11 days in Black Hills & Badlands, Jackson Hole & Grand Canyon National Park Itinerary

11 days in Black Hills & Badlands, Jackson Hole & Grand Canyon National Park Itinerary

Created using Inspirock United States tour itinerary maker

Make it your trip
Fly
1
Badlands National Park
— 1 day
Drive
2
Rapid City
— 2 nights
Fly
3
Jackson Hole
— 4 nights
Drive
4
Grand Canyon National Park
— 4 nights
Bus to Flagstaff Amtrak, Fly to Indianapolis

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Badlands National Park

— 1 day
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.
Kick off your visit on the 3rd (Tue): take in the dramatic natural features at Badlands Wall, then cruise along Loop Road, and then take in the dramatic natural features at Yellow Mounds Overlook.

For reviews, other places to visit, more things to do, and other tourist information, read Badlands National Park day trip planning app.

Indianapolis to Badlands National Park is an approximately 8-hour flight. You can also drive; or do a combination of bus, train, and taxi. Traveling from Indianapolis to Badlands National Park, you'll gain 2 hours due to the time zone difference. Plan for slightly colder nights when traveling from Indianapolis in August since evenings lows in Badlands National Park dip to 58°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 3rd (Tue) to allow enough time to drive to Rapid City.

Things to do in Badlands National Park

Nature · Parks · Scenic Drive · Outdoors

Rapid City

— 2 nights

Gateway to the Black Hills

South Dakota's second-largest city, Rapid City has for many years served as a gateway to the West.
Kick off your visit on the 4th (Wed): get to know the resident critters at Reptile Gardens, then explore the wealth of natural beauty at Mount Rushmore National Memorial, then immerse yourself in nature at Custer State Park, and finally take a memorable drive along Wildlife Loop Road. On the 5th (Thu), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: look for all kinds of wild species at Bear Country USA, explore and take pictures at Iron Mountain Road, and then take in the pleasant sights at Breezy Point Picnic Area.

To find traveler tips, reviews, ratings, and other tourist information, use the Rapid City trip planner.

Drive from Badlands National Park to Rapid City in an hour. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi and bus. In August, plan for daily highs up to 83°F, and evening lows to 60°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 5th (Thu) to allow enough time to travel to Jackson Hole.

Things to do in Rapid City

Parks · Scenic Drive · Outdoors · Wildlife

Side Trips

Jackson Hole

— 4 nights
The Jackson Hole valley is approximately 97 km (60 mi) long and 24 km (15 mi) wide, encompassing the town of Jackson, Teton Village, and the northern section of Grand Teton National Park.
Kids will enjoy Old Faithful and Grand Teton. Venture out of the city with trips to Yellowstone National Park (Blue Star Spring, Upper Geyser Basin, &more). It doesn't end there: take in the exciting artwork at Thal Glass Studio.

For traveler tips, photos, where to stay, and more tourist information, read our Jackson Hole travel planner.

You can fly from Rapid City to Jackson Hole in 6.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of bus, car, and taxi. Prepare for slightly colder weather when traveling from Rapid City in August: high temperatures in Jackson Hole hover around 78°F and lows are around 43°F. You'll have a few hours on the 9th (Mon) to wrap things up before traveling to Grand Canyon National Park.

Things to do in Jackson Hole

Nature · Parks · Wildlife · Outdoors

Side Trips

Grand Canyon National Park

— 4 nights
The size, shape, and color of Grand Canyon National Park combine to leave an impression on visitors as deep as the canyon itself.
Kids will enjoy Grand Canyon South Rim and Rim Trail. On the 11th (Wed), hike the day away at Bright Angel Trail. Next up on the itinerary: tour the pleasant surroundings at South Kaibab Trail, explore the stunning scenery at Inner Canyon, and take some stellar pictures from Grandview Point.

To see reviews, photos, more things to do, and other tourist information, read our Grand Canyon National Park day trip tool.

Getting from Jackson Hole to Grand Canyon National Park by car takes about 13 hours. Traveling from Jackson Hole in August, plan for somewhat warmer nights in Grand Canyon National Park, with lows around 50°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 13th (Fri) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Grand Canyon National Park

Parks · Outdoors · Trails · Nature