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family trip

Regina, Canada
9 posts
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family trip

Hi everyone. I'm looking for suggestions of where to stay in the area. We are a family of 5, kids aged 13, 15 and 16. We need at least 2 beds and a pull out couch. Two bathrooms would be fantastic but not necessary. We would like to see the caves and Mount Rushmore, what else would you suggest for us? Any great restaurants in the area? This will be a road trip so we'll have our car. Thanks for any suggestions.

Pitman, New Jersey
Destination Expert
for Rapid City, South Dakota
Level Contributor
5,767 posts
62 reviews
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1. Re: family trip


From your description of accomodations, I'd recommend possibly staying in a cabin. Mt. Mama, a regular poster on here, is most familiar with cabins out of all us, and I will provide a link to some very helpful information she provided below:


We have a smaller family of 3 and typically stay in hotels. The Roosevelt Inn in Keystone has family suites, as does the Rushmore Express, also in Keystone. We have stayed at the Roosevelt and have been pleased. This summer, we are going to try the Rushmore Express. Two baths might be tough unless you rent a cabin or vacation home, however. In addition to the link I provided above, I'd also check out vrbo.

The best towns to base out of are Keystone, Hill City, or Custer. Rapid City might have the "suite" set up in more hotels than the smaller towns, but you will be adding some travel time to get to the sights. The smaller towns are more centralized.

How many days do you have for touring? To get a great feel for the area, be sure to order a travel planner from travelsd.com. There's much to see and do. Here's my short list of must sees:

Badlands National Park

Custer State Park

Mt. Rushmore

Crazy Horse

Devil's Tower

Wind Cave

Jewel Cave

There are many other attractions in the area that may or may not interest you. The travel planner will give you summaries of the attractions and then you can decide your interest level.

As for restaurants, my favorites are the Alpine Inn in Hill City, Blue Bell Lodge in Custer State Park (any of the lodges in the park are good bets), and Big Time Pizza in Keystone. The Alpine is not open on Sundays and doesn't take credit cards,but they serve filet mignon for dinner at a very reasonable price. For lunch, they serve traditional German fare. The desserts are excellent. Blue Bell serves bison, along with other dishes, and Big Time Pizza has some of the best pizza I've encountered anywhere (subject to opinion, of course).

Let us know if we can assist you further.

Arlington, Virginia
Destination Expert
for Arlington
Level Contributor
12,409 posts
113 reviews
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2. Re: family trip

Have you considered a vacation home through VRBO? We rented 2 different homes through VRBO when we traveled with our teens/young adults to Glacier NP a few years ago and it worked out GREAT! Not only did everyone have his own bed, but we had 2 bathrooms and a lot of space both inside and outside--which is always good with teens. The rate was also much less than we would have spent on two hotel rooms.

My spouse and I are renting a smaller VRBO home in the Custer area this summer for the two of us and we are looking forward to having more space at a rate lower than any hotel I could find.

If you want to do this, I'd start looking and booking now.

3. Re: family trip

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