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Must-See Places in Idaho Falls

On your way into Yellowstone and driving through Idaho Falls?

Taking a tour of the tater-state and coming into Eastern Idaho?

This guide is for you.  This post will highlight the best of the best in Idaho Falls, Idaho, from an unbiased and un-sponsored individual.  It may be a small town, and I may complain about it from time to time, but it does have its charms...

First and foremost, if you're not LDS go ahead and skip the Mormon Temple.  It's the big white eyesore that ruins pictures of the falls and can be seen no matter where you are.

If you HAVE TO see it, do what I did and have some fun.

First on your list should be historic Downtown Idaho Falls.  There are lots of sights to see, including:

- Bars that have been in existence for over 100 years (Karen's and Ford's, Ford's smells like it's over 100 years old...)

- Unique 'Bench Art' from artists all over the world

- The greenbelt and (of course) the waterfalls that give IF the original name.

- And cool businesses galore.

There are great eateries and drinkeries downtown. MarCellar's is an amazing beer and wine shop where you can sample some of the best libations around.  The Snake Bite, The Frosty Gator and Rutabagas all have fantastic food offerings.

Come hungry.  And thirsty.

I have mentioned them before, but The Villa Coffeehouse is my favorite hangout in town by far.  Their coffees and teas are unmatched in this area, and their service is awesome.

Their internet sucks during peak hours, but that just shows the popularity of this place.  I've written about my worries when they were losing employees and customers were whispering predictions of doom, but they pulled out strong and are better than ever.

I would say 'ask for ______' but you really can't go wrong.  Come early for a pick-me-up (a Synergy latte and a jalapeno bagel for me), and come late on Wednesdays thru Saturdays for a nightcap.

And tell them I sent you.  Hell, ask if I'm there.  I'm there more often than I should be, and am surprised they don't charge me rent.

Another interesting sight in Idaho Falls is a statue/fountain on Utah St between Broadway and 17th Street.  It is the centerpiece on a roundabout and always has the fountain running.

Even in January.  The thing gets covered in snow, ice and icicles and is a sight to behold.  It's a neat scene during the summer, but looks much cooler when it is half-frozen.

Feel free to do like other tourists in town:  Park to the side and try to get your picture taken in front of the statue.  I'll bet at least 4 locals flip you off or curse you out before you can say 'cheese....'

If you're into the night life, there are a few options for you.  The Frosty Gator has a small venue next to the bar location, and The Peppertree Lounge often has bands or comedians playing (recently featured Saving Abel) with minimal covers.

For a more local and underground scene, check out The Wax House.

It's loud.  It's claustrophobic.  It's fucking awesome.

The venue is small and it's a little off the beaten path, but they get some good names now and then.  Local bands like The Opskamatrists and Gutter and the Onslaught know how to rock the house, and are worth seeing at least once.

While there is nothing better in this town than the fine dining options, you can easily cruise the town and get a few good laughs.

Remember some of the signs I've shared in previous posts?


Home Cook'n When YOUR Not Home Cook'n.  GAAH

What is this I don't even...

....well there is always more where that came from.  A reader board for a local insurance agency recently read "School is back in session!  Drive carefull!"  I couldn't tell if they spelled 'careful' wrong and have grammar issues, or if the 'y' fell off.  Days later, an 'l' was removed and now the sign reads 'drive careful.'  That answers that.

So yes.  I do live in a small town, and I complain about it from time to time.  But there are a few gems in this area of the gem state.  If you're passing through, slow down enough to see some of the good sights in Idaho Falls.

And if you need me, odds are I'll be at The Villa.
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8 witty retorts:

E Anonymous said...

Brandon, even if they can't go into the Temple the Visitor's center is worth a visit. At least then you can still see what some of it is about.

Brandon from said...

Well, yes and no. If you're going temple-diving, best to do it right and go to the SLC temple. They're the biggest and best represents the experience. Idaho Falls is, well, meh.

Thank, Q said...

Dud, no joke, but Idaho is on my bucket list. Now, it's waaaaaay down the list, but on there nonetheless. I will personally double the black population there upon arrival!

Out of Barnes said...

I've never spent anytime in Idaho Falls even though I've lived in the state for nearly 20 years. Your post made me think of making a, special trip just to see it.

Chubby Chatterbox said...

This looks like an interesting place. But i have a feeling my liberal beliefs wouldn't go down too well with the locals.

Adsila said...

Hum, I will have to check out some of those places if I ever get up to Idaho.

johnmerchant said...

According to my opinion idaho is very famous and visiting city and here are many hotels historical places and other tourist places available for visiting.

Brandon from said...

I have lived in IF for two years, and have learned to not talk about religion or politics outside of your own house. It's just not safe.

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