The northwestern state of Idaho is known as the 'Gem State,' as every known gem stone has been found there. Idaho is the 7th least densely populated state in the country and was admitted to the Union in July of 1890 as the 43rd state. Idaho is mountainous and shares an international border with Canadian British Columbia. The city of Lewiston is an important seaport on the Pacific coast due to the network of dams on the Columbia and Snake rivers.
Boise is the capital and most populous city in the state. It is located on the Boise River in the southwestern region of Idaho. Downtown Boise is a cultural center and the home to a significant number of small businesses. Boise does not have the same retail/dining focus that can be found in cities such as Seattle or Portland, but there is a large variety of shopping and dining options nonetheless. The neighborhood near 8th Street contains a pedestrian zone with several cafes and sidewalk restaurants. This neighborhood is also one of the best in the area for nightlife activity. Basque Block will allow visitors to learn more about Boise's heritage. Some of the main attractions downtown include the Egyptian Theatre and the Boise Art Museum. Boise State University is located just south of downtown. The North End of Boise is the area that contains most of the city's most historic homes. The North End is the location for the annual Hyde Park Street Fair. Boise and its nearest neighbor Meridian contain tree-lined drives and quiet neighborhoods.