Fun Things to do With Kids in Cody Yellowstone
Looking for a wild, fun, and adventure-packed vacation for you and your kids? Look no further than Cody Yellowstone! Home to the world’s first national park, abundant wildlife, and vibrant history, Cody Yellowstone is truly a destination for all ages. No matter what time of year you visit, you’ll find kid-friendly and kid-approved activities for a memorable family vacation. Here are some of the best things to do with kids in Cody Yellowstone, from outdoor adventures to classic Western experiences and fascinating learning opportunities.
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Outdoor Adventures in Yellowstone for Kids
If getting outside and experiencing awe-inspiring nature is high on your vacation to-do list, you’ll love it here in Cody Yellowstone. Here are a few ways to explore the great outdoors when you visit us.
Hike Gorgeous Nature Trails
Experienced hikers and amateur strollers love the hiking options here in Cody Yellowstone. Our wide variety of trails and paths means even your littlest companions will find something suitable. Whether it’s a meandering walk along our in-town trails, riverside hikes through the Shoshone National Forest, or boardwalk trots, you’ll find the right kid-friendly path to follow to ensure the whole family can take part and enjoy the sights and sounds of nature.
Check out Episode 2 of Outside Yellowstone: Hiking in Park County, Wyoming, for more great hiking recommendations.
Kid-Friendly Horseback Rides
Saddle up and head out on the trails with the kids! Horseback riding is the perfect way to get them to put away their screens and experience some good, old-fashioned fun. With multiple outfitters here in Cody Yellowstone, as well as numerous horse-centric ranches, you’ll find something suitable for your young aspiring cowboys and cowgirls. With so many options to choose from, young and old alike will have no trouble finding the perfect pony ride, trail ride, or multi-day horse-packing trip that suits their needs and skill level.
Bike Along Scenic Paths
Biking is a great way to explore the town of Cody and the surrounding area, so put the pedal to the metal and get out there. Numerous bikeable streets and trails in and around town are suitable for kids. With more than 10 miles of trails, Beck Lake Bike Park is an excellent option for family cycling excursions. Spring and fall are the prime pedaling seasons in Yellowstone National Park if you’re looking to plan a wild cycling experience.
Go Rafting, Paddling & Boating
Give your kids a fun and unique experience on the water in Cody Yellowstone. There are several places in the region where families can raft and paddle the day away. Multiple outfitters offer family-friendly rafting trips on the scenic Shoshone River, so you can find the journey that works best for your group. Located just a few miles from downtown Cody, the Buffalo Bill Reservoir in Buffalo Bill State Park features excellent boating options, and it’s even a hot spot for windsurfing! Yellowstone Lake in Yellowstone National Park is also fantastic for splashy fun. We suggest taking a guided boat and paddling trip or renting canoes and kayaks.
Take the Kids Fishing
Fishing is not just good for the soul and the planet, it’s also a great way to get outside with the kids and enjoy a leisurely day in the natural environment. There’s so much fishing in and around the town of Cody and Yellowstone National Park that even local anglers can’t tell you just how many streams, rivers, lakes, creeks, and tributaries we have here. Numerous outfitters in Cody will take families on guided trips and help them get geared up for a “reel” fun day of angling.
Plan a Family Day in Mentock Park
What kid doesn’t love making a splash and running around the park with their friends or siblings? With a water park, playground, picnic shelter, grills, and skate park, Mentock Park is perfect for shaking off the traveling cobwebs and letting the kids run wild and burn off lots of energy.
Classic Things to Do with Kids in Cody Yellowstone
Looking for something fun for the entire family that’s pure, classic Cody? Here are some ways your family can experience the spirit of the West and keep the kids entertained with long-running Cody favorites.
Experience Cody Nite Rodeo as a Family
The young and young at heart love a good spectacle, and very few spectacles can match the excitement of a good old-fashioned rodeo. Did you know that Cody is the Rodeo Capital of the World? It’s true! Every year, families travel from far and wide to experience the Cody Nite Rodeo at our town’s revered rodeo grounds. Whether it’s your first rodeo or you’re an old pro, this two-hour performance will surely be a highlight of any trip. Your kids will get a kick out of the performers’ feats — both human and animal — and will love the opportunity to enjoy hotdogs, nachos, and other concession treats. The Cody Nite Rodeo runs every night from June 1 through Aug. 31.
