Last Updated on March 26, 2024 by Kristin

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South Dakota’s cultural hub offers many opportunities to admire the beauty of Big Sioux Falls rushing through the city. However, Sioux Falls is also a great starting point for road trips ranging from big-city attractions to famous historical landmarks. Here are the best road trips from Sioux Falls.

Fabulous Road Trips from Sioux Falls

Omaha, Nebraska

181 miles / 2 hr. 40 mins.

Nebraska’s largest city and cultural capital is one of the easiest road trips from Sioux Falls. Start by visiting animals including penguins and gorillas at the Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium. Or opt for a more luxurious afternoon with a visit to the historic Joslyn Castle & Gardens mansion. Or maybe spend an afternoon browsing an extensive array of art galleries, boutiques, craft breweries and gourmet restaurants in the Old Market neighborhood.

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Fargo, North Dakota

243 miles / 3 hr. 20 mins.

Just more than three hours north of Sioux Falls lies Fargo, North Dakota’s largest city. Head to the Red River Zoo to visit red pandas. Or pay homage to aviation greats at the expansive Fargo Air Museum. Browse modern art exhibits at the Plains Art Museum. Then eat your way around the world by sampling tacos, Korean corn dogs or veggie samosas at the Red River Market’s varied food trucks.

Minneapolis, Minnesota

237 miles / 3 hr. 43 mins.

The bustling “Twin Cities” of Minneapolis and neighboring Saint Paul make for an exciting road trip from Sioux Falls. Travelers flock to the metropolis for any number of reasons — to catch a baseball game, browse museums, enjoy concerts and enjoy outdoor attractions. For an afternoon of culture, browse the Minneapolis Institute of Art, Weisman Art Museum, Walker Art Center and outdoor Minneapolis Sculpture Garden. For a dose of city history, check out the Mill City Museum to see what was once the world’s biggest flour mill. At night, head to the North Loop neighborhood for gourmet food and speakeasies.

Des Moines, Iowa

283 miles / 4 hr. 2 mins.

Iowa’s capital may just be the perfect mix of city life and outdoor attractions, offering a sprawling downtown farmer’s market on Saturdays and several scenic parks within city limits. Visit the Blank Park Zoo and Science Center of Iowa for family fun, or spend an afternoon admiring an impressive collection of contemporary art at the free Des Moines Art Center and adjacent Pappajohn Sculpture Park. For lunch or dinner, head to the Historic East Village neighborhood to browse more than 90 places to eat, shop and drink.

Mount Rushmore National Monument

368 miles / 5 hr. 15 mins.

Arguably the most iconic road trip from Sioux Falls heads due west, crossing the state to Mount Rushmore National Memorial. This area in the western part of South Dakota is a tourism hub, with its focal point being the famous monument carved with the faces of four presidents. However, there is much more to see. The closest city to Mount Rushmore, Rapid City, boasts a geology museum, reptile park and collection of dinosaur sculptures. Another must-see attraction in the area is Deadwood, a historic town featuring saloons, museums and other remnants of the gold rush era. Finally, outdoor enthusiasts should stop by Badlands National Park to enjoy canyons, fossil displays and wildlife like bison.

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Kansas City, Missouri

370 miles / 5 hr. 18 mins.

Kansas City’s Berkley Riverfront is quickly becoming the coolest neighborhoods in this essential Midwest destination, while the Riverfront Heritage Trail invites pedestrians, bikers and active travelers of all kinds to embrace their natural surroundings. Another hot attraction, Rock Island Bridge is America’s first entertainment district over a river. Coffee shops, bars, event spaces, pathways for pedestrians and bikers, restaurants and more attractions fill the bridge, creating an entirely unique venue suspended above the Kansas River.