With nearly half of Wyoming selected as public land, the Cowboy State is that the ideal destination for anyone who needs to explore the dramatic natural fantastic thing about the American West. The foremost sparsely inhabited state within the Union, the simplest places to go to in Wyoming are filled with spectacular landscapes, starting from the thermal geysers of Yellowstone River to the jagged mountain peaks of Grand Teton. The mountainous state is truly happy with its wild west heritage too. Whether or not looking a bronco-busting rodeo, chowing down on a chuckwagon dinner or rollicking the night away at a country-music dance palace, it’s clear that cowboy culture is alive and well in Wyoming.
Fossil Butte National Monument
Millions of years ago, three great lakes covered much of what is now a high desert in the southwest corner of Wyoming. The smallest body of water known today as Fossil Lake has proved to be a treasure trove of fossilized fish, animals and plants. Located around 15 miles (24 km) west of the City of Kemmerer, the Fossil Butte National Monument features a butte that rises 1,000 feet (300 meters) above the ancient lake bed. Fossils are found all over the butte, and during the summer, visitors can join paleontologists to dig for prehistoric remains. The Monument’s visitor center displays more than 300 fossils found in the region.
Hot Springs State Park
The largest hot springs in North America is the main attraction in Hot Springs State Park. Located near the aptly named town of Thermopolis, the steaming hot water from the Big Spring is used to supply several spa resorts and water parks. Run by the state, the State Bath House is open to the public. Visitors can soak in an indoor or outdoor pool free of charge for 20 minutes. With its open and enclosed twisting water slides, indoor and outdoor pools and bubbling hot tubs, the Star Plunge water park is a family favorite. The park is also home to a herd of around 25 bison.
Located in the southeast corner of Wyoming, Cheyenne is the Cowboy State’s capital and largest city. Founded in 1867, Cheyenne’s many historic buildings and museums are its main attractions. Built in 1887, the Renaissance rival-style Capitol Building features a gold leaf dome that’s visible from almost anywhere in the city, and the building’s stained glass interior, grand staircase and checkerboard marble floors make it worth a visit. The Nelson Museum of the West features Native American art and artifacts from the United States Cavalry. In July Cheyenne hosts the Cheyenne Frontier Days, the largest outdoor rodeo in the US. Established in 1897 it includes numerous rodeo events, free pancake breakfasts, night-time concerts, and parades.
The Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area owes its existence to the Yellowtail Dam built on the Bighorn River in Montana during the 1960s. Much of the dam’s reservoir, which extends 71 miles (114 km) upstream into Wyoming, lies within the Crow Indian Reservation. Steep canyon walls rise above Bighorn Lake, making the reservoir a scenic place to enjoy boating and water sports. The Wyoming side of the park lies adjacent to the Pryor Mountain National Wild Horse Range, offering visitors the chance to see herds of wild horses riding along the canyon’s summit.
Rising 1,267 feet (386 meters) above the surrounding terrain, Devils Tower is the core of an ancient volcano exposed from erosion. It is located in the Black Hills in Crook County, northeastern Wyoming and was declared a United States National Monument in 1906 by President Theodore Roosevelt. The mountain became world famous in 1977 when it was chosen as the location of the alien-human rendezvous point in Steven Spielberg’s Oscar winning science fiction film, Close Encounters of the Third Kind. Nowadays it’s one of the most popular places to visit in Wyoming.