Adventurous Things To Do in Lewiston

Attractions  |  Hidden Gems  |  Wineries  |  Public Art  |  Families & Kids  |  Young Women  |  Shopping |  Events

With all due respect to the rest of our website, this is our favorite page.

It gives us a chance to highlight the difference between just staying in Lewiston and actually experiencing Lewiston- the places, the people, the attractions and fun things to do that only folks who love the city can really tell you about. Folks like us.

If you're wondering what to do on a Thursday evening, looking for the perfect local restaurant or a funky boutique, the kind of places that can only be found in Lewiston, we know them all. The historical sites, parks, and breathtaking natural attractions like Hell's Canyon. Cultural hubs, from museums and art galleries to performance art centers. We'll tell you all about them, and then help get you there so you can experience them for yourself.

Below you'll find a glimpse at Lewiston's most popular attractions - from dining and nightlife to family friendly things to do, courtesy of the staff of the Red Lion Hotel Lewiston. It's certainly not everything, but it's a great start.

And if you find someplace new, let us know and we'll add it to the list.

First, a little background…

Captains Meriwether Lewis and William Clark came to the Clearwater Valley in 1805 in search of a trade route through the Northwest. They followed the Clearwater River from the Bitterroot Mountains to its merger with the Snake River, the present-day site of the twin cities of Lewiston, Idaho and Clarkston, Washington. The expedition found what it was looking for - the Port of Lewiston- 465 miles from the Pacific Ocean. It is the West's most inland seaport.

Lewis and Clark's journey might not have been successful were it not for the help of the Nez Perce Indians who had lived and fished for salmon in the area for thousands of years. Many of the Lewiston Valley's museums and parks, including the Nez Perce National Historic Parkand theLewis Discovery Center at Hell's Gate State Park, document and celebrate the history of the Nez Perce and the Lewis and Clark Expedition.

Once the capital of Idaho, Lewiston is best known today for its "Banana Belt" climate with warm, sunny days, year-round golf and limitless opportunities for water-skiing, jet boating, sailing, whitewater rafting, hunting, fishing, swimming and hiking. The city is perfectly situated to provide easy access to spectacular Hells Canyon, fishing for steelhead in the Clearwater River and whitewater rafting on the Salmon River. In town, miles of paved levee pathways follow the rivers for walking, jogging and biking. Lewiston celebrates its lovely climate and the coming of spring each April with the month-long Dogwood Festival.


Hells Canyon
North America's deepest river gorge, the world-famous Hells Canyon was created during the last ice age by the flowing waters of the 1,000-mile long Snake River. Measuring a mile and a half from the river bottom at Granite Creek Rapids to the tallest mountaintop, the headwaters of the Snake River start in Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming and travel through six states, crossing southern Idaho, before turning north to form the boundary between the state of Oregon. It enters Washington and turns southwest to end in the Columbia River. Discover an incredible array of wildlife, abandoned mines, fascinating shipwreck sites and homesteads.

Confluence Center
Learn all about Lewis and Clark's adventure at this interpretive center and historical marker for the expedition's October 10, 1805 campsite.

The Nez Perce National Historical Park
An info-packed center and museum stocked with historical displays and programs focused on the history and customs of the Nez Perce Indian Tribe. View detailed beadwork and carvings, and learn about the compelling histories of the Nez Perce and Sacajawea.

Lower Granite Dam
Open from 8:30 A.M. to 5:00 P.M. Monday through Saturday, the visitor center is home to a fish ladder viewing point where you can check out the fish, or opt for an interesting guided dam tour.

Aerial Tours
Catch some air! Tour Hells Canyon and the nearby region with a year-round tour, available from 15 minutes to two hours, with Kiwi Air.

[Back to top]


Hidden Gems

You don't even have to leave town to find some of the best fishing spots for trolling, spinning, bait casting and fly fishing. The Hells Canyon Snake River, Columbia River adn Grand Ronde River all provide solid fishing opportunities. If you're looking for charters check out Steel Dreams Guide Service or Hells Canyon Sports Fishing. 

