historic wallace idaho

Embrace History: 12 Fun Things to Do in Wallace Idaho!

Hey there! As someone who has explored North Idaho I am excited to share with you some of the top fun things to do in Wallace, Idaho, a historic town located in the Shoshone County.

historic wallace idaho
An artistic rendition of historic Wallace, Idaho

Known as the Silver Valley, Wallace is a charming town that offers visitors a unique blend of outdoor adventure, fascinating history, and local culture. In this article, I will take you on a personal journey through the top 12 must-visit spots in Wallace, ranging from mining museums to zipline tours, and even some local breweries and shops.

So, whether you’re planning a weekend getaway or a longer vacation, Wallace is a great destination to add to your itinerary. Let’s get started and explore all the amazing things this town has to offer!

Download the official Wallace Visitor Guide from the Chamber of Commerce.

Explore the Historic Museums of Wallace Idaho

Wallace, Idaho has a rich mining history, and the town’s museums offer a glimpse into its fascinating past. Here are the top four museums that you shouldn’t miss during your visit:

1. Sierra Silver Mine Tour

I highly recommend taking the Sierra Silver Mine Tour to experience the hard-rock mining history in the Coeur d’Alene Mining District.

The Sierra Silver Mine Tour is a unique and educational experience for visitors to Wallace, Idaho.

The tour takes visitors deep underground, guided by retired miners who provide first-hand accounts of their experiences and explain the technical aspects of mining.

Your guide for the tour, Wally, is a retired miner with 16 years of experience. He provides a unique perspective on the life of a miner, explaining how they lived and worked in the past and the challenges they faced.

Visitors will learn about the miners’ working conditions, including how they worked by candlelight 🕯 and kept birds 🕊 in cages to stay alive.

Wally strives to make the tour enjoyable and entertaining for visitors.

Overall, the Sierra Silver Mine Tour is an excellent way to learn about the rich mining history of Wallace, Idaho.Don’t miss out on this unique and unforgettable experience in the heart of the Silver Valley!

2. Wallace District Mining Museum

Another essential stop on your visit to Wallace is the Wallace District Mining Museum. This museum tells the story of the area’s mining heritage, which played a significant role in the town’s history.

The exhibits at the museum provide a comprehensive overview of the mining industry, including the tools and equipment used in the mines and the lives of the miners who worked in them. You’ll also learn about the technology and techniques that were developed to extract the valuable ores from the earth.

But the museum is more than just a collection of artifacts and exhibits. The knowledgeable and friendly staff are passionate about sharing the story of the mining industry with visitors and are happy to answer any questions you may have.

The Wallace Idaho District Mining Museum is a testament to the ingenuity, hard work, and determination of the miners and their families who helped shape the Silver Valley’s history. It’s a must-see for anyone interested in the town’s rich mining heritage.

3. Northern Pacific Railroad Depot Museum

If you’re a fan of trains or just curious about the history of transportation, the Northern Pacific Railroad Depot Museum is a must-visit destination in Wallace. This museum is located in a historic railroad depot and tells the story of the Northern Pacific Railroad and its impact on the region.

Inside the museum, you’ll find a collection of artifacts and exhibits that highlight the railroad’s history, including vintage locomotives and railcars, photographs, and informative displays about the railroad’s operations. The museum also includes a gift shop where you can purchase railroad-themed souvenirs to remember your visit.

One of the highlights of the museum is the opportunity to climb aboard some of the vintage railcars and experience what it was like to ride the rails back in the day. The knowledgeable and friendly staff are on hand to answer any questions you may have about the exhibits or the history of the railroad.

Overall, the Northern Pacific Railroad Depot Museum is a fascinating and educational destination that’s not to be missed when visiting Wallace. Whether you’re a train enthusiast or just looking for something fun and different to do, this museum is sure to delight and inform.

Experience Outdoor Adventures

Wallace is surrounded by breathtaking natural beauty and offers an array of outdoor activities for visitors to enjoy. From hiking to ziplining, here are some of the best outdoor adventures to experience in Wallace:

4. Silver Streak Zipline Tours

If you’re looking for an adrenaline rush, then Silver Streak Zipline Tours is the perfect choice for you.

The tour takes you on an exciting ride through the trees, with stunning views of the Bitterroot Mountains and the historic town of Wallace. The experienced guides provide a safe and thrilling experience for visitors of all ages.

5. Pulaski Tunnel Trail

The Pulaski Tunnel Trail is a scenic hiking trail that follows the North Fork of the Coeur d’Alene River. The trail is named after Edward Pulaski, a local hero who saved the lives of 45 firefighters during the 1910 fire that swept through the area.

Along the trail, you’ll see the historic Pulaski Tunnel, which was built to divert water from the river to the mine. The trail offers stunning views of the river and the surrounding mountains and is a popular destination for hikers and nature lovers.

6. Spokehouse E-Bike Rentals

Explore the scenic beauty of Wallace and the surrounding area with Spokehouse E-Bike Rentals. The electric bikes make it easy to navigate the hilly terrain and offer a fun and eco-friendly way to explore the area.

The knowledgeable staff will provide you with a map and suggested routes to explore the town and the beautiful Silver Valley.

Coffee, Food, and Shops in Wallace

No trip to Wallace Idaho, is complete without sampling the local flavors and visiting the variety shops in the downtown. The town’s rich mining history and natural resources have influenced its culinary traditions, and there are several must-visit establishments for foodies and beer lovers alike.

