fun things to do with kids in yellowstone national park   Travel for Kids
united states
  | wyoming
     
   

Yellowstone National Park

Yellowstone, the first National Park, is a remarkable landscape – the most geysers anywhere in the world, bubbling mudpots, brilliant turquoise hot springs, wisps of smoke emerging from hillsides, rushing waterfalls, steep canyons, steaming creeks, a huge lake and abundant wildlife. Kids are mesmerized by smelly blurping pools, hot springs like a bottomless abyss, frozen waterfalls of rock, the sight of a grizzly bear or huge bison. Yellowstone really is an amazing place.
Yellowstone National Park covers a big area (it’s the size of Connecticut). In planning your family trip, allow several days to travel around, we recommend at least three. In summer, the roads are crowded and it’s some distance to get to different parts of the park. You’ll want time to enjoy the sights (not just drive and drive), and don’t cram too many things into one day.
Yellowstone Photo Album
    Old Faithful & Around
    Yellowstone Lake
    Grand Canyon
    Lamar Valley
    Tower-Roosevelt
    Mammoth Hot Springs & Gardiner
    West Yellowstone
    Tips for Yellowstone with kids
  Wildlife – The wildlife you’ll see up close is unforgettable. We saw elk herds grazing in the meadows, bison everywhere (sleeping in the sagebrush or walking down the middle of the road), plus moose and two calves, bald eagles, chubby marmots, beautiful pronghorn, osprey family, and white pelicans. Grizzly bears and black bears are often seen also. Hayden Valley and Lamar Valley are especially good for wildlife spotting, especially early in the morning or later in the day. Be sure to bring binoculars, as you want to keep your distance.
    Yellow Bus tours – Take a tour on a vintage yellow bus (1930’s style), with canvas top that rolls back for spectacular views. Your best bets are the geysers and wildlife watching tours (parents can enjoy the scenery instead of driving). Tours depart from lodges and campgrounds, and West Yellowstone. A wonderful park tradition.
    Madison Junior Ranger Station – At the Madison Trailside Museum are ranger-led programs, just for kids (ages 5 –12). May to August, programs focus on different wildlife, geysers, history and lore of the park. For the daily schedule, stop into the West Yellowstone Visitor Center, or in Madison.
    Snowcoach tours – Take a snowcoach tour in the winter landscape, December to March. Snow covers the ground, lakes and rivers freeze over, but hot springs steam in the cold and the wildlife is amazing. The tours are accompanied by naturalist guides, who know where to spot elk or bison in their winter grazing grounds.
family hotels yellowstone

Travel for Kids has many fun things to do with kids in Yellowstone, but you'll need a fun place to stay.

Here's our own Travel for Kids hand-picked list of family hotels in and around Yellowstone National Park, all styles and price ranges, near to places you'll want to explore:

Yellowstone family hotels
family tours yellowstone

Go on a backpacking adventure, hiking through breathtaking mountain scenery in Yellowstone or the Grand Tetons and other spectacular wild areas of the western U.S. Viewing wildlife, soaking in natural hot springs, and camping out under the stars are experiences your kids will never forget. Book a trip with these experienced wilderness experts - they'll provide all the gear you'll need and arrange a custom trip just for your family:

    Big Wild Adventures
kids books yellowstone
     
Born Wild in Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks kids books  

Fabulous photos of young animals in Yellowstone National Park – bison calves rubbing noses, fuzzy brown moose calf, foxes playing, grizzly cubs following their mom, mule deer fawns in the meadows, and more. (Picture book)

 

     

Adventures of James and his sister Alice in Yellowstone – uncovering a plot to kill off the buffalo herds, surviving in the wilderness alone, learning the ways of the Shoshone, and exploring the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone. (Illustrated chapter book)

 

 
Lost in Yellowstone adventure kids
     
When the Wolves Returned yellowstone kids books  
When the Wolves Returned
Dorothy Hinshaw Patent

Fascinating story of how gray wolves play an essential role in Yellowstone. In the early 20th century, wolves were hunted to extinction in the park; as a result, coyotes and elk became too numerous, destroying trees and wrecking habitats of other animals. When wolves were re-introduced to the park, the ecological balance was restored. (Picture book)

 

     
One Wolf Howls
Scotti Cohn, Susan Detwiler

“One wolf howls in the January moonlight, deep in the woods where the moon hangs high.” Gorgeous illustrations and lyrical verse, it’s a year in the life of gray wolves – playing in the snow, fuzzy pups in spring, napping in a summer meadow, hiding under autumn trees, plus fun facts about the wolf. This is a gem! (Picture book)

 

 
yellowstone wildlife kids One Wolf Howls
     
Bison kids books yellowstone  
Bison
Cherie Winner

Bison are big and you’re sure to see them in Yellowstone. Find out how bison are the largest land animal in North America, have good hearing and sense of smell, but don’t see well, live in herds, and are fierce fighters. (Illustrated chapter book)

 

     
Moose
Anthony D. Fredericks

Before you start searching for moose in Yellowstone, learn out about these odd-looking animals. Moose have a short tail, large ears, skinny legs, can weigh up to 1,800 pounds, eat only plants, run very fast, are good swimmers, and more. (Illustrated chapter book)

 

 
Moose yellowstone childrens books
     
Who Pooped in the Park Yellowstone kids  
Who Pooped in the Park?
Gary D. Robson, Elijah Brady Clark

Find out about animals that live in Yellowstone National Park by following their tracks and scat (poop) – grizzly bear, mule deer, elk, moose, bison, gray wolf, mountain lion and badger. (Picture book)

 

     
Yellowstone Moran
Lita Judge

Thomas Moran came to Yellowstone in 1871, not as an explorer, but a painter. He painted the weird and wonderful geysers, and splendor of the waterfalls and sandstone canyons. Moran’s stunning portrayal of the wilderness influenced the decision to designate Yellowstone the first National Park. (Picture book)

 

 
artist kids Yellowstone Moran
     
what i saw in yellowstone  
What I Saw in Yellowstone
Durrae Johanek, Christopher Cauble

Kid's guide to geysers and wildlife in Yellowstone, and also keep track of different animals you see. Info and photos about bison, elk, deer, coyote, gray wolf, grizzly bear, chipmunk, raven, osprey, bald eagle, white pelican, and where to locate the wildlife. (Picture - Activity book)

 

     

Fun facts about Yellowstone National Park – geysers, fumaroles, mud pots and hot springs, petrified forests, wildlife (bison, pronghorn, elk, wolves), lakes and waterfalls, Indians and explorers. (Easy reader)

 

 
kids books Yellowstone National Park
     
field guide yellowstone grand teton national parks  

A super field guide for Yellowstone - it includes mammals (bison, elk pronghorn), birds, fish, reptiles, insects, plants, tracks & scat. Illustrations for each entry, and clearly organized. (Guidebook)

 

     
A Ranger's Guide to Yellowstone Day Hikes
Roger Anderson, Carol Shively Anderson

Use this guidebook to plan your day hikes in Yellowstone. Each hike has the level of difficulty distance, trail directions, and notes about plants and animals, geology, and observations by early explorers. (Guidebook)

 

 
A Ranger's Guide to Yellowstone Day Hikes
     
Yellowstone Treasures guidebook  
Yellowstone Treasures
Janet Chapple

Our favorite guidebook to Yellowstone National Park – detailed descriptions of the five main roads through the park, nature trails, geyser basin walking tours, driving distances, geological history, animals to look for, photos, color maps, campgrounds. (Guidebook)

 

More children's books on other Wyoming pages
 
travel for kids | united states | wyoming | yellowstone national park
twitter