirky and unforgettable in many ways. With a lot of small towns to consider on one's trip, it is known for its extraordinary landmarks and intricate locales that create a unique atmosphere for anyone visiting for the first time or even as a returner. Here are seven of the quirkiest towns in Montana worth checking out.


North Valley Public Library - Stevensville Montana
North Valley Public Library - Stevensville Montana, via Wikimedia Commons

With a population of 2,286 residents, Stevensville is a noteworthy historic town with beautiful outdoor views and recreational pleasures. Tourists can trek across to see the Stevensville Museum for Salish Indian history that has been around since the 18th century, or St. Mary's Mission, an 1840s structure where the origins of the town first began through photography of outback wonders. While at Lee Metcalf National Wildlife Refuge, visitors can get up close with Canadian geese, ospreys, coyotes, marmots, and other exotic species. At River's Mist Gallery and Gifts, it is not uncommon to find local artists exhibiting classical works from the past while ushering in a sense of friendliness. For natural sights, one may want to consider Lewis and Clark Park or Fort Owen State Park, both possessing cozy and quirky viewpoints of the town through interesting overarching pavilions and interpretative abode panels that are rare to see in most towns across the state. Saint Mary Peak Trail is also a viable landmark worth visiting because of its challenging yet serendipitous birding and hiking routes. This destination has a little bit of everything for all manners of tourism.


Anaconda, Montana
Anaconda, Montana - Image Credit Cheri Alguire via Shutterstock

Anaconda has a population of 9,649 residents and is considerably quirky since it has unusual locales and landmarks that appeal to just about everyone in a southwestern style. For instance, the landmark beauty of Washoe Park is enough to draw in visitors from all over with its unforgettable ethnic food cuisines and craft booths designed to instill something fresh and new in the town, while cutthroat trout is a frequent delight for the locals. A fascinating historical site to examine is the Copper Village Museum and Art Center, with its rich 1890s architecture and detailed archives that one cannot find in other towns. It is also situated close to the Upper Works Trail, a breathtaking golf course foundation and natural landmark that has lots of lush scenery and copper smelting history behind it. A popular landmark guaranteed to bring thrills and excitement while outdoors is the Lost Creek State Park, with its unforgettable granite formations and bighorn sheep habitats. Minimalist backpacking and signature cuisine in the middle of mountain environments are just some of the best ways to experience this town.


The Yellowstone Street district at sunset.
The Yellowstone Street district at sunset in Terry, Montana

This rugged small town has a population of only 582 residents but provides an unforgettable experience for anyone seeking southeastern quirks and fun things to do. With the dramatic mountainous backdrop of the Evelyn Cameron Gallery, travelers can expect to see captured moments of Montana's most ambitious women through glass plating and prairie badlands history. It is also worth discovering the Yellowstone River, an easy-flowing natural landmark for anyone seeking abundant wildlife scenery with remarkable rock-hunting activities that are considerably quirky and lesser known to outsiders. One locale that doubles as a landmark for student life and history is the Terry Badlands Wilderness Study Area, where academicians and tourists alike enjoy the magnificent arches, spires, and scoria escarpments on the Calypso Trail. At the historic Kempton Hotel, famous figures like Teddy Roosevelt and Calamity Jane were known to have settled in once, making this a great 1900s locale to explore for random localized history and fame. For hungry travelers in town, the Dizzy Diner is perfect for 20th-century homecooked meals and extravagant family-owned culture that creates everlasting memories.


Aerial view of Libby, Montana
Aerial view of Libby, Montana

A picture-perfect town in northwestern Montana with 3,382 inhabitants, Libby is defined as both quirky and laidback. With its incredible Kootenay River and Cabinet Mountains landscape, travelers may see no reason not to visit this town. Those checking out the popular Gold Pan Casino may find a mysterious vehicle awkwardly resting on top of a lampost right outside, while the interior is full of cushion chairs and slot machines ideal for cozy travelers. Over at the Black Board Bistro, tourists can experience Mediterranean-inspired cuisine with a touch of noir architecture in the background that is unlike any other restaurant experience in the state. As for history, the Heritage Museum preserves diversity and artifacts that are attributed to the 1970s. with captivating locomotives and Kootenai exploration tools that are truly quirky to newcomers. The Ten Lakes Scenic Area and its accompanying Libby Dam are frequented natural landmarks for travelers wanting to explore deeply carved wilderness valleys and high-rise rock basins. Those in town can even venture further out towards Yaak Falls, where surprisingly narrow mountain points create a scenic turnout on camera. In the "City of Eagles," it is easy to find solace among tourism surprises.

