Things to do & places to visit in North Dakota, United States

North Dakota cover image
If you’ve never thought much about North Dakota, maybe it’s time you started. Boasting miles and miles of hiking trails, including the Lewis and Clark trail, in addition to multiple museums, golf courses, casinos and amusement parks, North Dakota is bursting with things to do. Situated smack between the Great Lakes and the Pacific Ocean, North Dakota was once called “America’s Most Affordable Vacation Site” by the American Automobile Association. Meriwether Lewis and William Clark are two of North Dakota’s most famous residents. Tracing the courses of the Missouri and Columbia and rivers, the Lewis and Clark National Historic Trail stretches through 11 states. Thanks to their explorations, visitors to North Dakota with an interest in history can do some exploring of their own. Bismarck is not only the capital of the state, it’s also home to several Lewis and Clark historical sites including Fort Yates, where the pair stopped to trade with the Mandan Indians. For family fun in Bismarck, don’t miss the Dakota Zoo and Raging Rivers Waterpark. With more golf courses per capita than any other state (11 in Bismarck and Fargo alone), golf lovers are sure to find a course to their liking. Agri-tourism is also a popular activity in North Dakota, which ranks first in the production of spring wheat, durum wheat, sunflowers, barley, honey and other crops.

North Dakota #51 destination in United States 2023. The average rating score is 4.39 based on 15.6k traveler reviews, of 520 attractions. Timezone: America/Chicago, current date and time: Sunday, April 21, 2024, 0:28.

Top things to do (33)

Top destinations in North Dakota 100

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Top places to visit (30 attractions) view more »

  1. 5.0 Ralph Engelstad Arena (319 reviews)
    - Best hockey rink in college hockey
    Sunday: Arenas & Stadiums
    Ralph Engelstad Arena image
    With an egotistic and enthusiastic fan base to go with it. Keep in mind alcohol is served at this facility and fans are very passionate. UND will always be the Fighting Sioux, no matter how much the PC police try and crack down on the name. See more..
  2. 5.0 South Unit (263 reviews)
    - So much beauty!
    Historic Walking Areas • National Parks
    South Unit image
    Popular area of the park for hiking and horseback riding. See more..
  3. 5.0 Widman's Candy Shop (131 reviews)
    - Happiness Found Here!
    Speciality & Gift Shops
    Widman's Candy Shop image
    Such a wonderful and incredible place! Happiness is made here! How can you not be happy in a candy store? A chocolate shop? The employees are always very friendly. This is a perfect place for them. If this is your first time here, totally and undoubtedly, you MUST get a box of “CHIPPER!” I’ll say it now... “You’re Welcome!” I know you are going to want to thank me! Grand Forks is very fortunate to have Widman’s Candy Shop in Downtown Gramd Forks! See more..
  4. 5.0 Old Town Hall Theater (78 reviews)
    - Teddy Roosevelt Show
    Old Town Hall Theater image
    A rainy afternoon in Medora led us to buy tickets for the 1:30 p.m. show. What a treat! Hats off to Joe Wiegand for his portrayal of Teddy Roosevelt - engaging, witty and entertaining. We were a part of an audience of 50 including about ten children. The children were attentive and seemed to enjoy the show, too. I would highly recommend this show as a part of your Medora/Teddy Roosevelt National Park experience. See more..
  5. 5.0 Ronald Reagan Minuteman Missile State Historic Site (71 reviews)
    - Excellent tour
    Sunday: 1:00 PM - 5:00 PM Spent 1-2 hours Historic Sites
    Ronald Reagan Minuteman Missile State Historic Site image
    The Ronald Reagan Minuteman Missile State Historic Site consists of two locations, the Oscar-Zero Missile Alert Facility (the command site) and the November-33 Launch Facility (a missile site). Constantly manned 24 hours a day, 7 days a week from 1966 to 1997, the two sites stood as a vanguard of the American nuclear deterrent force throughout the Cold War. Opened for tours in 2009, the State Historical Society of North Dakota provides tours of Oscar-Zero and an insight into North Dakota's vital Cold War roles. See more..
