Nicknamed the “United States Smile Capital,” the city of Pocatello, Idaho is well known for its friendly hospitality. The idea in the state’s fifth largest city is to make the stay of every visitor fun and memorable, no matter how long the visit. It’s easy to spend several days experiencing everything Pocatello has to offer, from visitors wildlife at Zoo Idaho to exploring history at the Fort Hall Replica and the Idaho Museum of Natural History, to enjoying a pint or two of beer at Portneuf Valley Brewing and much more. Certain attractions may be temporarily closed or require advance reservations. Hours/availability may have changed.
1.Museum of Clean, Pocatello, Idaho
© Museum of Clean
The Museum of Clean is a one-of-a-kind museum in Pocatello, Idaho that showcases “all things Clean,” and is certainly a unique thing to do in town. The 75,000-square-foot complex is full of inspiration, education, and excitement for visitors of all ages. Since “clean” dominates nearly everything that affects life, this interesting museum is far from having a singular focus like many other museums. With a goal of incorporating as many dimensions as possible, the Museum of Clean features participation, slate, art items, and display. Many exhibits throughout the museum are object-centric, while others are a bit more conceptual in nature.
711 S 2nd Ave, Pocatello, ID 83201, Phone: 208-236-6906
2.Bannock County Historical Museum, Pocatello, ID
© Bannock County Historical Museum
Located near Zoo Idaho and the Fort Hall Replica, the Bannock County Historical Museum is home to records, objects, and exhibits related to the city of Pocatello and the surrounding Bannock County’s history. The various themes of the museum exhibits include Shoshone-Bannock Indian artifacts, Victorian-era parlor, the military, Oregon Trail, general store, early medical practices, farming and ranching, local printing, fire fighting, trading and trappin, photography, local archaeological specimens, railroad history, and more. There is also a research archive.
3000 Avenue of the Chiefs, Pocatello, ID 83204, Phone: 208-233-0434
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3.Fort Hall Replica, Pocatello, Idaho
© Fort Hall Replica
The Fort Hall Replica in Pocatello, Idaho was built back in 1834 and was constructed as a trading post in Southeast Idaho along the Snake River. While the fort was essentially demolished in the year 1963, visitors today can see a replica serving as a memorial to the heritage of Fort Hall. Historical artifacts that can be seen at the site include maps, recipes, and letters. A trip here is a trip to the nineteenth-century world of fur traders, trappers, explorers, pioneers, and Native Americans. The Fort Hall Replica is open on a seasonal basis from Memorial Day to Labor Day.
3001 Avenue of the Chiefs, Pocatello, ID 83204, Phone: 208-234-1795
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4.Idaho Museum of Natural History, Pocatello, Idaho
© Idaho Museum of Natural History
The Idaho Museum of Natural History is a place where people of all ages can unearth volcanic hotspots, mammals from the Ice Age, dinosaurs, and more. The official state natural history museum of Idaho, this Pocatello museum aims to nurture a delight in and understanding of the cultural and natural heritage of the state. In addition to a variety of exhibits, visitors will find outdoors exhibits like the Natural History Garden and the Tree Walk and the hands-on Discovery Room. The Idaho Museum of Natural History features both permanent exhibits and ever-changing exhibitions that emphasize its collection, as well as special events.
698 E Dillon St, Pocatello, ID 83201, Phone: 208-282-3168
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5.Zoo Idaho, Pocatello, Idaho
© Zoo Idaho
One of just two zoos anywhere in the country to specialize in animals native to the America’s Intermountain West, Zoo Idaho is home to numerous living symbols of the iconic “American West,” including grizzly bears, pronghorn, eagles, cougar, and bison. Zoo Idaho offers a unique change for people to learn more about the region’s native wildlife through family programs, classes, storytelling, and of course, its many animal habitats spread out across the approximately twenty-five acres of land. The zoo hosts several fun special events throughout the year as well, such as Zoo Boo and Ice Cream Zoofari.
