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104 miles W of Cody, Wyoming; 123 miles N of Sheridan, Wyoming; 142 miles E of Bozeman; 339 miles E of Missoula

The most populous city in Montana with over 100,000 residents, Billings might well be the most urban place in Montana or Wyoming. You'll find real shopping malls here, along with the occasional 5 o'clock traffic jam and the tallest free-standing brick building in the world (the 23-story Crowne Plaza). Since its 1880s development by Frederick Billings as a railroad town, the city has evolved into the economic and industrial hub for the entire region.

Once a booming oil town, as well as a crossroads for the railroads, Billings has now positioned itself as the progressive medical center for all of eastern Montana, the Dakotas, and Wyoming. The economy is still based on cattle and grain, but downtown Billings boasts new banks and contemporary business centers, with many historic buildings enjoying restorations since the turn of the 21st century. Billings also has its share of scenic splendor: From the rimrocks surrounding the city you can see the Pryor Mountains, the Bighorns, and the majestic Beartooths to the west.