Please be sure to call and
verify times and rates as they are subject to change
CUSTER- BEDROCK CITY THEME PARK
US HIGHWAYS 16 & 385, Custer 605.673.4079
COST: $8 / 5 and under Free
HOURS: Open May 20 - Sept 4; call for current hours
Your kids will love the walk around Bedrock. Tour the
houses and town building, ride a flintstonemobile and the Iron Horse
Train. There's even a show to see your favorite Flintstone's
characters! Don't forget to take the kids to Mt. Rockmore to
get a photo. Restaurant on site. There is also a
campground on site.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS- Great
for all ages; from our youngest to oldest they thought the
place was really fun. Lots of room to walk and move around.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS- They only allowed one ride per
child in the flintstonemobile and most of the children wanted a
LAURA INGALLS WILDER MUSEUM
1st Street, De Smet 800.880.3383
COST: $8 Adult / $4 Children / Under 5 Free
HOURS: January - April: Monday - Friday 9a - 4p; May:
Monday - Saturday 9a - 4p; June - August: Monday -
Saturday- 9a - 5:30p; September: Monday -
Saturday- 9a - 4p; October - December: Monday - Friday-
Take a guided tour of 2 of the Ingalls' family original homes,
including one built by Charles Ingalls. The tour takes
approximately 1 1/2 hours. It also includes a tour of the
first school in De Smet (attended by Laura and Carrie Ingalls). There is also a
Discovery Center for children to do hands-on activities which can
visit before or after your tour. Be sure to stop in the gift
shop to purchase a wide variety of Ingalls and historical souvenirs.
Also, ask about the 16 point walking/ driving tour of locations
mentioned in the Little House books.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS- Very
interesting for any child who has enjoyed reading the Little
House books. Even the boys (not Little House fans) were
interested to see the historical buildings and artifacts.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS- The guided tour can take almost
two hours which is long for younger children especially since most
of the tour is "hands off".
1800 US 18 Bypass, Hot Springs 605.745.6017
COST: $8 Adult (ages 13+) / $7.50 Senior (age 60+) / $4 Children
(age 5 - 12) / Under 5 Free Annual Family Membership:
$35 (2 parents and their
children up to age 18)
HOURS: May 15 - August 15: Daily 8a - 8p; August
16 - August 31: Daily 8a - 6p; September 1 - October 31:
Daily 9a - 5p; November 1 - February 28: Monday -
Saturday 9a - 3:30p, Sunday 11a - 3:30p; March 1 - May 14:
Daily 9a - 5p Last tour starts one hour
before closing time.
The Mammoth Site is more than just a museum! It is an
actual archaeological dig site; in fact, the world's largest
mammoth research facility. The building is built over the dig
area, allowing you to tour no matter the weather. The guided
tour takes you through the dig area, and the information provided is
both educational and interesting. The kids (and adults too!)
were amazed to see the mammoths preserved just as they fell about
25,000 years ago. There are some hands-on opportunities, such
as holding replica bones. Gift shop on-site. Restrooms
are located in the basement level with elevator access.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-
Interesting for a wide age range. We appreciated the
educational aspect. A few hands-on opportunities, such as
holding replica bones.
KEYSTONE- MOUNT RUSHMORE
Highway 244, Keystone 605.574.3198
COST: $10 annual parking fee per personal vehicle
HOURS: May 9 - August 14: 8a - 10p (night lighting at 9
pm); August 15 - September 30: 8a - 9p (night lighting
at 8p); October 1 - May 8: 8a - 5p
Just amazing! See Mount Rushmore from the overlook then
walk through the museum. There is also a walkway that takes
you closer down near the base, which includes guided tours. If
you can attend the night lighting, you are in for a treat!
Watch from the amphitheater as Mount Rushmore is majestically lit.
Restrooms conveniently located in museum building near the overlook.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-
During the summer there are some children's programs done in the
Sculptor's Studio. There are activity books for both younger
and older children. The kids also enjoyed
the walkway lined with state flags; it was fun to find the
flags for all of the states we had been to.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS- Younger children lost interest
quickly so don't expect to spend too long there.
