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Things To Do

Things to Do in Sun Valley, Idaho & Beyond

They named it Sun Valley for good reason. Welcome to a land with 250 days of sunshine a year with a constant stream of opportunities to put more adventures and experiences on your "Done That" list. The Vitamin D comes free; the hardest part might be figuring out how to do it all!

Below you'll find a line-up of things to do in Sun Valley. Click the link associated with each activity for more information on how  join-in on the fun. 

 

Summer Indoor & Outdoor Activities

You may come for the winter but you'll stay for the summer. 

 

 

Mountain Biking, Gravel Grinding & Road Riding:

  • 400+ miles of singletrack, lift-served trails, pump tracks, empty gravel roads and the Wood River Trail offer a riding experience for just about everyone. 
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Hiking & Trail Running:

  • From mellow loops right in town to epic climbs the foothills and mountains surrounding Sun Valley will keep you coming back for more.
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Fly Fishing:

  • The Big Wood River winds through the heart of the Valley while the Lost & Salmon Rivers along with Silver Creek Preserve are all less than an hour drive away. 
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Golfing:

  • 72 holes a spread throughout the Valley offering a variety or golfing experiences. There's even fun for the whole family at the Sun Valley Trail Creek putt-putt course.
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Tennis:

  • Bring your racket to Sun Valley! Play out in the elements or take shelter indoor at the the predominantly hard court surfaces. The nearest courts to Ketchum can be found out Atkinson Park. Other locations include the Sun Valley Tennis Center, Elkhorn, Zenergy and more. 

Paragliding:

Frisbee Golf:

  • It's a bit off the beaten path but there is an 18-hole disc golf course that will have you singing, "over the river and through the woods.."
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Swimming, Rafting & Paddleboarding:

  • Cool-off with a dip in the Big Wood River or keep it controlled with one of the many local pools, float part of the famed salmon river or paddle the many lakes within an hour drive of Ketchum. 
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Horseback Riding:

  • Channel your inner Clint Eastwood with a horseback ride through the mountains surrounding Sun Valley. 
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Skateboarding

  • Ever heard of Dreamland Skateparks? Well, here in the Wood River, we've been fortunate enough to have had their crew build two rad parks less than 20 miles from one another. 
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Sport Shooting

Ice Skating

  • Ice skating doesn't have to solely be a winter activity. The Sun Valley Ice Rink is located outdoors and operates year-round! If you're more in to spectating, the Sun Valley Summer Ice Shows put on some incredible performances featuring top skaters from around the world. 
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Rock Climbing & Mountaineering

  • We don't claim to have anything on Yosemite but we do have some top-shelf, high-alpine granite to be explored. 
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Winter Indoor & Outdoor Activities

This area came in to it's own thanks to the winter months. Downhill skiing was what made Sun Valley famous.

 

 

Downhill, Backcountry & Heli-Skiing & Snowboarding: 

  • Our roots are deeply seeded in the skiing & snowboard realm. Get lost in unique ski stories from Sun Valley that range from the first chairlift to exploring uncharted backcountry terrain to everything in between... Grab a chairlift, board a chopper or venture off with your own human powered legs to the snow-capped mountains fencing in Sun Valley. 3400 vertical feet of quad-burning terrain lies at Bald Mountain while backcountry terrain as far as the eye can see will beckon you to be shredded. No matter your skiing or snowboarding preference, there's an experience beckoning just about everyone. 
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Nordic Skiing

  • Considered by many to be the home of the lowest resting heart-rate, Sun Valley's Nordic scene can put your VO2 max to the test. While we're proud of our Olympic Training ground designation, it doesn't mean that there aren't entry level tracks to be found. Leisurely lose yourself in the scenery as you meaner along the Big Wood River surrounded by the Boulder Mountains to crush those hills until your lungs scream. The experience is up to you. 
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Snowshoeing

  • If you can walk, you can snowshoe. Slap on a set and navigate the deepest of snow with ease. Hop on one of the BCRD's numerous packed trails or venture off the beaten path to create your own trail. 
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Fat Biking

  • While Fat Biking has been slow to catch-on here in Sun Valley, there are still some solid options to get your winter-weather pedaling fix. Bike rentals can be found at the Elephants Perch and we offer a collection of groomed trails for your riding pleasure. 
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Ice Skating & Hockey:

  • Root-on the Sun Valley Suns hockey team or practice your own moves. There are two outdoor rinks and two indoor rinks in the area. 
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Snowmobiling:

  • This is a sledneckers paradise. Ease in to things with mellow groomed trails or do some serious exploring deep in the surrounding backcountry.
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Rock Climbing: 

  • The YMCA has an epic indoor climbing gym to satiate the those winter climbing urges. 
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Swimming:

  • Zenergy and the YMCA are the go-to locations to get your indoor laps in. There are also a number of hotels in the Wood River Valley with heated indoor/outdoor pools and hot tubs!
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Spring & Fall Activities

 

Things to do in the fall in Sun Valley, Idaho

 

 

Our shoulder seasons, also know as our "slack" season activities are closely correlated to our summer activities. For specific things to do, check out our spring & fall things-to-do stories below:

 

Fun for the Kids

 

Fun Things for the Kids to Do in Sun Valley, Ketchum & Hailey, Idaho

 

To grow up big, strong and brilliant just requires the right input. At least, that’s the hypothesis one could make of the 56 Olympians who call Sun Valley home.

Put that outlier effect to the test, and give your kids a chance to play in a playground bar none.  Even the littlest members of your family can fulfill their fun quotient in Sun Valley. Who knows where it may lead?