Lewiston Hill
Built in 1917, this historic road descends 2000 feet into Lewiston via a series of 64 switchbacks and sharp curves. Adventurous travelers will be rewarded with excellent views of the Lewiston skyline. 

Petroglyphs in Hells Canyon
Found in only six locations, the petroglyphs are along the Snake River in Idaho are a fascinating hidden gem in Hells Canyon. These notations reveal a slice of what life was like for the indigenous peoples who met with traders at these sites.

Ghost Tours of Downtown Lewiston
Get spooked! Tour Historic Downtown Lewiston and discover areas that have remained unchanged for the past 100 years. Feeling brave? Visit the underground passageways that run below the sidewalks and, legend has it, play host to the spirits who travel them - they're said to be ghosts from the "unmentionable" side of 1930s society. The especially adventurous can visit historic buildings that have documented paranormal activity.

Palouse Falls
Just 45 minutes away, the legendary Palouse Falls is a stunning 200-foot waterfall, with a particularly gorgeous surrounding area for visitors.

Christmas Lighting in Locomotive Park
Christmas cheer abounds as the volunteers of Winter Spirit, Inc., light up different areas around the Valley, including the Steam Engine 92, and Camas Prairie RR Caboose. Taking place from Thanksgiving weekend through New Year's Day, there's plenty of music, entertainment and all-around themed fun for holiday revelers. Learn more:

[Back to top]



Our region boasts a long - and, might we add, quite savory - history of winemaking. Grapes were first brought into the Clearwater Valley around 1872 and, because of two pioneering Frenchmen, Louis Desol and Robert Schleicher, and one German immigrant, Jacob Schaefer, the region quickly earned acclaim for its wine production. Schleicher was especially successful, scoring a number of awards at expositions in Omaha, Buffalo, St. Louis and Portland. Today, local wineries are winning their own awards for varietals made from local and regional grapes. With plenty of options to choose from, we guarantee you'll find a taste you'll love.

Basalt Cellars
906 Port Drive, Clarkston, WA, 509-758-6642
Dedicated to premium wines, Basalt Cellars opens its tasting rooms from Tuesday through Saturday.

Clearwater Canyon Cellars
1708 6th Avenue N, Ste. A, Lewiston, ID, 208-746-7975
Clearwater Canyon Cellars is Lewiston's first commercial winery since Prohibition, offering premium wines crafted by talented local artisans.

Colter's Creek Winery
20154 Colter Creek Ln, Juliaetta, ID, 208-874-3933
Sample wines created from locally-grown grapes at Colter's Creek.

Merry Cellars
1300 NE Henley Court, Pullman, WA, 509-338-4699
Sip a variety of ultra premium red and white Washington wines from the Pullman area's original winery.

Wawawai Canyon Winery
5602 State Route 270, Pullman, WA, 509-338-4916
There's more than wine here... though the wine is some of the area's best! Check out a wide variety of art exhibits and cultural events. The tasting room and gallery are located on the picturesque Pullman-Moscow highway.

Camas Prairie Winery
110 S Main Street, Moscow, ID, 208-882-0214
The oldest production winery inIdaho, Camas Prairie has offered impeccably produced wines since 1983. Visit to experience wine tasting, tours, a wine bar and imported beer.

Beamers Hells Canyon Tours Wine Tasting Cruise

Any oenophile's perfect way to while away a day, this four-hour narrated jet boat tour and impressive five-course plated dinner at Heller Bar Lodge, with perfectly-paired wines, is a must-visit. The tour is $99 per person. Call for reservations: 509.758.4800, or toll-free 800.522.6966.

[Back to top]


Public Art

With an ever-expanding and impressive collection of public art, the valley boasts a fascinating recent addition: the North Lewiston Gateway Project, artwork that can be viewed (and appreciated!) as you drive into Lewiston from the north and east. Artists David Govedare and Keith Powell produced a series of statues showing the Lewis and Clark meeting the Nez Perce people. Artist Shirley Bothum's three bronze statues show Meriwether Lewis, William Clark and Sacajawea. The statues are located at the intersection of Highway 12 and 21st Street.