7. Wallace Brewing Company

Wallace Brewing Company is a unique 15-barrel microbrewery that has been serving up delicious craft beers since 2009. It was founded in 2009 by a group of locals, including Chase Sanborn, Dean Cooper, Rick Magnuson, and the Zanettis.

The brewery is located in a historic building in downtown Wallace and offers a cozy, welcoming atmosphere.

The brewery has a unique brand of beers that pay homage to the town’s infamous past.

With mining and bordello-inspired names like

  • 1910 Black Lager
  • Jackleg Stout
  • RedLight Irish Red Ale
  • Idaho Select Light Lager

The beers are crafted in the honest spirit of the mining heritage that characterizes the town.

General Manager Chase Sanborn explains, “We want to brew in the honest spirit of the mining heritage. It’s not only the prevailing reputation of the town, but also one that can elevate the Wallace Brewing brand.”

8. 6th-n-Cedar Espresso Bar

It represents a new beginning for a classic old hotel listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Matt and Tamra Clair (with three energetic young daughters) are fulfilling their dream; to refurbish the Wallace Hotel. It was built in 1890.

The espresso bar coffee shop is on the street level right on the corner on this beautiful old building. They serve a full menu of espresso, milk drinks, blended drinks, hot and cold.

9. Johnson’s Gems and Collectibles

If you’re a rock enthusiast or simply curious about gems and minerals, a visit to Johnson’s Gems and Collectibles is a must.

This family-owned business stands out as the best gem and mineral store not only in Montana, Idaho, Washington, or Oregon but possibly in the whole country. 😃

What sets them apart from their competitors is their deep knowledge and expertise in the mining industry. Being a mining family, they have first-hand experience and know the ins and outs of rocks and minerals.

Their passion for their work is contagious, making Johnson’s Gems a gathering place for rock enthusiasts and miners alike. Don’t miss the chance to meet the rock stars in Wallace and discover the world of gems and minerals like never before.

10. North Idaho Trading Company

If you’re looking for a unique shopping experience in Wallace, be sure to visit the North Idaho Trading Company.

This hidden gem is a must-visit for anyone who loves handmade crafts, antiques, and collectibles. As a local Idahoan, I love stopping by to browse their selection of locally-sourced items. You never know what you might find!

From handmade jewelry to vintage clothing, there’s something for everyone at the North Idaho Trading Company. Whether you’re looking for a special gift for a loved one or just want to treat yourself, this shop is not to be missed.

Walk the Historic Downtown Wallace Idaho

As an Idahoan I highly recommend visiting downtown Wallace.

Especially during the summer months he historic downtown area is always bustling with energy and excitement during the warm weather season.

It’s a great time to explore the town’s unique boutiques, antique shops, and art galleries, as well as to enjoy a cold brew or a meal on one of the many outdoor patios.

🥶 Winters in Idaho can be challenging and harsh, with snow and ice covering the streets, sidewalks, and buildings. It’s not for the faint of heart, but for those who are brave enough to brave the elements, winter in Wallace has its own charm and allure.

However, if you’re looking for a more comfortable and accessible experience, the summer months are the way to go.

Plus, with the many festivals and events that take place during this time, you’re sure to find something that will pique your interest and make your visit to Wallace even more memorable.

11. Attend the top festivals held in Wallace, Idaho

  • Gyro Days: This festival celebrates Wallace’s Greek heritage with live music, traditional Greek dancing, and of course, plenty of gyro sandwiches to enjoy. The festival is typically held in July and attracts both locals and visitors alike.
  • Huckleberry Festival: As one of Idaho’s most beloved fruits, it’s no surprise that huckleberries are celebrated in a big way in Wallace. The Huckleberry Festival features everything from a huckleberry pancake breakfast to a huckleberry dessert contest. The festival is typically held in August.
  • Fall for History Festival: This festival celebrates the history and culture of the Silver Valley, with tours of historic buildings, live music, and plenty of food and drink. The festival is typically held in September and is a great way to learn more about the area’s rich history.

12. Sixth Street Theatre & Melodrama

For a truly authentic experience of Wallace’s cultural scene, be sure to visit Sixth Street Theatre & Melodrama.

This beloved historic theater has been entertaining audiences since 1983, when a small group including Don and Joan Springer, along with Sherrill and Pat Grounds, brought live theater to the community.

Sherrill served as the director and manager, while Pat wrote many scripts depicting the lives of miners in the area. Originally located on the lot where the Northern Pacific Depot Museum now stands, the theater secured the Kelly Building in 1984 and underwent extensive remodeling with grant funding over the years, including new theater seats and remodeled dressing rooms.

The building has a colorful past and is the only remaining wooden structure in downtown Wallace that survived the fire of the 1890s.

You should definitely check the schedule in advance and book your tickets early because shows tend to sell out quickly.


As an Idaho native and lover of the great outdoors, I can confidently say that Wallace Idaho is a hidden gem that is not to be missed.

From the town’s rich history in mining and railroads to its vibrant arts and cultural scene, Wallace offers something for everyone. I highly recommend taking a tour of the Sierra Silver Mine or checking out the local museums to learn more about the area’s past. And be sure to indulge in some of the town’s delicious local cuisine, like the huckleberry truffles at Johnson’s Gems and Collectibles.

Whether you’re visiting in the summer or winter, there is always something exciting happening in Wallace, so make sure to check out the festivals and events.

Don’t hesitate to ask the locals for recommendations or more information about the area – we love sharing North Idaho with visitors.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *