Does this scenario sound familiar? You are planning a visit to Yellowstone National Park. You take a look at Google Maps and you notice that Grand Teton National Park looks so close and you think to yourself, “Why not kill two birds with one stone and visit both?”
You’re not alone. But the next thing you notice is that Jackson Hole Airport is close to Grand Teton National Park and Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport is close to Yellowstone. Which airport should I go to? If you are thinking of landing at one and heading out of the other, your options are limited. Both airports are rather small and if you are looking at a vehicle rental, you are limited to the national carriers. So you will “get what you get.”
Your best bet would be to land at one or the other and make the loop back and head out the same airport you arrived from. But there are a few things to know. Firstly, as I’ve already mentioned, both airports are small. The airport in Jackson is the smallest. During peak season, which is now May through September (!), it is going to be crowded.
Landing at Jackson Hole Airport (JAC)
This is a very small airport with not too many services. It is close to the town of Jackson and Jackson Hole Resort though. The town is small and sparse. Don’t expect much in terms of chains. With the resort, there are activities in the Winter (skiing, etc.) and the summer.
You are also super close to Grand Teton National park and the great thing is you can’t escape the view of the Teton Mountains. You will see them even from inside the airport.
Landing in Bozeman International Airport (BZN)
The airport in Bozeman is a little bit bigger. But don’t let the word “International” full you. We don’t have that many gates and the airport is small when compared to larger cities. It’s big for us.
Landing in Bozeman will give you more options though. Bozeman has recently been “found” and so we have a good amount of restaurants in town and a thriving downtown area. You also aren’t very limited in places to stay as we have a considerable amount of hotels. All of which are very close to the airport. In reality, everything Bozeman is about “20 minutes away.”
Bozeman also has some of the things you might be used to large chain grocery stores, a Target, a Costco. Those things.
Where to land is really up to you. If you are looking for a more laid-back and sparse surroundings, Jackson is your best bet. If you are looking for a town to explore a little for a few days that has a few amenities that you might need or you want a few more “options” then Bozeman is best. Of course, if you are still on the fence and want to talk to a “local” we are happy to talk to you. Just give us a call at 406-530-5337.
Also, if you are still looking for transportation when visiting the national parks, reserve your Jeep with us today. It’s absolutely the best vehicle to enjoy Montana and the National parks we are so close to! Also, even if you don’t rent from us, make sure to check out our driving distances page that shows you distances between some of the most popular places people visit as well as our driving advice page. Both will help you plan and give you an idea of what you in for!