Amazing Boise River on an early Autumn morning.

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Boise River Greenbelt


The glowing emerald of Treasure Valley began as an ambitious plan in the 1960s to prevent development in the Boise River's floodplain and provide open space in a rapidly growing city. Today the growing collection of parks and museums along the tree-lined riverway is connected by more than 30 miles of multiuse paths, and hosts an insanely popular summer floating scene. A white-water park, complete with hydraulically controlled waves, is one of the largest in the country.

The put-in point for tubing the river is Barber Park, 6 miles east of downtown. It's a 5-mile float to the take-out point at Ann Morrison Park. There are four rest stops en route and a regular shuttle bus ($3) takes you back to your car from the take-out.

The most central and action-packed space on the Greenbelt, 90-acre Julia Davis Park contains the Boise Art Museum and is the permanent location of the Idaho State Historical Museum (temporarily closed for renovation).

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Boise attractions

1. Boise Art Museum

0.16 MILES

Inside 90-acre Julia Davis Park, this small but bright museum displays mostly contemporary art in all media, including the occasional Warhol, and touring…

2. Idaho State Museum

0.17 MILES

After a multi-year renovation, which brought this museum back to life, traditional exhibits now share space with multimedia installations for a…

3. Anduiza Fronton Building

0.37 MILES

Originally a boarding house from 1912, this building is home to Boise's popular indoor pala (Basque racquetball) court – check at the Basque Museum for a…

4. Basque Museum & Cultural Center

0.37 MILES

Sandwiched between the ethnic taverns, restaurants and bars is the Basque Museum & Cultural Center, a commendable effort to unveil the intricacies of…

5. Basque Block

0.38 MILES

Boise is home to one of the largest Basque populations outside Spain, with up to 15,000 residing here. The original émigrés arrived in the 1910s to work…

6. Idaho State Capitol

0.68 MILES

The joy of US state capitol buildings is that visitors can admire some of the nation's best architecture for free. The Boise building, constructed from…

7. World Center for Birds of Prey

6.81 MILES

The Peregrine Fund's worldwide raptor conservation programs have brought many species back from the brink of extinction – including the iconic California…