24 Hours IncityTravel

24 Hours in Boise with Kirsten Grove of Simply Grove

by Stephanie

24 Hours in Boise
From sprawling local parks and gardens to the plentiful coffee houses and delicious eateries, Boise, Idaho has made it’s mark as a must-visit location. It’s a booming city with the appeal of small-town America and today Boise local, Kirsten Grove of Simply Grove shares her ideal 24 hours in and around beautiful Boise.  —Stephanie

illustration by Libby VanderPloeg

Read the full guide after the jump…

I have called Boise my home for almost 16 years now. I’ve watched it mature and develop into a thriving, culturally diverse, metropolitan city. We are a fly over city that hasn’t drawn a lot of attention. In the past, Boise has been an undiscovered city, but that is quickly changing. People are moving in, companies are more than interested in this once sleepy city and the economy is on the rise. Our 4 seasons (we have a magical spring/summer), outdoor activities and crazy good food have caught peoples attention. It’s exciting to watch a place like this get the recognition that it deserves! And as a designer, I love being apart of the exciting changes that are occurring.

9am– Summer Saturdays in Boise are the best! My family and I usually start our Saturdays at our local farmers market. We have several in the city. We most likely start at our new farmers market downtown, mostly because we can stock up on Guru donuts. The vegan Hipsterberry is my personal favorite. They also have Neckar coffee, some of the best pour overs in town. Once we’ve scouted the land there, we make our way to the Capital City Public Market to purchase local produce and honey.

11am– By this time, our kids are bored and ready to run around like wild animals (kinda kidding) so we head to Camels Back park. There the kids can play on the giant field or on the playground. After awhile we may go on a hike right behind the park and scout the foothills.

12pm– We are super hungry so we go to a new lunch spot in town, On The Fly, which is a modern deli with the perfect hip ambiance. They have tons of gluten free options, which I appreciate. From there my husband and I need a little caffeine pick me up so we head to The District Coffee House where I get an almond milk Cardamom Latte.

2pm– Since I’m in the neighborhood, I stop by a project that I’m helping with, the newly remodeled Owyhee. They are revamping the entire building and creating super cool flats, a banquet hall, office spaces, and restaurants. I am styling some of the flats, offices and lobbies so of course I love watching the progress of the building. The entire project will be a show stopper for this city. the Owyhee is close to the Linen District, so we walk down to Second Chance to look for tile to add to our guest bathroom. On the way, we walk by my favorite hotel in all of Boise, The Modern Hotel. It’s a must stay when you visit Boise.

3pm– I then convince my family to head to Boise Vintage to see if they have any new mid century pieces, perfect for clients or even my home. I, of course, find the perfect Eames office chair but sadly I have no where to put it.

3:30pm- We then head to the Boise Library, which seems to captivate my kids for awhile. While my kids and husband are at the Library, I run over to Blush to pick up some Kai, my all time favorite scent. Don’t you like smelling like Hawaii everywhere you go?!

4:30pm– From the Library, we jump on the Green Belt on our bikes and head to Bown Crossing where we will eat dinner.

5pm- All four of us rarely agree on dinner but there is one place that we can all agree on. Boise Fry Company is our all time favorite spot. I mean, Idaho is known for our potatoes, right? So you know these fries are going to be life changing! And they are. With 6 types of fries and at least 10 different types of dipping sauces (blueberry ketchup and marshmallow maple are my favorites) everyone will find a fry that they like.

6:30pm- We jump back on the greenbelt and head to Julia Davis Park where we meet friends for dessert and games at the park. Our desserts of choice are macaroons from JanJou (a favorite bakery in the North End) and Toni’s Sun Valley Ice Cream that we picked up from Boise’s Co-op. Summer evenings in Boise are absolutely perfect. We could live outside at night, and sometimes we do.

9pm- At dusk, Julia Davis Park offers a movie under the stars. It’s the perfect ending to the perfect day.

A few extra picks from Boise-

Eat + Drink-

The Dish

Flatbread Pizza

Red Feather Lounge

Pho Nouveau

Saint Lawrence Gridiron

Cafe Vicino

Juniper Kitchen and Cocktails


Big City

A Tavola

10 Barrel


Fancy Pants

Latta Showroom




Hotel 43

Modern Hotel

The Grove Hotel


Boise Art Museum

Discovery Center

Ballet Idaho

Trey McIntyre Project

Idaho Botanical Gardens


Flying M


Thomas Hammer

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  • I am heading to Boise in November for my brother-in-law’s wedding. I’ve never been there before, so this is a great guide to take. Perfect timing.

  • I love Boise! Just went there a few months ago for the first time and was totally surprised! To be honest, I think I was just expecting a small town and a lot of potatoes. I wish we could have spent more than 24 hours there, it is a really awesome town!

  • Great little guide. The only thing missing is the exclamation point on the library. Library! – it yells from far away.

  • My husband and I spent about a day in Boise before we flew home after a long weekend in Sun Valley and we really liked the city! We loved how clean and walkable the downtown area was. We did a couple of the more touristy things like touring the Old State Penitentiary, hiked the foothills up towards Table Rock, and saw a hockey game. Our hotel was right across from Julia Davis Park, so we walked through that as well.

  • My husband and I lived in Boise (really close to the Depot) when we got married, and left partially because the economy made it hard to find jobs, but also because it wasn’t progressive enough. Sure enough after we came to Seattle, Boise started picking up the pace. I’m glad to see that there are new and interesting businesses going in, since my in-laws still live there. Now we know where to visit when we go back! We always loved the Co-op and tried Jan Jou last time we visited. Also, picnics up at Table Rock!

  • I lived there many years ago and still have a lot of family there. I go to visit several times a year now and will be moving back as soon as both hubby and I retire. I’ve been to a few of the places on your list, will certainly check out some more of them next time I am there.

  • Love this, and love Boise! The Modern is truly the best hotel – the bar is phenomenal too!

  • It’s called “Fork” not “The Fork”
    Pho Nouveau is spelled incorrectly.
    It’s “Boise Art Museum” not “Modern Art Museum”

  • This article is targeted at a Saturday visit to Boise but On The Fly is closed on Saturday.

    • Bob

      These guides are titled as a 24 Hour Visit, they’re not intended to be used on only one day. The author did her tour for photos on Saturday, but that’s definitely not the only day you can use the guide.


  • Also, you mentioned Boise Village but link to the Broadway Village FB page. (Boise Village took over Broadway Village about a year ago.)

  • I have lived in Boise since I was five and I am still discovering new things

  • As a member of an old Boise pioneer family, now living in Los Angeles, I enjoyed reading about modern Boise. What fun to see the changes and how wonderful that some old buildings are being saved and renovated, too!

  • I’m a native New Yorker who lived in Boise for three years and LOVED it! Not to be missed is the furniture consignment store Renewal. The sales personnel have a discerning eye and do a terrific job curating the inventory, plus they are funny and engaging. Boise is the friendliest city. Really miss the place.

  • Fantastic list! Love seeing so many friends’ businesses being promoted; it really is a treat to live here.

  • We’ve lived in Boise for 13 years now, and absolutely love this city. I thought we’d pretty much done it all, but it looks like I have a few new places I need to try. Great job, Kirsten!