In Wyoming, you’ll find top-notch museums, independently owned stores, a wide range of restaurants, and course, lots of outdoor activities which gives a long list of what are the best things to do in Cody WY. Decide on your adventure now with the help of our list.
Western attractions, such as nightly summer rodeos, gunfight re-enactments, cowboy music, and the renowned Buffalo Bill Centre of the West, are just a few of the best things to do in Cody WY, which was founded by the illustrious scout and showman Colonel William F. “Buffalo Bill” Cody.
You can take a stroll around Old Trail Town or visit the Shoshone National Forest. You can also consider exploring some famous sites or going around for some outdoor fun like ziplining. There are endless things that you can consider doing in Cody.
1. 10 Best Things to Do in Cody Wy
1.1. Whitney Western Art Museum
The Whitney Western Art Museum, which bears the name of the patron and artist Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney, was established in 1959 and is one of the chief things to do in Cody WY.
Whitney’s range offers works of Western American art from the early nineteenth century until today that illustrate wildlife, terrain, persons, and experiences.
1.1.1. What Format Does the Artist Use?
Over 300 paintings and sculptures are on show in the Grainger Gallery and the Whitney Western Art Museum. The museum and gardens are home to many works of art, and there are still more that are in storage.
The majority of the time, artworks are displayed according to when they were made, but in other locations, both ancient and modern pieces are grouped around a common theme to let viewers draw connections between different eras and civilizations, and this is the reason for it being amongst the premier things to do in Cody WY.
Our imaginative installations promote inquiry, test assumptions, and invite reflection.
1.1.2. How is the Work of Art Perceived?
Labels and interactives offer information, viewpoints, and opinions. Most of our literature was written by curators, academics, and teachers. Quotes from artists and the general public are included wherever practical.
The gallery’s activities give a taste of its peaceful areas, making sure that visitors of all ages and interests leave the gallery feeling motivated.
1.2. Yellowstone National Park
One of the top things to do in Cody WY is to visit American National Park, which is located in the western region of the country, predominantly in Wyoming’s northwest end and stretching into Montana and Idaho. The Yellowstone National Park Protection Act was passed by the 42nd U.S. Congress and went into force on March 1st, 1872, under President Ulysses S. Grant.
In distinction to being the inaugural public and national park in the United States, many people might think that Yellowstone was the original national park to ever be created.
1.3. Cody Firearms Museum
The largest collection of American guns in existence is kept at the Firearms Museum. The Winchester Arms Collection, the centerpiece of this museum, set out on a westward journey in 1975 thanks to a loan from the Olin Corporation, making it exciting and one of the best things to do in Cody WY.
In 1988, a gift deed was made for it. The Cody Firearms Museum currently houses over 7,000 firearms and more than 30,000 items related to firearms.
1.3.1. What is in The Museum?
One of the best things to do in Cody, Wyoming, is to be at the Cody Firearms Museum. It is among the five museums that make up the Buffalo Bill Centre of the West. It was established in 1991 and underwent meticulous remodeling in 2019.
Learn about the history of weapons in a way that shapes your thoughts and sparks interesting discussions. Included are topics like the West, military applications, physics, engraving, and more.
1.4. Buffalo Bill Centre
In Cody, Wyoming, a set of five museums and a library known as the Buffalo Bill Centre of the West houses art and memorabilia from the American West and is one of the superlative things to do in Cody WY.
The Buffalo Bill Centre of the West was also once recognized as the Buffalo Bill Historical Centre.
The Centre of the West was founded in 1917 to uphold Col. William F’s legacy and mission. “Buffalo Bill” Cody is home to the biggest and most historic Vatican museums in the American West which ensures it is amongst the finest things to do in Cody WY.
The New York Times called it to be “among the nation’s most excellent museums” and got enlisted amongst the foremost things to do in Cody WY.
1.5. Draper Natural History Museum
On June 4, 2002, the Draper Natural History Museum officially opened to the public as the newest component of the Centre of the West, formerly known as the Buffalo Bill Historical Centre is one of the best things to do in Cody WY.
1.5.1. What is this Museum About?
The Draper Museum was the first natural history museum in the United States to open in the new millennium, and it has won praise for its cutting-edge, educational, and inspirational exhibit experiences on a global scale.
This museum is named in honor of Buffalo Bill Centre trustee and patron Nancy-Carroll Draper, who persistently fought for the addition of a natural history museum to the Buffalo Bill Centre of the West’s humanities museums and got entitled under ‘one of the best things to do in Cody WY’.
1.5.2. The Draper: Conservation and Education
The Draper Natural History Museum’s holdings—both the lab specimens and the live birds of prey—assist in advancing its educational and conservation initiatives which attract more tourists and researchers proving to be one of the pre-eminent things to do in Cody WY.