Big Timber

Sign welcomes visitors to the small town of Big Timber Montana, located right off busy Interstate 90
Sign welcomes visitors to the small town of Big Timber Montana, located right off busy Interstate 90, via melissamn /

Big Timber, a southcentral small town with 1,747 inhabitants, is an agricultural hotspot for tourists seeking scenic drives and wilderness excursions. With quirky landmarks like the Absaroka-Beartooth Wilderness, blue-ribbon trout fishing is a common activity that shows visitors the recreational side of the state. The Crazy Mountain Museum is also nearby, which lives up to its name with a host of antiques and relics from the past that stimulate minds of all occupations. Travelers in this town will find a lot of crowds near the Big Beaver Campground, a locale within the Gallatin National Forest that caters to the finest firepits and picnic tables for unusually appreciative natural splendors in places that feel lost to time. The Green Mountain Trail, another spectacular locale for tourism, is adjacent to the Boulder River and has amusing paved walkways and geology perfect for those who love freshwater basins. Those staying near downtown may admire Two Rivers Gallery, a glorified locale that is accustomed to history through its pottery and sculptures reminiscent of Montana's quirkier side.

White Sulphur Springs

White Sulphur Springs, Montana welcoming signboard.
White Sulphur Springs, MT welcoming signboard. Image credit Cheri Alguire via shutterstock

An outdoor destination with plenty of culinary and natural wonders, White Sulphur Springs has a population of 1,114 residents. Its featured locales, like the Bar 47 saloon, demonstrate how quirkiness and beauty go hand in hand with locals and tourists enjoying cocktails and live music events. Over at Branding Iron Cafe, tourists may find quirks related to family-oriented breakfast meals with an outdoor view of the town's plaza. Historical enthusiasts will likely prefer Bair Museum, a 19th-century family home that features unexpected Crazy Mountains glaciation and Castle Mountains photography, as well as diverse collections of modern European and American murals that pay homage to Native Americans. For those looking to stay under sunlight and experience Meagher County's wilderness areas, the Arts & Cultural Trail has a two-hour recreational tour with five different mountain ranges appealing to trekkers and wanderers. Yet another quirky discovery in this town is the Kings Hill Scenic Byway, perfect for leisure drivers who want to witness rugged beauty and invigorating mountain lakes with high country vertical drops, a definitive example of unconventional tourism.


Christ Episcopal Church, a historic church in Sheridan, Montana, United States
Christ Episcopal Church, a historic church in Sheridan, Montana, United States, By Spend A Day Touring, LLC - Flickr: 44448 Sheridan Church, CC BY-SA 2.0, Wikimedia Commons

A charming small town with stunning beauty and quirky appreciation, Sheridan is home to 790 locals who recognize that southwestern tourism is as good as its people and landmarks make it out to be. Situated within Ruby Valley, this town has options like the Tobacco Root Mountains and Old West digging sites, which makes one's stay here feel like the 1860s when seeing desert plains and authentic "gold rush" culture. For natural quirks, Shoshone bands are often seen across mountain ranges, lending to sociocultural and environmental tourism that originates from the Civil War days. Backpacking on highlands through the Snowcrest Mountains is another way for tourists to feel involved, with multiple fishing stops and ghost towns that seem uncanny to settlers and campers. As for those with a penchant for unusual and intriguing nightlife, the Great Brew Pub has some of the most unique commercialized craft beers that leave visitors wanting more upon their next visit.

In Conclusion

These small towns all provide a quirky perspective on history and natural wonders in the state of Montana. With plenty of unforgettable inclusions and opportunities to visit, travelers will always be safe with this list in hand. The landmarks and locales one may find here are sure to bring smiles and enjoyment, no matter how familiar or unfamiliar they are with the "Big Sky Country."

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