The best place to visit in South Dakota
Tourist Attractions

12 Unforgettable Places To Visit in South Dakota

South Dakota is a land of incredible diversity, with something to offer everyone who visits. There are many great places to visit in this city, but if you are looking for the ultimate South Dakota experience, then you need to head to one of the places below. Whichever part of South Dakota you choose to visit, you’re sure to have an amazing time.

The Best Place to Visit in South Dakota

Mount Rushmore National Memorial

  • Address: 13000 SD-244, Keystone, SD 57751, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.7 (41420)
  • Phone: +1 605-574-2523
  • Website: Link
  • Opening hours:
    Monday: 5:00 AM – 9:00 PM
    Tuesday: 5:00 AM – 9:00 PM
    Wednesday: 5:00 AM – 9:00 PM
    Thursday: 5:00 AM – 9:00 PM
    Friday: 5:00 AM – 9:00 PM
    Saturday: 5:00 AM – 9:00 PM
    Sunday: 5:00 AM – 9:00 PM
The best place to visit in South Dakota
The best place to visit in South Dakota

5 Replies to 12 Unforgettable Places To Visit in South Dakota

  1. A wonderful piece of Americana accessible to all. The park has many modern refinements including a museum with video streaming a gift shop restrooms and a restaurant. There’s also covered parking available. Inexpensive and cold this time of year so be prepared. City of keystone mostly closed so don’t plan on seeing anything there. Definitely worth the trip.

  2. Loved loved it! You gotta visit this monument at least once in your life. Parking is good for 1 year as well which is great. My little family and I took a trip to see this beauty during spring break. The weather was wonderful even in March. It was not crazy busy like it’s prime season so I recommend it even though most things are not open until April and May. I still loved the fact that it was not overly crowded. We all loved the trail hike and seeing it up closer. A great nature trail walk. We also loved seeing all the flags of each state which was really cool.

  3. Lighting ceremony at night is beautiful and informational. Definitely should be on your Mt Rushmore list. We went during the day and at night and so glad we did. The trail was a great little walk. Decent amount of steps tho so if you don’t do well with steps may only be able to do part of the trail. Seeing all the state and territory flags is cool. Nice little gift shop as well. Bonus is you park for $10 and you can go back ad many times in a year as you want. So it’s inexpensive to hit day and night

  4. Such a great view. So beautiful and amazing. I love the history you can read about and all the specific things they did to build it right. Lots of parking so you don’t have to worry about getting a spot. The gift shop has so much stuff to buy and I wish I could buy all of it, there are so many amazing things to see there. Would definitely recommend going.

  5. We planned our visit to be there just before dark to see the memorial and then stay for the lighting ceremony. It was an amazing experience. The ceremony does a nice job outlining the men memorialized on the mountain as well as gives nice detail and background to the undertaking of creating it. I would not change a thing about our visit, the weather was perfect, crowd size was great (busy but not packed) the drive up and down as well as parking was simple. Walking through the flags of all the states on the way to the amphitheater…just an amazing and moving experience. I recommend a visit to all.

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Top 12 Tourist Attractions in South Dakota

The best place to visit in South Dakota
The best place to visit in South Dakota

Badlands National Park

  • Address: South Dakota, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.9 (13265)
  • Phone: +1 605-433-5361
  • Website: Link
  • Reviews:
    Absolutely beautiful! We drove the scenic route twice. Great park for all ages. You can see so much just from your car, super easy hikes on a boardwalk at several pullovers and of course you can hike out on your own for more intense and challenging hikes. Something for everyone. If you want to see wildlife, get out early in the morning (before 9am) lots to see! Def check out the yellow mounds overlook, my personal favorite.
    ✭✭✭✭✭ By Joel Collishaw (7 months ago)
    Beautiful views and so many unique rock formations. There is also wildlife in the badlands. We enjoyed watching the prairie dogs runaround. It’s a very beautiful relaxing drive around the park and make sure you stop and check out the views up close. I am in a wheelchair and they have a few areas where I could go out and get a more close-up view. We definitely recommend stopping here!
    ✭✭✭✭✭ By Erica Jo Byers Pelton (4 months ago)
    Such an incredible and majestic landscape. Who would have thought natural erosion can cause such beautiful, fantastic and striking formations. It just feels like the best artist out there, took all the time in the world, and painted this landscape. It just feels so surreal, you just soak it in, and then after a while you realize what’s in front of your eyes is just so real.
    ✭✭✭✭✭ By Keertu Anil (10 months ago)
    I love this park! The views are stunning. Everything is easily accessible. I came during summer and it was not very crowded. Temps can get hot, so plan for a day with overcast or go early or late in the day. The hikes are lovely! Platforms are available for walking, and you can also get out and explore the terrain on your own. This is the playground I dreamt of as a kid. Pit toilets are scattered about. No showers. Good connection with Verizon. Plenty of wildlife.
    ✭✭✭✭✭ By jessica kreais (6 months ago)
    Breathtaking views. We were here a couple weeks and it was just awesome! Bring extra water on hikes for sure! Since there is little to no light pollution, you’ll be able to see the beautiful night sky and you’ll definitely seeing some shooting stars. Just gotta go if you visiting this part of South Dakota. So quiet and peaceful
    ✭✭✭✭✭ By Simon Aguero Jr (4 months ago)

