Sponsored by South Dakota Travel
Planning your summer travel already? There's nothing that says "summer vacation" more than checking out some of America's National Parks, and perhaps nowhere is more stunning than the sweeping plains and soaring mountains of South Dakota.
The Landscapes Are World Class
Need we say more? The state is home to six national parks and 56 state parks full of natural wonders and stunning scenes that you'd think were photoshopped. However, South Dakota's vistas are #nofilter necessary - and we think you really owe it to yourself to see them with your own two eyes.
It's Surprisingly Hip
You probably don't think of trendy galleries or cafes when you think of South Dakota, but you might want to think again! For instance, Sioux Falls has an intriguing sculpture walk, lots of interesting ethnic food options, and a more lively night life scene than you would expect. What's more, Rapid City has a thriving, micropolitan downtown featuring a public art project called Art Alley - a remarkable tribute to freedom of expression that was launched in 2005.
And Lovably Kitschy
You've might have heard of classic roadside attractions like Wall Drug and the World's Only Corn Palace, but if you're a lover of all things kitsch and Americana, you really should visit these sights and South Dakota's other photo-worthy pit stops in person.
There's Nothing Like The Open Road
Summer means road trip, and South Dakota is particularly well-suited for that, thanks to the wide range of scenic drives and the aforementioned incredible landscapes. Your road trip options include the Peter Norbeck National Scenic Byway, Native American National, the State Scenic Byway, the Badlands Loop, the Wildlife Loop including Custer State Park, and so many more.
See Mount Rushmore
Pictures can't really do a national icon justice, can they? And seeing a depiction of democracy literally emblazoned on the side of a mountain is something that we really can't put into words either. Yet one more reason a trip to South Dakota should be on your bucket list!
And The Crazy Horse Memorial
This awe-inspiring, massive sculpture-in-progress is one of the most visually striking - and massive - pieces of semi-public art that you can see in the United States. Plus when it's completed, it very well might be the world's largest sculpture, so you can say that you saw it when it was under construction.
There Are Baby Animals (And Lots Of Other Wildlife)
Is there anything cuter than baby animals? If you visit South Dakota in the spring or summer, you'll likely see tons of them. Baby mountain goats, buffalo, bighorn sheep, antelope, whitetail deer, geese, ducks, and plenty more. And the wildlife spotting opportunities are pretty excellent during the rest of the year too!
Opportunity For Cultural Immersion
South Dakota's landscapes might actually be what we all picture when we think of the spirit and respect for the land that Native Americans possess; accordingly, there's a huge variety of museums, memorials, and cultural centers where you can explore America's heritage.