Do you love the outdoors and exploring with your family?
Do you enjoy learning about the region’s history and want a front-row seat to how it’s getting better?
Then you’ll love all the treasures of Treasure Valley, which offers the public a collection of stimulating activities to do and destinations to explore. So much so, that you can plan out an entire year of weekend activities and never get bored or do something twice.
If you need some ideas for the next couple of months as the weather turns and the outdoors become increasingly inviting, here are some things to consider as you plan out your next adventure in Treasure Valley.
Check out the Boise River Greenbelt
Quick fact: The beautiful river greenbelt flows through the entire region for more than 25 miles, opening the possibilities for scenic hikes, biking, general exploration and a lot of fun.
As one of the region’s most beloved parks, the Boise River Greenbelt will take you along a tree-lined pathway that follows a seemingly endlessness of nature, river waters and wildlife.
Some of the points of interest you’ll want to explore include: Willow Lane Athletic Complex, Veterans Memorial Park, Quail Hollow golf course, Warm Springs Park, Natatorium Pool and other gems along the miles-long greenbelt.
Flock to the World Center For Birds of Prey
The entire family can catch the sights, sounds and wonder of the raptor world. From the moment you arrive at the courtyard, you’ll be surrounded by native and non-native birds.
Then, you can experience the mysterious world of raptors through presentations, exhibits, hands-on activities and tours of the Archives of Falconry.
When you get a moment to breathe, you can just take in the surrounding beauty and panoramic view of Treasure Valley from the interpretive trail and gazebo. Don’t forget to stop by the gift shop for your raptor gear.
Tour the Old Idaho Penitentiary
Satisfy your Smithsonian urge and learn about the Old Idaho Penitentiary, which opened in the early 1870s and housed some of the region’s worst and mean-spirited criminals.
After nearly 100 years of incarcerating inmates, the facility closed but opens its doors to folks such as yourself.
Visitors can expect to learn about Idaho’s unique prison history and also get a feel for solitary confinement, cell blocks and gallows.
It is one of only four territorial prisons open to the public.
Escape into the Idaho Botanical Gardens
A lush 15-acre masterpiece of nature awaits your visit. The Idaho Botanical Gardens invites all visitors to take a step back and celebrate nature. It’s hard to find a more beautiful way to take in nature than in this geographically unique region.
The peaceful haven is tucked away in the foothills near the Old Penitentiary Historic District. Visitors have a chance to explore native and domestic plants that have adapted to the intermountain region Boise is so famous for.
The gardens are thoughtfully designed to inspire visitors to connect with nature in various formats. The various green spaces include a children’s adventure garden, conservation area where visitors learn about water-conserving plants, a meditation garden that can help pinpoint your center, an outdoor exhibit with more than 300 species of plants and a section that highlights Idaho’s native plants.
If you love politics and architecture, then the Idaho State Capitol Building should be on your list of places to visit.
One of the more charming characteristics is the building’s classic style. Appearing as a smaller-scale version of the U.S. Capitol, the building was recently renovated.
Visitors can begin the tour at the garden level where they can take in the sights and sounds of the bustling rotunda, which is not too far from where elected and nonelected government workers conduct business, pass laws and carry out other state functions.
This is a great opportunity for families to explore state government in a self-guided tour that will introduce them to the dome at the rotunda, the treasurer’s office, executive branch grounds and the offices of the statewide elected officials, house and senate chambers and various art galleries.
Experience Warhawk Air Museum
Given the current international situation, visiting the Warhawk Air Museum will remind people how freedom has endured throughout recent history.
With thousands of visitors each year, the museum was established to preserve military aviation history and present it in an interactive way. Upon its opening in the late 1980s, the museum paid tribute to WWI/WWII veterans. Today, visitors can explore expanded corridors and exhibits that house history about the Iraq War, Persian Gulf War, Vietnam War, Korean War and Cold War.
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