POCATELLO, Idaho (KIFI)- Tourism is still strong throughout southeast Idaho, and the amount of outdoor opportunities brought a huge spike in tourism numbers during the COVID-19 pandemic.
In the last fiscal year, tourism grew about 6% in Pocatello/Chubbuck and surrounding areas.
"Tourism in southeast Idaho is very strong. We're still steadily growing here in Pocatello and the southeast Idaho region," Visit Pocatello/Chubbuck Tourism and Marketing director Jeff Glissendorf said.
Glissendorf said there are many attractions in the Pocatello/Chubbuck area such as Lava Hot Springs, Museums, Shoshone/Bannock Casino and Pebble Creek that bring in high numbers.
"We have the Museum of Clean. We have the Natural History Museum at Idaho State University, and we have the Benton County Historical Museum. They're all showing about 5 to 10% increases on some of those hot days. The museums are the place to go, but our local attractions, the Zoo and Ross Park here just on the other side of us are amazing," Glissendorf said.
There are also many events coming up in Pocatello such as the Pocatello Marathon, Pocatello Fall Ultra and Pocatello Downs.
The Pocatello Visitors Center says the goal is to continuously bring people in and show visitors what Pocatello has to offer but considers them hidden gems that aren't widely known outside of the area.
Idaho State University is an added opportunity for tourism and for outsiders to recognize Pocatello's hidden gems, and university events bring in people from all over the country such as student's families and alumni.