Bigfork is a picturesque little Montana town right on the edge of Flathead Lake. There are plenty of reasons to visit Bigfork aside from the fact that it is something of a lake resort though, and outdoor types and nature lovers as well as anyone looking for a rather quaint and arty western stop-off in Montana.
One of the main draws with Bigfork is that you have the option of choosing either accommodation overlooking the amazingly scenic Flathead Lake, or a guest house hotel in the vibrant and artistic downtown region.
Downtown Bigfork is a friendly and stylish locale with galleries, museums, exhibitions, and all kinds of festivals—yet it also retains those classic Montana elements presented in a small-town guise.
Accommodation options are not huge compared to some of the much larger towns and cities in the state, but there is a nice range of options catering to different preferences and budgets.
You won’t find much along the lines of huge 4 or 5-star hotels in Bigfork, but there are a few reasonable and welcoming hotels, motels, guesthouses, and of course bed and breakfast options.
Where to Find The Best Bed and Breakfast in Bigfork
Bigfork has a range of interesting and varied Bed and Breakfast accommodation options to suit anyone looking for something aside from the usual 2 and 3-star hotel options. Let’s take a closer look at some of the best Bed and Breakfast in Bigfork to help make the most out of our visit.
Staying in Bigfork – Travel Tips and Advice
- Which areas in Bigfork are best: Downtown Bigfork is going to be the place for anyone interested in the best range of local ‘foodie’ options, not to mention its vibrant art and music scene. The surrounding Flathead Valley areas which include the scenic Flathead Lake are the best places for anyone looking for scenery, relaxation, or recreation.
- Getting Around: The best way to get around downtown Bigfork is definitely on foot. If you are close to the Downtown region you’ll get the best opportunities to check out the galleries and boutiques on foot. You might even catch a show at the famous Summer Playhouse, or explore some of the parks—all possible on foot. Car rentals are available from Glacier National Park Airport and in the town if you fancy exploring a bit further afield or using the town as a base.
- Attractions: Depending on where your interests lie, the main attractions could be either the art galleries—which Bigfork is known for—or the variety of theaters, most notably at the Summer Playhouse. On top of that, there are plenty of boutique-style shops, and there is also a 27-hole golf course.
- Of course, some visitors might avoid the town center completely and head out of town more towards the Flathead National Forest and the lake which provides a multitude of scenic outdoor activities. Plenty of visitors to Bigfork will come for both aspects of the town and region.
The Best Bed and Breakfast in Bigfork
The Outlook Inn overlooks 7 acres of land located on the incredibly scenic western shore of Flathead Lake and is just 16 miles from Glacier Park International Airport. Here guests are privy to unparalleled lake views from every room, and they can also enjoy decking areas.
The accommodation’s rooms feature a private bathroom, a flat-screen TV, a fridge, a microwave, and coffee-making facilities along with an outside grill.
As far as breakfast goes, only locally-sourced farm-to-table foods are used in the kitchen at the Inn, with some of the unique Montana ingredients coming from the residence’s own organic garden. Breakfast options include Full English or Irish Breakfast as well as Vegan and Gluten-Free options.
Situated on Electric Avenue in Bigfork, The Inn Bigfork Bay features accommodation with a bar and its own private beach area. The rooms have private bathrooms, free Wi-Fi, and flat-screen TVs, and some rooms have fully-equipped kitchens.
A stay at the Inn on Bigfork Bay puts you in the heart of Bigfork but is not too far away from attractions like Flathead Lake and Bigfork Summer Playhouse. Guests at the accommodation can take advantage of a hot tub, or relax in the garden, or the shared lounge area. Laundry facilities are available, and some units have a patio or a balcony with lake views.
The amenities at the accommodation include a hot tub, which is just the ticket after a day of hiking, skiing, or cycling. The residence also features a garden and a shared lounge area.
The nearest airport, Glacier Park International, is less than 20 miles from Bigfork Bay, and the Inn provides a paid airport shuttle service.
Another wonderfully-scenic location on Flathead Lake comes by way of the Islander Inn. Just four miles from the center of Bigfork, guests will find a selection of island-themed suites and bungalows at this Inn.
All air-conditioned rooms include free Wi-Fi, and many are dog-friendly. There is an on-site restaurant and bar. A seating area is provided as is cable TV, a refrigerator, and tea and coffee-making facilities.
