The Black Hills and Badlands of South Dakota: Outdoors and Cultural Attractions
Visit the Black Hills and Badlands region of South Dakota for iconic attractions and adventures at Mt Rushmore, Custer State Park, Badlands National Park and Crazy Horse Memorial
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South Dakota is an expansive, sparsely populated midwestern U.S. state where rolling prairies give way to the dramatic Black Hills National Forest. Black Hills is home to 2 historical monuments carved right into towering granite peaks: Mt. Rushmore, the iconic depiction of 4 revered U.S. presidents, and Crazy Horse Memorial, a tribute to the storied Native American tribal leader.
Badlands National Park.
Chapel in the Hills.
Crazy Horse Memorial.
Custer State Park.
Mount Rushmore National Memorial.
National Music Museum.
South Dakota Air and Space Museum.
The Journey Museum and Learning Center.
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Top 7 Places to Visit in South Dakota
Top 7 Places to Visit in South Dakota
There are so many places to visit in South Dakota that it's hard to narrow it down to just a few! This list comprises our favorites! We could have made it a top 10 but some places we didn't take any video or photos...so yeah, top 7 it is!
Number 7 - The Corn Palace
The Corn Palace is located in the town of Mitchell in the far South East of the state. The corn Palace or The Worlds Only Corn Palace as it deems itself is an arena in downtown Mitchell with outlandish onion shaped domes akin to St. Basil's cathedral in Russia. What makes the corn palace a roadside attraction is well...its corn. The building is decorated each year with thousands of ears, and husks of the stuff, all carefully arranged and nailed into place to create amazing patterns and pictures.
Number 6 - Wall Drug
If you Drive along the interstate 90 in South Dakota prepared to be onslaught with billboards and signs of every shape and size advertising Wall Drug Store. The story goes that wall drug owned by Ted Hustead in the 1930s was struggling to keep business until his wife Dorothy had the bright idea of advertising free ice water to travelers heading west to the Black Hills. Business began to boom and wall drug grew into the most curious collection of stores and shops you've ever seen. It really is more like a mall than anything else. Wall drug has got some great food, donuts, and delicious fudge in it's candy shop. Not to mention lots of photo ops and places for the kids to romp out back...oh and did we mention they still have free ice water!
Number 5 - Crazy Horse Memorial
The Crazy Horse Memorial is a monument under construction in the Black Hills representing the Native American leader Crazy Horse. The memorial is absolutely massive with all of Mt Rushmore being able to fit within a small portion of the top of it. The memorial and its work are overseen by the Crazy Horse Memorial Foundation, a non-profit seeking to educate people, and preserve the heritage and history of the native american peoples. The monument has been under construction since 1948 and is far from being completed, but the museums and film about the memorial make this a worthwhile stop.
Number 4 - Mt Rushmore National Memorial. Perhaps the most iconic attraction of South Dakota and one of the most recognized national memorials in the United States, Mt. Rushmore is an impressive feat of engineering. The monument features the 60 foot likenesses of 4 iconic United States Presidents: Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, Thomas Jefferson, and George Washington. It was created between 1927 and 1941. There's no fee to visit the memorial, but you do have to pay to park. The bright side is that your parking fee covers you for a whole year. At night there is a special patriotic program put on by the rangers and they light up the mountain.
Number 3 - Reptile Gardens
Reptile Gardens is a tourist attraction Wild Animal Park housing an amazing collection of reptiles, birds, bugs, and amphibians. The Reptile gardens has an incredible collection of venomous snakes...we saw snakes here we had never seen in any other zoo. They also house Maniac and enormous 16 foot Salt water crocodile from Australia. Make sure to stop in to all the various shows included with your admission, especially the Alligator Show. Also make sure to go pet the giant tortoises.
Number 2 - Badlands National Park. The Badlands are a spectacular natural wonder of the American Plains. Badlands National park protects over 240 thousand acres of buttes, pinnacles, and mixed grass prairie. It was made a national park in the year 1978 and is such a unique place. The Badlands has several places to hike, picnic and learn about the flora, fauna, and ancient history of the area. The land was originally hunting grounds of many Native American tribes. It was originally the Lakota People that gave the area the origins of it's name. Definitely check out the Notch Trail if you plan a trip, and make sure to watch our Adventure 36 video where we hike it!
