7 daysActivity Level
breakfasts, lunches, dinners
You’re invited to saddle up for outdoor family adventure in Yellowstone National Park and Big Sky, home to the most stunning winter wonderlands in all the West.
You and your buckaroos will see the mesmerizing eruptions of water and steam at Old Faithful, then strap on snowshoes for easy hikes along snow-laden fields and thermal springs. Ice skate, cross-country ski, sleigh ride and dogsled through this amazing region, filled with towering mountains, thermal basins, frozen canyon waterfalls and coniferous forests. Track and identify the region’s amazing wildlife, including elk, bison, bear and bald eagle, with your expert naturalist guide. The days are filled with erupting geysers and snowside picnics, while the nights land in you some of the region’s most comfortable lodging.
You’ll experience smaller crowds during the winter season, making Yellowstone your personal winter playground. It’s the best of the West, and it comes packaged with hardy meals, expert guides and services. Let’s giddy up!
Take in the Stellar Beauty of Yellowstone
Explore some of Yellowstone’s iconic scenery: colossal canyons, sweeping forests and picture-perfect lakes. The park’s geysers regularly erupt in explosions of boiling steam, and the hydrothermal basins range from lunar white to pink and sandy red. Expect to go stargazing on some beautiful winter nights among the sweeping plains and serene stillness.
Witness the Eruptions at Old Faithful
Old Faithful’s magnificent eruptions shoot up water and vapor, thanks to a process where magma heats up and pressurizes underground water. This is a must-see, and the rest of the Upper Basin deserves some love too – it’s home to many of the world’s largest geysers.
Snowshoeing, Skating, Sleigh Riding and Cross-Country Skiing
Yellowstone and Big Sky are a paradise for winter sports. Look forward to snowshoeing thermal basins and learning to “mush” your own dogsled team through the untracked meadows and rolling hills of Yellowstone.
Discover Amazing Wildlife
The wildlife is one of the most incredible parts of Yellowstone: elk, bison, bald eagles, grizzly bears, wolves and many more amazing animals call this slice of the world home. Your naturalist guide will help you identify signs of wildlife, such as otter slides and deer tracks.
Fly to Bozeman, Montana
Snowshoe Mammoth Hot Springs
Strap on your snowshoes and walk above the steaming hydrothermal basin at Mammoth Hot Springs. Explore these incredible travertine formations, where whiffs of sulfur dissipate in the air and the colors range from lunar white to pink to sandy red. The mountains rise in the distance, and on your adventure, you may spot elk, bison, deer and other wildlife.
Lamar Valley Wildlife Safari
Head out with your naturalist guide on a safari expedition in the Lamar Valley, often called America’s Serengeti for its large and easy-to-see population of animals. Keep an eye out for the wandering herds of bison, pronghorn and more. Your naturalist guide will help you identify signs of wildlife, such as otter slides and deer tracks!
(Conditions Permitting) Swim Yellowstone Hot Spring Boiling River
Take a dip in this natural hot tub, formed where a large hot spring enters the chillier Gardner River. The hot and cool waters mix into a temperature comfortable enough to bathe in. It’s a great place to soak while soaking up the natural beauty of Yellowstone.
Museum of the Rockies
Check out the Museum of the Rockies at Montana State University, showcasing some of the area’s dinosaur fossils and other natural history exhibits. The Sibel Dinosaur Complex touts one of the largest collections of North American dinosaurs in the world (yes, they have a few Tyrannosaurus rexes), along with dinosaur eggs, dinosaur babies and other prehistoric mammals.
Stroll to Frozen Waterfall
A short walk from the town center will lead along the Ousel Falls trail to a frozen fall, where the water has frozen into magnificent, icy blue walls of ice. It’s an easy hike that everyone can do!
Sledding and Ice Skating
Big Sky has plenty of opportunities for winter sports. Behind the town center stands a hill specifically designated for sledding. In the town center itself stands the ice-skating rink, with skate rentals available nearby.
Visit Old Faithful
One of the world’s most magnificent geysers, Old Faithful’s eruptions are enormous, ranging in height from 100-180 feet, and they can last between one and a half to five minutes long. This stunning display of magma-heated water is one of the most beautiful natural occurrences in North America.
Snowshoe the Hot Springs
Snowshoe in the thermal basin area surrounding Old Faithful while learning about the micro ecosystems that thrive in the hot water. The steaming hot springs will rise all around you – it feels like walking in a field of volcanoes!
Before the night ends, stop for some stargazing among the tranquil scenery of Yellowstone. Because of the park’s low amount of artificial light, it’s often possible to see your shadow cast by nothing more than the stars and the moon. The sheets of white snow create the perfect backdrop – it’s a great opportunity for some shadow puppets.
Cross-Country Ski and Winter Wildlife Survival Skills
With your guide to teach you, set out on a cross-country ski adventure along the Madison River, through untracked meadows and over rolling hills. Along the way, you’ll learn winter wilderness and wildlife safety skills, such as how to build a snow shelter, stay safe in winter environments and start a fire without using matches or lighters.
Wildlife Sanctuary and Discovery Center
Spend some time at the Yellowstone Wildlife Sanctuary, where animals struggling to survive in the wild receive support and protection. You’ll see grizzly bears, wolves, otters and more living in their natural environments. You’ll also learn about the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem and how the species in the sanctuary fit into it.
Sleighride to Dinner
Snuggle up in a warm blanket for this authentic Western experience! Glide through snow-laden plains and magical forests in a two-horse open sleigh. Your destination is a campsite, or yurt, in an idyllic winter wonderland, where you’ll eat dinner.
Bonfire and Fireworks
Celebrate the New Year with a bonfire and fireworks out in Montana’s winter wonderland. Expect sparklers, snow and plenty of unforgettable memories of ringing in the new year!
Experience an unforgettable part of Montana on this canine-powered adventure. Loyal and lovable huskies will give you a tour of their home, with jaw-dropping views of Lone Mountain, the Spanish Peaks, the Gallatin Range and more. If you’d like, your expert dog-sledding guide will teach you how to “mush,” or drive the sled all by yourself!
Afternoon at Leisure
Depart Bozeman, Montana
Transfer to the Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport
You’ll be transferred to the Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport for your flight home.
Arrive home in the US
Dates & Prices
12/23-12/29Adult $4990Teen $4990Child $4790Internal Air
12/27-01/02Adult $4990Teen $4990Child $4790Internal Air
Additional $998 for single accommodations.
If you are a returning Thomson guest, please subtract $500 per family from these prices.
We strongly recommend purchasing travel insurance. We’ve received great feedback about Travel Guard– you can learn more about the benefits of travel insurance there.
All entrance fees, accommodations based on two to a room, land transportation, private bilingual guide throughout, area specialists, most meals, bottled water and snacks in the vehicle.
Guaranteed departures. Surcharge applied to groups smaller than four guests.
Thomson Family Adventures will attempt to adhere to this itinerary and its hotels as much as possible. However, certain conditions (political, climatic, environmental, cultural, or availability) may necessitate changes in the accommodations.
- Why Thomson
Guaranteed DeparturesNo matter what happens, once your family books a trip you’re going.
GuidesBe accompanied for your entire trip by an expert local in-country guide who will know all of the ins and outs of the adventure and destination.
Small GroupsWith a small group you’ll have plenty of time for spontaneity and to develop a connection with your fellow travelers and guide.
7 daysActivity Level
ActiveActive trips revolve around multi-sport activities that keep your family outside and having fun! Your family will spend more time interacting with the elements and exploring than sitting on a beach or inside of a museum. These activities are not always physically demanding but they can be and do require a basic level of fitness.