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Plan Your Trip

Free digital trip planning guide

Enjoy an all-American summer (or fall) vacation full of art and culture, jaw-dropping scenery, and one-of-a-kind memories. Plan your trip from start to finish using our free digital trip planning guide and the wealth of resources below. It's the perfect summer for a Yellowstone adventure!

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    Museum Info

    If you have questions and can’t find the info on this page, call us at 307-587-4771, email us at [email protected], or message us on Facebook.

    Why should I visit the Center of the West?

    It’s the largest, most acclaimed museums (ahem, five museums) in the vicinity of Yellowstone. There’s something for everyone, including special exhibits, family-friendly activities, after-hours cowboy dining experiences, live birds of prey, and more.

    Most people will need to stay at least one night outside of Yellowstone before or after they spend time there. Spend that night in Cody and take advantage of our museums and everything else the area has to offer.

    Are the museums and activities family-friendly?

    Yes! There’s plenty for kids of all ages to do at here at the Center. Our five museum galleries have plenty of videos, interactives, and engaging exhibits to inspire them. Our live raptor program is another great activity for kids; they can see live birds of prey like owls, eagles, hawks, and vultures up close.

    Hours & Rates

    Hours

    May 1 – Sept. 15 8 a.m. - 6 p.m.
    Sept. 16 - Oct. 31 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.
    Nov. 1 - Nov.30 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
    Dec. 1 - Feb. 28 Thu. - Sun., 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
    Mar. 1 - Apr. 30 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
    Closed NYD, Thanksgiving, Christmas

    Rates

    Adults $21
    Kids 6-17 $14
    Kids <5 Free
    Students $19
    Seniors $20
    Tour Groups Call: 307-578-4000
    Members Free

    COVID-19 Info

    Masks are highly recommended, but not required, for museum visitors and staff. For more information on our cleanliness procedures, and other COVID-19 protocols, visit our COVID-19 info page.

    Accessibility

    Our entire campus is ADA wheelchair accessible including marked parking spaces, ramps, elevators, restroom stalls, and an ADA compliant Outdoor Play Area for children. The Center of the West offers manual wheelchairs on a first-come, first-served basis. Tours for visitors with special needs are available upon request by contacting the education department. There are a variety of audio, audio visual, and tactile opportunities throughout the galleries, most audio visual programs are open captioned.

    Dining at the Center

    The Center of the West has a full cafeteria serving sandwiches, burgers, bison brats, salads, desserts, and more. We also have a full coffee bar that serves lattes and other espresso beverages. We host bi-weekly cowboy chuckwagon dinners in the evenings, subject to availability. Enjoy a cowboy cut of beef, beans, and cobbler, just like they made it out on the range.

    How much time do I need?

    The Center of the West can be enjoyed for two hours or two days! Our general admission tickets are good for two days, but the average casual visitor with kids could easily enjoy our museums over the course of a morning or afternoon. There’s certainly a lot to see across five museums, so if you can spare an entire day and you love museums, it would certainly be worth it!

    For those who can’t spend that much time with us, we offer a variety of after-hours programs so you can get a wild west experience when it’s most convenient for you and your loved ones. 

    Cody, Wyoming Travel Info

    Driving to Cody

    Cody sits less than an hour outside Yellowstone and is easily accessible via major roadways. Here are just a few simple ways to get here.

    Via Denver I-25N

    Those coming from the south or the east can easily link up with I-25 North via I-70 or I-80. Head north to Casper then take WY-26 to Shoshoni, WY-20 to Thermopolis (home to some amazing natural hot springs) and then WY-120 into Cody. This route is known for its wide-open spaces, interesting geology, and smooth driving.

    Via Salt Lake City I-80

    This is an easygoing trip with a breathtaking mountain pass drive in the middle. Take I-80 east past Evanston to WY-189, make a stop in Farson at Farson Mercantile (home of the biggest ice cream cones you can imagine), head over South Pass to Riverton, take WY-26 to Shoshoni, then make your way to Cody via Thermopolis. 

    Via Rapid City I-90

    I-90 is the main interstate corridor leading to Cody, especially for those travelling from the Mount Rushmore/Badlands/Black Hills area on their way to Yellowstone. Travelers can take I-90 West to Ranchester then take Highway 14 through the Bighorn National Forest through Burgess Junction, Shell, Greybull, and into Cody. 

    Via Bozeman I-90E

    If you’re driving from the PNW to the Yellowstone area, you have a big decision to make outside of Butte, Montana: take I-15 down to West Yellowstone or continue on I-90 through Bozeman and into Cody. West Yellowstone looks closer to the Park, but what’s closer to the best scenery, wildlife, and landmarks? 

    Driving into the park from West Yellowstone is a double-edged sword. You get to be in the park sooner, but you must drive through dense forests for about 2.5 hours until you get the classic Yellowstone views and wildlife you’re looking for. It’s been a big regret for many a road-tripper.

    Let us offer you two alternative routes that are twice as scenic: 

    1. Take I-90 through Bozeman (Montana’s good food capital with awesome mountain views) and Livingston to get to Columbus. Then take MT-78 to Red Lodge (a quaint mountain ski town with awesome breweries and restaurants), through Belfry, and into Cody via WY-120. This route is peppered with historical sites and roadside stops, and it’s a less-traveled road in the summer months. 

    2. Hop off I-90 at Livingston, Montana, and head toward the north entrance of Yellowstone and Gardiner, Montana. Once you’re in Mammoth, head east through Tower and the Lamar Valley (the best place to see wildlife in Yellowstone) and out the Northeast Gate. Cruise down the Beartooth Scenic Highway and Dead Indian Pass — two of the most acclaimed mountain drives in the U.S. — before you land in Cody.

    Flying to Cody

    Yellowstone Regional Airport (Cody, WY) 
    Jump right into the action and fly straight into Cody! It’s a laid-back airport with easy access to Cody’s hotels and amenities. Direct flights from Denver and Salt Lake City during the summer season. 

    Other solid options: 
    Billings Logan International Airport (Billings, MT) 

    An affordable airport with a 90-minute drive to Cody. Direct flights from numerous major cities with easy car rentals and other amenities. 

    Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport (Bozeman, MT) 
    The biggest and busiest airport in the area. 3 beautiful hours to Cody. 

    Lodging in Cody

    There are plenty of lodging options in Cody for a comfortable stay — just make sure you book in the spring to get the best availability and rates! Here’s a complete lodging directory for you.

    Things to Do

    There are plenty of attractions in Cody. Check out some of the best ones here.