National Parks

EPIC Grand Teton to Glacier National Park Road Trip | 7-Day Itinerary

Jan 5, 2024

National Parks

EPIC Grand Teton to Glacier National Park Road Trip | 7-Day Itinerary

Jan 5, 2024

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Imagine this – lush alpine meadows, abundant wildlife, bubbling hot springs, colorful geysers, and glistening lakes with superb backdrops of snow-capped mountains. That (and more) is the scenery you get when taking a road trip from the Grand Tetons to Glacier National Park.

A road trip between these two magnificent US national parks is a great way to explore the country’s diverse landscapes.

And if you’re familiar with this suggested starting point, then you’ll know that the extraordinary Yellowstone National Park is just a stone’s throw away.

So if you’ve thought about planning a trip to Yellowstone and Glacier National Park, why not add Grand Teton to your list and make it an epic journey through two of America’s Mountain States?

This 7-day Grand Teton to Yellowstone to Glacier itinerary covers all the scenic spots, hidden gems, and top attractions you’ll want to explore.  

Disclaimer: Hey explorer! This post contains affiliate links which means I earn a small percentage of each purchase made through my links. I only ever recommend products I believe in and appreciate your support if you decide to use my links—thank you!

Planning Your Grand Teton to Glacier National Park Road Trip

But before we dive in, let’s look at the nitty-gritty details.

Best time to go: From late June to mid-October. During this time all roads in the three national parks will be open. Avoid going in winter, as that’s when most roads will be closed.

Distance from Grand Teton to Glacier National Park: 443 miles (varies with the route).

Trip Length: Seven days

Flights: Book your flights with KAYAK to get the best deals. You’ll most likely land at Jackson Hole Airport in Wyoming. 

Rental Car: Get the best car rental deals on KAYAK.

Rental Campervan: For ready-to-go campervan rentals, use Outdoorsy.

Stay: You’ll find accommodation recommendations in the breakdown of each day.

Fees: A standard National Park entry pass costs about $35 per vehicle. Or you can get the annual America the Beautiful pass for $80 to visit as many state or national parks as you can. 

Your Grand Teton to Glacier Itinerary Breakdown

Here’s a snapshot of your journey from Grand Teton to Yellowstone to Glacier National Park.

  • Day 1 – Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming
  • Day 2 – Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming and Montana
  • Day 3 – Bozeman, Montana
  • Day 4 – Helena, Montana
  • Day 5 – Great Falls, Montana
  • Day 6 – St. Mary, Montana
  • Day 7 – Glacier National Park, Montana

Day 1 – Jackson to Grand Teton National Park

Morning

Once you’ve landed at Jackson Hole Airport, pick up your rental car and let the epic journey begin! Your first stop will be Jackson Town Square.

Seriously, why go to a town and not explore its commercial and entertainment hub? This will be your chance to shop or grab a quick bite to eat.

If you’re an animal lover this next spot is a must-see. The National Elk Refuge is a sanctuary that preserves, restores, and manages the land for one of the largest elk herds in the country.

But elks are not the only ones on show. You may spot bison, bighorn sheep, and bald eagles.

Afternoon to Evening

From the National Elk Refuge head over to Jenny Lake Visitor Center to get a map of the park and a few tips from the knowledgeable rangers.

It’s best to take the 42-mile scenic loop drive to see most of the park’s best attractions all in one go. 

Some noteworthy stops along the loop include the Mormon Row Historic District, Glacier View Turnout, Schwabacher Landing, and Snake River Overlook.

These stops are some of the most photogenic viewpoints in the park, so make sure you don’t forget your camera.

Aside from the scenic drive, there’s still plenty to explore. A half-day tour of Grand Teton gives you the opportunity to engage in a range of activities, including wildlife spotting.

If animals make your heart melt, you won’t want to miss out on this Grand Teton wildlife safari tour

Day 2 – Grand Teton to Yellowstone National Park

Morning

Like any trip to Yellowstone National Park should begin, start your day at the Grant Visitor Center. Here you’ll find all basic amenities, as well as a souvenir shop and an exhibit center. 

From the visitor center, your first stop will be the West Thumb Geyser Basin, which contains a variety of geothermal pools and extraordinary lake views.

Next up on your Yellowstone National Park itinerary is arguably the best attraction in the park.

But before you get to Old Faithful, take in the amazing scenery, like the Continental Divide, as you drive along Highway 191. 

