Wildlife Safaris & Eco Tours

Yellowstone Tours from Gardiner

Nestled at the northern entrance of Yellowstone National Park, Gardiner, Montana, beckons travelers with its unrivaled proximity to the wonders of the natural world. As the Roosevelt Arch welcomes you into this picturesque town, the air is charged with anticipation for an adventure that seamlessly blends outdoor exploration, wildlife encounters, and a charming touch of Western hospitality.

Yellowstone Safari Company offers daily tours from Gardiner into the Lamar Valley for wildlife watching and into the park interior to see the highlights of Yellowstone National Park.  During the winter months, the Lamar Valley remains accessible and it’s an excellent time for spotting wolves and other wildlife.  Wildlife enthusiasts can join a 3-Day Winter Wolves and Wildlife tour to maximize their experience in the region.

History of Gardiner

Earliest references to the area date back as far as 1805. With the exception of Yellowstone National Park, it is the oldest known place name in the region, dubbed Gardiner in 1870 after Johnson Gardner. Not much is known about him, and it is thought that the extra “i” in the name came from a mispronunciation from explorer Jim Bridger. The town served as the main gateway to the park since its creation in 1872 due to its extremely close proximity. Its purpose was to serve the needs of visitors to the park, a role which it still plays today.

Things to do in Gardiner, MT

While Gardiner is known for its immediate access to Yellowstone National Park, there is so much more to this charming western town. Whether you’re looking for a thrill or a way to unwind and relax, there are plenty of options!

Feel the rush of the Yellowstone River on a river rafting adventure, where guided trips cater to all skill levels. Navigate through canyons, pass by wildlife habitats, and let the river’s flow carry you through a landscape of unparalleled beauty. After a day of exploration, find solace and rejuvenation at Chico Hot Springs Resort. Soak in natural hot springs surrounded by mountain views, indulging in a moment of tranquility and luxury. Fine dining completes the experience, creating a perfect balance of adventure and relaxation. Wander through the historic streets of downtown Gardiner, where Western architecture harmonizes with a vibrant community spirit. Local shops offer unique souvenirs, quaint eateries beckon with local flavors, and friendly locals embody the town’s welcoming atmosphere, inviting you to become a part of its story.

Lodging in Gardiner, MT

Gardiner, Montana offers a spectrum of lodging experiences harmoniously intertwined with the town’s rustic charm and natural splendor. From cozy bed and breakfasts and historic inns that evoke the spirit of the West to comfortable hotels and lodges with panoramic views of the surrounding mountains, visitors are presented with a diverse range of accommodations. Charming cabins and vacation rentals tucked amidst the wilderness provide a secluded retreat, while campgrounds near the Yellowstone River offer a closer connection to nature. Whether you seek the warmth of personalized hospitality, the convenience of a hotel, or the tranquility of a secluded cabin, Gardiner ensures a restful and memorable stay, complementing the adventure that awaits within Yellowstone’s captivating landscapes.

Gateway to Yellowstone

Gardiner lies mere moments from the iconic Yellowstone National Park, making it an ideal base camp for park goers and wildlife enthusiasts who wish to maximize their time within its boundaries. It’s a fantastic launching point for a tour with Yellowstone Safari Company, where seasoned guides lead immersive journeys into the diverse landscapes of Yellowstone National Park. From wildlife safaris to geyser explorations to walking tours, these tailored tours provide insights and connections with the pristine beauty of the park. Witness untouched wilderness and capture memorable moments, creating an unforgettable adventure at this iconic natural wonder.

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Can I access Yellowstone National Park from Gardiner during the winter?

Yes! Gardiner is the only entrance that stays open year round for vehicles to enter and explore the northern range.  Yellowstone Safari Company runs tours daily in the winter months into the park from the north entrance.  

When is the best time of year to visit Gardiner, MT?

The summer months are undeniably the most popular with favorable weather and conditions. Spring and fall see more wildlife movement while the temperatures aren’t so warm. Winter is a much quieter time with fewer crowds and no shortage of snow! Every season offers something unique.

What activities are available in Gardiner, MT?

Gardiner offers numerous outdoor activities, including wildlife watching, hiking, skiing, snowshoeing, photography, and fishing. You can also enjoy rafting on the Yellowstone River and horseback riding through scenic landscapes.  Yellowstone Safari Company runs tours in summer and winter into the northern range in Yellowstone National Park.

From Gardiner, you can take a walking safari during the summer months or a snowshoe safari during the winter months for a unique adventure and a more immersive approach to wildlife watching in the park.

How far is Gardiner from Yellowstone National Park?

Gardiner, Montana, is actually located right at the northern entrance of Yellowstone National Park. The historic Roosevelt Arch, which is the iconic entrance to the park, is situated in Gardiner. Visitors staying in Gardiner are essentially at the doorstep of Yellowstone, making it an ideal location for those looking to explore the park. The town serves as a convenient base for entering Yellowstone National Park, with easy access to popular areas within the park such as Mammoth Hot Springs.

This was a wonderful tour and a great time. The small group added to the fun. Our guide was a wonderful and had our best interest at heart while working hard to find things special for us to see - yet showed great respect for the park, the wildlife and the environment. Would do this again if I could. Don't miss it.
Karen C.

Further Reading

A Month by Month Guide to Yellowstone National Park

Aug 17, 2022

The best time to visit Yellowstone is most dependent on your own planning; each month provides its own outstanding experience. Read through the highlights of each month to help plan your visit according to your interests.

A Brief History of Yellowstone National Park

Nov 3, 2020

Yellowstone National Park was established on March 1, 1872 as the world’s first national park. Yellowstone is an active volcano with one of the world’s largest calderas, measuring approximately 45 miles by 30 miles.