9 days in South Dakota Itinerary

9 days in South Dakota Itinerary

Created using Inspirock South Dakota travel planner

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Route & dates

9 days in South Dakota Itinerary

Start: Minneapolis
Fly + taxi:  4​h 15​min
1
Badlands National Park
— 1 night
Drive:  1​h
2
Rapid City
— 5 nights
Drive:  1​h 15​min
3
Hot Springs
— 2 nights
taxi + Fly:  4​h 15​min
End: Minneapolis

1
night
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 16th (Fri): take in the dramatic natural features at Badlands Wall and then admire all the interesting features of Loop Road. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: explore the striking landscape of Badlands National Park.

To find traveler tips, reviews, ratings, and other tourist information, you can read our Badlands National Park itinerary builder app .

Minneapolis to Badlands National Park is an approximately 4.5-hour combination of flight and taxi. You can also drive; or do a combination of bus and taxi. The time zone changes from Central Standard Time (CST) to Mountain Standard Time (MST), which is usually a -1 hour difference. When traveling from Minneapolis in August, plan for a bit warmer days and a bit cooler nights in Badlands National Park: temperatures range from 87°F by day to 58°F at night. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 17th (Sat) so you can go by car to Rapid City.

Things to do in Badlands National Park

Parks Nature Outdoors

Side Trip

Badlands National Park
Highlights from your plan
Badlands National Park ©
Badlands National Park
Loop Road ©
Loop Road
Badlands Wall ©
Badlands Wall

5
nights
Rapid City

Rapid City ©
South Dakota's second-largest city, Rapid City has for many years served as a gateway to the West.
You'll visit kid-friendly attractions like Reptile Gardens and Big Thunder Gold Mine. Change things up with these side-trips from Rapid City: Mount Rushmore National Memorial (in Keystone), Crazy Horse Memorial (in Crazy Horse) and Custer (Custer State Park, Sylvan Lake, & more). Pack the 19th (Mon) with family-friendly diversions at Rushmore Tramway Adventures. There's still lots to do: identify plant and animal life at Bear Country USA, don't miss a visit to Dinosaur Park, get in on the family fun at Storybook Island, and wander the streets of Downtown Rapid City.

Discover how to plan a Rapid City trip in just a few steps with Inspirock's itinerary builder.

Drive from Badlands National Park to Rapid City in an hour. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi and bus. August in Rapid City sees daily highs of 83°F and lows of 60°F at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 22nd (Thu) to allow time to drive to Hot Springs.

Things to do in Rapid City

Parks Theme Parks Nature

Side Trips

Custer, Keystone, Crazy Horse Memorial
Highlights from your plan
Bear Country USA ©
Bear Country USA
Reptile Gardens ©
Reptile Gardens
Rushmore Tramway Adventures ©
Rushmore Tramway Adventures

2
nights
Hot Springs

Hot Springs ©
Hot Springs is a city in Fall River County, South Dakota, United States. On the 23rd (Fri), Head underground at Wind Cave National Park, take a memorable drive along Wildlife Loop Road, and then learn more about the world around you at Mammoth Site of Hot Springs. Here are some ideas for day two: Head underground at Jewel Cave National Monument and then pause for some photo ops at Bicycle Sculpture.

For maps, traveler tips, reviews, and other tourist information, read Hot Springs trip maker website .

You can drive from Rapid City to Hot Springs in 1.5 hours. Plan for little chillier temperatures traveling from Rapid City in August, with highs in Hot Springs at 77°F and lows at 51°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 24th (Sat) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Hot Springs

Parks Nature Outdoors

Side Trips

Custer, Wind Cave National Park, Bicycle Sculpture
Highlights from your plan
Jewel Cave National Monument ©
Jewel Cave National Monument
Mammoth Site of Hot Springs ©
Mammoth Site of Hot Springs
Wildlife Loop Road ©
Wildlife Loop Road

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