2900 S 2nd Ave, Pocatello, ID 83204, Phone: 208-234-6264
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6.Standrod Mansion, Pocatello, Idaho
Constructed back in 1902, the Standrod Mansion in Pocatello was built by Emma and Drew Standrod and has been noted as the state’s “ finest example of Victorian architecture,” as well as one of the most historic houses in Idaho. The home is also listed on the United States National Register of Historic Places. The sixteen-room Standrod Mansion was bought by the City of Pocatello in 1974 and was used as a cultural event center and museum for many years before being bought in 1995. The home is now a private residence once again, but visitors can view it from a distance.
648 N Garfield Ave, Pocatello, ID 83204
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7.Portneuf Valley Brewing, Pocatello, Idaho
© Portneuf Valley Brewing
Portneuf Valley Brewing first opened to the public in Pocatello, Idaho in 1996, but Brew Mistress and owner Penny Pink had been brewing her own fine beers for friends and family for many years before the brewery officially opened. She set up her first brewery inside of Dudley’s Sports Bar, where her brews soon acquired a loyal following. Portneuf Valley Brewing, open for samples and pints of brews and the occasional live entertainment, is a fun place to visit.
615 S 1st Ave, Pocatello, ID 83201, Phone: 208-232-1644
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8.Butter Burrs Restaurant, Pocatello, ID
© Butter Burrs Restaurant
A locally owned and operated neighborhood eatery in the city of Pocatello, the Butter Burrs Restaurant has been providing the local community with home-cooked quality meals for more than thirty years. The menu at Butter Burrs includes real homemade mashed potatoes, a variety of specialty sandwiches, omelets, Butterburgers, homemade soups, pies, breads, and many iconic “twists” made fresh every day, all day. The main entrees for dinner include many popular comfort food classics, such as chicken fried steak and seven-hour rump roast. Butter Burrs Restaurant is open seven days a week, from eight in the morning to nine at night.
917 Yellowstone Ave, Pocatello, ID 83201, Phone: 208-232-3296
9.Sumisu, Pocatello, Idaho
Sumisu aims to be the Pocatello area’s leading provider of Japanese fusion cuisine and sushi. The restaurant also boasts that they inspire their employees to try and live better lives, as well as have “heart of service” for its customers and community. Sumisu prides itself on using traditional Japanese techniques when it comes to the preparation of the dishes it serves, as well as using their own flair for showcasing Asian-inspired flavors. Offering fresh fish that’s flown in from the coast, Sumisu offers a menu featuring the “greatest hits” from Asia, including familiar dishes with an influence of fusion and fresh sushi.
309 E Center St, Pocatello, ID 83201, Phone: 208-232-5610
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10.Buddy's Italian Restaurant, Pocatello, Idaho
© Buddy's Italian Restaurant
Buddy's Italian Restaurant is a family-owned and operated restaurant serving Italian cuisine in Pocatello, Idaho. First opening its doors to the public in 1961, the restaurant has been serving ravioli, pizza, special sauces, a variety of sandwiches, and its homemade “Famous Buddy’s Salad Dressing” to the local community for more than fifty years, making this Italian eatery one of the oldest restaurants in Pocatello. The menu includes salads, soups, pizzas, many pasta dishes, and both regular and open-faced sandwiches.
626 E Lewis St, Pocatello, ID 83201
11.Chief Pocatello Statue
The city of Pocatello is named in remembrance and in honor of Chief Pocatello, a leader of the Northern Shoshone tribe from the Great Basin. He played a pivotal role in the survival of his tribe during the 1800s. The chief is memorialized by a beautiful statue that is located at the city’s visitor’s center, ready to greet visitors to Pocatello from near and far. This eye-catching statue is a mainstay in many selfies taken by newcomers to the city as well as the city’s residents. Be sure to enjoy the walking paths around the statue that connect to the Rotary International Rose Garden.
2695 South 5th Avenue, Pocatello, Idaho 83204, Phone: 208-234-6582
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12.Veteran’s Memorial Building
© Vibe Images/stock.adobe.com
Dedicated to the brave veterans of Pocatello, the Veteran’s Memorial Building was designed by Frank Paradice Jr. And built by contractor Alex Mathers in the 1920s and was finally completed in 1926. The architecture and make of the building alone are enough to make it a fantastic place to visit in Idaho. Among the many striking features of the building’s façade, some of the things that stand out are its U-shaped floor plan, the raised concrete foundation, and its vantage point of the Portneuf River. The building is maintained and operated by the Bannock County Veterans’ Memorial Association and still retains its function as a community center to this day.
