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Visit to Rapid City

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California Hot...
posts: 39
reviews: 22
Visit to Rapid City

Hello Experts. My family of 4 is planning a visit to Rapid City in June. We will visit all the highlights and parks. My question is for lodging. Is it best to anchor in Rapid City and visit all the sights from there or split our stay between Rapid City and Hill City to break up the drives and scenery? First time in SD. Any advice appreciated. Thank you!

9 replies to this topic
Sioux Falls, South...
Destination Expert
for Sioux Falls
posts: 1,875
reviews: 128
1. Re: Visit to Rapid City

Please go to the South Dakota forum (this is the Hill City forum) and look at the Top Question in the upper right corner entitled, "How do I choose a base . . .?" If you still have additional questions after reading the Top Question, please feel free to ask.

Edited: 10:17 pm, April 09, 2014
Arlington, Virginia
posts: 7,521
reviews: 92
2. Re: Visit to Rapid City

If your plan is to see Rapid City, then it makes sense to find lodging there. If your plan is to visit the Black Hills attractions, it makes sense to find lodging there (Hill City, Keystone, Custer).

When we visited South Dakota last June for 8 days, we flew in and out of Rapid City. After our arrival, we spent the rest of the day sightseeing in Rapid City and overnighted there. We then moved on to Custer for the Black Hills portion of our trip. At the end of our 8 days, we spent another day sightseeing in Rapid City, overnighted there and flew out the next morning. It was an efficient use of our time and it worked well for us.

Edited: 10:22 pm, April 09, 2014
California Hot...
posts: 39
reviews: 22
3. Re: Visit to Rapid City

Great Info Longhorn. It helps to have a perspective. I was thinking all doable from Rapid City. I will change the plan like you did. Also, I was thinking 6 nights might be too much time. You stayed 8 days. Plenty to do? I like to keep the family busy, we are not lay by the pool and relax vacationers.

California Hot...
posts: 39
reviews: 22
4. Re: Visit to Rapid City

Thanks for the advice 3174 I found the info.

Arlington, Virginia
posts: 7,521
reviews: 92
5. Re: Visit to Rapid City

I have been to the Black Hills many times, but this was my first visit in several years. We concentrated on seeing and doing things we had never done before, so we skipped attractions like the caves, Crazy Horse, the Mammoth Site, etc. Even skipping a lot of Black Hills attractions, we found more than enough things to see and do during our 8-day stay. With 6 days, you'll have to really pick-and-choose how you allocate your time amongst the various attractions and activities. (We enjoy hiking, so did several good hikes.)

Edited: 5:17 pm, April 10, 2014
Pitman, New Jersey
Destination Expert
for Rapid City, South Dakota
posts: 4,268
reviews: 35
6. Re: Visit to Rapid City

I have spent as long as 11 days and as short as 3 touring days. Three days is pretty rushed, but you can get a lot in since the area in pretty compact. There's plenty to do as Longhorn mentiioned. To get a great overview of the area, be sure to order a travel planner from travelsd.com

My personal opinion is to not stay in Rapid City at all. I prefer to stay in more rural locations, however. Hill City, Keystone or Custer really give one a great feel for the Black Hills. If you read in the top questions under South Dakota, "How do I choose a Base...", you will get a good synopsis of the towns to help you decide which one you'd enjoy most.

California Hot...
posts: 39
reviews: 22
7. Re: Visit to Rapid City

Longhorn and slrtravelplanner I appreciate the info. I am feeling good about my plan. One last question. Does a 1 day trip to Sturgis, Devil's Tower and Deadwood seem realistic from Hill City? Most info says yes. I didn't know if we should have a night in that area as well as Hill City.

Pitman, New Jersey
Destination Expert
for Rapid City, South Dakota
posts: 4,268
reviews: 35
8. Re: Visit to Rapid City

Absolutely, although I would skip Sturgis unless you have a very keen interest in cycles. A great daytrip would be Devil's Tower, a drive through Spearfish Canyon, and possibly ending the day in Deadwood for a quick stop. You could certainly lodge in the northern hills for a night if you choose, but you could do a daytrip.

California Hot...
posts: 39
reviews: 22
9. Re: Visit to Rapid City

Great thanks again. You have been very helpful.

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