Explore Old Trail Town
Bring your kids along for an experience that’s immersive, educational, and just plain fun. Your trip to Cody Yellowstone can offer a trip back in time when you visit Old Trail Town. This ingeniously staged “town” provides a look at what life was like back in the days of the Wild West. It features 26 authentic cabins and other frontier buildings from the 1890s. Come see why True West Magazine voted Old Trail Town “Best Tourist Attraction and Historical Site”!
Drive the Scenic Byways
Nothing beats a road trip—and we have some of the best routes on our famously Scenic Byways! Road-trippers have been hitting the road here in Cody Yellowstone since 1917, when the first private automobiles were allowed in Yellowstone National Park. So pack the kids into the car to encounter some picture-perfect sights they’re sure to remember long after they return home from their Cody Yellowstone vacation. You’ll find five fantastic Scenic Byways here, each offering a unique collection of classic Western stops and experiences.
Educational Things to Do with Kids
Just because it’s a vacation doesn’t mean your kids can’t learn something new! We’ve got hands-on exhibits, wow-inducing displays, area museums, and plenty of historic attractions. Explore the region’s fascinating history, immerse yourself in the Western spirit, and learn about Buffalo Bill, Cody’s larger-than-life town founder. Here are a few educational attractions you don’t want to miss.
Explore the Buffalo Bill Center of the West
The Buffalo Bill Center of the West is an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution, home to five incredible museums under one roof. Your whole family can explore the Buffalo Bill Museum, Draper Museum of Natural History, Plains Indian Museum, Cody Firearms Museum, and Whitney Western Art Museum when you visit. But that’s not all! The museum also features special exhibits and interactive programs such as Cowboy Rich’s Chuckwagon Dinners and a Live Raptor Experience that the kids will love.
Learn Forgotten History at Heart Mountain WWII Interpretive Center
Give your kids the gift of knowledge about a lesser-known period in American history at Heart Mountain WWII Interpretive Center. Powerful and harrowing, this attraction tells the story of some 14,000 Japanese-Americans who were incarcerated at the Heart Mountain Confinement Camp during World War II. A fascinating look at an oft-forgotten part of the Second World War, the Interpretive Center is not to be missed.
Discover the Buffalo Bill Dam & Visitor Center
Your kids will be fascinated by the scale and scope of Buffalo Bill Dam & Visitor Center, a local engineering marvel. Completed in 1910, the Buffalo Bill Dam was once the tallest concrete arch dam in the world! A visit here showcases the dam’s masterful engineering, as well as its important impact on tourism and agriculture in the region.
Cody Yellowstone Shows for Kids & Families
Cody Yellowstone comes alive in the summer. You’ll find numerous kid-friendly entertainment options when you visit for a family summer vacation. No matter which ones you choose, they’re sure to have you humming “Home on the Range” long after you’re, well, home.
Experience the Wild West Spectacular
Every summer, for six memorable weeks, the Wild West Spectacular wows audiences with a musical extravaganza that shares the legend of Buffalo Bill Cody and other colorful characters from the history of Cody Yellowstone. The show’s dancers, musicians, and actors are sure to entertain the whole family, and kids will love the treats available at the lobby canteen, including dipped ice cream bars, popcorn, soda, and other favorites.
Visit the Cody Cattle Company
Authentic Western dinners and live musical performances? Sounds like a recipe for kid-friendly fun! Cody Cattle Company offers a chuckwagon dinner featuring delicious local food and music by award-winning musicians and entertainers that will surely have your family smiling.
Listen to Dan Miller’s Cowboy Music Revue
Dan Miller is a Cody Yellowstone legend. For nearly 20 years, Dan and his talented band have been entertaining Cody audiences with Dan Miller’s Cowboy Music Revue. This family-friendly production features songs, comedy, and even a little bit of cowboy poetry! It’s a classic Cody Yellowstone experience that keeps families coming back, year after year.
Attend a Concert in the Park
We love our music here in Cody Yellowstone, so we’re always looking forward to the free, fun, and family-friendly summer concerts in the park. These weekly performances—a hit with locals and visitors alike—take place every Thursday throughout July and August at 6:30 pm at the City Park bandshell.
Ready to Bring the Kids to Cody Yellowstone?
Give your kids what they want in a family vacation: an amazing and unique trip to Cody Yellowstone! Start planning your getaway today.