300 N Johnson Avenue, Pocatello, Idaho 83204, Phone: 208-232-9960
13.Massacre Rocks State Park
© christian yuriel vargas chavarria EyeEm/stock.adobe.com
Don’t let the name of this state park fool you: Massacre Rocks State Park is a gorgeous recreational destination that is full of fun, adventure, and history. Situated along the banks of the powerful Snake River, the park offers miles of fantastic hiking trails that feature informational plaques about the Oregon Trail’s history, the many geological wonders along the way, and the plan and bird species that call the park home. Visitors can also participate in activities like boating, camping, rock climbing, trail biking, fishing, and many more. The Junior Rangers also host activities in the park as well as the First Time Adventure program that is meant to help families enjoy the outdoors together.
3592 N. Park Lane, American Falls, Idaho 83211, Phone: 205-584-2672
14.Portneuf Wellness Complex
© Portneuf Wellness Complex
There is something for everyone to enjoy at the newly built 80-acre large Portneuf Wellness Complex. The complex features a state-of-the-art amphitheater that can accommodate 11,000 people on its outdoor and relaxing grassy hillside. Great events like amazing concerts, festivals, and community-driven events are backdropped by glorious mountain scenery in this complex, which is also outfitted with pavilions, concession stands, and spacious parking areas. On days with no events, visitors to the complex can enjoy the 6.5-acre lake in the complex which has a swimming beach and fishing docks, or enjoy the stream and the perimeter trail. The complex is also home to a mountain bike park, a pump track, several sports fields, basketball courts, and sand volleyball courts.
2375 Olympus Drive, Pocatello, Idaho 83201, Phone: 208-237-1340
15.East Mink Creek Nordic Center
© New Africa/stock.adobe.com
Just a short distance from Pocatello, the East Mink Creek Nordic Center is a fantastic recreational facility that is maintained and operated by the City of Pocatello in partnership with the Caribou-Targhee National Forest and the Pocatello Cross-Country Ski Foundation. Perfect for visitors who want to get their dose of winter sports, the center features endless miles of well-kept skate and ski trails and even a snowshoe trail. Sledding hills are also available for youngsters, while Catamount, Jackson, Inman, and Skyline Yurts are available for rent to visitors who want to experience yurt living. See spectacular views of the Caribou-Targhee National Forest as you zig and zag through beautiful cross country skiing trails.
144 Wilson Avenue, Pocatello, Idaho 83201; Phone: 208-234-6237
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Swore Farms is all about CSA – Community Supported Agriculture. The farm is dedicated to supplying the community healthy, tasty, and ultra-fresh produce right from the field to your tables. While their produce is certainly the star of the show, Swore Farm also offers educational programs for children where they can learn the ins and outs of agriculture in a fun and engaging way. For added fun, visitors can stop by the Pumpkin Patch where guests can pick and take home their own pumpkin and take a tractor ride. Swore Farms also has a huge corn maze and straw maze which is popular amongst the farm’s guests. The giant wheat sandbox is also beloved by children coming to visit, while night walks through the farms are also open to those who wish to enjoy the farm in the evening.
225 Ballard Road, Pocatello, Idaho, Phone: 208-238-7466
17.Ross Park Aquatic Complex
© Ross Park Aquatic Complex
There’s more to the Ross Park Aquatic Complex than just a swimming pool! This water complex is a great summer destination for the whole family and has long been a favorite place to gather for the community. The aquatic center features a spacious 25-yard by 25-meter main swimming pool, an activity pool with a cargo net feature, a basketball hoop for those who want to play an aquatic game of ball, and even lily pads to rest and relax on. The complex also features a lazy river, a zero-depth pool with a playground in the center, and an open deck for lounging. Visitors to the Ross Park Aquatic Complex can also enjoy a trip to Zoo Idaho, an awesome playground in Pleasureland, and a sand volleyball court.
