Welcome to South Dakota

Gently rolling prairies through shallow fertile valleys mark much of this endlessly attractive state. But head southwest and all hell breaks loose – in the best possible way. The Badlands National Park is the geologic equivalent of fireworks. The Black Hills are like opera: majestic, challenging, intriguing and even frustrating. Mt Rushmore matches the Statue of Liberty for five-star icon status

Top experiences in South Dakota

Travel guides

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South Dakota activities

$84.40 Day Trips & Excursions

Mount Rushmore Experience

This tour of Mt. Rushmore is a 6.5-hour (not including pickup), all inclusive tour of the Black Hills of South Dakota. On this tour, you will make your way from your northern-most area, Rapid City, and travel all the way to the southern-most point, Custer State Park, while viewing and exploring the top attractions along the way. As you make your way through the Black Hills, your driver/guide will provide interesting narration, answer questions, and provide you with information of what to do and see at your attraction stops. The Mt. Rushmore tour is exactly that – a full experience of the Black Hills, including a lunch at the Carver’s Café located at Mt. Rushmore.  You will discover Crazy Horse Memorial, take in the scenery of Custer State Park with Iron Mountain Road and Mount Rushmore National Memorial.  Custer State Park provides visitors with wildlife, pigtail bridges, magnificent Black Hills scenery and tunnels that frame Mt. Rushmore in the distance.

$295 Air, Helicopter & Balloon Tours

Black Hills Hot Air Balloon Ride

A hot air balloon ride is a one-of-a-kind adventure for South Dakota locals and visitors. With over thirty years flying experience, your guide will take you on the only hot air balloon ride adventure offered in the Black Hills.Flying in the beautiful Black Hills is a unique experience. While balloon flights are generally focused over vineyards and farmland, you will fly over some spectacular, rugged terrain on this route, typically in the southern hills. From up high you'll see the Custer Valley and the world-renowned Custer State Park. On certain days if the winds are favorable, you'll be able to see Mount Rushmore and the Crazy Horse Memorial. There are mountains, valleys, lakes and prairies to view as you drift along on the morning breeze, and travelers quite often see some unique wildlife that you really don't see in many other places from a balloon! The Black Hills are home to elk, antelope, buffalo and mule deer. If you're really lucky you might even see a mountain lion from the secure gondola! There’s nowhere else in the world where you can witness the same views from a hot air balloon and fly over such a historic and beautiful landscape.

$264 Sightseeing Tickets & Passes

Safari #1 and Deadwood/Northern Hills Tour Package

Combine our Safari #1 Tour with Deadwood/Northern Hills Tour and receive a 10% discount on both tours.Safari #1 Tour uses comfortable and unique convertible-top tour vehicles and offers unparalleled picturesque wildlife viewing. On this tour, you'll learn about the history of the region from experienced guides. These convertible-top vehicles open and close to adjust to the ever changing weather of the mountains. The tour is never rushed and makes frequent stops for photo ops and breaks. The vehicles do not overcrowd. Eight guests are allowed per tour. The vehicles provide excellent viewing with window seats for everyone. This tour offers the most you can see in one day of the southern hills and is inclusive of fees, bottled water, snacks, and a lakeside picnic lunchDeadwood and Northern Hills Tour includes the infamous Deadwood, South Dakota, with its rich history of Wild Bill Hickok and Calamity Jane.  It is the only town in South Dakota with full service gambling, just like it was in 1876. Here we visit the Mt. Moriah Cemetery, the Adams Museum, No.10 Saloon, Kevin Costner's Midnight Star and Seth Bullock's Hotel. We also visit the Lead Visitor Center and Spearfish Canyon, where four ecosystems meet: trees and plants from Rocky Mountains, Eastern Woodlands, Northern Forests and the Great Plains areas can be found here. This canyon provides breathtaking beauty, with thousand-foot-high limestone/sandstone palisades in shades of brown, pink and gray, and three amazing waterfalls. Tour includes: fees, bottled water, snacks and a picnic lunch beside the beautiful Roughlock Falls.