Falls Park

  • Address: 131 E Falls Park Dr, Sioux Falls, SD 57104, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.8 (10771)
  • Phone: +1 605-367-8222
  • Website: Link
  • Opening hours:
    Monday: 5:00 AM – 12:00 AM
    Tuesday: 5:00 AM – 12:00 AM
    Wednesday: 5:00 AM – 12:00 AM
    Thursday: 5:00 AM – 12:00 AM
    Friday: 5:00 AM – 12:00 AM
    Saturday: 5:00 AM – 12:00 AM
    Sunday: 5:00 AM – 12:00 AM
  • Reviews:
    The park was really beautiful and well kept. We enjoyed climbing and exploring the various routes along the falls and watching the water. Our visit was in the fall, so the water was much lower than the other photos we saw, which I assume were in the spring. It was still very worth the trip. Plenty of nice folks were visiting at the same time. Bathroom is clean and in good working order.
    ✭✭✭✭✭ By Crystal Ferguson (3 months ago)
    We love falls park but with all the drought this year, the river is significantly lower than it normally is. Coming in the winter is a treat because a good portion of the river freezes over but the falls are still moving. They also have the Christmas lights out for the Winter Wonderland theme. The pedestrian bridge over the river is a bit small so you can’t stop long to take pictures. Great experience though and I highly recommend.
    ✭✭✭✭✭ By Sarah Chernatinski (4 months ago)
    We spent our morning here before driving to the Badlands. It was great. Lots of walking paths, bridges, an observation tower with a gift shop, and a great little cafe. We loved the grilled cheese and tomato soup. It was hard to pull my kids away, but we had a long drive ahead of us. I highly suggest this as a stop on the way to the Badlands and Mt. Rushmore.
    ✭✭✭✭✭ By Catherine Bleish Bonandin (6 months ago)
    Amazing park with beautiful scenery. We were passing through, staying in Sioux Falls just for one night and visited this park. We didn’t get to see everything there was to see but enjoyed viewing the falls from the multiple overlooks. The reddish rock surrounding the falls is Sioux Quartzite and not what we expected. The park has a restaurant and well landscaped with grass. There are a couple historic buildings onsite as well. Overall, the park is a nice setting to take a break and relax.
    ✭✭✭✭ By K G (3 months ago)
    This place is fantastic. The beauty of Nature is really displayed here. The sound of the falls are extremely calming and the sight of them is captivating. There are places all over for picnics. They have an observation tower with a gift shop. There is a cafe as well.
    ✭✭✭✭✭ By Nickolas D (3 months ago)

Custer State Park

  • Address: 13438 US Highway 16A, Custer, SD 57730, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.8 (8690)
  • Phone: +1 605-255-4515
  • Website: Link
  • Opening hours:
    Monday: Open 24 hours
    Tuesday: Open 24 hours
    Wednesday: Open 24 hours
    Thursday: Open 24 hours
    Friday: Open 24 hours
    Saturday: Open 24 hours
    Sunday: Open 24 hours
  • Reviews:
    $20 is fair admission for how much there is to see here, and is good for a whole week. I took the wildlife loop twice so the number of cars and people dwindled down. There were more bison in one place than I’ve ever seen (remember to not get out of your vehicle – they are dangerous, even when just grazing). A lot of people brought carrots and fruits to feed the burros. There are a bunch of pull-outs so you can stop for photos. The lakes are breathtaking but lots of people. If you like the water, consider staying at the lodges. The overlooks are beautiful. There’s a good amount of signage. Park rangers do patrol in case you need help. Needles Highway requires patience. Read your maps so you know if your vehicle can make it through. I’ve visited Sylvan Lake before so I skipped it this time and went to Legion Lake instead. The Bison Center is finally open and, though small, packed with information and people willing and able to answer your questions. Please come and learn why conservation for the wildlife here is so important.
    ✭✭✭✭✭ By Ashley Chmielewski (4 months ago)
    Custer State Park is hands down the greatest state park in the United States. For my money, it has more attractions than some of the national parks. In the south, do not miss the Wildlife Scenic Road to view the largest bison herd outside of Yellowstone. Along the road you may spot wild turkeys, pronghorn and elk. In the fall, try to visit during the bison roundup, that is quite a site to see. In the northern part of the park be sure to drive the spectacular Needles Highway. From Sylvan Lake you can hike one the incredible trails to the best area in the Black Hills and South Dakota. Cathedral Spires, Sylvan Lake Trail, Sunday Gulch and Little Devil’s Tower are incredible hikes to see. This park is worth 2-3 days for a more extensive visit. The campgrounds in the park are also very nice for being close to the sites of the park. The Needles Highway is closed during the winter so check conditions.
    ✭✭✭✭✭ By Jacation Adventure (6 months ago)
    Loved visiting this park!!! Although not a national park, it could easily be one given the scenic beauty and wildlife!! I highly recommend hiking the Sylvan Lake and Cathedral Spires trails. The wildlife loop offers great opportunities to view Bison, Prairie Dogs, and even some begging burros. One should definitely visit this park if visiting the Black Hills!
    ✭✭✭✭✭ By Justin (5 months ago)
    Custer State Park is AMAZING. Even though it’s not a national park it is very much worth all the time you can give it. The wildlife loop is a must do, along with stopping at all the scenic overlooks. The Needles highway is breathtaking too. We saw a ton of bison, along with some burros and a pronghorn. The landscape and wildlife are great.
    ✭✭✭✭✭ By Benjamin Carpenter (8 months ago)
    This is our second visit there. The first one was 18 years ago. The cost to enter was $20. I don’t remember having to pay last time.

