Out of all of the cities located within Bonner County, Idaho, Sandpoint is by far the largest and most well known. Today, it is regarded as one of the most scenic cities in the state of Idaho, and it has quickly become reknowned for its large and prosperous tourism, recreational, and manufacturing industries. Sandpoint’s location is ideal, as it is located on the shore of the largest lake in Idaho- Lake Pend Oreille. In addition to being a waterfront city, Sandpoint is bordered by three of most major mountain ranges in the state- the Bitterroot, Cabinet and Selkirk ranges. The city covers approximately four square miles of land, and owns approximately one square mile of water, which is used by both the citizens and tourists for a variety of recreational and industrial activities. Between the gorgeous Lake Pend Oreille and the breathtaking mountain views, there is no doubt that this city is beyond scenic. In fact, in 2011, Sandpoint was even declared the nation’s “Most Beautiful Small Town” by the famous newspaper USA Today. Despite the fact that this city is becoming progressively more popular in regards to both the tourism industry and permanent residents, it has still managed to retain that ‘small town feeling’ that it is so well known for. This is clearly shown by the fact that it has a population of only approximately 8,000 people.
Sandpoint has always been known for its rich and colorful history, and that is one of the main reasons why it is considered to be such a unique town. The area of Sandpoint was originally inhabited by the Kalispel and the Kootenai tribes, mainly due to Lake Pend Oreille and the abundance of fish that it has provided for generations. In addition to fish, this town has also always been known for having a large supply of cedar and huckleberries, both of which were incredibly popular among these two tribes. In the years to come, explorer David Thompson would eventually stumble across the area, and in turn start a whirlwind of settling and construction. Finally, in the year of 1898, Sandpoint became an official city of the United States of America. Today, this city is now larger, stronger, and more successful than ever. Its industry is continually growing, and its housing market is currently booming. There are numerous options in regards to property that is up for sale, and the prices are truly unbeatable. People from all over both the nation and globe are considering moving to Sandpoint, and with good reason. No matter whether you are raising a family or are soon to be retiring, Sandpoint is guaranteed to be perfect for you. If you are looking to buy property in the area, now is most definitely the time to finally consider doing so. Additionally, the affordable living expenses found in Sandpoint are absolutely unbeatable, and they will make living here even more enjoyable than you had ever previously believed to be possible.
Additionally, Sandpoint’s weather is also perfect for two of its main tourist attractions: water sports and snow sports. Summers in this beautiful Idaho city are known for being very warm, dry, and temperate, while the winters tend to be the exact opposite. During the summer, there are a variety of different activities that many people like to take part in, including things such as water sports on the lake and land activities, such as hiking, horseback riding, and backpacking. Sandpoint is highly celebrated for both its fishing and boating opportunities, and it has extensive trails located in the nearby mountain ranges. These trails are perfect for both hiking and biking, and there are lots of camping areas that are located nearby as well. Towards the end of the year, the temperature begins to rapidly drop, and a large amount of snow accumulates both in the city and on the mountains surrounding it. This snow not only serves to make Sandpoint a scenic city, but to also make it one of the best snowboarding and skiing spots in the nation. In fact, Sandpoint is home to Schweitzer Mountain Resort, which is not only one of the most famous mountain resorts in the country, but also the largest in the state of Idaho. Schweitzer Mountain Resort is located on the Wild Horse Trail and Pend Oreille Scenic Byway, and it is the perfect vacation destination for every occasion. Thousands of individuals flock to Schweitzer each and every year, and it truly has something to offer to all parties, including families, couples, and groups of friends.
Although outdoor activities and sports are one of the deciding factors for individuals who to choose to live in or are considering relocating to Sandpoint, they are by no means the only reason. The city of Sandpoint is considered to be a town of quick economic growth, and it has assets and conveniences that are perfect for any type of business and industry. It is considered to be the largest service center in the counties of both Boundary and Bonner, and it is home to quite a few national businesses. Sandpoint has a very large and promising retail sector, which includes many respected companies, such as Coldwater Creek, Litehouse, and Pend d’Oreille Winery. This little town is the perfect mixture between large companies and small businesses, and individuals come from all across the area in order to shop here. Additionally, Sandpoint is also the only city in Idaho where you can catch an Amtrak train. The Sandpoint train station can get you to any fellow Amtrak station in the nation, and it is considered to be a large travel hub. If you are looking to tour the nation by train, or would just like to know that you have a simple and affordable means of travel if you do choose to live in Sandpoint, this city’s Amtrak station will have everything that you could possibly need.