This area of the park is chock-full of geysers including the kaleidoscopic Morning Glory Pool.

You’ll also find tons of lodges, restaurants, and hiking trails, so you can easily spend most of your morning here. 

Afternoon to Evening

Continue along Highway 191 to explore more of the park’s top attractions.

Once you reach Madison Junction, take the Grand Loop Road towards the almost-other-worldly Norris Geyser Basin, dominated by white sands and misty pools. 

Wrap up your day in Yellowstone admiring the cascading Mammoth Hot Springs.

Unfortunately, you cannot swim in these pools, but that’s not to say you can’t end your day with a good soak. About a mile away, you can take a dip in the steamy waters of Boiling River Hot Springs.  

Day 3 – Yellowstone National Park to Bozeman

Morning

As you cross over the Wyoming-Montana border, you’re greeted by a towering stone monument.

Roosevelt Arch marks the north entrance to Yellowstone National Park, and it’s a fantastic place to snap some Insta-photos. 

Afternoon to Evening

After a long morning of driving, you’ll appreciate the numerous restaurants and eateries in Bozeman.

Grab lunch and get ready for a fun afternoon. Start your tour of Bozeman by exploring the city’s green spaces. 

If you’re an art enthusiast, a leisurely stroll through Bozeman Sculpture Park is just up your alley. Burke Park is also a great place to relax and offers hiking trails and scenic views of the city. 

Bozeman also has plenty of museums that you’ll love to visit.

The Museum of the Rockies showcases a collection of dinosaur fossils, while the Gallatin History Museum is home to Native American battlefield exhibits and artifacts.

Day 4 – Bozeman to Helena

Morning

You are about halfway through your road trip to Glacier National Park, so you could be getting a little tired of being on the road.

Luckily, this last stretch is jam-packed with exciting attractions and scenic rest stops along the way.

Your first stop this morning is Missouri Headwaters State Park in Three Forks.

Take some time to relax in nature. Hiking, hunting, or doing water-related activities, like swimming and fishing, are all on offer. 

Afternoon to Evening

There’s so much to do in Helena you might not get to do it all due to time. But try your best to see most of Montana’s captivating capital.

History lovers shouldn’t miss out on visiting Reeder’s Alley to immerse themselves in the history of the city and explore local businesses. 

Mount Helena gives you a great vantage point to see most of the city.

And if you can’t make it up there, the Acropolis also gives sweeping views of the cityscape and skyline.

One attraction you cannot miss out on, regardless of what you’re into, is the Cathedral of Saint Helena. This towering structure is magnificent outside and inside, being a wedding venue for many locals.

Day 5 – Helena to Great Falls

Morning

The road from Helena to Great Falls is full of amazing rest stops.

The first one, Lyon’s Creek I-15 Eastbound Rest Area, is good for a quick stop. You’ll find restrooms and a sitting area here.

The Dearborn I-15 Southbound Rest Area is a great spot for a quick lunch. It has lots of parking spaces and several benches to sit, eat, and take in the surrounding views.   

Afternoon to Evening

Once you arrive in Great Falls, tons of attractions and activities await.

As you would expect, a lot of these attractions sit along the mighty Missouri River. You can ward off the afternoon heat swimming or floating on the lazy river at Electric City Water Park.

Take some time to visit the Statue of Liberty Replica in Gibson Park.

And if you’re an art lover, you can’t leave Great Falls without visiting the C. M. Russell Museum. Here you’ll find extraordinary “cow boy” art by renowned artist Charles Marion Russell.

Day 6 – Great Falls to St. Mary

Morning

The journey from Great Falls to St. Mary is the longest stretch of driving you’ll experience on your Glacier National Park road trip, so prepare to spend most of your morning and early afternoon on the road.

But there are a few stops along the way that will keep you active. 

The Teton River (Dutton) Rest Area offers incredible views of snow-capped mountains, it boasts restrooms, benches, and short hiking trails to stretch your legs.

A little further on, the Conrad Rest Area has covered, indoor seating, as well as a free Wi-Fi hotspot. 

Afternoon to Evening

As soon as you arrive in St. Mary, make sure to grab a bite to eat, as you’ll need the energy.

Once you’re all fueled up, head over to the Saint Mary Visitor Center. 

Here you’ll find interactive displays, information panels, and hiking maps.

