With its proximity to both Bozeman and Yellowstone National Park, Livingston has become a popular place to visit – and for good reason. With the Yellowstone River running through it and the Absaroka Mountain Range as its backdrop, Livingston has a quaint small-town feel, while boasting some of the best restaurants and activities in Southwest Montana. Whether you are a tourist or a local, here are our top picks for the best things to do in Livingston, Montana.
Gil's Goods is easily one of the best restaurants in Livingston. They make everything in-house with a focus on local and organic ingredients. Their wood-fired oven pizza is out of this world, and their burgers are always delicious. Gils Goods is always bustling with a mix of tourists and locals and is the perfect blend of old and modern. On the weekends you'll find live music and dancing in the adjacent Murray Bar, which is always a good time! If it's too crowded, check out one of the other restaurants in the area, there are so many to choose from!
Photo courtesy of Gil's Goods
The Livingston Depot was built in 1902 as the Northern Pacific Railroad's starting point for travel to Yellowstone National Park. The building was designed by the same architects that designed Grand Central Station in New York City, and it is certainly worth a visit! The museum is open in the summertime from 10:00 - 5:00 every day but Sunday. They have several exhibits including Rails Across the Rockies, Remarkable Migrations, Film in Montana, and more. Just outside of the Livingston Depot is the Depot Rotary Park which is a nice park in the center of downtown Livingston. There are many events hosted here throughout the year, depending on your timing you may be lucky enough to catch one!
Marks In & Out has been slinging burgers from this location since 1954, and is a Livingston classic! You will almost always find a long line of people outside this retro drive-up restaurant - that's how you know you are in the right spot! Their milkshakes are the best, and you can't say no to the onion rings and fries either. Raise your hand if you've made the drive from Bozeman just to get Mark's In & Out...
Photo courtesy of Mark's In & Out
Floating the Yellowstone River through Paradise Valley will have you enjoying some of the best views, and fishing, in Montana. There are multiple access points and take-outs so you can determine how long of a float you want to do, and what section of the river you would like to see. If you are comfortable going on your own, Rubber Ducky River Rentals has everything you need to hit the RIver. If you would like the assistance of a guide, there are plenty of options in Livingston. Yellowstone River Outfitters is our top pick. However you get on the Yellowstone, this is one to put on your summer bucket list every year.
The Livingston Farmer's Market takes place every Wednesday from June - September. It is set on the banks of the Yellowstone River outside the Civic Center and Miles Park Band Shell. You'll find live music, fresh produce from local farms, local craft beer, baked goods, locally made art and so much more! This is a great way to support the Livingston Community and to see what this area has to offer. Photo credit: www.westernsustainabilityexchange.com
The hikes near Livingston are some of the best in Southwest Montana. From sweeping vistas to towering waterfalls, there is so much to explore in this area. But please remember this is bear country. Always carry bear spray and be sure that you know what to do if you do encounter a bear on the trail. Click here to see our list of the best hikes near Livingston, Montana.
Livingston has two fantastic breweries. Neptune’s Brewery has great beer and a low-key atmosphere. If you are looking for more than just beer, head to Neptune's Taphouse for food, beer, and sushi. Yep, you read that right, sushi. Whether you feel like some sashimi or a hamburger they’ve got you covered! Bonus-the rooftop deck lets you enjoy your dinner with a view! Another favorite brewery in Livingston is Katabatic Brewing Company located in downtown Livingston. This is a great place to sit and people-watch while enjoying great beer, food and live music.
Photo courtesy of Katabatic Brewing Company
Sitting along the banks of the Yellowstone River with the Absaroka Mountains on the other side, Sacajawea Park is a great place to relax and have a picnic. Pack a lunch (or grab some Mark’s In & Out as suggested above) and throw out a blanket under one of the many huge trees for a picnic. There’s a playground, tennis courts, and trails to wander on. When you're done at the park, take a stroll through the nearby neighborhoods and enjoy checking out all the eclectic and historic homes in this area.
Photo courtesy of Livingston Roundup
The space in this historic Livingston building is so cool. They’ve preserved much of the original building while updating the space making it a perfect music venue. It’s right on Main Street and they have a full bar. Click here to see their current lineup.
Photo courtesy of The Attic
This is the perfect way to top off a day in Livingston. 2nd Street Bistro is a delightful restaurant that makes everything from scratch. During the summer they use many ingredients from their urban farm and they also handcraft cocktails with house-infused liquors. A jalapeno pineapple margarita sounds awfully refreshing after a day on the river.
Photo courtesy of 2nd Street Bistro
If you are visiting Livingston from out of town, then you have to stay at the Murray. This is an authentic Western hotel with all the modern amenities you need. You can’t help but get caught up in the history of this place if you stay here. Everyone from Buffalo Bill to the Queen of Denmark has spent time at the Murray Hotel!
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