$95.40 Outdoor Activities

Discover Rock Climbing Adventure

Meet us at 8am sharp ready to go in front of the General Store at Sylvan Lake in Custer State Park. This is our group course so please don't be the late person who holds up the fun.  Arrive a little early if you think you will need to deal with gathering your things and bathroom breaks etc. Please wear pants to protect your legs from scuffs and close toed shoes for the approach hike. (NO sandals or flip flops) Bring water, snacks, sunscreen, camera, extra clothing etc. so that you are ready to be outside for the day.  Sylvan lake is over 6000 feet in elevation and may be cooler then surrounding area forecast, especially first thing in the morning. Meet your guides. Fill out liability waivers.  Parents must be present to sign for minors (grandparents, aunts, uncles, scout leaders cannot sign for parents unless they are legal guardians, but by contacting us ahead of time, waivers can be printed and brought from home). For children under 17, a parent or adult must PARTICIPATE  in the course with them (yes that means you get to climb too).  Seventeen year olds must have a parent or adult observing for the duration of the course. Health considerations should be discussed with your medical professional prior to arrival. Get fitted in climbing shoes, harness, helmets etc.  We have tiny kids harnesses and shoes up to size 15 shoes for adult. Drop your personal items into your backpack.  (We will lend you one for the day if needed.) Hike about 10 minutes to the climbing site. Once arrived, settle in, change into your climbing shoes. Sylvan Rocks Guides will hang climbing ropes and instruct you on the basics needed to climb.  We will talk about foot holds, hand holds, tying in, and getting lowered back to the ground.  This is a group participation course, and as the day goes on you will learn to belay each other such that you can become a little more independent and get the maximum amount of climbing time in.  If you are looking to rappel and learn more about rock climbing, our private 6 or 8 hour days might be better for you. Open climbing will continue on the routes we have set up.   Depending on the group size, we will be back in the parking lot by 11 or 12 o'clock. Return your climbing gear and you are free to return to your regular vacation.  Most people head out for a well earned lunch they brought or enjoy eating at the Lodge, in Custer, or Hill City.

$7.50 Family Friendly

Admission Ticket to the Dakota Discovery Museum

Register at the desk in the main building, and choose to begin your self-guided tour in the main building or outside in the museum’s village. The main building holds five galleries. First, visit the History Gallery which is dedicated to illustrating the history of the region through physical artifacts. Next, visit the three art galleries and a changing gallery on the second level. The changing gallery houses exhibits that rotate out three to five times per year. Two of the art galleries are dedicated to the artists Oscar Howe and Charles Hargens. The final gallery contains a blend of native, tribal and pioneer art. The village portion is located directly behind the main museum building. It contains an 110-year-old prairie church, a one-room schoolhouse that opened in 1885, a railroad depot, and the home of Louis and Mary Beckwith. Louis Beckwith was the cofounder of one of the Corn Palace. The museum is also home to the Garret Gift Shop where books, art, and souvenirs are available for purchase. This includes the availability of framed and/or unframed, numbered Oscar Howe prints.

$75 Food, Wine & Nightlife

Black Hills Winery Tour

A stretch limousine will pick you up at your Rapid City area home, hotel, or campground. Depending on the number and location of travelers, pickup times will be between 12:00pm and 1:00pm local (MDT) time. The tour will depart Rapid City no later than 1:00pm local time.Your tour will start with a 30 minute scenic drive through South Dakota's famous Black Hills and will arrive at the Stone Faces Winery near Hill City, SD. Complimentary snack and beverages will be available on board your limousine. Next you will visit the Stone Faces Winery. Here you can sample their selection of dry, sweet, grape or other fruit wines, Stone Faces Winery has your palate covered! There is a gift shop with some great winery gifts and memorabilia.The third stop on your tour is at the Naked Winery and this is not your typical winery experience! The Naked Winery is all about fun, while being a little cheeky in the process but don't let their playfulness fool you! They offer a fantastic selection of wines and beers that will tantalize and impress you.The final stop on this limousine tour is at the Prairie Berry Winery. This winery is considered by many to be the most popular and has won over 200 national and international awards. Some of their most famous labels include Red Ass Rhubarb and the Anna Pesä vintages. You can also taste their great selection of beers and ales.The tour will end with a departure from the Prairie Berry Winery at 5:15pm for a 30 minute return to Rapid City, where you will be dropped off at your home or hotel.