  6. 4.5 Theodore Roosevelt National Park (1.855 reviews)
    - Underrated Gem of the National Park System
    Spent More than 3 hours National Parks
    Theodore Roosevelt National Park image
    Well, well! We have found another hidden gem of the National Park system. We found TR National Park to include critters and fowl by the score, scenics to beat the band...the works! I'm sure it helped that we visited in April, and so had many trails and pullouts all to ourselves. We were the only visitors to the phenomenal petrified forest and other trail sights. The southern unit seems to have the critters and the northern unit the speculator views. We preferred the beauty of the northern unit...and we strongly recommend you travel the 60 miles north of Medora to visit that jewel. Thank you, National Park've got a gem on your hands! See more..
  7. 4.5 Medora Musical (859 reviews)
    - So worth it on a nice night
    Theatre & Performances
    Medora Musical image
    If you’re expecting Broadway level voices and theatrics, you’ll be disappointed, but if you’re looking for an entertaining night in a beautiful outdoor amphitheater, this is the show for you! I had no idea what to expect as I had never heard of Medora Musical until I arrived in Medora. I was pleasantly surprised. It’s a little pricey (~$50 for the cheapest seats) but I got a really clear night, so the view from the amphitheater was incredible. The stage design was also pretty cool and they sing a lot of songs many people will recognize. I would definitely recommend attending if you find yourself with a free night in the Medora area. See more..
  8. 4.5 North Dakota Heritage Center & State Museum (634 reviews)
    - Exploring the North Dakota Heritage Center & State Museum
    Sunday: 11:00 AM - 4:00 PM Spent 2-3 hours Speciality & Gift Shops • History Museums
    North Dakota Heritage Center & State Museum image
    ** We will be reopening on June 22. Four galleries tell the fascinating story of North Dakota through thousands of artifacts and specimens, high-tech displays, and interactive exhibits. Experience North Dakota’s heritage throughout the museum spaces. Along with the galleries, hallway exhibits located within the Corridor of History also help tell our unique story. The Northern Lights Atrium is a stunning combination of architecture and symbolism, and the outdoor Pembina River Plaza features specimens from our geologic past. Find treasures in the new Museum Store, and enjoy refreshments at the James River Cafe. From a life-size T. rex skeleton cast to a 1950s soda shop, you will find connections from your own life with your experience here. Our goal is “history for everyone." See more..
  9. 4.5 Fargo-Moorhead Visitors Center (429 reviews)
    - A must stop, inside or out
    Sunday: 9:00 AM - 4:00 PM Visitor Centers
    Fargo-Moorhead Visitors Center image
    Our Visitors Center, the "Grain Elevator," located at exit 348 of Interstate 94, has bushels of information, maps, brochures, and a gift shop. It is open year-round, so stop in and talk to our Visitor Center Travel Ambassadors. We provide free wifi and coffee for visitors...And the bathrooms are spick-and-span! The Fargo-Moorhead Visitors Center is also home to the woodchipper from the movie 'FARGO.' Stop by and have your photo taken with the infamous woodchipper! We provide the (fake) leg to complete the photo op. Be sure to see the Celebrity Walk of Fame outside our visitors center with star signatures and hand & foot prints in cement. See more..
  10. 4.5 Scandinavian Heritage Park (362 reviews)
    - Nice spot
    Sunday: Parks
    Scandinavian Heritage Park image
    This is a well-done spot for seeing some buildings, statues of some famous Scandinavians and items which were used in past centuries in the homes of Scandinavians. Buildings are in great shape, including the beautiful replica Norwegian church. The huge Dala horse is fun to stand under and take pictures of. Employees in the visitor center are helpful. Volunteers in the church and some other buildings are knowledgeable and friendly. No admission charged, but please leave something in the visitors center to help cover costs. See more..
