This story was created in partnership with Hot Springs Travel & Tourism.
Family Fun at Hot Springs State Park
Thermopolis is known for Hot Springs State Park, where many other Wyomingites come to play and relax. Along the Big Horn River, more than 8,000 gallons of water flow over the rainbow-colored terraces every day at a constant temperature of 135 degrees Fahrenheit. Walk along the terraces, or swim in the water beneath them. The park has a free bath house where the water is maintained at a soothing 104 degrees Fahrenheit. And you won’t want to miss the “Big Spring”, where the natural spring contains 27 different minerals, making the water a beautiful turquoise and green color.
Don’t feel like driving all the way to Yellowstone on your trip? No worries, you can still see a herd of bison within our park. The park’s bison herd resides in a few pastures on the north and east sides of town. A public loop road allows visitors to get a closer view of the animal. Remember though, they’re wild and can be very dangerous, so stay in your vehicle.
Dig for Dinosaur Bones
Another family fun activity is to take a trip to the Wyoming Dinosaur Center. The center includes a world-class museum, working dig sites, and a preparation laboratory. It was named one of the World’s Coolest Places for Kids by TIME Magazine in 2019. Yes, it’s that good. Spend a day digging for real fossils with the professionals, or simply explore the museum and live dig sites.
Fish or Raft the Big Horn River through Wind River Canyon
Just four miles south of Thermopolis is Wind River Canyon, which is one of the most scenic drives in Wyoming. The river cuts through gorgeous, lush terrain and offers stunning views, exciting whitewater rafting, and world-class fishing. The canyon is part of the Wind River Indian Reservation, so visitors will need an additional license to fish the river, and cannot float the river within the canyon unless guided. We recommend booking a whitewater trip in the canyon one day, and a fishing trip that takes you all the way to the state park for another day.
Explore the Wild West at the Historical Museum
Sometimes it can be hard to convince children that a history museum will be a fun time—the Hot Springs County Museum is different. Rather than walking around just reading blurbs of information on a sign, this museum makes visitors feel like they’ve just stepped back into a different time period. Climb aboard a railroad caboose, sit at the original bar where local gang members used to hangout, and walk through the old town setting peering through windows of a dentist office and newspaper shop.
Discover ancient art at the Legend Rock Petroglyphs
While you’re feeling excited about history, why not drive out of town a bit to see the Legend Rock petroglyphs. Only 23 miles west of town, there are at least 283 different petroglyphs on 92 individual sandstone “panels.” This is a great place for adults and kids alike to enjoy the beauty of ancient art.
Enjoy the family fun activities, small-town hospitality, and unique outdoor adventure that Thermopolis has to offer. Whether Hot Springs County was your destination, or it’s a stop en route to Yellowstone, make the most of your Wyoming family trip!