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“Best Value!”

Badlands Petrified Gardens
Ranked #1 of 2 things to do in Kadoka
Attraction details
Reviewed October 2, 2012

Out of everything we did in South Dakota I have to say this was the best value. Be sure to get your coupons from there site and be prepared to buy some rocks as they sell them by the pound. I am not into rocks but I had to buy a couple of pounds of rocks there. I got some rose quartz that I saw at other rock shops later on for much more money than I spent here. They also have some bargains inside that I couldn't resist. The person working there was very friendly and told is a lot about places to do and see in South Dakota. This is a cheap place to take the family and get a nice memento of the badlands.

7  Thank KansasKelli
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed August 19, 2012

We visited in July for our second time. This is a great little museum to stop at. We visited a second time as our kids were young the first time we went and didn't remember, otherwise one stop will do here.

Not only is it at a great location between visits to get out and stretch your legs there is a lot on neat things here.

One hour is about all you need here. Very neat displays with a nice rock area to buy unfinished rocks at $2 a pound. There is also a gift shop qith lots of differents kids of polished rocks.

Check in the local brochures and also on their website for a $1 off coupon.

1  Thank casey101
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 25, 2012

My expectations, which were probably building because of all the billboards leading up to the Kadoka exit, may be a bit dashed a bit when we first approach the Badlands Petrified Gardens because the whole "garden" is completely surrounded by a tall wooden fence. No peeking! However, dollar-off coupon in hand, we went in ad paid our now $4 fee per person and were directed to the first display (indoors) -- naturally glowing (fluorescing) rocks. The outdoor garden is a self-guided tour. The kids ran from display to display, while the grown-ups made a more organized circular tour. Unlike a collection at a museum, you can actually get right up close to petrified logs and tree stumps, marveling at their colors and even touching their varied textures. We easily spent a half hour or 45 minutes out there reading and learning and marveling at what nature can do. (We arrived right after a rain. If you come on a dry day, ask if it is okay to bring a bottle of water and wet down some of the pieces -- their gorgeous colors, rings, and sparkles are greatly enhanced by a sprinkling of water.

There are opportunities both inside and out to purchase interesting little treasures. Outside they literally sell rock "by the pound." I found a couple nice, small pieces that will soon be in my aquairum after I confirm they won't leach anything into the water.

The tour ends inside with a marvelous collection of geodes, agates, and other natural and cut stones. The final stop is a rock-filled gift shop. Prices range from 40 cents for a rock specimin on a labeled card to many hundreds of dollars for more impressive pieces.

There are no blinking lights, video screens, or smells from greasy food vendors here. That in itself may have been worth the cost of admission!

3  Thank Toni S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 23, 2012

This is a family collected and owned exhibition – but what an exhibition!
The grandfather of the current owner collected it from all around the badlands, in a time when fossils were not so rare as today. The petrified trees are really unbelievable, a very good and diverse collection that can compete with any leading natural history museum in the US and in the world (and we visited many of them along the years). So are also the other fossils, as well as the fluorescentic rocks. The shop is nice and prices are HALF and less comparing to most museum shops of minerals and fossils.
Spend some more time in asking the owner about the history of the collection, it is very interesting (and not explained anywhere in the site).
The inner exhibition is well air-conditioned but outside main exhibition is not and there is no shade, so try to avoid mid-day hours. In any case, it worth the 5$ per person!

(If you’ve found this review helpful, you can let me and others know it by clicking the green Yes below)

9  Thank Avi O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed June 2, 2015
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Thank Acmx2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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