The rambling mountain town of West Yellowstone is smack in the middle of some of the best hiking, fishing, sightseeing and hunting in the Greater Yellowstone ecosystem. It's only 50 miles from Big Sky, 90 miles from Bozeman and 32 miles from Old Faithful, making it almost an ideal base from which to explore the park and countryside; but not quite.
As Yellowstone National Park's busiest entrance – admitting over 1.8 million visitors per year, more than twice as many as the next-most popular south entrance – traffic here can come to a standstill throughout town as everyone funnels through the gates. Expect every hotel to be booked early and restaurants to have a wait. If you do stay here, get up and get out early before the rest of Montana and Idaho arrive.