7 days in South Dakota Itinerary

7 days in South Dakota Itinerary

Created using Inspirock South Dakota attractions planner

Plan created by another user. Make it yours
Drive to Austin Straubel International Airport, Fly to Rapid City Regional Airport
Rapid City
— 4 nights
Badlands National Park
— 2 nights
Drive to Rapid City Regional Airport, Fly to Austin Straubel International Airport, Drive to Appleton


Rapid City

Gateway to the Black Hills

South Dakota's second-largest city, Rapid City has for many years served as a gateway to the West.
Bring the kids along to Mount Rushmore National Memorial and Rushmore Tramway Adventures. Change things up with these side-trips from Rapid City: Custer (Wildlife Loop Road, Sylvan Lake, &more) and Keystone (Presidential Trail & Breezy Point Picnic Area). There's still lots to do: identify plant and animal life at Bear Country USA, look for gifts at Alex Johnson Mercantile, find something for the whole family at Storybook Island, and meet the residents at Reptile Gardens.

To see more things to do, maps, and other tourist information, read our Rapid City driving holiday app.

Appleton to Rapid City is an approximately 7-hour combination of car and flight. You can also drive. The time zone changes from Central Standard Time (CST) to Mountain Standard Time (MST), which is usually a -1 hour difference. When traveling from Appleton in July, plan for somewhat warmer days and about the same nights in Rapid City: temperatures range from 85°F by day to 62°F at night. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 5th (Sun) so you can go by car to Badlands National Park.

Things to do in Rapid City

Parks · Theme Parks · Outdoors · Nature

Side Trips

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 6th (Mon): explore the wealth of natural beauty at Badlands National Park, then cruise along Loop Road, and then tour the pleasant surroundings at Yellow Mounds Overlook. On your second day here, explore the striking landscape of Bigfoot Pass Overlook, take in the dramatic natural features at Big Badlands Overlook, and then explore the striking landscape at Badlands Wall.

To find where to stay, other places to visit, maps, and more tourist information, use the Badlands National Park road trip planner.

Traveling by car from Rapid City to Badlands National Park takes an hour. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and taxi. When traveling from Rapid City in July, plan for a bit warmer days and about the same nights in Badlands National Park: temperatures range from 91°F by day to 60°F at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 7th (Tue) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Badlands National Park

Nature · Parks · Scenic Drive · Outdoors

Side Trip

South Dakota travel guide

National Parks · Scenic Drive · Monuments
The State of Great Faces and Great Places
Famous for the cliffside monuments of Mount Rushmore and the Crazy Horse memorial, South Dakota is a land of Old West history, American Indian culture, and impressive natural wonders. Get to know the state's diverse and breathtaking landscape with a trip through Custer National Park, with a herd of 1,300 free-roaming bison, or by traversing the dramatic peaks of Badlands National Park near the Black Hills. Allow time in your itinerary to visit the state's largest city, Sioux Falls, for shopping, dining, and entertainment options, as well as a number of museums and historical attractions.