In addition to its booming economy and amazing outdoor attractions and sports, the actual city of Sandpoint also has numerous activities that make it a great place to both visit and live. Sandpoint has a very strong art community, a historical theater that still offers shows, and a large number of amazing restaurants and shops that will ensure that there is always something to do when you are out and about in the town. Downtown Sandpoint is constantly full of life, as it provides individuals with unique and rare dining and shopping experiences that you simply cannot find in any other city. If you are looking for an authentic shopping experience, make sure to visit the headquarters of Coldwater Creek! Coldwater Creek offers products that are both incredibly high quality and affordable, and shopping there is considered to be a once in a lifetime retail experience. And, once you have made all of your purchases, you can then head over to Coldwater Creek’s very own espresso shop and wine bar, where you can relax before continuing your excursion downtown. This famous store has it all, and it’s an experience that the entire family will be able to enjoy.
If you enjoy golfing, Sandpoint is the perfect city for you to either visit or settle in. There are three major golf courses found in Sandpoint, and each of them is neatly kept and maintained. The first is the Elks Golf Club, which is conveniently placed just on the outskirts of town. It only offers 9 holes, but it is a great option for anyone who is new to the game of golf, or who simply would just like to play a quick game. Elks Golf Club is the perfect place to teach the kids how to play, and we guarantee that the entire family will love their experience there. But, if you find that you would like to play a full 18 holes of golf, there are two other options for this as well. The Idaho Club is located just 8 miles away from the city of Sandpoint, and it is absolutely gorgeous. The course manages to successfully incorporate areas of forest, wetlands, and water into the club, and it is full of sprawling land. The Idaho Club is most definitely worth the price that you pay, and it has nothing other than glowing reviews. Lastly, you can always choose to play at the Priest Lake Golf Course, which also has 18 holes as well. The Priest Lake Golf Course covers over 6,500 yards of land, and both forests and wetlands also surround it. It has putting greens, a full course, a driving range, and a restaurant, and it truly is the perfect place to relax and enjoy a game of golf while also being able to experience the gorgeous and one of a kind scenery.
Sandpoint also has a large selection of breweries and wineries that you can choose to visit. Each and every one of them offers high quality drinks that are sure to not only impress you, but to also make your entire trip memorable as well. They are the perfect places to purchase souvenirs for family and friends, and they are sure to supply you with memories and stories that you will keep with you for years. And, once you’re done touring these, why don’t you head on over to The Spa at the Seasons? The Spa of the Seasons is a state of the art relaxation spa, and it is perfect for all of your pampering needs. Its facilities are absolutely gorgeous, and its prices are unbeatable. Despite the fact that this is one of the highest quality spas in the state of Idaho, you do not need to spend large amounts of money in order to enjoy your day there. Plus, if you are in need of an activity that the kids will enjoy as well, don’t worry- there are plenty of them. Sandpoint is located just 30 minutes north of Silverwood, which is known as the largest theme park within northern Idaho. It has over 60 different rides, games, and other activities, and it is home to four gigantic roller coasters that your entire family is sure to love. Connected to the Silverwood amusement park is the Boulder Beach Water Park, which is the perfect way to cool off during those hot Idaho summers. And, the best part is that once you purchase one ticket, you are able to get into both parks for free. Very few amusement parks are known for doing this, and we urge you to take advantage of this amazing deal. Between the fun rides at Silverwood and the relaxing lazy river at Boulder Beach Water Park, your entire family is guaranteed to have the time of their lives. Additionally, don’t forget about the amazing shows and other entertainment that Silverwood also provides. This park will keep you highly entertained for the entire day; there is no doubt about it.
If you love nature and visiting state parks, Sandpoint is definitely the perfect city for you! There are three major state parks that are located within reasonable driving distance of Sandpoint, and each one of them has been highly praised for its scenery and fun activities. The first of these state parks is Round Lake State Park, which is located just 10 miles south of the city of Sandpoint. Although Round Lake is incredibly small and by no means rivals Lake Pend Oreille in regards to size, it is still absolutely gorgeous and is considered a “must-see” if you are in the area. It is surrounded by several different trails that are perfect for mild site seeing and hiking, and it has an abundance of several different types of perch and trout, making it the perfect place to relax and fish for the day. During the summer months, Round Lake State Park provides many opportunities for hiking and camping, and during the winter months, it also provides many opportunities for sledding and cross-country skiing. Additionally, because Round Lake is so small, it generally freezes over in the winter, thus providing the perfect place for skating.
Another popular state park that is located near Sandpoint is Farragut State Park. Farragut State Park is composed of 4,000 acres that lie just on the southern tip of Lake Pend Oreille. It has an 18-hole golf course, a model airplane flying field, lots of land that is perfect for wildlife viewing, and a slew of other outdoor activities that attract numerous tourists each and every year. If you enjoy mountain biking, hiking, boating, swimming, camping, and fishing, we highly recommend that you visit Farragut State Park when you are in the area. There is so much to see and do here; we promise that there will never be a dull moment.
