Things To Do In the Mount Rushmore Area
Are you tired of planning a family vacation each year only to find, once you get there, that there just isn't enough to do to keep everyone in the family satisfied? Then it's time to plan a trip to the greater Mount Rushmore Area. Here you will not only find plenty of activities for the entire family but also a look into the past of this great nation.
Journey Museum in Rapid City
Begin your visit with a trip to the Journey Museum in Rapid City. You'll get an insider's view of the history of this area and its historical inhabitants, both human and other creatures. The museum features four distinct collections including the Museum of Geology where you'll learn about the land of the Black Hills, view life-size dinosaur fossils, watch geologists as they work and even touch a real dinosaur bone. The Archaeological Research Center focuses on the diverse cultures of the people of the area and displays 10,000 years worth of artifacts from the surrounding area. The Sioux Indian Museum is a tribute to the Lakota Nation. You'll learn how the Lakota people worked, hunted and played through tales and traditions presented by Lakota descendants. The Minnilusa Pioneer Museum takes you into the lives of the first European settlers of the area including miners, military and mountain men. You'll get an up-close look at historical figures of the area such as General Custer, Jim Bridger, Wild Bill Hickock and Sitting Bull.
Jewel Cave/Wind Cave Tour
You say you need more adventure than a visit to a museum will provide? Then the Jewel Cave/Wind Cave Tour is for you. You can choose which of these natural wonders you'd like to explore then get ready for an astonishing look at nature at its best. Jewel Cave is the third longest cave in the world and was designated as a national monument in 1908. To date more than 129 miles of this boxwork cave have been explored and this is not by any means all or even most of the cave. Surrounded by more than 1,000 acres of Ponderosa Pine forest, a visit to Jewel Cave will leave a lasting impression for anyone who visits. Wind Cave was, for many years, a mystery to all those who came upon it because of its ability to blow air out of the cave and, at other times, to suck it into the cave. Since that time scientists have discovered the reason for this strange occurrence is due to atmospheric changes, however, that doesn't diminish the effect that Wind Cave will have on every one of its visitors. Situated on more than 28,000 acres of National Park Lands, Wind Cave offers dramatic scenery and wildlife as well as many varieties of outdoor activities.
Other tours that are a must-see for any visit to the area include:
- Black Hills Circle Tour
- Deadwood/Lead Historic Tour
- Devil's Tower Tour
- Pine Ridge Indian Reservation Tour
- Wall Drug/Badlands Tour
- And, of course, the Mount Rushmore Tour.
You also won't want to miss a visit to the Mammoth Site of Hot Springs where you'll see a working paleontology lab and view the remains of one of the world's greatest creatures, the mammoth. And be sure to include the Pioneer Auto Museum and Antique Town in your itinerary. With hundreds of items throughout 30 buildings, you'll browse hundreds of classic cars and motorcycles and even see Elvis Presley's own Harley Davidson and The General Lee. A visit to the old general store will offer up displays of hundreds of antiques including dolls, music boxes, toys and more.
No longer will your family vacations be the same old boring thing when you plan a trip to Mt. Rushmore. Here you'll find something for every member of the family as well as great lodging choices and restaurants. Make this a vacation they'll never forget and plan your stay in the Mt. Rushmore area.