2901 S 2nd Avenue, Pocatello, Idaho 83204, Phone: 208-234-0472
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18.Outer Limits Fun Zone
© Outer Limits Fun Zone
With a motto of “Don’t stay home, get in the zone!”, the Outer Limits Fun Zone guarantees tons of fun in sprawling 30,000 square foot facility. There is an endless variety of indoor recreational activities to enjoy in the fun zone, the most popular of which is its humongous laser tag arena. Test your stealth and aim in a round (or three!) of laser tag, or head to the black light miniature golf course for a psychedelic game of 9-hole putt-putt. The Outer Limits Fun Zone is also home to an incredible arcade, which is filled over 120 of the latest and most popular games, a soft-play area called the Play Palace. If that wasn’t enough, Outer Limits Fun Zone also has a blacklight bowling alley.
1800 Garrett Way, Pocatello, Idaho 83201, Phone: 208-232-7529
© Mat Hayward/stock.adobe.com
If you’ve ever had a desire to throw a couple of hatchets around for fun, then look no further than Heber Hatchets. Specializing in lumberjack entertainment, flannel, whispers, sawdust, and all, Heber Hatchets greets visitors with the lovely scent of pine oil, friendly flannel wearing hosts, and a crazy array of hatchet throwing games that will trump a bowling or mini golf game any day. Hatchet throwing will stir up your competitive spirit as the games involve a wood target, scoring, and lots of precision. Axe throwing sessions need to be booked ahead of time through mail or phone, while special events can also be booked.
504 E Center Street, Pocatello, Idaho 83201, Phone: 208-252-5034
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20.L.E. and Thelma E. Stephens Performing Arts Center
Performing arts like dance, theater, and music all converge together in the L.E. and Thelma E. Stephens Performing Arts Center. Catering to the communities of southeastern Idaho and the Idaho State University, this performing arts center was built thanks to the support and donations of hundreds of private donors. The result of their contributions is a 123,000 square-foot complex with all the state-of-the-art features that one could think of. The center sits atop a Pocatello hill and seats 1,200 people in their grand concert hall. The center, which is ranked fourth among the country’s top 25, also has a thrust stage theatre, a black box theatre, a rotunda, and multiple offices, practice rooms, and shops.
1002 Sam Nixon Drive, Pocatello, Idaho 83209, Phone: 208-282-3595
Referred to lovingly by the locals as “A Theatre for the Community”, the Palace Playhouse is a beloving performing arts center in Wilson that proudly stages countless comedies and musicals throughout the year. They are dedicated to creating a fun experience for families in addition to educating and cultivating the skills and passions of budding performers through their educational programs and summer classes. The Palace Playhouse has staged some classic plays in the past like Annie, Fiddler on the Roof, Mary Poppins, and Into the Woods. While the professional performances are certainly worth the tickets, some of the hidden gems include the shows performed exclusively by the theatre’s youngest talents.
158 East Chubbuck Road, Pocatello, Idaho 83202, Phone: 208-238-8001
© Sandpiper Restaurant
Opened in 1975, the Sandpiper Restaurant is part of a chain of successful casual fine dining restaurants and is much loved and frequently visited because of three things in particular: their steak, their seafood, and their pasta. Open for dinner service from Monday to Saturday, the restaurant features cozy and comfortable interiors as well as spectacular service and a welcoming atmosphere to pair with their delicious food. Patrons can tuck into thick, juicy, fantastic cuts of steak including the Filet Tenderloin Steak, the Rib Eye, the New York, USDA Prime Grade Top Sirloin, and their house recommended Steak Sandpiper. Don’t miss out on their seafood offerings either among which are the Alaskan Red King Crab Legs, the Fresh Idaho Trout, and the Hawaiian Crunch Halibut.
1400 Bench Road, Pocatello, Idaho 83201, Phone: 208-233-1000
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23.Poky Popcorn Shop
© Poky Popcorn Shop
At Poky Popcorn Shop, they believe that popcorn is a treat for every occasion, not just the movies. With fresh and tasty offerings, Poky Popcorn Shop is the go-to place in Pocatello for a wide array of popcorn flavors made, as much as possible, from locally sourced and natural products. Pick up a bag of gourmet popcorn with specialty flavors like Cashew Crunch, Pecan Crunch, Lemon Munch, White Chocolate Huckleberry, Dark Chocolate Sea Salt Caramel, and Caramel with Peanuts. They also carry flavors like S’mores Extreme and Cook’s Delight but also have their staple gourmet flavors like Strawberry Cheesecake, Cotton Candy Popcorn, Jalapeno Cheddar, among others. Visitors can also pick up other treats like the Poky Popcorn Shop’s honeycomb treats, half-pound fudge, peanut butter candy, and more.
