There is more to Boise, Idaho, than the blue turf of the Boise State Broncos football team. Idaho’s capital and most populous city offers ample opportunities for adventures – in both urban and rural settings. With a booming population and the growth of high-tech jobs, Boise is quickly becoming an important part of the economy of the Pacific Northwest and the nation as a whole.
Located on the Boise River, the city traces its origins to the days of the Oregon Trail, when the U.S. Army established a fort in the area to protect pioneers on their voyage westward. The fort and the city were established in 1863. Idaho became a state in 1890. Boise is just minutes from thousands of acres of national forest and other protected areas in the Rocky Mountains. Boise’s neighborhoods are as diverse as its dynamic landscape and include a vibrant downtown, the North End and Warm Springs.
Home to many of the cultural attractions of Boise – including the Idaho State Capitol, the Boise Art Museum and the historic Egyptian Theater – Downtown Boise hosts the popular San Inanzio Festival each July celebrating Boise’s rich Basque heritage. Boise has one of the largest populations of ethnically Basque residents outside of France and Spain. When there isn’t a festival in town celebrating this fascinating culture, stop by the Basque Museum and Cultural Center located a block from city hall.
The North End
While more residential than downtown, the numerous parks of The North End make for a great stop on a warm summer afternoon. Visit the Hull’s Gulch Reserve for a quick escape from the city and experience the natural environment of the hills that line the northern side of Boise. On days with high visibility, you can see for miles from the park down into the city. After your hike, head to the Hyde Park district on 13th Street for some great local food and shopping.
Located toward the southeastern frontier of the city, Warm Spring’s Victorian homes have housed some of the wealthiest residents of Boise since its founding. The neighborhood gets its name from the hot springs located in the area – which also warm many of the homes in this historic neighborhood. Warm Springs is also home to a public golf course and the Boise Natatorium public swimming pool, both of which are open during the summer months.