The center is also a great place to access the Going-to-the-Sun Road. This 50-mile stretch of alpine road boasts incredible views throughout, from winding passes to jagged cliffs, and glacial lake lookouts.

Other must-see attractions along the way include the 35-foot scenic waterfall, Saint Mary Falls, and Logan Pass – the highest point of the Going-to-the-Sun Road.

Here you’ll find a visitor center, several hiking trails, and abundant alpine wildlife.

Day 7 – St. Mary to Glacier National Park

Morning

The great thing about staying in St. Mary is that you won’t have to spend most of your morning on the road.

This town is just a stone’s throw away, so you’ll have enough time to enjoy your Glacier National Park itinerary to the fullest.

Your day starts along the Going-to-the-Sun Road at the Logan Pass Visitor Center. Here, you’ll have access to the mesmerizing Hidden Lake Overlook.

This hiking trail is considered the best hike in the national park. Nothing beats the sweeping views of the valley and snow-covered summits.

Afternoon to Evening

Next up is the Grinnell Glacier Overlook, where you’ll find a turquoise glacier lake at its center. It’s also one of the best hiking trails in the park and should not be missed.

Other fascinating viewpoints to add to your itinerary are the Triple Arches Bridge and Bird Woman Falls Overlook.

Grand Teton to Glacier National Park | FAQs

Here are a few of the most frequently asked questions about taking a trip from Grand Teton National Park to Glacier National Park.

How Far Is Grand Teton From Glacier National Park?

The distance from Glacier National Park to Grand Teton is about 443 miles (eight hours), but this often varies from trip to trip, as it depends on the route used.

What Is the Prettiest Part of Glacier National Park?

As you can already guess, the Going-to-the-Sun Road offers the most beautiful viewpoints in all of Glacier National Park. You cannot plan a trip to Glacier National Park and not add this road to your list of must-sees.

Read Next: Prettiest and Ugliest US National Parks

Wrapping Up Grand Teton to Glacier National Park Road Trip

This ultimate 7-day itinerary sees you travel to three of North America’s best national parks.

But this journey is not just about the destinations; it’s about the magical moments, jaw-dropping landscapes, colorful hot springs, and incredible wildlife in between.

So instead of planning a trip to Yellowstone and Glacier National Park, make your starting point Grand Teton and brace yourself for some heart-stirring experiences!

Imagine this – lush alpine meadows, abundant wildlife, bubbling hot springs, colorful geysers, and glistening lakes with superb backdrops of snow-capped mountains. That (and more) is the scenery you get when taking a road trip from the Grand Tetons to Glacier National Park.

A road trip between these two magnificent US national parks is a great way to explore the country’s diverse landscapes.

And if you’re familiar with this suggested starting point, then you’ll know that the extraordinary Yellowstone National Park is just a stone’s throw away.

So if you’ve thought about planning a trip to Yellowstone and Glacier National Park, why not add Grand Teton to your list and make it an epic journey through two of America’s Mountain States?

This 7-day Grand Teton to Yellowstone to Glacier itinerary covers all the scenic spots, hidden gems, and top attractions you’ll want to explore.  

Disclaimer: Hey explorer! This post contains affiliate links which means I earn a small percentage of each purchase made through my links. I only ever recommend products I believe in and appreciate your support if you decide to use my links—thank you!

Planning Your Grand Teton to Glacier National Park Road Trip

But before we dive in, let’s look at the nitty-gritty details.

Best time to go: From late June to mid-October. During this time all roads in the three national parks will be open. Avoid going in winter, as that’s when most roads will be closed.

Distance from Grand Teton to Glacier National Park: 443 miles (varies with the route).

Trip Length: Seven days

Flights: Book your flights with KAYAK to get the best deals. You’ll most likely land at Jackson Hole Airport in Wyoming. 

Rental Car: Get the best car rental deals on KAYAK.

Rental Campervan: For ready-to-go campervan rentals, use Outdoorsy.

Stay: You’ll find accommodation recommendations in the breakdown of each day.

Fees: A standard National Park entry pass costs about $35 per vehicle. Or you can get the annual America the Beautiful pass for $80 to visit as many state or national parks as you can. 

Your Grand Teton to Glacier Itinerary Breakdown

Here’s a snapshot of your journey from Grand Teton to Yellowstone to Glacier National Park.