Sandpoint is also located fairly close to Priest Lake State Park. Priest Lake also has an abundance of salmon and trout, and it is home to some of the finest fishing in the northern Idaho area. At Priest Lake, you are able to partake in both tent and RV camping, and you can also swim within the lake. There are many hiking and mountain biking trails surrounding the lake, and these trails also supply amazing wildlife viewing opportunities.
If these state parks sound like a lot of fun, but you find that you would rather stay a bit closer to the actual city of Sandpoint, don’t worry- we understand. There are three different lake parks that are located in Sandpoint, and they are all equally beautiful and fun to visit. The most popular of these lake parks is City Beach Park, which is a public lake beach that is located right in the middle of downtown Sandpoint. It is full of fine sand beaches, and has clean and pristine water areas that are perfect for swimming, wading, and a variety of other lake activities. Additionally, City Beach is also equipped with basketball, volleyball, and tennis courts, and it has numerous boat ramps and docks, thus allowing you to bring your personal lake equipment if you choose to do so.
In addition to City Beach, there is also Sam Owen Park, which is found on the Hope Peninsula. It has a nice pebble beach, as well as a clean swimming area that is absolutely beautiful. And, if you wish to spend a few days camping here, that is no problem at all. Sam Owen Park is full of different camping areas, as well as picnic and barbequing areas. It is the perfect place to spend a few days with both the family and friends.
Lastly, there is also Springy Point, which is located just four miles off of Lakeshore Drive. Springy Point offers great water that is perfect for both swimming and boating, and there are also spaces for camping during the summer. If you choose to camp at any of these locations, we urge you to call soon! Camping spaces are limited, and they tend to fill up very quickly during both spring and summer.
And, if you are interested in seeing some of the amazing wildlife that Sandpoint has to offer, your options for activities and site seeing are truly endless. The Kootenai National Wildlife Refuge, which is located just 30 miles north of Sandpoint, has over 2,000 miles that are full of unique species of animals and an abundance of plants that you truly cannot find anywhere else. There are a variety of different trails located throughout the refuge that are perfect for both cross country skiing and hiking, and each trail offers amazing wildlife viewing that people all across the world have simply raved about. Additionally, there are also many different blinds where the waterfowl can be watched, and they are the perfect spots to quietly and respectfully watch the birds without having to worry about potentially disturbing or scaring them. In the fall and early winter, the refuge becomes the home of thousands and thousands of swans, ducks, and geese, as well as a few other breeds of waterfowl that are participating in their annual migration over what is known as the “Pacific Flyway”. Although there are very few birds that continue to live in the refuge during the long and harsh winter months, there are still some, and they will be visible to you if you ever choose to go cross-country skiing in the area. During the summer, the birds start to come back, and the area is once again filled with ducks, geese, bald eagles, hawks, and herons. In addition to the birds, it is also common to spot a few types of large mammals in the refuge, such as deer, bears, moose, and elk. If you wish to explore the land in the refuge, you have several different options. You can choose to either take an auto tour in your personal vehicle, or you can go by foot. Both of these options are available year round, except during the hunting season, which takes place during October-November. The Kootenai National Wildlife Refuge is gorgeous year round, and when you visit it, you are sure to see a plethora of animals and different types of scenery that will no doubt take your breath away.
Additionally, Sandpoint is also well known for the birds known as “ospreys”. The ospreys, otherwise nicknamed “fish hawks”, give birth to and raise their chicks at a place called Memorial Field. Memorial Field is a lakeside park that is found right in the middle of Sandpoint, and it is quite scenic. Visitors have the opportunity of watching the ospreys take care of their chicks during the months that they spend residing there.
In addition to fowl, Sandpoint is also home to a variety of different fish. There are two main fish hatcheries and habitats that are found near Sandpoint, and each of them offers a variety of activities and things to see. The first, which is Waterlife Discovery Center, offers self guided tours and trails that you can follow in order to see the fish habitat yourself. Additionally, there is also Cabinet George Hatchery, which is located just 30 miles outside of the actual city of Sandpoint. Cabinet George Hatchery is home to the hatching of several million salmon eggs before they are finally released into Lake Pend Oreille. At this hatchery, you have the choice of either participating in a self-guided tour, or of calling ahead of time and setting up a group tour for you and your accompanying party. Viewing both of these fish habitats is a great experience, as it allows you to truly see the history behind one of the most beloved activities in the area, and how it is such a large and constantly growing industry.
No matter what your hobbies and personal interests are, we guarantee that the city of Sandpoint has something to offer you. This city is amazing and unique, and you cannot find another like it anywhere else in the world. If you are considering relocating, or would just like to go on vacation in the coming months, we strongly recommend Sandpoint, and we simply know that you will not regret coming here. Between all of the amazing activities, site seeing opportunities, and the booming local economy, you are bound to bloom and prosper here. Sandpoint is one of the most amazing cities in the world, and there are many that will attest to that fact.