Breakfast is available at any of the 2 onsite restaurants which also cater to any other requirements including kids’ meals on request. One of the onsite eateries—the Raven Restaurant and Bar—offers on-site dining in a Caribbean-style atmosphere right next to the lake and is open for lunch, dinner, and cocktails.
Other amenities include an indoor and heated outdoor pool with seating and a bar. The beach and docks across from the Raven can also be used by guests and feature local rental companies offering bicycles, kayaks, and stand-up paddle boards.
Glacier International Airport in Kalispell is a 30-minute drive from The Islander Inn, which is popular with couples and families.
Timbers Motel is literally a stone’s throw from Flathead Lake. It is located just off Highway 35, and is within 10-minutes’ walking distance of Wayfarer’s State Park.
The Motel is a locally-owned establishment that is also a convenient 40-minute drive away from Glacier National Park, which makes it an ideal stop-off point for many travelers.
The rooms are simple yet comfortable, and different sizes and grades are available. All rooms include free Wi-Fi, a refrigerator, a microwave, and coffee-making facilities.
The motel also has an outdoor pool and an outdoor lounge area, and just a couple of miles away guests can find Eagle Bend Golf Club. It is also close to a few scenic local hiking trails
Around 8 miles from Downtown Bigfork and its famous art galleries, this unique and highly-regarded residence is located in the Flathead Valley amidst 32 acres of land. Here you’ll get breath-taking views of Flathead Lake, the Mission Mountains, and the Flathead Valley.
Guests can enjoy all of the finest features and amenities which include a massive fireplace, spectacular surrounding views, and a full home theater in some of the luxury suites. The almost regal beauty of this rustic yet elegant lodge astounds many guests from the world over.
The accommodation serves as an ideal alternative to a regular hotel and is great for families or couples on a romantic getaway. Coyote Bluff is accessible via a 15-mile drive from Glacier National Airport.
Bigfork’s Mountain Lake Lodge is located just 5 miles south of the center of the town and overlooks Flathead Lake. It is also surrounded by impressive views of the Rockies and is just a few minutes away from Eagle Bend Golf Course. The lodge is also just over a half-hour drive from Glacier National Park.
Not so much a Bed and Breakfast as an entire resort that is nevertheless a refreshing change from a standard hotel. The year-round resort comprises thirty spacious rooms that include fireplaces. All rooms provide some excellent views of the surrounding area.
The lodge has two restaurants, and other amenities include a spa, an infinity pool, a fitness suite, a putting green, and a fire pit. The breakfast is complimentary continental-style, and guests can also enjoy the facility’s private landscaped courtyard, as well as the onsite Riley’s Sports Pub.
Flathead Lake Resort comprises motel-style rooms as well as nautical-themed cabins. The rooms are one or 2 beds to suit 2 to four guests, and the establishment has its own private beach area. Camping is also available here and it is in a great spot for some outdoor recreation.
The resort is less than five miles from the center of Bigfork, and just over a 30-minute drive from Glacier Park International Airport. Eagle Bend Golf Club is 6 miles away, and a bit further out at just over 15 miles away is Blacktail Mountain.
There are outdoor common areas at the property where guests can enjoy the fire pits, and if you don’t want to travel too far away, there are various activities to engage in nearby like water and snow sports according to season, as well as horseback riding.
The Bottom Line
All in all, there are some nice Bed and Breakfast-type accommodations in and around Bigfork to suit a range of preferences. Options are somewhat limited as far as standard B&B-style accommodation goes, but you’ll find a few variations along guesthouse and resort themes in and around Bigfork, especially close to the lake.
This means that with a touch of careful advanced planning, it won’t be too difficult to find the best Bed and Breakfast in Bigfork to suit your requirements.
Just remember if you do plan to stay near or on the lake itself you’ll need to book quite a bit in advance—maybe 6 months—and you can expect it to be more on the expensive side.
- Best B & B has to go to The Inn Bigfork Bay. The location, the private beach, and surroundings, as well as the other amenities, make it a pretty top-notch option. This place also qualifies as one of, if not the most romantic place to stay with its scenic, natural, and peaceful environment that is still close enough to the theater for a romantic evening stroll there.
- In terms of the cheapest B & B’s in Bigfork, you may be best to look towards the more Motel-style options—the Timbers Motel being the best example with its reasonable rates and value for money. The rooms are simple but comfortable and close to all the amenities and attractions.
- Best Family B & B-style accommodation goes to the Mountain Lake Lodge for its location and amenities including a garden, not too far from all the attractions.