The first time I’ve been to McCall is way back when I was a student in the middle of an internship in Boise city. I still remember that my colleagues at the time drove me to McCall on a Jeep Wrangler through a shortcut via some dirt roads which took us about an hour and a half. This small town has surprised me with its beautiful natural landscapes back then and it’s still surprising me now. I’m the type of person that likes to enjoy my holiday time with nature but the places also have to have convenient facilities, thus McCall is one of those spots that keep attracting me back.
How would I get to McCall
The nearest airport to McCall is from Boise city. I rarely have to come to McCall during tax season, but when I do, Boise airport is always my previous stop, which is about 2 hours of car driving away. You can read my blog about Boise here. When I drive my family to McCall on my Ford SUV from my home in Stanley, the driving time is pretty much the same as from Boise. In fact, the trip usually takes me 3 hours of car driving time, either from Boise or Stanley, because I’m a slow driver, with or without my family. Therefore, if it’s for work, I would call Uber.
What to do in McCall
Where to stay
If you take a late flight to Boise Airport, remember to find a hotel or homestay in Boise downtown. I would suggest in the North End or in the Greenbelt.
As in McCall, I personally like to spend a night in a modern hotel with convenient facilities and hotel staff to support me if I and my family need anything, especially when I always bring my kids. Therefore, Hotel McCall is my go-to destination for every trip. Although my wife loves to experience new stays, this is one of a few decisions she totally agrees with me. The place offers nice rooms, delicious food, an onsite pool and restaurant, what more can we demand!
I know, for many of the young generation, it would be weird to take a trip to a fascinating natural landscape and sleep in a boring hotel room. I totally understand as I used to think like that a few years ago. If you want to have a memorable night at a million-star hotel, there are tons of perfect camping spots in McCall. Campgrounds in Ponderosa State Park are numerous and varied. Some campgrounds are for RVs, some have convenient facilities like electricity and bathhouses, while some are deluxe cabins with all the comfort you need.
Summer activities in McCall
Biking is the most popular outdoor activity there in the summer. The famous biking paths in McCall are countless, namely Tamarack resort, Brundage Mountain, Jug Mountain, Eagles Nest Trail or Payette National Forest.
For water activities, Payette Lake and Payette River are the most popular spots with a wide range of fun actions, such as sunset cruise tours, boating, rafting and swimming. You would immediately fall in love with these places even for someone who has a fear of water.
Winter activities in McCall
Even though you can go to the hot spring anytime in the year, winter is the perfect season to visit Gold Fork or Burgdorf Hot Springs. However, in to get to the hot springs in the winter when snow reign over all terrains, snowmobiling is one of the few solutions that are still available by then, which is also a fun activity I want to mention. Snowmobiles can be easily rented in town, and you can hire a tour guide to explore the snowy world without getting lost.
Skiing is also a wonderful sport on snow terrains. You can buy tickets in some places like Tamarack and start skiing from the top of the mountain or smooth wide groomers.
Delicious meals in McCall
In the morning, I like to have some burritos and smoothies in Ruby Kitchen. I could spend a whole morning in Ruby and enjoy their fresh-brewed coffee while my wife goes on adventures.
For lunch, if you want some hot and mouth-watering local burgers I would suggest Salmon River Brewery, The Shore Lodge Club or My Fathers Place.
I personally like some fine dining restaurants, since we already stayed in Hotel McCall, we would normally take our dinner in the onsite restaurant called Ruperts.