    It’s a great place to see wildlife. We saw deer, a mountain goat, and lots of bison. Last time we saw a bunch of donkeys too; not this time.

    Sometimes the bison are roaming within the park and sometimes they can be found outside the park near route 86. When we didn’t find any in the park we asked at the visitor’s center and they directed us to where they could be found that day.

    The bison are just so much fun to watch. They happily stand in the road and walk right past your car. This year there were a lot of calves too. It;a just a fantastic experience.

    ✭✭✭✭✭ By Marc Albert (6 months ago)

The World’s Only Corn Palace

  • Address: 604 N Main St, Mitchell, SD 57301, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.2 (7249)
  • Phone: +1 605-995-8430
  • Website: Link
  • Opening hours:
    Monday: 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM
    Tuesday: 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM
    Wednesday: 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM
    Thursday: 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM
    Friday: 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM
    Saturday: 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM
    Sunday: Closed
  • Reviews:
    Enjoyable visit! The outside is really cool, the inside has pictures of the past themes, which we enjoyed, but I don’t know that I would need to go out of my way to see the inside again. The popcorn balls were yummy! It is nice that it is a free museum! If you are looking for something to do in this area, it is a fun stop.
    ✭✭✭✭ By Sara Talbot (6 months ago)
    This place was sort of a life saver we were tired from driving all day so we decided to stop and check the corn palace out, fyi it’s free to go in and check things out. Tons to see! Cool gift shop, stuff for the kids to do and its so interesting all the history that’s in that building and quite frankly impressive as to the murals they’ve done on the side of the building out of corn! Would definitely go back again so much fun and a great way to get out and stretch your legs.
    ✭✭✭✭✭ By Kari Dalrymple (7 months ago)
    Not to be corny but this place is amazing! All ears now?
    Seriously I was traveling to Mitchell to visit my parents and the opportunity came up to visit the Corn Palace. I was a little hesitant.
    As soon as I pulled up the epic pictures and coordinated theme pulled me in.
    I loved all the pictures formed by corn and up close crazy to see the material and curious how it is actually built.
    I saw that it was free to go in so we headed in and read all the descriptions on the wall and deep history of the Corn Palace.
    It can be a short visit but if interested in the themes throughout the years and all the different people and artists who have been part of the vision and history.
    Check it out and remember the theme changes each year so gives you reason to visit it over time.
    What was your favorite part that popped for you, I’m all ears?
    ✭✭✭✭✭ By Andrew Blevins (3 months ago)
    I honestly expected this to be more a store, not a stadium… Which it apparently closed early the day we were there because of an NRA event.
    It did have a concession type stand with basic popcorn, pretzels, nachos, etc type food.
    But it really is more a giant art piece and keeper of history than anything else. It had photos of each years designs and it was interesting to see how they decorated it each year. They also had a lot of boards with historical facts about the corn palace and historical events and other art.
    ✭✭✭✭ By Rose Green (4 months ago)
    The outside is amazing in its own right. The inside is just a small arena styled building. Not much to do but a cool stop to break up the drive and get a few unique photos. Apparently they change the outside so if you haven’t stopped in for a few years, might be worth checking out.
    ✭✭✭✭ By Joel Collishaw (7 months ago)

Dignity Statue

  • Address: Chamberlain, SD 57325, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.8 (4684)

The Mammoth Site

  • Address: 1800 US-18 BYP, Hot Springs, SD 57747, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.7 (3728)

Crazy Horse Memorial

  • Address: Crazy Horse, SD 57730, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.3 (3476)

1880 Train – Hill City Depot

  • Address: 222 Railroad Ave, Hill City, SD 57745, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.7 (3059)

Wind Cave National Park

  • Address: South Dakota, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.5 (3016)

Dinosaur Park

  • Address: 940 Skyline Dr, Rapid City, SD 57701, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.4 (2513)

Butterfly House & Aquarium

  • Address: 4320 S Oxbow Ave, Sioux Falls, SD 57106, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.5 (1801)

Jewel Cave National Monument

  • Address: 11149 US-16 B-12, Custer, SD 57730, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.4 (1770)

Although South Dakota is a large state with many amazing places to visit, these 12 locations stand out as the best according to traveler ratings and reviews. Did your favorite spot make the cut? Let us know in the comments above!