10 days in South Dakota & Medora Itinerary

10 days in South Dakota & Medora Itinerary

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Route & dates

10 days in South Dakota & Medora Itinerary

Start: Rapid City
Drive:  1​h
1
Badlands National Park
— 2 nights
Drive:  5​h 15​min
2
Medora
— 2 nights
Drive:  4​h
3
Deadwood
— 2 nights
Drive:  1​h 15​min
4
Hill City
— 3 nights
Drive:  45​min
End: Rapid City

2
nights
Badlands National Park

Badlands National Park ©
Although Badlands National Park's name might not be the most inviting, its landscape of pinnacles, eroded buttes, spires, and an expansive, pristine mixed-grass prairie remain enticing.
On the 11th (Sun), stroll through Castle Trail and then take a memorable drive along Loop Road. On the 12th (Mon), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: take in the dramatic natural features at White River Valley Overlook, tour the pleasant surroundings at Saddle Pass Trail, explore the striking landscape at Yellow Mounds Overlook, then explore the striking landscape at Panorama Point Overlook, and finally explore the striking landscape at Badlands Wall.

For traveler tips, ratings, where to stay, and other tourist information, read our Badlands National Park trip itinerary planner .

Rapid City to Badlands National Park is an approximately 1-hour car ride. You can also take a bus. In August, daily temperatures in Badlands National Park can reach 87°F, while at night they dip to 58°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 13th (Tue) so you can go by car to Medora.

Things to do in Badlands National Park

Parks Nature Outdoors

Side Trip

Badlands National Park
Highlights from your plan
Yellow Mounds Overlook ©
Yellow Mounds Overlook
Badlands National Park ©
Badlands National Park
Loop Road ©
Loop Road

2
nights
Medora

Medora ©
Medora is a city in Billings County, North Dakota, United States. On the 14th (Wed), explore the wealth of natural beauty at Theodore Roosevelt National Park. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 15th (Thu): look for gifts at Prairie Fire Pottery and then get to know the fascinating history of South Unit.

Before you visit Medora, use our trip planner to discover what you can do and see there.

You can drive from Badlands National Park to Medora in 5.5 hours. Other options are to do a combination of taxi and flight; or do a combination of bus and taxi. Traveling from Badlands National Park in August, expect Medora to be slightly colder, temps between 80°F and 50°F. On the 15th (Thu), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can drive to Deadwood.

Things to do in Medora

Parks Nature Historic Sites

Side Trips

South Unit, Prairie Fire Pottery
Highlights from your plan
South Unit ©
South Unit
Theodore Roosevelt National Park ©
Theodore Roosevelt National Park
Prairie Fire Pottery ©
Prairie Fire Pottery

2
nights
Deadwood

Deadwood ©
Deadwood is a city in South Dakota, United States, and the county seat of Lawrence County. On the 16th (Fri), admire the sheer force of Spearfish Falls, then get outside with Devil Bathtub South Dakota, and then admire the majestic nature at Bear Butte State Park. Here are some ideas for day two: get engrossed in the history at Adams Museum, admire the verdant scenery at Roughlock Falls State Nature Area, and then immerse yourself in nature at Roughlock Falls Nature Area.

To see reviews, ratings, traveler tips, and more tourist information, go to the Deadwood trip planner .

Getting from Medora to Deadwood by car takes about 4 hours. Other options: do a combination of car and bus. The time zone changes from Mountain Standard Time (MST) to Central Standard Time (CST), which is usually a 1 hour difference. Expect a bit warmer evenings in Deadwood when traveling from Medora in August, with lows around 56°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 17th (Sat) to allow enough time to drive to Hill City.

Things to do in Deadwood

Parks Nature Outdoors

Side Trips

Savoy, Devil Bathtub South Dakota, Roughlock Falls State Nature Area, Bear Butte State Park
Highlights from your plan
Adams Museum ©
Adams Museum
Roughlock Falls State Nature Area ©
Roughlock Falls State Nature Area
Bear Butte State Park ©
Bear Butte State Park

3
nights
Hill City

Hill City ©
Hill City is the oldest existing city in Pennington County, South Dakota, United States. On the 18th (Sun), explore the striking landscape at Needles Eye Tunnel, take in the awesome beauty at Harney Peak, and then explore the striking landscape of Mount Rushmore National Memorial. Keep things going the next day: take a peaceful walk through Black Hills National Forest, take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Black Hills, and then get a new perspective on nature at The Museum @ Black Hills Institute.

For ratings, where to stay, other places to visit, and tourist information, you can read our Hill City holiday site .

Getting from Deadwood to Hill City by car takes about 1.5 hours. Traveling from Deadwood to Hill City, you'll gain 1 hour due to the time zone difference. Traveling from Deadwood in August, Hill City is little chillier at night with lows of 51°F. On the 20th (Tue), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can drive back home.

Things to do in Hill City

Parks Nature Museums

Side Trips

Custer, South Dakota, Mount Rushmore National Memorial, Mammoth Site of Hot Springs
Highlights from your plan
Black Elk Peak ©
Black Elk Peak
Black Hills ©
Black Hills
Mount Rushmore National Memorial ©
Mount Rushmore National Memorial

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