I-90 (exit 170), Murdo 605.344.2236
COST: $10 Adult / $9 Seniors / $7 Teens (age 13 - 19) / $5 Children
(age 6 - 12) / 5 & under Free / discounted group
rates / (Print Coupons
HOURS: Daylight hours during summer. Call for hours for
the rest of the year.
This 1880 era town is laid out in a street style, so you
walk from building to building. Many of the over 30 original
buildings can be walked in. You can also walk through a
display of movie props from the movie "Dances With Wolves". In
the summer months, you can have lunch on the 50s Train Diner.
Restrooms are located in the main building.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS- The
street was well-laid out to seem like a real old-time main street.
The kids enjoyed seeing the different buildings and props inside
some of them. Some areas had hands-on aspects which kept even
the younger children interested.
WALL DRUG STORE
510 Main Street, Wall 605.279.2175
HOURS: Summer: 6:30a - 10p; Fall: 6:30a - 7p
With each trip across South Dakota we have enjoyed seeing the
signs for Wall Drug Store. We finally decided we just had to
stop and see what it was about....and it was worth it. Wall
Drug Store is a block long old-style drug store mall with an amazing
variety of little stores. From cowboy boots to homemade fudge,
you will find it at Wall Drug Store. Besides that, there are
plenty of photo opportunity props, such as the big jackelope that
kids can climb up on or the old stagecoach. Don't miss the
animated, roaring T-Rex that 'erupts' about every 10 minutes.
If you have seen the signs, you know that Wall Drug advertises free
drinking water (in fact, that is what put Wall Drug on the map back
in the Great Depression). They still offer the free water in
special free Wall Drug water paper cups. Restrooms are
conveniently located in both the front and back buildings.
FAMILY FRIENDLY PROS-
It's FREE! Amazing shopping variety and lots of fun props to
take photos with. The kids loved the free water in the free
water cups (somehow free water at Wall is much more entertaining
than free water anywhere else!).
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS- Parking is packed. Don't be
surprised if you have to drive around if you want to be able to park
DE SMET-PRAIRIE HOUSE
MANOR BED & BREAKFAST
209 Hwy 25
South, De Smet 605.854.9131
Lovers of Laura Ingalls Wilder's Little House books will recognize
the small town of De Smet as the setting of several of her books.
Prairie House Manor B&B is the perfect overnight spot for anyone
visiting De Smet, but especially for those interested in the
much-loved books. Located on the same street as the
'house Pa built' (the final home of Pa & Ma Ingalls), this
family-friendly B&B is in the turn-of-the-century home of the former
Mayor of De Smet. Yes, I said Family-Friendly; an oddity
when speaking of a B&B! The home has a variety of room sizes,
aimed to fit a variety of family sizes or couples. Each is
decorated with its own style/ theme. Our room was clean and
comfortable, with its own television and bathroom. There were
games and books for the children to entertain themselves. Our
room came with a full breakfast; even the hungriest in our
family couldn't finish the huge plate of delicious food! The
best part of this establishment is the innkeepers. They were
happy to answer questions, help us find our way around town, were
very helpful and accommodating with our children's food allergies,
and were generally attentive and friendly. Definitely
worth a stay-over if you will be passing through De Smet.
FRIENDLY PROS- A Family-Friendly Bed & Breakfast seems
to a rarity, but this one is really welcoming to families.
Rooms available for a variety of family sizes. Comfortable,
clean rooms at reasonable prices. Situated in a quiet
neighborhood; perfect for an early evening walk. A full
breakfast included; made to order and delicious!
WESTERN GOLDEN SPIKE INN & SUITES
601 E. Main St., Hill City
Located convenient to Mount Rushmore, this hotel offers a variety of
rooms including a family suite. The family suite has a
separate bedroom with king size bed, plus two queen size beds and a
sofa sleeper in the main room area. Refrigerator and microwave
in family suite. Room was clean, nicely decorated, and had
very comfortable beds. Amenities include indoor and outdoor
pools, as well as an exercise room. There is a restaurant
on-site, and a coffee & ice cream shop in the lobby.
FRIENDLY PROS- Clean, comfortable and tastefully
decorated. Convenient parking. Family suite allows an
affordable option for larger families. Pets are also allowed
with certain restrictions.
FAMILY FRIENDLY CONS- No breakfast included.