Totally Boise Blog


What is Boise Famous For?

Last updated May 31, 2023 by Totally Boise

Move over Hollywood! You ain’t got nothing on these famous things to come out of Boise! As the biggest city and capital of Idaho, there have been several famous people, food, and attractions that can only be found in our City of Trees. Idaho actually ranks as the 13th least most populated state in the Union, but that’s never held us back from creating some wonderful history.

If you’re getting ready to visit Boise for the first time, or you’re just curious what Boise and Idaho is famous for, you’ve come to the right place! We’re going to explore the many wonderful things to come out of this amazing place that we call home.

What is Boise Famous For?

  • Aaron Paul: Known for his role as Jesse Pinkman in the hit TV show “Breaking Bad” was born in Emmet, Idaho and raised in the nearby Treasure valley, graduating from Centennial High School. He is known to return to his hometown often for local events or to promote his Mezcal brand Dos Hombres, co-owned with actor Bryan Cranston.
  • Blue Football Field: Boise State University's football field, also known as the "Smurf Turf," is a unique and iconic landmark that has become synonymous with Boise.
  • Boise River Greenbelt: The Boise Greenbelt is a 25-mile-long path that follows the Boise River and offers residents and visitors a scenic thoroughfare from East Boise to Eagle, Idaho.
  • Ice cream baked potato: Yes, you read that right! Crafted with ice cream, chocolate sauce and other delicious toppings, the culinary treat looks remarkably like a baked potato. Head to Westside Drive-In on State St. to try it for yourself.
  • Basque Block: Ongi Etorri! The Basque Block is a historic district in downtown Boise that celebrates and showcases the rich Basque culture and heritage that has influenced the city for over a century. At over 16,000, Boise is home to one of the largest communities of Basque people in the United States outside of their home country. Don't miss any of their amazing celebrations, like Jaialdi or San Inazio Festival!
  • Idaho Anne Frank Memorial: The Idaho Anne Frank Human Rights Memorial, housed at Julia Davis Park, is a beautiful and moving tribute to the famous young diarist and a symbol of strength and resistance during the Holocaust. This landmark is currently the only memorial to Anne Frank in the United States and just one of a few worldwide.
  • World Center for Birds of Prey: The World Center for Birds of Prey is a world-renowned research and conservation center that houses over 200 birds of prey and offers visitors a unique and educational experience.
  • Freak Alley Gallery: Freak Alley Gallery is an outdoor art gallery showcasing some of the city's most vibrant and thought-provoking street art and murals, and is a must-visit for any art lover.
  • The To Do List: The 2013 movie The To Do List was filmed in Boise by Borah graduate Maggie Carye and features iconic locations like Borah pool and Big Bun Drive In.
What is Boise Famous For?
What is Idaho Famous For?

What is Idaho Famous For?

Beyond our beautiful city along the river, there are several other things that Idaho is famous for!

  • Potatoes: Idaho is famously known as the "Potato State" and produces over 1/3 of the potatoes grown in the United States.
  • Sawtooth Mountains: The Sawtooth Mountains are a breathtaking range of peaks and valleys offering some of the state's most spectacular scenic views and outdoor recreational opportunities.
  • Craters of the Moon National Park: Craters of the Moon National Park is a unique and surreal landscape of volcanic activity that offers visitors an otherworldly experience of lava fields, cinder cones, and lava tubes. You can even camp there!
  • Star Garnets: These striking and rare gemstones can be found in only two places on Earth, one of them being Idaho. They are known by their dark, purple appearance contrasted by a bright natural star shining from inside.
  • Silver and Gold Rush: The gold and silver rushes of the 1800s and early 1900s brought much of Idaho's early settlers to Idaho and established several of our early cities. Briefly, in the 1860s, Idaho City had the largest population in the Northwest, more than St. Louis or San Francisco, thanks to the mining opportunities.
  • Fry Sauce: Fry sauce, a tangy and delicious condiment made from a blend of ketchup and mayonnaise, was invented in Idaho and has become a beloved staple in the state's culinary scene.
  • Napoleon Dynamite: The cult classic indie comedy film, Napoleon Dynamite, was set and filmed in Preston, Idaho and has become a pop culture phenomenon with a devoted fanbase.
  • White water rafting: Idaho is home to world class white water rafting. The Snake River and Salmon River offer thrilling and challenging rapids (we're talking class IV and V rapids!) for adventurers of all levels.
  • Natural hot springs: Idaho is famous for its many natural hot springs, which are a popular destination for relaxation and wellness. Several "best-of" lists rank Idaho as a state with some of the best and most hot springs in the US.
  • Hops growing: Idaho is one of the top hops-growing states in the country and produces over 10% of the nation's hops. We are lucky to be one of a few states that can enjoy fresh "field-to-bottle" hops in our locally crafted beers.
  • First chairlift: Sun Valley, Idaho, was home to the world's first chairlift, which opened in December of 1936, revolutionizing skiing and snowboarding and paving the way for modern resorts.
  • Deepest Canyon: Hells Canyon, which straddles the border between Idaho and Oregon, is North America's deepest river gorge (almost 2,000 feet more than the Grand Canyon) and offers stunning views and outdoor recreation opportunities.
  • Ernest Hemingway House: The famous writer Ernest Hemingway spent several years living in Idaho and wrote some of his most famous works there.
  • Finger Steaks: Finger steaks, a popular appetizer of breaded and deep-fried strips of beef, were invented in Idaho and have become a beloved staple in the state's culinary scene. It is cited that they became a menu item in 1957 at Milo's Torch Lounge, now known as the Torch Lounge.
  • The Marilyn Monroe Potato Sack Dress: After being called “cheap and vulgar” by a reporter in 1951 who said the famous actress would be better “wearing a potato sack,” the starlet put out several photos of her wearing the very thing. Across the potato sack, you can see “Idaho Sawtooth Brand Potatoes'' from Twin Falls.
  • Dante's Peak: Featuring Pierce Brosnan, the 1997 film was shot in Wallace, Idaho (also known as the “Center of the Universe”) and is our favorite volcano movie to date!
  • DogFace208: The TikTok sensation went viral after shooting a short video of himself vibing with a jug of Ocean Spray Cranberry juice while riding his longboard to the music of Fleetwood Mac. The internet star is based in Idaho Falls, and you can catch him rapping with 208 Natives or even Snoop Dogg

What's Your Favorite Thing About Boise?

We hope you've enjoyed learning about what makes Boise and Idaho so special. Now it's your turn to share with us! What's your favorite thing about Boise? Is it the great outdoors, the friendly community, or something else entirely? We want to hear from you!

Tag us on Instagram @totallyboise or use #totallyboise to share your favorite Boise moments and memories. Together, let's celebrate everything that makes this city and state such a great place to be!




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