Fun things to do in South Dakota
Tourist Attractions

8 Cool and Unusual Things to Do in South Dakota

Not sure what to do on your next vacation? Check out this list of the top 8 activities in South Dakota, USA that you won’t want to miss! From strolling around and exploring parks, all the way up through sightseeing tours and historical landmarks – we’ve got something for everyone. Get ready for an unforgettable experience!

The Best Thing To Do in South Dakota

Fun things to do in South Dakota
Fun things to do in South Dakota

Mount Rushmore National Memorial

  • Address: 13000 SD-244, Keystone, SD 57751, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.7 (41448)
  • 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

5 Replies to 8 Cool and Unusual Things to Do 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 8 Things To Do South Dakota, USA

Fun things to do in South Dakota
Fun things to do in South Dakota

Badlands National Park

  • Address: South Dakota, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.9 (13275)
  • 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 (5 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 (7 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 (5 months ago)

Falls Park

  • Address: 131 E Falls Park Dr, Sioux Falls, SD 57104, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.8 (10780)
  • 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 (4 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 (5 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 (7 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 (4 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 (4 months ago)

Custer State Park

  • Address: 13438 US Highway 16A, Custer, SD 57730, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.8 (8694)

The Mammoth Site

  • Address: 1800 US-18 BYP, Hot Springs, SD 57747, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.7 (3729)

Crazy Horse Memorial

  • Address: Crazy Horse, SD 57730, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.3 (3479)

Wind Cave National Park

  • Address: South Dakota, United States
  • Map: Click here
  • Rating: 4.5 (3017)

Jewel Cave National Monument

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

That’s it for our list of the best things to do in South Dakota! If you have any arguments or additional information, please leave a comment. We love to hear from our readers too!

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