Backcountry Accommodation Options In Glacier National Park
If youre an avid hiker, there are two backcountry chalets you can hike into for accommodations. These are great options for enjoying a quiet and scenic part of the park outside of busy daytime hours. Remember that they are more rustic and you need to hike in, so be prepared!
- Sperry Chalet: Hike into a remote chalet built back in 1913, offering comfortable linens, blankets, pillows, hand towels, and meals. Note that you wont find electricity, heat, or running water, so come prepared to rough it a little bit.
- Granite Park Chalet: Stay in a rustic chalet built back in 1915. You can preorder food and linens, or bring your own!
Lodging In The Highway 2 Corridor / Southern Glacier Area
Glacier Haven Inn: Small inn located between West and East Glacier.
Summit Mountain Lodge: Located on the Continental Divide along the southern border of Glacier Park. Close to East Glacier with amazing views and a great restaurant. Our #1 pick for Glacier National Park weddings those views simply cant be beat!
The Snowslip Inn: A small motel/restaurant/bar along Hwy 2 near Essex, MT. Great people and home cookin!
Best For Families: Cedar Creek Lodge
Courtesy of Cedar Creek Lodge
Located in Columbia Falls, Cedar Creek Lodge is a 25-minute drive from the West Glacier Entrance of the park. It combines the charm of a traditional mountain lodge with the modern amenities needed for a comfortable stay with smaller children. Free Wi-Fi comes in handy on wet weather days, while all rooms include a mini-fridge and microwave for basic self-catering.
Family-friendly floor plans range from Deluxe Rooms with a king bed and pull-out sleeper sofa to two-bedroom suites with a separate living room. For meals, there are several popular restaurants within easy walking distance for little legs. The lodge also offers a fitness center, sundries shop, and complimentary parking.
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Best B& b: Moss Mountain Inn
Moss Mountain Inn
Moss Mountain Inn receives near-perfect TripAdvisor reviews for its generous hospitality and pristine setting on a six-acre wildlife sanctuary in Flathead National Forest. The three-story cedar chalet is seven miles from the West Glacier Entrance and boasts a wonderfully cozy, log cabin-style interior. Choose from four unique guest rooms, all with private bathrooms and fast Wi-Fi. Some have walk-in showers, others have soaking tubs, and two spoil with private balconies overlooking breathtaking mountain views.
Each morning starts with a full, fresh-cooked breakfast and drinks from the hot and cold beverage bar. If youre planning on heading into the park early, you can arrange to have your breakfast to go picnic lunches, snacks, and sit-down dinners are all available upon request. Make time to explore the B& Bs perennial gardens and nearby trails . An elevated birdwatching room, a glass solarium and a living room with cable TV and a crackling fireplace complete the Moss Mountain Inn experience.
How Long Does It Take To Drive Through Glacier National Park
As the snow and ice start to melt in the summer, the Going-to-the-Sun Road opens making it possible to drive through the middle of Glacier National Park. This typically happens in late June or early July but is fully dependent on the weather. The full 50 miles of the Going-to-the-Sun Road will take about 2 hours to drive as it is a very narrow road winding through the mountains.
As you drive the Going-to-the-Sun Road, youll go through Logan Pass, which is the highest point at 6,646 feet high. To help you understand the layout of the park a bit more, Logan Pass is 32 miles from the west entrance and 18 miles from the east entrance.
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Glacier National Park Lodging: Granite Park Chalet
There is probably no better way to connect with Glacier National Parks natural majestic scenery and bountiful wildlife than to stay at Granite Park Chalet. Constructed between 1914 and 1915 by Great Northern Railway, the chalet was built to provide a comfortable backcountry lodging option inside of Glacier National Park. First one among several, its now one of two remaining chalets. This rustic lodge made of timber and stone is a National Historic Landmark. Granite Park Chalet is not for the faint of heart: Guests can only reach it by hiking. The ones that make it, however, will be rewarded with an unrivaled Glacier Park experience.
West Glacier, MT 59936, Phone: 855-733-4522
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Are There Shuttles In Glacier National Park
There is a seasonal shuttle system within Glacier National Park. Whether you are staying inside of Glacier National Park or staying in one of the surrounding towns, you can park at any of the shuttle stops and catch the shuttle further into the park.
The shuttle connects all parts of the park, including West Glacier, Apgar, Lake McDonald Lodge, St. Mary, and Many Glacier. It may be the preferred way to get around as parking becomes challenging during the peak summer season. That being said, there may also be lines to board the shuttles. Scout the options before you decide to drive or ride!