  • Day 1 – Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming
  • Day 2 – Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming and Montana
  • Day 3 – Bozeman, Montana
  • Day 4 – Helena, Montana
  • Day 5 – Great Falls, Montana
  • Day 6 – St. Mary, Montana
  • Day 7 – Glacier National Park, Montana

Day 1 – Jackson to Grand Teton National Park

Morning

Once you’ve landed at Jackson Hole Airport, pick up your rental car and let the epic journey begin! Your first stop will be Jackson Town Square.

Seriously, why go to a town and not explore its commercial and entertainment hub? This will be your chance to shop or grab a quick bite to eat.

If you’re an animal lover this next spot is a must-see. The National Elk Refuge is a sanctuary that preserves, restores, and manages the land for one of the largest elk herds in the country.

But elks are not the only ones on show. You may spot bison, bighorn sheep, and bald eagles.

Afternoon to Evening

From the National Elk Refuge head over to Jenny Lake Visitor Center to get a map of the park and a few tips from the knowledgeable rangers.

It’s best to take the 42-mile scenic loop drive to see most of the park’s best attractions all in one go. 

Some noteworthy stops along the loop include the Mormon Row Historic District, Glacier View Turnout, Schwabacher Landing, and Snake River Overlook.

These stops are some of the most photogenic viewpoints in the park, so make sure you don’t forget your camera.

Aside from the scenic drive, there’s still plenty to explore. A half-day tour of Grand Teton gives you the opportunity to engage in a range of activities, including wildlife spotting.

If animals make your heart melt, you won’t want to miss out on this Grand Teton wildlife safari tour

Day 2 – Grand Teton to Yellowstone National Park

Morning

Like any trip to Yellowstone National Park should begin, start your day at the Grant Visitor Center. Here you’ll find all basic amenities, as well as a souvenir shop and an exhibit center. 

From the visitor center, your first stop will be the West Thumb Geyser Basin, which contains a variety of geothermal pools and extraordinary lake views.

Next up on your Yellowstone National Park itinerary is arguably the best attraction in the park.

But before you get to Old Faithful, take in the amazing scenery, like the Continental Divide, as you drive along Highway 191. 

This area of the park is chock-full of geysers including the kaleidoscopic Morning Glory Pool.

You’ll also find tons of lodges, restaurants, and hiking trails, so you can easily spend most of your morning here. 

Afternoon to Evening

Continue along Highway 191 to explore more of the park’s top attractions.

Once you reach Madison Junction, take the Grand Loop Road towards the almost-other-worldly Norris Geyser Basin, dominated by white sands and misty pools. 

Wrap up your day in Yellowstone admiring the cascading Mammoth Hot Springs.

Unfortunately, you cannot swim in these pools, but that’s not to say you can’t end your day with a good soak. About a mile away, you can take a dip in the steamy waters of Boiling River Hot Springs.  

Day 3 – Yellowstone National Park to Bozeman

Morning

As you cross over the Wyoming-Montana border, you’re greeted by a towering stone monument.

Roosevelt Arch marks the north entrance to Yellowstone National Park, and it’s a fantastic place to snap some Insta-photos. 

Afternoon to Evening

After a long morning of driving, you’ll appreciate the numerous restaurants and eateries in Bozeman.

Grab lunch and get ready for a fun afternoon. Start your tour of Bozeman by exploring the city’s green spaces. 

If you’re an art enthusiast, a leisurely stroll through Bozeman Sculpture Park is just up your alley. Burke Park is also a great place to relax and offers hiking trails and scenic views of the city. 

Bozeman also has plenty of museums that you’ll love to visit.

The Museum of the Rockies showcases a collection of dinosaur fossils, while the Gallatin History Museum is home to Native American battlefield exhibits and artifacts.

Day 4 – Bozeman to Helena

Morning

You are about halfway through your road trip to Glacier National Park, so you could be getting a little tired of being on the road.

Luckily, this last stretch is jam-packed with exciting attractions and scenic rest stops along the way.

Your first stop this morning is Missouri Headwaters State Park in Three Forks.

Take some time to relax in nature. Hiking, hunting, or doing water-related activities, like swimming and fishing, are all on offer. 

Afternoon to Evening

There’s so much to do in Helena you might not get to do it all due to time. But try your best to see most of Montana’s captivating capital.

History lovers shouldn’t miss out on visiting Reeder’s Alley to immerse themselves in the history of the city and explore local businesses. 

