Top 7 Places to Find Food and Lore in Billings, Montana

Northeast of Yellowstone, find a brewery district, gluten-free pancakes and Old West charm in this city of 110,000.
By Tori Peglar ,

1. Walkable Brewery District

Montana's only walkable brewery district in Billings, Montana.

Photo courtesy of Visit Billings

Reason to Go: Visit six breweries, two distilleries and a cider mill on this 1.5-mile stroll past outdoor patios.

Access: Start at Yellowstone Valley Brewing Co. with a Grizzly Wulf Wheat and end with Custer’s Last Stout at Montana Brewing Co. 

2. Stella’s Kitchen and Bakery

Breakfast at Stella's in Billings, Mont. Photo by Mike Willis via Flickr

Photo by Mike Willis via Flickr

Reason to Go: Legendary among locals, this downtown breakfast establishment serves up traditional morning food with stellar baked goods and even gluten-free pancakes.

Quirky Fact: Pancakes here may be larger than your head. 

3. The Northern Hotel

The lobby and fireplace at the Northern Hotel in Billings

Photo courtesy Northern Hotel

Reason to Go: Newly restored, this elegant historic hotel has been voted “best hotel in Billings” for four consecutive years. It features two fantastic restaurants: Bernie’s Diner for breakfast and lunch and TEN for upscale atmosphere and innovative Montana cuisine.

Quirky Fact: Break all the rules and order the “Vacation Breakfast” at Bernie’s - it’s chocolate cake coupled with a chocolate milkshake.

4. Swords Rimrock Park

Swords Rimrock Park near Billings, Montana

Courtesy Visit Billings

Reason to Go: Walk, bike or skateboard along the 4.5-mile, ADA-accessible pathway that runs the length of the city-owned park located along the top of the Rimrocks, a geologic formation.

Quirky Fact: Yellowstone Kelly was buried here in 1929. An army scout who chased Chief Joseph across four states, played tennis with Teddy Roosevelt and delivered mail to army outposts, Kelly has appeared in four books and a movie. Visit the Yellowstone Kelly Interpretive Site. 

5. Pictograph Cave State Park

Pictograph Cave State Park. 

Photo courtesy Visit Billings

Reason to Go: See warriors and animals painted on rock walls by ancient people more than 2,000 years ago in Pictograph Cave just five miles south of Billings. The cave is 160 feet wide and 45 feet deep, so bring your binoculars to see the art.

Quirky Fact: Archaeologists have discovered more than 30,000 artifacts, including tools and weapons here. 

6. Pompeys Pillar National Monument

Pompey Piller on the Yellowstone River near Billings, Montana. 

Photo courtesy of Visit Billings

Reason to Go: On their return route after reaching the Pacific Ocean, members of the Lewis and Clark Expedition stopped here and Clark engraved his first initial and last name, along with the date, July 25, 1806, into the rock.

Quirky Fact: The rock is named after Sacagawea’s child, Jean Baptiste Charbonneau, also known as “Pomp.”

7. Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument

The site where General Custer fell at the Battle of Little Bighorn

Loren Kerns via Flickr

Reason to Go: See the site recognizing the June 25-26, 1876, battle where the U.S. Army’s 7th Cavalry fought Sioux and Cheyenne Indians in one of their final armed efforts to preserve their way of life.

Quirky Fact: Sixty miles from Billings, this is the third most-visited place in Montana. 

For more information:
Billings Visitor Center
(406) 252-4016, (800) 735-2635
815 S. 27 St.