Find full details on the shuttles in Glacier National Park.
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Day 2 Of The Best Way To Spend 7 Days In Glacier National Park: Hike Highline Trail To Granite Park Chalet And Grinnell Glacier Overlook
Ill be completely honest that this hiking day isnt for the faint of heart. If youre an avid hiker and want some incredible views and wildlife, definitely do this, but it is a long hiking day.
Youll start out early and drive along the Going-to-the-Sun Roads curvy mountain road until you hit the Logan Pass Visitor Center. This is where youll park to begin your hike.
However, youll need to get here early. We got here around 6:30 am and it was almost packed. By 7 am, the lot was almost completely full. So if you want to find parking, getting in around 6:30 am is a great idea.
Then, be sure to have a backpack full of snacks, water, and wear many layers, as today youll be hiking between 13-17 miles.
Highline Trail to Granite Park Chalet
Youll stay on the Highline Trail for the majority of the hike, where youll be met with incredible mountain views all along the way. Watching the sunrise while hiking in the mountains is a true thing of beauty, making the early head start well worth the effort.
Also along the way, youll likely spot mountain goats, bighorn sheep, marmots, and some adorable ground squirrels! If youre really lucky, you may even spot a moose or bear , so be sure to carry bear spray on you at all times!
Very quickly into your hike, youll see a wall with a cable attached as this area isnt very wide. So if youre terrified of heights, dont look down! As there are steep drop-offs here.
Garden Wall Trail
Granite Park Chalet and Coming Back
Best For Romance: Garden Wall Inn
Garden Wall Inn
Couples planning a romantic getaway need look no further than Garden Wall Inn, a charming Whitefish boutique located a 40-minute drive from the park’s West Glacier Entrance. Sheltered by graceful spruce and maple trees, the inn is an old-world sanctuary complete with antique rugs, hardwood floors, and period furnishings. Each of its unique guest rooms set the scene for romance with fresh flowers, luxury mattresses, and Egyptian cotton sheets, while handmade chocolate truffles are left on your pillow each evening.
All rooms come with an Art Deco-style private bathroom. For unparalleled romance, ask for one with a claw-foot soaking tub. The inn is owned by chefs and fine food is a focus. Your wake-up call is accompanied by a cup of locally roasted Garden Wall Blend coffee and breakfast is a gourmet, three-course spread created using the freshest farm produce. In the afternoon, complimentary hors-doeuvres and beverages are served by the living room fire. Ask your hosts to reserve a table in town for a special dinner.
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Hotels In Columbia Falls Mt
Columbia Falls lodging is a great way to find hotels around Glacier National Park without spending a ton of money. While its not as posh as Whitefish, motels in Columbia Falls offer great budget options and a quick driveits the closest town to Glacier National Park. For those looking for a hotel near Glacier National Park that will do the job, you cant go wrong with Columbia Falls.
930 2nd Ave W
Columbia Falls Cedar Creek Lodge is an extremely popular option among those looking to stay close to the park while still having access to a nearby town and restaurants. Its also located right by a water park if youre interested in taking a dip after a long day of hiking. Make sure you book it well in advance since its one of the most sought after spots near Glacier National Park.
480 Bad Rock Dr
This charming little B& B is one of the best motels near Glacier National Park in terms of value. Not only is it extremely affordable, but it is also homey and offers an opportunity to explore Bad Rock Canyon if you want to do some hiking and outdoor activities outside of the park itself. Free breakfast is included!
2215 Dillon Rd
Where To Stay In Glacier National Park: Motel Lake Mcdonald
Motel Lake McDonald is located about 10 miles inside the west entrance of Glacier National Park, Montana. The motel is situated near the shores of the parks largest lake, giving guests a great opportunity to do some kayaking on Lake McDonald or take a scenic lake cruise with the Glacier Park Boat Company. Other park activities include hiking to waterfalls, mountain biking, mountain climbing, and horseback riding. The rooms have a mix of contemporary and Western-style log furniture, gray carpets, knotty pine ceilings, and large windows that provide ample natural light. The rooms also feature private bathrooms and modest additional amenities.
