Polson is a charming lakeside community nestled nicely at the southern end of Flathead Lake. This is the lake region of the wide and sweeping Mission Valley, flanked by the rugged Mission Mountains and comprising the Flathead Indian Reservation, which in turn is home to the state’s National Bison Range.
Polson was one of the first settlements along the region of Flathead Lake and the area has long been a trading hub for one of Montana’s most fertile farming areas. Polson is a renowned and prime cherry-growing region and home to numerous orchards.
The town celebrates this annually with a Cherry Festival in downtown Polson. Downtown Polson also plays host to numerous other events and festivals throughout the year as well as is the location of the Polson’s Farmers’ Market.
Flathead Lake has numerous State Parks available for daytime recreation use or camping. The Flathead River, which runs through Polson, is a popular white-water rafting location. This is class II-III water which is easily accessible right in town. The main routes are US 93, and MT 35.
Closest Interstate is I-90 to the south. Glacier Park International Airport is about an hour to an hour and a half drive north, near Kalispell.
Although just a small town, Polson offers a reasonably wide range of accommodation options as well. This is good news for anyone looking to get away from the more traditional-style hotels and some of the options include quaint inns, ranch lodging, motels, and a few rustic Bed & Breakfasts. With that said, let’s take a closer look at some of the best Bed and Breakfasts in Polson.
Staying in Polson – Travel Tips and Advice
- Which areas in Polson are best: Much of the tourism in the town is based on or around the regions of the lake which actually stretches out quite far and covers a wide radius. If you do want to be closer to the downtown region you’ll still be near the lake. You’ll also get a great choice of restaurants, bars, and cafes. Aside from that, you can indulge in a spot of historic culture by way of museums, theatre, and various other pursuits.
- Getting Around: The town itself is small so getting around on foot is no problem for most people. If you want to go a bit longer and wider into the lake and its recreation regions you might consider renting a set of wheels, booking a tour, or hiring a boat!
- Attractions: A large proportion of the main attractions in the area relate to the lake and its boating as well as other recreation options. The surrounding downtown regions offer plenty of dining and shopping as well as a spot of history and culture by way of the theatre or the two museums The Miracle of America and Polson-Flathead Historical Museum.
- The Flathead River flowing from Polson is also popular for white-water rafting in some stretches. On top of that there is major recreation to be found at Seli’š Ksanka Qlispe’ Dam (formerly Kerr Dam), and wildlife at the National Bison Range on the Flathead Indian Reservation and the Ninepipes and Pablo Wildlife Refuges.
The 5 Best Bed and Breakfasts in Polson
Flathead Lake Inn offers simple and straightforward Motel/B & B-style accommodation with breakfast. This is a welcoming and affordable establishment that is pet-friendly and has a fireplace in the lobby. The Inn is also just 4.5miles from Polson Airport.
The rooms all contain single and double king and queen-sized beds and also feature refrigerators and microwaves. Wi-Fi is included and there are various dining options available. Breakfast is served Continental-style with homemade waffles and is available between 7 am and 10 am.
Parking for boats and trailers is available at the Inn and a small grocery store as well as and a Starbucks Coffee are also on hand. Polson Bay Golf Course is within walking distance and Boettcher Park on Flathead Lake is less than 2 miles away.
Just five miles from the center of Polson you can find this ideal Bed & Breakfast residence nestled somewhere between the Mission Mountains and the lake, surrounded by forest.
Anyone seeking either a peaceful and private retreat or a base camp for the surrounding recreation will love this fantastic spot. The 5-bedroomed accommodation is great for couples or families who want to spend some time in and around the scenic lake area and room types include doubles and suites as well as the option of a holiday home.
Free Wi-Fi is available throughout the property and amenities include an on-site sauna, a pool, a garden, a conference center, and a snack bar. Parking is available if you decide to drive to the accommodation, and Glacier International Airport is the nearest at less than 40 miles away.
Port Polson is by America’s Best Value and offers comfortable rooms overlooking Flathead Lake. The Inn is 750 m from the center of Polson a 15-minute drive from Polson Airport.
The residence has more than 40 rooms and offers them in double, suite, and quadruple sizes. The spacious rooms feature a flat-screen TV with cable as well as tea and coffee-making facilities. The breakfast is served Continental-style, and amenities include an outdoor hot tub, a business center, and a picnic area.
Free Wi-Fi is available throughout the property and truck and bus parking is available. The National Bison Range is less than 30 miles from the residence.
Red Lion Ridgewater Inn & Suites Polson is a large, Inn-style accommodation with a family-friendly vibe. The accommodation is just over 40 miles from Glacier International Airport.
All air-conditioned rooms at this residence contain a flat-screen TV and a private bathroom including toiletries and a hairdryer. Amenities include an indoor pool, a hot tub, and a 24-hour desk at the property.
Nearby attractions within walking distance include the Polson Bay Golf Course and the Miracle of America Museum. Various other attractions are just a short drive away including Turtle Lake, Wild Horse Island State Park, and Skidoo Bay.
Guests can also venture out and find plenty of dining and shopping in the locale as well.
This bed and breakfast-style accommodation owned by a famous skier is located right on Flathead Lake. A private and secluded pebbly lakefront beach greets visitors, and the rooms are private and comfortable. All rooms have great views of the lake, and a delicious, country-style breakfast awaits guests in the morning.
This residence is a wonderful place to enjoy the surrounding views and the plethora of surrounding avenues for some outdoor, Western Montana-style recreation.
Guests at this establishment enjoy relaxing by the cozy campfire, swimming, and boating, as well as maybe spotting a wide range of wild birds including songbirds, bald eagles, and osprey.
The welcoming and highly-rated hospitality, not to mention the amazing views will leave you wanting to come back here again for sure. You can also easily jump on a boat trip to the scenic, nearby Wild Horse Island which is ideal for hiking, picnicking, and watching wildlife such as mule deer, bighorn sheep, and of course the wild mustang horses the island gets its name from.
The Bottom Line
All in all, the highly-scenic lakeside region of Polson is a wonderfully relaxing place to stay—or invigorating, depending on the activities you are interested in.
Polson is a great option for anyone seeking out some homely and impressive Bed and Breakfast-type accommodations. This is especially true for anyone who likes being near the lake.
It won’t be too difficult to find the best Bed and Breakfast to suit your budget and your group size, as well as any planned itinerary you may have. Of course, when you plan to travel will make a huge difference to the prices and availability of accommodation, so it pays to know when the peak times are in the region for tourism.
You might consider booking up to 6 months in advance if you decide to head to Polson during any time close to the tourist season. If you are driving, also keep in mind the volume of traffic likely to be heading towards the national park during the peak months.
- Best B & B has to go to Swan Hill Bed & Breakfast for just being everything that you would imagine a homely Montana B&B to be. It’s got the surroundings, the welcoming feel, the food, and the wildlife.
- In terms of the cheapest B & B’s in Polson, the Flathead Lake Inn has to be the best option. The rooms are simple but comfortable and close to all the amenities and attractions. The location is also a huge bonus for this particular spot.
- Best Family Residence from this selection would also have to go Wild Horse Hideaway for the sheer abundance of on-your-doorstep things to do. Its peaceful, private natural surroundings are also well within reach of local amenities.