Boise is the state capital of Idaho and is located midway between Salt Lake City, Utah and Portland, Oregon. Boise is the third largest metropolitan area in the northwest. The city itself boasts 200,000 residents and shares a metropolitan population of 600,000. Known as the City of Trees, Boise boasts a river flowing through the heart of the city and a 25-mile riverfront greenbelt with large urban parks and one-of-a-kind museums. Boise is home to one of the largest Basque communities outside of Northern Spain and celebrates their culture with the annual San Inazio Festival and the International Basque Cultural Festival held every five years. Commuting by bicycle is popular in Boise, with 3.9% of commuters cycling to work. The city has been noted in several publications for its quality of life. Forbes rates Boise #12 in Cost of Doing Business and #36 among Best Places for Business and Careers. The high-tech industry has become increasingly important to Boise over the years, though the economy remains diversified with its government and business sectors continuing to be strong influences.
Begun by The Hudson Bay Company, Fort Boise was established in 1834 as an Oregon Trail supply point located along the Snake River near the present town of Parma, Idaho. It was abandoned in 1854 due to flooding and Indian attacks, leading the United States Government constructing. a new fort in 1863, 50 miles to the east on the Boise River. New Fort Boise was large, accommodating hundreds of soldiers, and positioned to protect the area’s miners and settlers. The city of Boise was established along with the construction of the fort, and the area prospered as miners and suppliers traveled through on their way to Idaho City. Construction of a territorial prison, a U.S. Assay Office, a streetcar system and irrigation channels continued the city’s growth through the 1920’s. The Arrowrock Dam project and the arrival of a main line railroad during the 1920’s and 1930’s helped Boise weather The Great Depression. The city has continued to thrive as a hub of commerce in the northwest, supported by numerous international, regional, and state corporations with a large presence in Boise.
Boise experiences hot and dry summers with highs occasionally reaching 100 °F, yet because of the aridity, the temperature can drop 30° at night. Winters are cold, with a December average of 30.7 °F and lows falling to 0 °F or below. Snowfall averages 19 inches, but typically falls only a few inches per episode. Precipitation is usually infrequent and light, especially during the summer months. Learn more about Boise’s weather and climate using these links.
Public transportation in Boise is provided by a series of bus lines operated by ValleyRide. A network of bike paths run throughout the city and surrounding region. With many bike paths and little precipitation, cycling is popular option for getting around town. Boise Airport provides commercial air service. The terminal was recently renovated to accommodate the growing number of passengers. The city is served by Allegiant Air, Alaska Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Southwest Airlines, United Airlines, and US Airways.
Cost of Living in Boise
At 6% below the national average, the cost of living in Boise, Idaho, is very advantageous for local residents. Housing is especially affordable, at 20% below the national average. Plan your budget with these cost of living calculators.
The Boise School District includes 31 elementary schools, 8 junior high schools, 5 high schools and 2 specialty schools. Part of the Meridian School District (now the largest in Idaho) is within the Boise city limits, and the city is therefore home to six public high schools, adding Meridian district’s Centennial High School to the city. Boise’s private schools include the Catholic Bishop Kelly, Foothills School of Arts and Sciences, and the International Baccalaureate-accredited Riverstone International School.
Boise’s best hospital is St. Alphonsus Regional Medical Center. This facility is ranked as the third-best hospital in Idaho and is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities. If you’re planning on relocating to Boise, it’s a good idea to know the medical resources available.
Boise Real Estate
Steady population growth and low interest rates have created a strong real estate and construction market in Boise, yet housing remains very affordable in Boise. The area’s cost of living is among the lowest in the west, and a high quality of life continues to attract new residents. Check out the real estate available in Boise with these links.
When selecting a place to stay in Boise, Idaho, you might consider a major brand, or one of the interesting alternatives the city has to offer. The Bond Street Motel Apartments offer quality and comfortable accommodations with full kitchens and spacious rooms that are well-suited to a longer stay. The Oxford Suites is one of Boise’s top rated accommodations, with convenient access to downtown and the interstate highway. The Boise Guest House B&B is a charming stay within walking distance to the downtown restaurants and nightspots. For a quiet setting, the Boise Hillside Suites are just minutes from downtown, tucked away in a quiet neighborhood on the North End. Find a great place to stay using these links.
Boise hosts a fascinating selection of unique and eclectic restaurants that appeal to locals and visitors alike. Chef/Owner Franck Baquet prepares country French cuisine at his South Boise bistro, Le Coq Rouge. The restaurant simply known as "Fork" serves fresh and organic feasts with most of their ingredients coming from local and regional sources. If you have an adventurous palate, or at least a flame-retardant one, the Habanero Pizza at Flying Pie Pizzaria was famously featured on The Travel Channel’s "Man versus Food". They have milder choices, too. For breakfast, there is no better choice than Goldy’s Breakfast Bistro, open until 2pm for late-risers. Discover more dining options using these links.
Things to Do in Boise
Boise is a great place to enjoy the great outdoors. Extensive hiking and biking trails wind through the foothills just north of downtown. Boise River Greenbelt is an urban trail system that runs along the Boise River. The river is also a popular destination for fishing, swimming, and rafting. In winter, the Bogus Basin ski area, just 16 miles from the edge of town, offers skiing, snowboarding, and snow tubing. Boise has a thriving performing arts community with the Boise Philharmonic, now in its 49th season. The renovated the Egyptian Theatre is a multi-use performance venue hosting concerts, operas, ballet, and more. In the fall, downtown Boise hosts the Idaho International Film Festival. The city is also home to several museums, including the Boise Art Museum, Idaho Historical Museum, the Basque Museum and Cultural Center, Idaho Black History Museum, Boise WaterShed and the Discovery Center of Idaho. Explore more great things to do in Boise using these links.