Grand Teton is one of the most picturesque US national parks. From the jagged peaks of the Teton Range to Wyoming’s vast plains, a weekend visit to this park and the surrounding area will give you a comprehensive feel for Grand Teton National Park and a true taste of the Old West.
What to Do
If you only have a weekend to spend in Grand Teton National Park, you’ll want to make sure to hit the highlights. Plan to fly into Jackson, Wyoming, and then drive to and around the park from there.
42 Mile Scenic Loop Drive
Drive along this picturesque loop to get a feel for the area and take in some breathtaking views, stopping for photo ops as you please. You’re likely to see some of the area’s native wildlife along your way!
Jenny Lake Hike
One of the most iconic destinations in the park, Jenny Lake is a must for weekend visitors. Hiking the 7.7 mile Jenny Lake Trail loop will take you around the lake, offering gorgeous views the entire time. You’ll also have the opportunity to swim and rent canoes or kayaks here. Be wary that this area can get very crowded during peak season.
A quick 1.3-mile round trip hike from Jenny Lake, either hike or take the shuttle boat from Jenny Lake to get to Hidden Falls. These massive, powerful falls will leave you speechless and are well worth a visit during the weekend.
Jackson Lake Cruise
Spend an hour or two on a scenic Jackson Lake cruise for spectacular views of Mount Moran and the surrounding area. You’ll also learn a bit about the history, geology, and folklore native to the region.
Colter Bay Village
A great way to get a feel for the Old West, spend a few hours touring parts of the park on horseback from Colter Bay Village. Located on Jackson Lake, enjoy beautiful views, swim, kayak, hike, and fish here as well. If time allows, also check out the Colter Bay Indian Arts Museum for a dose of Native American history.
Rafting on the Snake River
Take the morning or afternoon to raft down the winding Snake River. Scenic white water rafting trips are available at different points all along the river and will offer you views of Grand Teton National Park from a new perspective.
Head to Taggart Lake for spectacular views and a quick, easy, and rewarding hike. This scenic hike is the perfect way to spend an afternoon during the weekend and you can even stop for a swim here, too!
Take a quick but necessary visit to Mormon Row to view the famed Moulton Barn, a remnant of this historic pioneer settlement framed by the gorgeous Teton Range. You’re likely to encounter plenty of wildlife in this area, so be sure to keep a safe distance when taking photos!
Menor’s Ferry Historic District
Home to the iconic Chapel of the Transfiguration, head over to Menor’s Ferry for views of the breathtaking Tetons through the chapel’s large viewing window. The chapel is still functioning, and typically holds Sunday services.
Explore Jackson Hole
Brimming with ski resorts, Jackson Hole offers some of the country’s best skiing and winter activities. In the summer, head over to the town of Jackson for charming shops and restaurants, as well as a visit to the National Museum of Wildlife Art.
Where to Stay
You have several options for where to stay both in and near Grand Teton National Park.
Stay either in the town of Jackson or at one of Jackson Hole’s many mountain resorts, which are also open for overnight accommodation during the summer.
Colter Bay Village
Colter Bay Village is located in Grand Teton National Park on Jackson Lake and offers a variety of accommodations, from hotels to lodges to cabins to camping.
There are lots of options for camping in and around Grand Teton, both for traditional campsites and RVs. If you choose to camp in this scenic area make sure to reserve your campsite ahead of time as they tend to book up quickly and far in advance.
There are several lodges within the park itself that offer both overnight accommodation and activities. Some of the more popular lodges in the park include Jackson Lake Lodge and Jenny Lake Lodge.
How to Get Around
The best way to get around Grand Teton National Park is driving between hiking trails, as distances can be far and rugged. However, it is possible to hike or bike around the park, but it’s not for the faint of heart!