Rapid City Journals

A Touristy Tour Through Rapid City

A June 2005 trip to Rapid City by huddlesgirl

Dinosaur Park Photo, Rapid City, South Dakota More Photos
Quote: My family's main purpose in South Dakota was baseball. We ended up like total tourists, spending our time and money on ridiculous tourist things. It was still a lot of fun, and as much as a tourist trap as this city is, it’s nestled in the most beautiful natural setting in America.

Quality Inn

Hotel | "Quality Inn Rapid City"

Quote:
This was a nice moderate hotel perfect for what my family needed. We got a reasonable price with our AAA discount, but keep in mind that since Rapid City is such a tourist trap, hotels are somewhat expensive compared to other cities. It was in a nicer part of town close to I-90, with a nice selection of kid- and family-friendly restaurants and the mall. All the rooms are air-conditioned and very clean, and there is an exercise room, game room, great indoor pool in the center atrium of the hotel, and of course, a gift shop and nice restaurant/cafe/bar that serves a free continental breakfast and happy hour at night. People were friendly, and all in all, we had a nice time!

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on August 5, 2005

Quality Inn
1902 LACROSSE ST
Rapid City, South Dakota 57701
605-342-3322

Black Hills Caverns

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Attraction | "Enjoying the Black Hills Underground"

Quote:
Beneath the Black Hills lies a beautiful, silent underground wilderness. There are so many underground caves, caverns, gold mines, and other formations in the Black Hills, it's hard to decide which are worth the mooolah. Well if you are into the underground natural wonder or the gold boom mining thing, then the black hills are for you! First there is Big Thunder Gold Mine. You can experience the Gold Rush of the 1800s here. This was a real gold mine and boasts one of the biggest displays of original mine equipment anywhere. The tour guides are well-informed, and they tell you all about the history, geology, and answer most questions. There is also a nice museum and, of course, a gift shop. You can...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on August 5, 2005

Black Hills Caverns
2600 Cavern Rd.
Rapid City, South Dakota 57702
605/343-0542

Dinosaur Park

Attraction

Dinosaur Park Photo, Rapid City, South Dakota
Quote:
In plain view from the baseball stadium where we spent a lot of our time in Rapid City was a giant dinosaur atop a mountain. With a short drive straight up you will fin yourself ontop of this mountain looking down on the city. There are seven life-size concrete replicas of dinosaurs placed in a park-like setting. The brontosaurus is 80 foot long and 28 foot high and can be seen from most places in the city. The exhibits are lighted until 10:00pm. Built in the early 1930s. The park was built as a WPA project(Works Project Administration) in 1936 by paleontologist C.C. O’Hara. O'Hara, a retired professor, was a dinosaur enthusiast, and had even helped in uncovering many dino digs in the Badlands. H...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on August 5, 2005

Dinosaur Park
Dinosaur Park, Skyline Drive
Rapid City, South Dakota 57701
(605) 343-8687

Storybook Island

Attraction | "Get Lost in a Children's Story Book"

Storybook Island Photo, Rapid City, South Dakota
Quote:
Storybook Island is a fairyland park with nursery-rhyme displays, live animals, and a special playground that make you feel like you stepped right into a book. Being one of Rapid City's most popular attractions this is a must see, especially if you have kids, or if you are young at heart! It has such an adorable and innovative concept, and the grounds are very intricately designed. They also keep it very well maintained! The park opens at 9am and is open until 7pm. It is only open from Memorial Day to Labor Day during the summer! You can usually catch a production at the McDonalds Story Book Iland Theater, which puts on cute productions and educational experiences. Character greetings are ubiquitous h...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on August 5, 2005

Storybook Island
1301 Sheridan Lake Road
Rapid City, South Dakota 57702
(605) 342-6357

Bear Country

Attraction | "Bear Country U.S.A."

Quote:
Bear Country is a premier drive-through wildlife park. There are around 25 different species of native North American wildlife that (mostly) freely roam a 200-acre preserve. They do have to keep the wolves away from the elk and deer and the grizzly bears away from human automobiles! It is about a 3-mile drive, and you are guaranteed to see mountain lions, elk, reindeer, wolves, buffalo, and black bears. At the end of the drive is a short walk around babyland, which hosts zoo-like exhibits with fuzzy, cuddly baby bears, wolves, and otters you can ooooh and ahh your heart away at! There is also a very nice gift shop to purchase everything you can dream up with a bear or wolf on it. To top it off,...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on August 5, 2005

Bear Country
13820 South Highway 16
Rapid City, South Dakota 57702
(605) 343-2290

Reptile Gardens

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Attraction

Quote:
Reptile Gardens is one of the Top 10 Places in the United States to "Stop the Car and Take a Look." It has the World's Largest Reptile Collection. There are also rare and beautiful minerals, fossils, plants, and sculptures. On "Death Row", you can see more of the world's deadliest snakes than can be seen anywhere else on earth. There are two large male Komodo Dragons and the second largest crocodile in captivity, Maniac. And let me tell you, the thing is HUGE. The large dome in the middle of the park is a "walk-through" jungle filled with lizards, crocodiles, harmless snakes, parrots, and hundreds of stunning orchids and tropical plants. There are also a ton of exhibits that are homes to snakes, lizar...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on August 5, 2005

Reptile Gardens
Box 620
Rapid City, South Dakota 57709
(605) 342-5873

Main Street in Rapid City

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Story/Tip

Firehouse Photo, Rapid City, South Dakota
Quote:
With a great small-town feel, Main Street is an awesome place just to relax and walk. It’s not such a great place to go shopping, unless you are looking for a hideous wedding dress. This is the historic downtown district. Highlights include the 1914 First National Bank building at 7th and Main, and across the street is the 1911 Lions Head Fountain, which was once a watering station for horses. The fire station, now a restaurant, is also quite a sight. There is also a great Native-American store on the north side of Main that has a ton of art, collectibles, and Native-American-created artifacts. Other than that, and a few nice restaurants and bars and one sweet hotel, there is not much there in the for...Read More

About the Writer

huddlesgirl

huddlesgirl
Centennial, Colorado

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