In South Dakota, there’s a great place for everyone. History buffs come here for the frontier legends and Native American culture. Outdoor adventurers love the national parks and room to roam. For foodies, there’s an endless menu of unique Dakota cuisine. And, of course, sightseers of all kinds will never forget Mount Rushmore National Memorial.
Bring your group tour to a state loaded with history and teeming with natural beauty, where rugged landscapes set the scene for lifelong memories. Endless adventures await in South Dakota—here are a few of the greatest.
Mount Rushmore National Memorial/ Crazy Horse Memorial®
You may recognize Mount Rushmore’s faces, but do you know how the historic heads were carved? Or did you know there’s a bigger memorial right down the road, dedicated to a legendary Lakota warrior named Crazy Horse? The story behind these monuments is just as remarkable as their outsized scale.
Custer State Park
This 71,000-acre pine paradise has lakes, granite spires and 1,400 free-roaming bison. One of the greatest highlights—Wildlife Loop Road—takes you on an 18-mile journey through the heart of bison country. Expect to meet a few furry giants on the road. One of the most scenic spots, Sylvan Lake, is a popular picnic destination for a lazy lake afternoon.
Custer State Park
Wall Drug Store/Badlands National Park
The world’s best-advertised roadside attraction has a lot more than 5-cent coffee. Wall Drug Store is the lost island of misfit attractions, including a gigantic jackalope, robot T.rex and gravy-soaked hot beef sandwiches. This oasis of oddities is the gateway to an even greater wonder only 9 miles south: Badlands National Park. As far as landscapes go, there’s no place like it on Earth. Most memorable are the razor escarpments and crimson spires. Pinnacles Overlook is one of the best places for sightseeing, and it’s only 15 minutes south of Wall Drug.
The frontier spirit lives on in South Dakota’s iconic boomtown. In the 1870s, the Black Hills Gold Rush brought all sorts of colorful characters to Deadwood, like Wild Bill Hickok, Seth Bullock and Calamity Jane. Many of these Wild West legends have been immortalized in HBO’s Deadwood, a series that perfectly captures the town’s lawlessness. Today, the entire city is on the National Register of Historic Places. Gunfights still occur daily in the streets, although these ones are between re-enactors.
historical re-enactors in Deadwood
If safe exploring is your number one priority, South Dakota should be at the top of your group tour list. See how our great places are wide open for adventure at TravelSouthDakota.com