  11. 4.5 The Dakota Zoo (324 reviews)
    - An Excellent Zoo for a Close Up Experience
    Sunday: 1:00 PM - 5:00 PM Spent 1-2 hours Zoos
    The Dakota Zoo image
    The Dakota Zoo was founded in 1961 by Marc & Betty Christianson with the help of a host of dedicated volunteers. The Dakota Zoo opened its gates on June 3, 1961 on 15 acres of developed land, with 75 mammals and 23 birds, and 40,000 visitors passed through the gates that first year. Today, thanks to the continued support of members, visitors, donors and volunteers, the Dakota Zoo has grown to a 90 acre facility housing 600 animals, birds, reptiles and fish representing 125 species and visited by more than 150,000 people each year. See more..
  12. 4.5 North Dakota State Capitol Building (309 reviews)
    - Unexpectedly glamorous interior
    Sunday: Spent < 1 hour Government Buildings
    North Dakota State Capitol Building image
    Tours begin on the hour. Monday through Friday: 9:00 am, 10:00 am, 11:00 am, 1:00 pm, 2:00 pm, 3:00 pm. Guided tours weekends Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day. Saturdays 9:00 am, 10:00 am, 11:00 am, 1:00 pm, 2:00 pm, 3:00 pm. Sundays 1:00 pm, 2:00 pm, 3:00 pm. Free visitor parking east of Capitol. Entrance on southeast side. See more..
  13. 4.5 Enchanted Highway (276 reviews)
    - Enchanted Highway - North Dakota
    Scenic Drives
    Enchanted Highway image
    Large, man-made sculptures line this scenic highway. See more..
  14. 4.5 Painted Canyon Overlook (269 reviews)
    - Beautiful Views
    Historic Walking Areas
    Painted Canyon Overlook image
    Begin your visit to the Teddy Roosevelt National Park with a spectacular view of the Badlands, a flat desert landscape broken by petrified wood and rock formations. See more..
  15. 4.5 Fort Abraham Lincoln State Park (254 reviews)
    - Change Your Plans - This is a Must-See Location
    Sunday: 8:00 AM - 10:00 PM Spent 2-3 hours State Parks • Playgrounds
    Fort Abraham Lincoln State Park image
    Rich in both military and early Native American history, Fort Abraham Lincoln State Park is your destination! The North Dakota Parks and Recreation Department is the state agency charged with administering selected parks and recreation areas that are deemed to have state-wide or regional significance. In addition, the department has responsibility for the following functions: ◾Off-highway vehicle planning and safety program ◾Snowmobile safety programs and trails ◾Nature Preserves Act ◾Outdoor recreation grants and statewide recreation planning ◾State Scenic Byways Program The mission of the North Dakota Parks and Recreation Department is to provide and enhance outdoor recreation opportunities through diverse parks and programs that conserve the state's natural diversity. Fort Abraham Lincoln State Park in North Dakota is one of the outstanding historic areas within the state. The park is made historically important because within its boundaries are the ruins of On-A-Slant Mandan Indian Village and the Fort Abraham Lincoln cavalry and infantry posts. Fort Abraham Lincoln State Park is located 7 miles south of Mandan, ND, on Highway 1806. For those touring the historic fort buildings and Mandan Village, interpretive passes are required in addition to the vehicle entrance fee. There are daily tours of the Custer House and the On-A-Slant Indian village (May - September). Amenities ◾1,006 acres ◾Campground ◾Electrical ◾Reservations ◾RV Dump station ◾Showers ◾Cabins ◾Visitor center ◾Historic buildings ◾Interpretive tours ◾Picnic shelters ◾Playground ◾Horse corrals See more..
  16. 4.5 Roosevelt Park Zoo (206 reviews)
    - Phenomenal smallish zoo
    Sunday: Spent 1-2 hours Zoos
    Roosevelt Park Zoo image
    Roosevelt Park Zoo was established in 1921, making it the oldest zoo in North Dakota. Home to more than 65 species (170 individuals), our residents include: giraffe, lion, okapi, black-footed penguins, red panda, amur tiger, camel, bear, otter, wolf, bison and many more. Plus an aviary and children's zoo. We are open year-round, building new frequently. Can see everything in a quick hour or take your time for a full day trip. See more..
