South Dakota Vacation

Kicked off Summer with a trip to Rapid City, South Dakota. We had no concrete plans but ideas on what we wanted to do. With kids we wanted to make sure we kept their interest. Giving them suggestions on what we can do and then letting them decided for the most part.

Here are places we visited on our trip that were great for kids:

•Sioux Falls, SD – Huge Playground next to Butterly House and Aquarium, did a picnic lunch here. Kids would be content with the playground the whole time.

•Badlands driving through stopping along some of the scenic overlooks. In our opinion, the first and last stop were by far the best views.

•Bear Country – kids loved seeing them animals up close.

•Sylvan Lake for picnic lunch and hike around the lake. Boys enjoyed climbing the tall rocks.

•Mt. Rushmore – we came from Sylvan Lake area. If you have time for a drive go to Needles Highway Overlook, to S Playhouse Road this takes you to 16A (to Mt Rushmore). You get an amazing view of Mt Rushmore from this road. FYI this road is very curvy so be ready.

•1880 train – We parked in Keystone as we were doing Rushmore Cave after. Purchased tickets online ahead of time allowed us to pick what seats we wanted. Rode in the enclosed train car (windows do open up) on way to Hill City and then open train on way back. FYI enclosed train seats are comfier. Wanted the open train for the experience and you can see more this way.

•Rushmore Cave – many caves in the area. This one was good but maybe others are better.

Places to Eat:

We stayed at Holiday Inn Express, free breakfast (win!), packed picnic lunches and then would eat out at night. We did pick up pizza one evening and ate back at the hotel.

Restaurants were Sickies Garage Burger and Brewery (great burgers and milkshakes!) and Firehouse Brewery (Meal’s are big we could have shared a plate. Kids get a Fire hat in the end).

In the end we asked the kids their favorite parts and both said playing in the pool at the little water park, Mount Rushmore and climbing on Rocks. Keep it simple, don’t rush and kids will have a great time.