Even the ground-breaking ceremony was grandiose, with the 80-year-old philanthropist commanding an enormous yellow backhoe that overshadowed the conventional shovels.
With her $13 million endowment, Nancy Carrol Draper added to the museum’s establishment. Dr. Richard Leakey, an anthropologist of international acclaim and an African animal conservator, presented the keynote address even during the museum’s official opening in June 2002.
1.6. Cody Heritage Museum
A local history museum in Cody, Wyoming, is one of the best things to do in Cody WY tells the tale of the town’s founding and highlights its early enterprises, industries, historic families, tourism, and agriculture.
Many of the Society’s members are descended from some of Cody’s first inhabitants and are anxious to share their collection of artifacts with the locals as well as the numerous tourists that Cody welcomes each year.
To create a neighborhood museum, a group was established, and it has been working on this project for ten years. Although Cody already has a first-rate facility in the form of the Buffalo Bill Historical Centre, that establishment does not concentrate on the history of the Cody region.
The Cody Heritage Museum is dedicated to preserving local Cody history, and Cody was established by William F. “Buffalo Bill” Cody, H.M. Gerrans, George Bleistein, Nate Salsbury, George T. Beck, and Bronson Rumsey
- The history of agriculture and ranching, as well as the early Cody companies
- Our economy is built primarily on tourism, which was developed in Cody to share Yellowstone National Park with the world.
- The impact of the railroad, gas, and oil industries
- History of the local cowboys, including the Cody Stampede Rodeo
- Family lore from the generations that have contributed to the development of the beloved Cody!
1.7. Buffalo Bill Dam and Visitor Center
The Buffalo Bill Dam Visitor Center, a National Civil Engineering Landmark, was the highest concrete dam when it was opened in 1910 and is represented under one of the best things to do in Cody WY.
There is a provision for parking RVs, and a transport system runs to the center. The Buffalo Bill Dam & Visitor Center’s many amenities—public facilities, travel guides, tickets for Cody events, and breathtaking views—are just a few of the attractions. located on Highways 14/16/20, six miles west of Cody.
1.7.1. About the Buffalo Bill Dam?
The Buffalo Bill Dam, a masonry pinnacle building built on the Buffalo Bill River in Cody, Wyoming, visiting this place could be considered among the best things to do in Cody, WY. It is named after William “Buffalo Bill” Cody, a well-known character in the Wild West, who founded the adjacent town of Cody and held a large portion of the area that is now covered by the reservoir that was created by its construction.
The dam is part of Cody’s most recent project, the Shoshone Project, to inundation at the Bighorn Basin and convert it from a moderately-arid, sparse vegetation plain to productive farmland. When it was inaugurated, it was delineated with the title Shoshone Dam; in 1946, Cody’s name was affixed.
1.8. Old Trail Town
Old trail towns give visitors a rare chance to encounter their rich Western heritage firsthand. It is recognized by True West Magazine as the “Best Tourist Attraction and Historical Site.”
On your route to the East entrance of Yellowstone National Park, Old Trail Town, one of Cody, Wyoming’s most well-liked family-friendly western sites, is conveniently located just along US HWY 16-20-14.
William F. (“Buffalo Bill”) Cody, a showman, and western scout set out the initial townsite of Cody, Wyoming, which bears his name, on this location in 1895.
1.8.1. Historical Significance
The process of collecting historical structures and artifacts to be displayed at a location on the west side of Cody, Wyoming, just east of Yellowstone National Park, started in the spring of 1967. In 1895, Buffalo Bill and his companions selected this location as the first “Cody City” town site.
The Old Trail Town collection today includes 26 structures that range in age from 1879 to 1901, 100 horse-drawn vehicles, a sizable assortment of antiques from the Wyoming frontier, and genuine Indian artifacts in the old west making it to be the exciting things to do in Cody WY.
Bob W. Edgar, who died in 2012, was an archaeologist with the Buffalo Bill Historical Centre in Cody WY during the 1960s. He was a trapper, an artist, a historian, and a skilled marksman.
Edgar adored old structures that told the history of the old west, but he realized they had a propensity to vanish—to be destroyed, set on fire, or left to decay. He began to collect a few of them.
In 1967, Edgar debuted Old Trail Town with five structures. There wasn’t any historical community at the place, notwithstanding the entry sign claiming to be the place Buffalo Bill Cody intended his first townsite for Cody WY.
1.9. Dead Indian Summit Overlook
A mountain pass on Wyoming Highway 296 is called Dead Indian Pass (8,071 feet/2,460 m) high. The pass, which spans the Absaroka Range, is situated along the Chief Joseph Scenic Byway.