Moving on, at the center of Lewis-Clark State College campus, you'll find a representation of explorers convening with Chief Twisted Hair. The wooded setting shows the Clearwater region, replete with waterfalls and native plants, and other bronze figures include Nez Perce women gathering food. The Tsceminicum sculpture, located on the Lewiston side of the confluence of the Clearwater and Snake rivers, represents Nez Perce mythology with a symbolic Earth Mother figure. The wildlife and legends depicted on the east-facing wall are those of the Clearwater River and its tributaries; on the west-facing side are those of the Snake River. The central "trickster" character of Indian legend, Coyote, keeps watch from the north end of the wall. Other art includes a bronze statue of Sacajawea at Lewiston's Pioneer Park; water flows from the bowls in her outstretched hands in the summer months into a pool guarded by four bronze coyote statues.

You'll find a modern sculpture fountain at Brackenbury Square, on Lewiston'sMain Street, featuring connected rings with three children playing in a pool of water. And, at Tribune Plaza, a public area created by the Lewiston Tribune, you'll discover a bronze sculpture of long-time local newspaper reporter Tom Campbell.

Lastly, artist Don D. Joslyns' bronze of a Nez Perce warrior on an Appaloosa horse, entitled "Indian Summer 1974," can be viewed at the Nez Perce County courthouse.

[Back to top]


Families & Kids

Aquatic Center
Mom and Dad can sneak in a workout at the lap pool while the kids enjoy the outdoor water park's wave pool, lazy river and thrilling slides! The Aquatic Center also has an indoor fitness center and hot tub, plus space available for birthdays, meetings and events.

Nez Perce Historical Park
Keep the kids educated and entertained at this museum, featuring Nez Perce Indian history and culture. The Spalding Visitor Center/Museum is a great jump-off spot for exploring the National Historical Park. It hosts a collection of about 150,000 compelling pieces, and it's also a go-to spot for research. Check out the displays of objects dating back mid-1800s, including woven bags of hemp and cornhusk, baskets, beaded buckskin clothing and painted parfleches, and more.

[Back to top]


Young Women

Nail Art
Pamper yourself at our town's most popular nail salon, Nail Art. Skilled technicians expertly deliver the latest trends in acrylic nail art and pedicures.

Levi Bypass
The picturesque miles of paved levee pathways that run along the rivers are the perfect place for walking, jogging and biking.

[Back to top]



Lewiston Historic Downtown District
With charming local stores feature unique merchandise you won't find anywhere else, the Lewiston Historic Downtown District has some especially unusual antique, jewelry and artwork finds.

Lewiston Center Mall
The only shopping mall in the valley, Lewiston Center Mall is our go-to place for shopper's favorites like Macy's, JCPenney, Rite-Aid, Maurices, Claire's, and Pro Image.

Nez Perce Plaza
The latest addition toLewiston's shopping scene, Nez Perce Plaza has such stores as Ross, Pier One, Home Depot and Eddie Bauer, Famous Footware and T.J.Maxx.

[Back to top]



Dogwood Festival
Handmade crafts, stunning artwork, wine and beer tastings, a golf tournament and car show... the list goes on! Our annual Dogwood Festival, held every April, was named as one ofAmerica's 100 Best Events, and it's easy to see why. The Lewis Clark Valley explodes with gorgeous dogwood blossoms, forming the picture-perfect scene for enjoying the Festival's craft booths, nonstop entertainment, and musical acts. Be sure to catch the event's culmination, Art Under the Elms, a three-day artisan fair held the last week of April.

NAIA World Series
Take me out to the ballgame! This thrilling double-elimination tournament, held annually inLewiston, determines the baseball champion of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA).

Hot August Nights
Vroom, vroom! Get revved up for Lewiston's Hot August Nights, when the valley is packed with custom classic cars and blaring oldies music. The classic cars cruise through downtown Lewiston on Friday nights, while concerts on Friday and Saturday nights feature big-name bands from the 50′s through the 90′s.

[Back to top]