 

Arts & Culture

 

Thing to Do in Sun Valley, Idaho - Arts & Culture

 

Art Galleries 

  • This small mountain boasts an impressive art scene capable of surprising the savviest connoisseur. Twelve plus art galleries are strewn about the Ketchum city limits invite you to explore a variety of styles and mediums that may leave you feeling a greater sense of enlightenment. Monthly Gallery Walks are great way to coalesce free cheap wine, mingling and art admiration all in one fail swoop.
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Museums

  • From mining to ski heritage and Hemingway to sheep herding, Sun Valley's history is rich with stories to be told. Several museums in the area are eager and waiting to give you a glimpse in to the past. 
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Performing Arts

  • Seeing it live has the ability to put you in the moment, to experience the rawness of the performer(s), to have a unique experience. Get on point with the ballet, catch a show or let your mind wander with the theater. 
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Movies & Film

  • The movie scene in Sun Valley goes beyond the movie stars that call this place home. You may have seen one of the collection of films have been made here and heard whispers of the indie-style Sun Valley Film Festival. This is not your typical Hollywood glitz and glamour nor is it a stale, cookie-cutter scene. This is a place whose film roots have substance and appreciate for the craft. Don't worry if you're simply keen on catching the latest blockbuster flick, we have the Magic Lantern Movie Theater, Sun Valley Opera House and Big Wood Cinemas for you to get your fix. 
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Health & Wellness

 

Health & Wellness things to do in Sun Valley, Idaho - Yoga

 

Gyms, Yoga & Exercise Classes

  • While we may be bias in thinking that the outdoors are the best places for working out and doing yoga, there are other more conventional establishments in the area to make you feel at home. Former and current top-shelf athletes and all-around unassuming badasses will give you the encouragement you might need to push it that much harder of find that true zen moment. 
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Spas

  • Treat Yourself! We all deserve a little pampering from time to time. Take your pick from mud masks to pedicures, stone massages to salt baths. Between Zenergy and the Sun Valley Spa, these two entities will leave you feeling revitalized and re-centered. 
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Events

 

 

Events and other Things to Do in Sun Valley, Idaho

 

Find out all of the happenings in Sun Valley, Ketchum and Hailey, Idaho with our in-depth calendar of events the features all of the events and activities scheduled for when you plan to visit. Get links to tickets, directions to venues and everything else you need to make plans now or, for, in the future. No matter what time of year it is, there is always something happening from arts and culture to food, music and fin activities for kids and the whole family.

Calendar of Events

 

Attractions

 

Sun Valley Idaho Things to Do - Attractions

 

Central Idaho Dark Sky Reserve:

  • Ketchum is a gateway city to America's 1st Dark Sky Reserve. See the stars in all of their brilliance, the way they were meant to be seen. 
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Sawtooth Botanical Gardens

  • The Sawtooth Botanical Garden is a community resource showcasing native and cultivated plants that flourish at high altitude. The Garden connects people to the region’s unique beauty and fosters environmental stewardship through education, events, displays and plant collections.
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Local Parks

  • What is a destination without its parks? There are a variety of offerings strew throughout the Wood River Valley ranging from your classic swing-set, BBQ shelter setups to serene tucked away nooks. For a list of parks, check the links below:
  • Parks in Sun Valley, Ketchum, Hailey & Bellevue

Silver Creek Preserve

  • A short drive south of Ketchum, water percolates from an aquifer in the middle of high-desert farm land. A series of spring-fed streams braid together to form the famed Silver Creek. This micro-ecosystem creates an oasis for trophy trout, moose, elk, deer, birds of prey, waterfowl and so much more. See for yourself why this place was cherished by Hemingway. 
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Craters of the Moon National Monument

  • Similarly to Silver Creek, a liquid oozed its way up through the cracks in the earth but instead of consistently flowing, this substance cooled and turned to rock. This immense lava field will have you feeling like you've landed on the moon. The lunar landscape of Craters of the Moon National Monument lies a little over an hours drive from Ketchum. 
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Galena Lodge

  • In the summer you'll find 47+ miles of non-motorized trails suited for hiking, biking and horseback riding. Come winter, snowshoes and cross-country skis dominate the scene. During both seasons you'll find delicious meals served daily. Perched 23-miles north of town, this destination is well worth the drive. 
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Ernest Hemingway Legacy

  • The Nobel Prize winning author, Ernest Hemingway, had a soft spot in his heart for the Sun Valley area. Papa Hemi took-up part time residency here, hunted, socialized and was ultimately buried in the Wood River Valley. Much of his legacy lives-on with museum exhibits, a memorial, and a few still-standing, watering holes.
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Original Ski Chairlifts

  • Did you know that the world's first ski chairlifts were built right here in Sun Valley, Idaho? Now you do.. Thanks to the Sun Valley Company's ties to the Union Pacific Railroad, one of their clever engineers came up with the concept and brought it to the area. While most of the original lift no-longer exists, you can see the remnants of the Ruud Mountain lift. 
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The Big Chair

  • A trip to Sun Valley is not complete without a photo in the Big Chair. Located in front of the Cellar Pub in downtown Ketchum, this is a local icon. Don't be bashful, get up there for a classic photo. Locals will be more than happy to snap a photo for you. 
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Visit Sun Valley Visitor's Center

  • If you like getting your information from a real person face-to-face then the Visitor's Center is your ticket to insider tips and tricks for the Sun Valley area. Centrally located in downtown Ketchum within the Starbuck's building, the Visitor's Center offers a knowledgeable, friendly staff ready to equip you with maps, brochures, magazines and guides to ensure that you have the best Sun Valley experience. 

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Guides, Itineraries & Ideas for Things to Do: Searching for Sun Valley Blog

 

Searching for Sun Valley - Things to Do in Sun Valley, Idaho

For anything that we may have missed here, check out the tabs on the left or dig in to our Searching for Sun Valley Blog for a slew of great unexpected ideas. 

 

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