  17. 4.5 Chateau de Mores State Historic Site (188 reviews)
    - Very good museum and home, but know the facts about the man it honors
    Sunday: 8:30 AM - 5:30 PM Spent 1-2 hours Historic Sites • History Museums
    Chateau de Mores State Historic Site image
    Summer Hours: 8:30am - 5:30pm MST, Daily. Last tickets sold at 4:30pm MST. Covers entry to the Interpretive Center and Chateau de Morès. Off-Season Hours: 9:00am - 5:00pm MST, Tuesday-Saturday. Last tickets sold at 4:00pm MST. Covers entry to Interpretive Center. Located SW of Medora, the site interprets the North Dakota ambitions of Antoine de Vallombrosa, the Marquis de Morès, who arrived in 1883. His enterprises included a beef packing plant, stagecoach line, freighting company, refrigerated railway cars, cattle, and sheep raising, land ownership, and a new town named Medora in honor of his wife. See more..
  18. 4.5 Fargo Air Museum (188 reviews)
    - Interested in air plans this is a nice museum to visit
    Sunday: 10:00 AM - 1:00 PM Spent 1-2 hours Speciality Museums • Points of Interest & Landmarks • History Museums
    Fargo Air Museum image
    Located just off I-29 interstate, The Fargo Air Museum is an easily accessed pet friendly, must-stop location. North Dakota's premiere aviation destination, the Fargo Air Museum's dual hangars are home to aircraft of all eras - from a modern unmanned reconnaissance drone to the "most accurate recreation of a Wright Brothers' flyer the Smithsonian Institute has ever seen." A "flying" museum, many of the airplanes occasionally take to the sky, a unique feature not found in the vast majority of the nation's static-display air museums. More than just a simple place to display its many aircraft, military memorabilia and exhibits, the Fargo Air Museum also houses one of the midwest's largest Aviation libraries. In addition, the museum hosts educational day-camps, speakers and seminars for flight fans of all ages to enjoy. The Fargo Air Museum is a fantastic choice for a unique venue for corporate & private events and has quickly become a local favorite for hosting wedding ceremonies and receptions. Please email for event rental information. Located across the street from the Fargodome, the museum is also surrounded with dining opportunities and is conveniently just moments away from the Fargo's Hector International Airport. See more..
  19. 4.5 North Unit (182 reviews)
    - Our Dream Came True!!!!
    National Parks
    North Unit image
    One half of Theodore Roosevelt National Park, separated from the rest of the park by almost 50 miles. See more..
  20. 4.5 Badlands Overlook (175 reviews)
    - Great views (but be quiet).
    Spent < 1 hour Lookouts
    Badlands Overlook image
    This is the last overlook after 24 miles of driving before you have to turn around on the former “Scenic Loop” road. There is a small parking area and great views of the vista. Just remember to be courteous. We wanted just a minute to take in the views, wind and everything nature had to offer but a man had to tell other travelers (loudly) of all the places he has been. So, we enjoyed the views but the company not so much. We quickly left and headed back. See more..
  21. 4.5 Newman Outdoor Field (161 reviews)
    - Beautiful Stadium
    Sunday: Arenas & Stadiums
    Newman Outdoor Field image
    What a great place to take in a baseball game! Due to the COVID 19 pandemic I had been missing baseball something fierce, but I was able to take in a Fargo-Moorhead Redhawks game at this wonderful stadium. It was a beautiful weather day, the stadium is quite nice for an Independent League team, and for a couple of hours things seemed "normal". If you have a chance to see a game here I recommend you take it. See more..
  22. 4.5 Fort Union Trading Post (158 reviews)
    - Visit when it’s not crowded!
    Sunday: 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM Historic Sites
    Fort Union Trading Post image
    The Grandest Fort on the Upper Missouri River Between 1828 and 1867, Fort Union was the most important fur trade post on the Upper Missouri River. Here, the Assiniboine and six other Northern Plains Indian Tribes exchanged buffalo robes and smaller furs for goods from around the world, including cloth, guns, blankets, and beads. A bastion of peaceful coexistence, the post annually traded over 25,000 buffalo robes and $100,000 in merchandise. See more..
