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Where to Stay in Billings
Although Billings is quite a large city, it’s still easy and efficient to get around by car, so there’s no pressing need to choose a hotel based on its proximity to major attractions. A good way to begin your search is to examine the three areas where most of the city’s hotels are located: Downtown Billings, the Heights and the Southwest Corridor.
Downtown Billings is the only relatively pedestrian-friendly neighborhood for tourists, so if you like having a variety of dining and nightlife options within walking distance of your room, this is the neighborhood for you. A few of its hotels are short walks from points of interest like the Moss Mansion Museum, the Yellowstone Art Museum and the Western Heritage Center.
Adjacent to Downtown is the Heights, so called because it’s perched atop a steep cliff overlooking the city’s core. The neighborhood’s relatively few hotels are close to the historic Boothill Cemetery, the Black Otter Trail and a few casinos.
The Southwest Corridor has the greatest concentration of accommodations and is the best place to check for cheap hotel deals in Billings. Centered around a major Interstate 90 interchange, this area has several casinos, restaurants and parks with activities like water slides, go-karts and mini golf.
Billings Hotel Tips
The variety of accommodations in Billings is huge, owing to the wide range of roles the city plays in the region. It’s Montana’s center of commerce and the only significant convention destination for miles around, so luxurious business hotels are plentiful. As a popular vacation destination, Billings also has its fair share of affordable, family-friendly chain hotels and bed and breakfasts. Discount motels round out the in-town selection, and as you expand your search to the surrounding areas, you’ll find nature resorts, ranch lodges, rental cabins and campgrounds. If you’re visiting in the summer, it’s important to book far in advance, as hotels often reach capacity.
Billings Hotel Recommendations
Downtown Billings’ Crowne Plaza Hotel has the distinction of being the tallest free-standing brick building in the world, but it’s equally well known for being one of the best hotels in town. A modern renovation ensures that the rooms and amenities at this business hotel are state-of-the-art, and the upper-floor suites offer unparalleled views of the city.
Another Downtown Billings favorite is the Dude Rancher Lodge, which features a charming inner courtyard. The rooms here have more character than many of Billings’ chain hotels, as every little design choice was made with the ranch’s Western theme in mind.
An independently owned option in the Southwest Corridor is the C’mon Inn, where the warm and inviting accommodations match the folksy name. Exposed timbers and an attractive indoor waterfall provide an outdoorsy atmosphere, with the comfortable benefits of climate control and hearty, complimentary breakfasts.
If you’d rather stay near the Heights, the Boothill Inn & Suites stands out among its neighborhood competitors. The standard rooms are spacious enough, but the suites are ideal for traveling families or extended stays. Amenities include an indoor pool, two hot tubs, a fitness center and a free area shuttle.
Though Billings is served by public transit and taxi companies, the only way to conveniently explore the city and its outlying areas is with your own car. If you’re arriving by air, you can rent a vehicle from your choice of several car rental agencies at Billings Logan International Airport following your flight to Billings.
If you think public transportation suits your needs, you can review bus routes, rates and schedules on the MET Transit website or at the Downtown Transfer Center. The routes cover most in-town areas of interest to tourists, but keep in mind that bus service ends in the early evening and does not run on Sundays.
Don’t expect to be able to flag down a taxi on the street, even in Downtown Billings. You can ask for help arranging a ride at hotels, restaurants and other destinations, but it’s a good idea to carry the phone numbers of one or two local cab companies with you.