Founded in 1864 by four miners with dreams of striking it rich, Helena was built on gold. Today, it continues to offer residents a comfortable living with its rock-solid economy and high-scoring infrastructure and educational system.
In fact, Helena ranked well in most categories, earning it the #27 spot on this year’s list of Top 100 Best Places to Live. If planting roots under the big sky and enjoying unparalleled access to the rugged outdoors sounds appealing, you’ll want to get familiar with this capital city.
Local Obsession: Hot water! Helena has over 60 natural hot springs and approximately 15 commercial locations. Perfect for warming up during the cold months.
Climate Described in 6 Words Or Less: Cold winter. Hot summer. Little between.
Top Industries and Employers: The top industries in Helena are public administration, healthcare and social assistance, and education. The top employers are the State of Montana, St. Peter’s Hospital and Carroll College.
Local Dream Job: A wedding planner for the stunning Kleffner Ranch.
Quintessential Meal: Dessert can be a meal in Helena where huckleberry swirls are a thing. Try On Broadway’s take with their huckleberry swirl cheesecake.
Favorite Weekend Activity: Newcomers will love getting to know Helena on the Last Chance Tour Train. Hiking Mt. Helena is another great option.
After-Work Meetup Spot: Once a burlesque club, Windbag Saloon serves up pub-style fare and an exceptional Bordello Pear.
Best Brewery/Local Beer: Blackfoot River Brewing’s tap room has 10 beers on tap with a lineup that changes daily. Sip your favorite brew or try something new in the tap room’s comfortable atmosphere.
Beloved Bookstore: Montana Book Company has a huge selection of books, a great meeting space and hosts regular events for the community.
Free Way to Have Fun: Explore Helena National Park’s 1,000 miles of trails!
Truly Hidden Gem: Avon Cafe, a wonderful place to grab breakfast that’s just a 30-minute drive up the pass.
- Annette Benedetti