421 East Oak Street, Pocatello, Idaho 83201, Phone: 208-223-4654
© 13 Locks
Test your wits, teamwork, and mental fortitude at 13 Locks, a premiere escape room game facility in Pocatello. Thirteen Locks features physical versions of popular “escape the room” video games, which bring to life fictional locations such as space stations, prison cells, or dungeons. Each game presents a unique challenge with several clues and puzzles that need to be solved for you and your group to escape. There’s no denying that a visit to 13 Locks will be thrilling, and it’s so good that it’s even the destination of choice for numerous team buildings. Games can be booked from Tuesday to Saturday evening, while large groups can call ahead to get a quote. Students and veterans are also entitled to discounts.
701 S 1st Avenue, Pocatello, Idaho 83201, Phone: 208-241-0333
25.Geronimo's Trampoline Park
Get a ton of adrenaline-pumping fun in and jump to your heart’s content at Geronimo’s, a cutting-edge indoor trampoline park that is favored by many families in Pocatello. This trampoline park is home to a whopping 11,000 square feet of trampoline surface. Part of this total is a 4,000 square foot open jump trampoline, 2 dodgeball trampoline courts, 2 basketball trampoline slam dunk lanes, 3 stretches of trick-style track trampolines that lead to an airbag, and even a couple of battle beams. In addition to free jumps pace, Geronimo’s also offers special programs and classes for the battle beam and fidget ladder, for high-performance freestyle jumping, as well as a Mommy and Me program perfect for mothers who want to create bonding memories with their kids.
423 E Chubbuck Road, Chubbuck, Idaho 83202, Phone: 208-254-5400
25 Best Things to Do in Pocatello, Idaho
- Museum of Clean, Pocatello, Idaho, Photo: Museum of Clean
- Bannock County Historical Museum, Pocatello, ID, Photo: Bannock County Historical Museum
- Fort Hall Replica, Pocatello, Idaho, Photo: Fort Hall Replica
- Idaho Museum of Natural History, Pocatello, Idaho, Photo: Idaho Museum of Natural History
- Zoo Idaho, Pocatello, Idaho, Photo: Zoo Idaho
- Standrod Mansion, Pocatello, Idaho, Photo: tong2530/stock.adobe.com
- Portneuf Valley Brewing, Pocatello, Idaho, Photo: Portneuf Valley Brewing
- Butter Burrs Restaurant, Pocatello, ID, Photo: Butter Burrs Restaurant
- Sumisu, Pocatello, Idaho, Photo: Sumisu
- Buddy's Italian Restaurant, Pocatello, Idaho, Photo: Buddy's Italian Restaurant
- Chief Pocatello Statue, Photo: dp3010/stock.adobe.com
- Veteran’s Memorial Building, Photo: Vibe Images/stock.adobe.com
- Massacre Rocks State Park, Photo: christian yuriel vargas chavarria EyeEm/stock.adobe.com
- Portneuf Wellness Complex, Photo: Portneuf Wellness Complex
- East Mink Creek Nordic Center, Photo: New Africa/stock.adobe.com
- Swore Farms, Photo: alicja neumiler/stock.adobe.com
- Ross Park Aquatic Complex, Photo: Ross Park Aquatic Complex
- Outer Limits Fun Zone, Photo: Outer Limits Fun Zone
- Heber Hatchets, Photo: Mat Hayward/stock.adobe.com
- L.E. and Thelma E. Stephens Performing Arts Center, Photo: Sanklinarika/stock.adobe.com
- Palace Playhouse, Photo: nagaets/stock.adobe.com
- Sandpiper Restaurant, Photo: Sandpiper Restaurant
- Poky Popcorn Shop, Photo: Poky Popcorn Shop
- 13 Locks, Photo: 13 Locks
- Geronimo's Trampoline Park, Photo: Rakursstudio/stock.adobe.com
- Cover Photo: City of Pocatello - City Hall
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