  23. 4.5 Missouri River (143 reviews)
    - Beautiful Stretch of Water
    Bodies of Water
    Missouri River image
    The Missouri River as it passes through Bismarck is a beautiful sight. Wide and calm and the perfect location for people to enjoy the activities that the river provides. we saw many kayakers, boaters and water skiers enjoying the water. Keelboat park sits along the banks and a great place to enjoy watching the river. See more..
  24. 4.5 West Acres Shopping Center (124 reviews)
    - A step into the past
    Sunday: 12:00 PM - 6:00 PM Shopping Malls
    West Acres Shopping Center image
    As the region's premier shopping destination, West Acres Shopping Center is home to over 120 stores, including 4 major department stores, and exclusive stores. See more..
  25. 4.5 Lewis & Clark Interpretive Center (LCIC) (123 reviews)
    - Touring The North Dakota Lewis & Clark Interpretive Center
    Sunday: 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM Spent 1-2 hours History Museums
    Lewis & Clark Interpretive Center (LCIC) image
    The Lewis & Clark Interpretive Center stands at the crossroads of culture and commerce on the Northern Plains. When Lewis & Clark arrived at the Mandan and Hidatsa villages in 1804, they simply became the most famous of many people who visited in search of knowledge and trade. Today's visitors will experience engaging exhibits, hundreds of period artifacts, world-class art collections and friendly interpreters who tell the story of the Lewis and Clark Expedition like never before. The Lewis & Clark Interpretive Center highlights some of the area's most famous of countless travelers and residents over hundreds of years along this special stretch of the Missouri River. Each gallery tells the story of a different one of these groups. Self-guided tours, augmented by our nationally-certified interpretive staff, offer visitors a focused view of the incredible heritage of the Northern Plains. See more..
  26. 4.5 North Dakota Cowboy Hall of Fame (122 reviews)
    - Outstanding Museum
    Speciality Museums
    North Dakota Cowboy Hall of Fame image
    We had dedicated a day in the town to museums while staying in Medora, and glad we did, it was worth the visit. The staff are really helpful and clearly (and with good reason !) take pride in their museum. The first floor was packed with interesting exhibits on Lakota life, ranching, prairie life, and all things bison. Second floor was displays on rodeo life. Our dwell time here was about at least an hour - so much too see. The staff told me people slip in to escape the midday heat, then stay for the true interesting experience. Well done town of Medora, this museum is outstanding See more..
  27. 4.5 Laughing Sun Brewing Co. (107 reviews)
    - Come for the beer, stay for the BBQ (or music, or axe throwing)
    Sunday: 11:00 AM - 8:00 PM Spent 1-2 hours Breweries
    Laughing Sun Brewing Co. image
    Started in 2012, Laughing Sun Brewing Company is Bismarck, North Dakota's first brewpub. Laughing Sun produces quality hand crafted American Ales and specialty beers. Laughing Sun's mission with their pub is to have a place where the local community can feel welcome and involved. Their walls feature the work of local artists. Their stage is open to local musicians, poets, writers, and thinkers with original compositions and ideas. Laughing Sun Brewing Co. is all about freshly crafted American ales, served in a community-friendly setting. Local art on the walls, live music on the Sun Stage, Axe Throwing, board games on our shelves, and a rotating tap list of fresh handcrafted brews. Don't forget to try our Award Winning house-smoked BBQ, made daily! See more..
  28. 4.5 Bully Pulpit Golf Course (106 reviews)
    - Stunning Scenery
    Golf Courses
    Bully Pulpit Golf Course image
    The reviews I read were spot on. Everyone was very helpful and pleasant. My husband and 12 year old golfed and I tagged along. The last 8 holes were spectacular. My husband said it was a great course to play and he never thought he would get a chance. There are some steep slopes but the carts have auto braking and they worked very well. I didn't feel scared only excited. It was a little rainy and we had a tee time delay due lightning. They have good Saftey protocols. We didn't see any snakes, but lots of other critters. This is rattlesnake country so be aware. Be prepared to lose a few balls unless your a master. You may find a few as well. Excellent ice filled water stations in a few places. Nice coolers attached to their carts for your bevs. We had mild weather and I think this course would be much more difficult in extreme hot and humid weather cycles. Probably a bucket list golf course for golfers. Highly recommend. See more..