Mount Helena gives you a great vantage point to see most of the city.

And if you can’t make it up there, the Acropolis also gives sweeping views of the cityscape and skyline.

One attraction you cannot miss out on, regardless of what you’re into, is the Cathedral of Saint Helena. This towering structure is magnificent outside and inside, being a wedding venue for many locals.

Day 5 – Helena to Great Falls

Morning

The road from Helena to Great Falls is full of amazing rest stops.

The first one, Lyon’s Creek I-15 Eastbound Rest Area, is good for a quick stop. You’ll find restrooms and a sitting area here.

The Dearborn I-15 Southbound Rest Area is a great spot for a quick lunch. It has lots of parking spaces and several benches to sit, eat, and take in the surrounding views.   

Afternoon to Evening

Once you arrive in Great Falls, tons of attractions and activities await.

As you would expect, a lot of these attractions sit along the mighty Missouri River. You can ward off the afternoon heat swimming or floating on the lazy river at Electric City Water Park.

Take some time to visit the Statue of Liberty Replica in Gibson Park.

And if you’re an art lover, you can’t leave Great Falls without visiting the C. M. Russell Museum. Here you’ll find extraordinary “cow boy” art by renowned artist Charles Marion Russell.

Day 6 – Great Falls to St. Mary

Morning

The journey from Great Falls to St. Mary is the longest stretch of driving you’ll experience on your Glacier National Park road trip, so prepare to spend most of your morning and early afternoon on the road.

But there are a few stops along the way that will keep you active. 

The Teton River (Dutton) Rest Area offers incredible views of snow-capped mountains, it boasts restrooms, benches, and short hiking trails to stretch your legs.

A little further on, the Conrad Rest Area has covered, indoor seating, as well as a free Wi-Fi hotspot. 

Afternoon to Evening

As soon as you arrive in St. Mary, make sure to grab a bite to eat, as you’ll need the energy.

Once you’re all fueled up, head over to the Saint Mary Visitor Center. 

Here you’ll find interactive displays, information panels, and hiking maps.

The center is also a great place to access the Going-to-the-Sun Road. This 50-mile stretch of alpine road boasts incredible views throughout, from winding passes to jagged cliffs, and glacial lake lookouts.

Other must-see attractions along the way include the 35-foot scenic waterfall, Saint Mary Falls, and Logan Pass – the highest point of the Going-to-the-Sun Road.

Here you’ll find a visitor center, several hiking trails, and abundant alpine wildlife.

Day 7 – St. Mary to Glacier National Park

Morning

The great thing about staying in St. Mary is that you won’t have to spend most of your morning on the road.

This town is just a stone’s throw away, so you’ll have enough time to enjoy your Glacier National Park itinerary to the fullest.

Your day starts along the Going-to-the-Sun Road at the Logan Pass Visitor Center. Here, you’ll have access to the mesmerizing Hidden Lake Overlook.

This hiking trail is considered the best hike in the national park. Nothing beats the sweeping views of the valley and snow-covered summits.

Afternoon to Evening

Next up is the Grinnell Glacier Overlook, where you’ll find a turquoise glacier lake at its center. It’s also one of the best hiking trails in the park and should not be missed.

Other fascinating viewpoints to add to your itinerary are the Triple Arches Bridge and Bird Woman Falls Overlook.

Grand Teton to Glacier National Park | FAQs

Here are a few of the most frequently asked questions about taking a trip from Grand Teton National Park to Glacier National Park.

How Far Is Grand Teton From Glacier National Park?

The distance from Glacier National Park to Grand Teton is about 443 miles (eight hours), but this often varies from trip to trip, as it depends on the route used.

What Is the Prettiest Part of Glacier National Park?

As you can already guess, the Going-to-the-Sun Road offers the most beautiful viewpoints in all of Glacier National Park. You cannot plan a trip to Glacier National Park and not add this road to your list of must-sees.

Read Next: Prettiest and Ugliest US National Parks

Wrapping Up Grand Teton to Glacier National Park Road Trip

This ultimate 7-day itinerary sees you travel to three of North America’s best national parks.

But this journey is not just about the destinations; it’s about the magical moments, jaw-dropping landscapes, colorful hot springs, and incredible wildlife in between.

So instead of planning a trip to Yellowstone and Glacier National Park, make your starting point Grand Teton and brace yourself for some heart-stirring experiences!

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