A stream called Dead Indian Creek flows beneath the pass. Dead Indian Gulch, and Dead Indian Mesa, and the well-known Dead Indian Mountain are also close to the pass.
1.9.2. Origin of the Names
There are two versions of how Dead Indian Pass got its name. The Nez Perce flight in 1877 is mentioned in the first. According to legend, a Nez Perce was killed close to the pass, giving rise to the name.
According to the second account, a band of Bannock Indians was encountered by Col. Nelson A. Miles and his comrade-in-arms in 1878. A Bannock was killed by the Crow Indian Scouts, who buried him here. The history behind it remarks the place as a segment of the best things to do in Cody WY.
1.10. Plains Indian Museum
One of the top things to do in Cody, Wyoming, is to explore the Plains Indian Museum, which is counted to be among the five museums featured within the Buffalo Bill Centre of the West. The Plains Indian peoples’ histories, customs, and traditions are examined in this Native American museum.
View historic Plains Indian artifacts and learn how contemporary Plains Indian tribes continue to practice and celebrate their tribal customs. On the way to Yellowstone, it should not be missed as it is considered to be one of the best things to do in Cody WY.
For both present and future generations, the Museum promotes an understanding of American Indian living cultures, including their histories, art, spirituality, and traditions.
The Plains Indian Museum works carefully to collect, conserve, show, and interpret cultural artifacts from prehistoric times to the present in order to fulfill its mission.
The museum holds the view that the past can best be utilized when it benefits the present and the future and the view gets it entitled to be another of the best things to do in Cody WY.
The collection of the Plains Indian Museum is remarkable; it consists of artwork created by Plains Indians between the middle of the nineteenth century and the present that is both historically relevant and frequently breathtakingly beautiful.
The attire and accessories worn by Native American performers in Buffalo Bill’s Wild West shows, which cruised from 1883 to 1913, were originally from the Northern Plains, however unlike socio-linguistic repositories of massive North American and European natural history museums of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries.
It has grown over time as a result of the acquisition of significant rare books and, more recently, masterpieces from prominent Plains Native artists and is considered to be one of the best things to do in Cody WY.
The county seat of Wyoming’s Park County is located in the city of Cody, which is in Northwest Wyoming. It bears Colonel William Frederick “Buffalo Bill” Cody’s name in honor of his contribution to the establishment of Cody in 1896.
In 2020, 10,066 people were living there. The Yellowstone Regional Airport provides service to Cody.
The coordinates for Cody are 44.523244 and 109.057109 (44°31′24′′N, 109°3′26′′W).
The climate in Cody is semi-arid and wildly unpredictable. The relative humidity is often 30% or lower, which is fairly dry.
An average of 11.5 inches (292.1 millimeters) of precipitation falls per year, including 45.0 inches (1.14 meters) of snowfall that is recorded per season.
Because of the arid climate, it can be noted that there are only 29.4 days per season when there is at least one inch (0.025 meters) of snow on the ground. Every year, roughly 300 days of sunshine are experienced by Cody.
The Buffalo Bill Center of the West is a sizable, up-to-date building close to the city’s heart. This collection of five museums includes the Draper Natural History Museum, the renowned Whitney Western Museum of Art, the Cody Firearms Museum, the Buffalo Bill Museum, and the Plains Indian Museum, which tells the narrative of William F. Cody, after whom the historical center is named.
Large groups are looked at by the historical center. Several travelers stop in the village on their approach to or from Yellowstone. Given below are the wonderful and exciting things to do in Cody WY.
Conclusion: The Great Day Trip Destination
There are several fun things you can enjoy in Cody Wy. Cody is what America used to be—a thriving center for the cowboy lifestyle and the start of the new West. The scenery is breathtaking, the terrain is undeveloped, the people are affable, and the chances for outdoor adventure, enjoyment, learning, and entertainment are as numerous and varied as the Wyoming skies and more of the best things to do in Cody WY.
The Cody night rodeo Stampede celebrates its 103rd year in 2019 and the Cody Nite Rodeo events celebrate its 84th century.
Cody is more entrenched in Western culture, history, and character than just about anywhere else in the state and is home to a world-famous rodeo and world-class museums making it one of the main reasons for tourist attractions allowing it to be the best things to do in Cody WY.
The Heart Mountain War Relocation Centre, another of eleven concentration camps used to imprison Japanese Americans who had been evacuated during World War II, is placed halfway between the settlements of Cody and Powell in northwest Wyoming. It is named after the surrounding Heart Mountain.
Simply travel west from Cody, Wyoming. Although the river’s headwaters are only accessible on foot or by horseback, the river’s higher reaches are located in the Shoshone National Forest.
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