Number 1 - Custer State Park
Number one on our list is Custer State Park. Custer is massive state park of over 71,000 acres in the Black Hills of the state. It's a refuge for a large variety of wildlife including Pronghorn Antelope, Turkeys, and even a herd of 1500 American Bison. The park has ample opportunities for recreation, including hiking, camping, swimming, or just driving the scenic Needles highway. There are multiple visitors centers in the park and an excellent Junior Naturalist program. There is just so much to do here, especially if you enjoy the outdoors. This is one of our favorite state parks that we have ever visited, be sure to check out our video about it!
Did we miss any of your favorite places to go in this fantastic state? Leave us a comment if you've ever been to any of these places.
#southdakota #blackhills #mtrushmore
Top 5 Favorite Places to Visit along I-90 in South Dakota
We are going to show you our top 5 favorite places to visit along the 1-90 in South Dakota. A lot of people think I-90 on South Dakota is a boring drive. But not us! Subscribe to our channel for more RV travel and tips:
We love the entire route and sometimes have spent as much as a week traveling through. That's because there are so many places to stop and explore.Everybody knows about places like Sturgis, Deadwood, the Black Hills, Mt. Rushmore. But the five we picked to show you in this video are among our very favorite places to stop anywhere in North America.
Some are very touristy. That's okay. They are all great spots to take a break from the road, be refreshed, walk around a bit, learn things and have a lot of fun.
We hope you enjoy this video as much as we did in making it!
Wanna know our favorite spots mentioned in the video? Here they are:
#1 WALL DRUG, EXIT 109
#2 BADLANDS NATIONAL PARK, EXIT 110
#3 1880 TOWN, Exit 170
#4 AL'S OASIS, Exit 260
#5 THE INGALLS FAMILY HOMESTEAD, DESMET, SD, EXIT 330
Now watch the video to learn all about them....
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We're journalists Mike and Jennifer Wendland, and we travel the country in an RV doing RV travel videos about the RV Lifestyle. Please subscribe to our channel for more RV Lifestyle videos! We like to virtually take you with us and regularly do lIve reports from our RV travels and also post new RV videos a couple times a week. Please subscribe so you'll know when there's new content here.
Top 5 Things to Do in Black Hills, South Dakota and Wyoming
There is a lot to see and do in the Black Hills of South Dakota and Wyoming. Here are a list of our Top 5 Things to Do.
The Best Places to Visit in South Dakota
The Best Places to Visit in South Dakota
Welcome to South Dakota!
Whether you are looking for a back-to-nature experience in fascinating surroundings, some great museums and cultural attractions, or a chance to explore America’s Wild West legacy, you will find it all in South Dakota. You can visit Mount Rushmore, you can see the Crazy Horse Memorial, you can also see some amazing rock formations in Badlands National Park, enjoy natural hot springs, or enjoy museums and art galleries in Sioux Falls.
#2.Badlands National Park
#4.Crazy Horse Memorial
#5.Custer State Park
#6.Minuteman Missile National Historic Site
#8.The Corn Palace
#9.Wind Cave National Park
The BEST Things To Do Near Rapid City, South Dakota | Wind Cave | Mount Rushmore | Custer State Park
There are so many things to do in the Rapid City, SD area! We spent a day exploring Wind Cave National Park, Custer State Park, & Mount Rushmore. We also saw a ton of wildlife, including bison, prairie dogs, & antelope.
Don't miss our Badlands National Park video!
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We are Hayden and Aaron Hall and we sold everything we owned to travel the US in an RV. Our goals are to visit every state and every National Park in the U.S. before we travel internationally to visit every country in the world. We love to highlight amazing outdoor adventures as well as delicious vegan food that we find on our travels.
Want more Vegan Voyagers? Follow us on our other social media to get more insight as to what goes on in our daily lives!
Tour of the Badlands in the Black Hills of South Dakota
Jon Olson, a Black Hills native, gives a behind the scenes tour of the Badlands of South Dakota. A unique Black Hills adventure.
South Dakota Tourist Attractions: 10 Places To Visit
Planning to visit South Dakota? Check out our South Dakota Travel Guide video and see top most Tourist Attractions in South Dakota.
Best Places to visit in South Dakota:
Mount Rushmore National Memorial, Badlands National Park, Custer State Park, Crazy Horse Memorial, Black Hills National Forest, Reptile Gardens, Adams Museum & House, Corn Palace, Harney Peak, Sioux Falls Park
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Outdoor Activities in Rapid City, SD and the Black Hills | KELOLAND Living
Hear all about the breathtaking National Parks, State Parks and monuments located in Rapid City and the Black Hills on this KELOLAND Living segment featuring Julie Jensen from Visit Rapid City! Discover more about these attractions on our website: