Must-see attractions in South Dakota

  • The Corn Palace in Mitchell, South Dakota.

    Corn Palace

    South Dakota

    The Corn Palace is the king of roadside attractions, enticing more than half a million people to pull off I-90 each year. Close to 300,000 ears of corn…

  • From its humble beginning as a small drug store, Wall Drug has grown into an international tourist attraction for an otherwise small town in rural South Dakota.

    Wall Drug

    South Dakota

    Wall Drug is a surprisingly enjoyable tourist attraction of the old school. It really does have 5¢ coffee, free ice water, good donuts and enough…

  • Falls Park along the Big Sioux River in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

    Falls Park

    South Dakota

    Stroll along the grass-lined paths to Sioux Falls' star attraction – its rambling namesake waterfall – at this picturesque park. Popular with amorous…

  • Eroded rock formations at Badlands National Park.

    Badlands National Park

    South Dakota

    Pinnacled rock formations with vivid color bands, sharp-edged cliffs with tiptoeing bighorn sheep, and sprawling colonies of feverish prairie dogs are…

  • Badlands Loop Road in Badlands National Park.

    Hwy 240 Badlands Loop Rd

    South Dakota

    Badlands National Park's North Unit gets the most visitors; this stunning road is easily reached from I-90 (exits 110 and 131) and you can drive it in an…

  • Akta Lakota Museum & Cultural Center

    South Dakota

    This engaging museum and cultural center at St Joseph's Indian School has Lakota cultural displays and contemporary art from numerous tribes. Check the…

  • Buffalo grazing on the prairie along the Sage Creek Rim Road, Badlands National Park, Black Hills, South Dakota.

    Sage Creek Rim Rd

    South Dakota

    The portion of the Badlands west of Hwy 240 along this gravel road is much less visited than the sights of the Badlands Loop Rd. There are scenic…

  • Minuteman Missile National Historic Site

    South Dakota

    In the 1960s and '70s, a thousand Minutemen II intercontinental ballistic missiles, always at the ready in underground silos spread across the Plains,…

  • Wounded Knee Massacre Site

    South Dakota

    The massacre site, 16 miles northeast of Pine Ridge town, is marked by a faded sign. It helps to read up on the events before you arrive. The mass grave…

  • Delta-09 Missile Silo

    South Dakota

    This Cold War–era missile silo, located down a dirt road in a desolate area 5 miles southeast of Wall, gives you a glimpse into the enormous network of…

  • Red Cloud Heritage Center

    South Dakota

    This well-curated art museum has traditional and contemporary works and a craft shop with locally made artisan goods. Haunting photos taken after the…

  • Laura Ingalls Wilder Memorial Society

    South Dakota

    Right in town, the fussy and frilly complex that's home to the society paying homage to the Little House on the Prairie author runs tours. They include…

  • South Dakota Cultural Heritage Center

    South Dakota

    Exhibits at this ecologically groundbreaking museum (it's completely underground) include a bloody Ghost Dance shirt from Wounded Knee. Exhibits trace the…

  • Old Courthouse Museum

    South Dakota

    This huge and restored pink quartzite 1890s courthouse has three floors of changing exhibits on the region. It's part of the Siouxland Heritage Museums,…

  • Lewis & Clark Information Center

    South Dakota

    Get out of your car – instead of your canoe – at this hilltop rest stop, south of town, for exhibits on the intrepid duo and their voyages past here on…

  • Story of Wounded Knee

    South Dakota

    This important small museum tells the story of the Wounded Knee massacre from the Lakota perspective using photos and narratives. It's more insightful…

  • Buffalo Gap National Grassland

    South Dakota

    This nature reserve surrounds the Badlands and together they protect the country's largest prairie grasslands, several species of Great Plains mammal …

  • Ingalls Homestead

    South Dakota

    Just outside De Smet and down a dirt road, the actual Ingalls Homestead has been much gussied up and includes all manner of attractions like covered wagon…

  • Framboise Island

    South Dakota

    At a bend on the Missouri River, Framboise Island has several hiking trails and plentiful wildlife. It's across from where the Lewis and Clark expedition…

  • State Capitol

    South Dakota

    Small-town Victorian homes overlook the imposing 1910 State Capitol with its black copper dome. Be sure to check out the floor mosaics and marbled columns…

  • Petrified Wood Park

    South Dakota

    This 1930s collection of geologic oddities covers an entire city block in the center of little Lemmon, way off in the northwest corner of the state.

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