  29. 4.5 Salem Sue - World's Largest Fiberglass Cow (103 reviews)
    - You cant' miss this when driving by
    Points of Interest & Landmarks
    Salem Sue - World's Largest Fiberglass Cow image
    So yes we like to stop at odd places while traveling. Salem Sue is a great stop. You have to take the dirt road up the hill to a small parking area but it is a good road. Sue is bigger than you think when you get close and you can see it from miles away which is fun. Definitely stop and take a look you will not be dissapointed. See more..
  30. 4.5 Fort Mandan State Historic Site (98 reviews)
    - Interesting place!
    Spent 1-2 hours Historic Sites
    Fort Mandan State Historic Site image
    Visitors can step back in time at the reconstructed Fort Mandan, a fully furnished, full-size replica of the fort in which the Lewis and Clark Expedition overwintered in 1804-1805. Their time here was characterized by the hospitality of the Mandan and Hidatsa peoples. In fact, this is where they met and built friendships with such important figures as Sacagawea, Toussaint Charbonneau and Sheheke-Shote. Available by guided tour only, weather permitting. Many great learning experiences are available at Fort Mandan. Join one of the guided tours that depart at regular intervals throughout the day. Our interpretive staff is always on hand to bring the stories of that winter to life through programs on a wide array of related topics. Exhibits in the Visitor Center reveal that winter in greater depth, while a children's play area allows young visitors to discover history with costumes, camp supplies, and more. Our museum store offers a great selection of souvenirs, beverages, and snacks. See more..
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  1. Points of Interest & Landmarks
  2. Architectural Buildings
  3. Churches & Cathedrals
  4. Historic Sites
  5. Art Museums
  6. Speciality Museums
  7. History Museums
  8. Religious Sites
  9. Bridges
  10. Historic Walking Areas
  11. Gardens
  12. Mountains
  13. Wineries & Vineyards
  14. Nature & Wildlife Areas
  15. Speciality & Gift Shops
  16. Private Tours
  17. Taxis & Shuttles
  18. Health Clubs
  19. Horseback Riding Tours
  20. Lookouts
  21. Monuments & Statues
  22. Bodies of Water
  23. Theaters
  24. National Parks
  25. Hiking Trails
  26. Game & Entertainment Centers
  27. Escape Games
  28. Adrenaline & Extreme Tours
  29. Ranches
  30. Shopping Malls
  31. Water Parks
  32. Amusement & Theme Parks
  33. Observatories & Planetariums
  34. Children's Museums
  35. Flea & Street Markets
  36. Visitor Centers
  37. Sports Camps & Clinics
  38. Breweries
  39. Ghost Towns
  40. Golf Courses
  41. Movie Theaters
  42. Art Galleries
  43. Antique Shops
  44. Educational sites
  45. Sports Complexes
  46. Government Buildings
  47. Theatre & Performances
  48. Horse Tracks
  49. Cemeteries
  50. Military Museums
  51. Scenic Drives
  52. Valleys
  53. Operas
  54. Science Museums
  55. Ski & Snowboard Areas
  56. Libraries
  57. Playgrounds
  58. Arenas & Stadiums
  59. Farmers Markets
  60. Battlefields
  61. Bars & Clubs
  62. Fishing Charters & Tours
  63. Casinos
  64. Convention Centers
  65. Cultural Events
  66. Civic Centres
  67. State Parks
  68. Bike Tours
  69. Military Bases & Facilities
  70. Gear Rentals
  71. Symphonies
  72. Wine Bars
  73. Rail Services
  74. Shooting Ranges
  75. Auto Racing Tracks
  76. Off-Road & ATV Trails
  77. Bowling Alleys
  78. Yoga & Pilates
  79. Miniature Golf
  80. Airport Shops
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