West Glacier, MT 59936, Phone: 844-868-7474
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Glacier National Park Lodging: Swiftcurrent Motor Inn
Travelers longing for an intimate connection to Glacier National Park will appreciate this lodging option. Located inside the park, Swiftcurrent Motor Inn provides unrivaled access to park activities that include guided mountain climbing and fly fishing tours, scenic float tours down the Flathead River, and world-class hiking. The property features 95 rustic motor inn and cabin rooms, a fully stocked camp store, a gift shop, and a restaurant. Guests will be able to explore nearby trails that lead to Swiftcurrent Pass, Iceberg Lake, and the 183-foot Ptarmigan Tunnel. Rooms are comfortable and contemporary and feature basic amenities like coffeemakers and Wi-Fi.
Columbia Falls, MT 59912, Phone: 855-733-4522
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Renovated Barn In Somers Flathead Luxury
Nestled right in the heart of Montana, Somers was once a popular farming area. The buildings left behind, including this barn, have since been converted into unique accommodation. It is surrounded by a working farm, with waterfowl as your neighbours. The kitchen has up to date appliances, though the oven is outside. This is the perfect space for a family of four looking for something a bit different without having to be too adventurous.
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West Glacier Best Place To Stay In The Heart Of Glacier National Park
West Glacier is the largest town within the national park itself, making it our top pick for staying close to all the best parts of the region! It is also a little bit quieter than the larger towns outside of the park, making it the perfect getaway spot. If youre here for hiking and scenery, this is the place for you.
Just north of West Glacier, the town of Apagar provides stunning views of Lake Macdonald! Many visitors opt for Apagar instead, so you can admire the scenery without having to leave your accommodation especially sought after in this time of social distancing. Its only a two-minute drive from West Glacier, so you can easily move between the two.
Polebridge 30 Min From West Glacier
The Way Less Traveled: Located in the remote North Fork Valley. Perfect for someone looking to get away from it all. Must travel on a well loved dirt road for 20+ miles.
North Fork Hostel: Quiet and rustic accommodations since 1979. The Hostels mission is to provide the best possible experience and create a sanctuary for all people without causing unnecessary harm and educate and inspire guests with solutions to our environmental and social crisis.
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Apgar Village Lodge & Cabins
Tucked away in a dense forest surrounded by cedar trees, Apgar Village Lodge & Cabins is a hybrid of the charming village and raw, glorious nature. Immaculate waters against stunning rocky mountains, travelers get to experience both tranquility and a sense of community.
Sights and Landmarks: Lake McDonald, access to North Fork area.
Point of Interest: The quaint Montana village has a visitor center, a camp store, with a smattering of gift shops. Home to the biggest campground, it attracts plenty of travelers. Plenty of rustic lodgings here. West Glaciers grocery store offers locally-brewed beers.
Activities: bus tour , horseback riding, and boating. Grab dinner and a huckleberry ice cream for dessert at Russells Fireside Dining Room
Apgar Village Best Hotels
Sky Eco Glacier General Store and Cabins 13 mi from Glacier Park International Airport Glacier Homestead 13 miles from Glacier Park International Airport
Apgar Best Airbnbs:
Tent Campsite near Glacier National Park 9 miles from the West Gate of Glacier National Park
Where To Stay At Glacier National Park
There are seriously so many options for where to stay in and around Glacier National Park. If you want to save some serious cash, then camping is obviously one of the cheapest options.
Most campgrounds are open during the summer and cost about $10-23 per night. Check out camping options here!
There are also many lodges throughout the park. Lake McDonald Lodgeand Many Glacier Hotel are some of the most beautiful and popular spots to stay and can get quite pricey as well. Rooms can go for as much as $500 per night!
Be sure to book these well in advance!
There is also the option to stay outside of the park. This is what we did as we found some great Airbnbs outside the park that included laundry and had a kitchen, which was ideal after hiking so much.
This was our West Glacier Airbnb and our East Glacier Airbnb. There are some great West Glacier VRBOs and East Glacier VRBOs too!
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Final Thoughts On Where To Stay In Glacier National Park
Theres no other way of putting it Glacier National Park is simply stunning! Dramatic mountain ranges, adrenaline releasing adventure activities, and peaceful hikes are found everywhere. If we had one piece of advice, its to make sure you have spare camera batteries.
We dont like to play favourites, but if this is your first time, we recommend staying in West Glacier! This is the town closest to all the best-known attractions. It also comes with some great tour options if you want some help in discovering the best scenery.
That being said, Glacier National Park is a diverse region, and each town comes with its unique charms. We hope this guide has helped you narrow down your options.
Did we miss anything? Let us know in the comments!
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