Explore South Dakota and Find Your Great Place
Natural beauty and wonder await you in South Dakota. Across the state, you will be inspired to expand your journey in the west from the Black Hills and Badlands, to the northeast to explore the glacial lakes and outdoor adventure. Along the way, you’ll follow the Missouri River as it flows down through central South Dakota and experience the history of Lewis and Clark. Discover the land of the southeast and its bustling cities, quiet country escapes and family attractions. As you venture back home, you will know you truly made memories that will last forever.
America's Shrine of Democracy, Mount Rushmore National Memorial features the 60-foot faces of four great American presidents who represent the birth, growth, development and preservation of this country. Beginning summer 2019 and lasting approximately 18 months, enhancements are being made to the park grounds. Mount Rushmore remains open during this time.
The third-longest cave in the world features a variety of cave tours below the surface and a 1,279-acre park with nature trails above ground.
Few truly wild places remain in this country. Custer State Park is one of them. Nearly 1,300 bison wander the park’s 71,000 acres, which they share with pronghorn antelope, elk, mountain goats and a band of burros.
Walk in the footsteps of historic Old West legends like Wild Bill Hickok, Calamity Jane and Seth Bullock. This 1870s gold rush town became a National Historic Landmark in 1961. Today, it teems with Black Hills entertainment and things to do including concerts, casinos, museums, historic sites, spas and parades.
History and adventure abound along and on the waters of the Mighty Mo’. Free-flowing sections and four reservoirs – Lake Oahe, Lake Sharpe, Lake Francis Case and Lewis & Clark Lake – are prime for fishing, boating and water recreation.
This striking South Dakota landscape boasts a maze of buttes, canyons, pinnacles and spires. Skeletons of three-toed horses and saber-toothed cats are among the many fossilized species found here. Wildlife abounds in the park’s 244,000 acres and can often be seen while hiking, camping and traveling the Badlands Loop Scenic Byway.
The first cave to be designated a national park, Wind Cave National Park features the world's largest concentration of rare boxwork formations along with 33,851 acres of forest and prairie on the surface creating a sanctuary for wildlife.
Korczak Ziolkowski began work on Crazy Horse Memorial in 1948. Once complete, this tribute to the Lakota leader will be the largest mountain carving in South Dakota, and the world. The on-site Indian Museum of North America and the Native American Educational & Cultural Center also provide educational and cultural programming.
Some describe it as lunar-like, some say desert, the Native Americans were the first to call it "bad lands," or "mako sica." We think you’ll come up with your own description for Badlands National Park.
Searching for animals you don’t see in your neighborhood? Custer State Park’s 18-mile Wildlife Loop State Scenic Byway has what you are looking for!
Towering limestone cliffs and a rushing mountain stream keep you company along the 19-mile stretch of US Highway 14A known as Spearfish Canyon Scenic Byway.
Some of the most incredible roads anywhere make up the Peter Norbeck National Scenic Byway in the Black Hills of western South Dakota. Mix in America’s most patriotic monument along the way and you have a never-to-be-forgotten road trip.
Breathtaking views of the Missouri River, diverse landscapes, and tribal history and culture are showcased on the Native American Scenic Byway running north and south through central South Dakota. The route takes travelers through the lands of the Yankton, Crow Creek, Lower Brule, Cheyenne River and Standing Rock Sioux Tribes.
See what others are exploring in South Dakota, or leave a photo memento for someone else. Join our community of online travelers to find – and share – Your Great Place in South Dakota.