12 days in Yellowstone National Park & South Dakota Itinerary

12 days in Yellowstone National Park & South Dakota Itinerary

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12 days in Yellowstone National Park & South Dakota Itinerary

Start: Omaha
Fly + Drive:  7​h 15​min
1
Yellowstone National Park
— 2 nights
+2
Drive + Fly + Taxi:  6​h 45​min
2
Custer
— 2 nights
Drive:  1​h
3
Rapid City
— 2 nights
Drive:  1​h
4
Badlands National Park
— 2 nights
Drive:  4​h 30​min
5
Sioux Falls
— 2 nights
Fly:  5​h 45​min
End: Appleton

2
nights
Yellowstone National Park

Yellowstone National Park ©
An exceptionally diverse landscape and varied wildlife have made Yellowstone National Park one of America's most popular parks.
Kick off your visit on the 7th (Sun): look for all kinds of wild species at Grand Loop Road, then witness a stunning natural landmark at Castle Geyser, and then identify plant and animal life at Firehole Canyon Drive. Keep things going the next day: steep yourself in history at Fort Yellowstone Historic District, appreciate the extensive heritage of Uncle Tom's Trail, and then explore the stunning scenery at S Rim Trail.

To find ratings, reviews, traveler tips, and more tourist information, refer to the Yellowstone National Park trip itinerary maker .

Omaha to Yellowstone National Park is an approximately 7.5-hour combination of flight and car. You can also do a combination of shuttle, flight, and car; or drive. The time zone difference moving from Central Standard Time (CST) to Mountain Standard Time (MST) is minus 1 hour. Traveling from Omaha in June, you will find days in Yellowstone National Park are little chillier (66°F), and nights are cooler (34°F). Finish your sightseeing early on the 9th (Tue) to allow enough time to travel to Custer.

Things to do in Yellowstone National Park

Scenic Drive Outdoors Historic Sites
Highlights from your plan
Grand Loop Road ©
Grand Loop Road
Uncle Tom's Trail ©
Uncle Tom's Trail
Firehole Canyon Drive ©
Firehole Canyon Drive

2
nights
Custer

Custer ©
Generally considered to be the oldest town established by European Americans in the Black Hills, Custer began as a mining town.
On the 9th (Tue), get a new perspective on nature at The Museum @ Black Hills Institute, then get a new perspective on nature at Native American Educational and Cultural Center, and then look for all kinds of wild species at Angostura Recreation Area. On the 10th (Wed), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: see a world frozen in time at Four Mile Old West Town, then see the interesting displays at Pioneer Museum, then get a new perspective on nature at Mammoth Site of Hot Springs, and finally identify plant and animal life at Windcross Conservancy.

For reviews, other places to visit, maps, and more tourist information, refer to the Custer online trip itinerary planner .

Traveling by combination of car, flight, and taxi from Yellowstone National Park to Custer takes 7 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of car and flight. Traveling from Yellowstone National Park in June, things will get a bit warmer in Custer: highs are around 73°F and lows about 48°F. On the 11th (Thu), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can drive to Rapid City.

Things to do in Custer

Museums Parks Wildlife

Side Trips

Hot Springs, The Museum @ Black Hills Institute, Native American Educational and Cultural Center, Windcross Conservancy
Highlights from your plan
The Museum @ Black Hills Institute ©
Windcross Conservancy ©
Windcross Conservancy

2
nights
Rapid City

Rapid City ©
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 11th (Thu): get engrossed in the history at Pawnseum and then wander the streets of Downtown Rapid City. On the next day, contemplate the long history of Adams House, then look for all kinds of wild species at Black Hills Parrot Welfare & Education Center, and then steep yourself in history at Vore Buffalo Jump.

To see more things to do, reviews, ratings, and other tourist information, refer to the Rapid City trip app .

You can drive from Custer to Rapid City in an hour. Expect a bit warmer evenings in Rapid City when traveling from Custer in June, with lows around 57°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 13th (Sat) to allow time to drive to Badlands National Park.

Things to do in Rapid City

Museums Historic Sites Parks

Side Trips

Deadwood, Black Hills Mining Museum, Vore Buffalo Jump, Black Hills Parrot Welfare & Education Center
Highlights from your plan
Adams House ©
Adams House
Vore Buffalo Jump
Vore Buffalo Jump
South Dakota Air and Space Museum ©
South Dakota Air and Space Museum

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.
Start off your visit on the 14th (Sun): explore the striking landscape at White River Valley Overlook, explore the striking landscape of Minuteman Missile National Historic Site, learn about all things military at Delta-09 Missile Silo, then appreciate the extensive heritage of Sage Creek Wilderness Area, and finally identify plant and animal life at Roberts Prairie Dog Town. Here are some ideas for day two: explore the wealth of natural beauty at Badlands National Park and then contemplate the long history of Prairie Homestead.

For where to stay, photos, maps, and more tourist information, read our Badlands National Park travel route planning site .

You can drive from Rapid City to Badlands National Park in an hour. Another option is to take a bus. In June, plan for daily highs up to 83°F, and evening lows to 54°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 15th (Mon) early enough to go by car to Sioux Falls.

Things to do in Badlands National Park

Parks Nature Historic Sites

Side Trips

Philip, Delta-09 Missile Silo, Badlands National Park
Highlights from your plan
Badlands National Park ©
Badlands National Park
Prairie Homestead ©
Prairie Homestead

2
nights
Sioux Falls

Sioux Falls ©
Sioux Falls is the largest city in the U.S. Visit St. Joseph Cathedral and Spirit Mound for their historical value. Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Spomer Classics & Museum and Sioux Empire Medical Museum. Next up on the itinerary: contemplate the waterfront views at Arrowhead Park, see the sky in a new way at Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) Center, and look for all kinds of wild species at Mary Jo Wegner Arboretum.

To find where to stay, ratings, other places to visit, and more tourist information, you can read our Sioux Falls trip maker tool .

Drive from Badlands National Park to Sioux Falls in 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi and flight; or take a bus. Due to the time zone difference, you'll lose 1 hour traveling from Badlands National Park to Sioux Falls. In June, plan for daily highs up to 80°F, and evening lows to 58°F. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 18th (Thu) to allow time for travel back home.

Things to do in Sioux Falls

Parks Wildlife Museums

Side Trips

Spomer Classics & Museum, Spirit Mound
Highlights from your plan
St. Joseph Cathedral ©
St. Joseph Cathedral
Spomer Classics & Museum ©
Spomer Classics & Museum
Sioux Empire Medical Museum ©
Sioux Empire Medical Museum

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