Heritage center

30 Must-See Places in North Dakota

North Dakota has uncrowded, wide-open spaces, and amazing vistas that take your breath away at must-see national and state parks, and recreational areas. Its urban hubs offer all the amenities you are looking for along with a friendly smile. There's lasting memories and adventure to be found in North Dakota at so many unique, and affordable destinations so fill your itinerary with more than two dozen things to see and do on a tour of North Dakota.

Girl runs on boardwalk at Fort Buford State Historic Site
Missouri-Yellowstone Confluence Interpretive Center (MYCIC)

Historically significant area includes the Missouri-Yellowstone Confluence Interpretive Center and Fort Buford, a supply depot for the U.S. Army during the Indian wars and the site of Chief Sitting Bull's surrender in July 1881.

Fort Union Trading Post
Fort Union Trading Post National Historic Site

Home to John Jacob Astor's powerful American Fur Company, Fort Union Trading Post dominated the peaceful fur trade on the upper Missouri River between 1829 and 1867. Today, see museum exhibits in the Bourgeois House and shop for gifts and souvenirs in the reconstructed Indian Trade House.

Turtle Mountain Chippewa Heritage Center
Turtle Mountain Chippewa Heritage Center

See artifacts relating to the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa history at Turtle Mountain Chippewa Heritage Center. The vibrant multi-cultural community includes traditions from the Ojibwe (Anishinaabe) and Metis/Cree people.

Scandinavian Heritage Park
Scandinavian Heritage Park

Celebrate the heritage of all five Scandinavian countries all in one place! See the 60-foot-tall full-scale replica of the Gol Stave Church built without nails, an original Norwegian log house, a Nordic-style visitors center and more at this 14-acre park.

Maah Daah Hey Trail

The Maah Daah Hey Trail is a 144-mile EPIC single-track for hiking, biking and horseback riding through the Badlands, Theodore Roosevelt National Park and the Old West town of Medora. 

Lake Sakakawea at Government Bay
Lake Sakakawea and Garrison Dam

The largest lake in North Dakota and the largest man-made lake within one state, Lake Sakakawea covers 609 square miles behind Garrison Dam. It's named for the young Indian woman who accompanied Lewis and Clark on their expedition.

Riverdale, ND 58565
United States

Knife River Indian Villages
Knife River Indian Villages National Historic Site

Visit the 1804 meeting place of Sakakawea and Lewis and Clark. On the ruins of an ancient Indian village last occupied in 1845 today sits a state-of-the-art museum dedicated to preserving the culture of the Plains Indians. A reconstructed earthlodge contains artifacts from the Plains culture.

Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center
Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center

Stop into this world-class interpretive center along the route Lewis and Clark traveled. Exhibits focus on artifacts from every tribe the explorers encountered, showcasing the culture of the Mandan Indians and the winter of 1804-05. Fort Mandan is two miles west of the interpretive center.

On-A-Slant Village
Fort Abraham Lincoln State Park

At Fort Abraham Lincoln State Park, history goes back 300-plus years to when On-A-Slant Village was home to the Mandan Indians. Today it's a 977-acre park on the banks of the Missouri River, and its exhibits relate to the life of the Mandans and the military history of the fort. Tour the home of General George and Libbie Custer and the 7th Cavalry.

North Dakota State Capitol and Heritage Center
North Dakota State Capitol

The collection of Plains Indians artifacts found here at the North Dakota Heritage Center and State Museum is second only to the Smithsonian's. See displays on the state's rich military and agricultural history and step back into the time of the dinosaurs. The 19-story Capitol, built in the early 1930s, has a top-floor observation deck. 

Dakota Zoo in Bismarck
Dakota Zoo

See more than 600 animals from more than 125 species at the Dakota Zoo, home to mountain lions, moose, grizzly bears, river otters and more.

Dinosaur fossil
Pioneer Trails Regional Museum

The museum features dinosaur fossils and other archaeological, genealogical and paleontological findings presented to the public. Traveling displays rotate regularly. 

Enchanted Highway
Enchanted Highway

Classic roadside art, in the forms of giant metal statues, rise from the prairie alongside the Enchanted Highway between Gladstone and Regent in western North Dakota. It's selfie heaven.

Regent, ND
United States

Dickinson Museum Center
Dickinson Museum Center

Don't let the life-sized Triceratops and Pachycephalosaurus outside the entrance scare you away. Real skeletons excavated from the area are found inside, in addition to a Triceratops skull named "Bill" and a collection of minerals from all over the world. The gift shop has unique souvenirs like insects in amber and casts of dinosaur teeth and claws.

46 W Museum Dr
Dickinson, ND 58601
United States

Medora Musical
Medora Musical, Pitchfork Fondue and Chateau de Mores State

Tour the 26-room Chateau de Mores, built in 1883 by the founder of Medora, eat a steak cooked cowboy style at the Pitchfork Fondue and settle in for the Medora Musical in the outdoor Burning Hills Amphitheatre.

3426 Chateau Rd
Medora, ND 58645
United States

Hiking at the south unit of Theodore Roosevelt National Park
Theodore Roosevelt National Park - South Unit

Admire the 26th president's contribution to conservation at this south unit of the park. The North Dakota Badlands provide a scenic backdrop, and you may spot buffalo, deer, elk, bighorn sheep, wild horses, mule deer and prairie dogs on the loop drive.

Summer view at Riverbend Overlook at the north unit of Theodore Roosevelt National Park
Theodore Roosevelt National Park - North Unit

Get spectacular views along the 14-mile scenic drive, which features turnouts with interpretive signs. Self-guided nature trails take you through coulees and breaks. Visit the prairie dog town, Oxbow Overlook and the Edge of Glacier Pullout.

Hiking at Little Missouri State Park
Little Missouri State Park

Little Missouri State Park offers a wilderness experience in the picturesque North Dakota Badlands. Hike or bring a horse and explore the extensive trail system (corrals are available).

World's Largest Buffalo Monument
National Buffalo Museum & Store

The World's Largest Buffalo Monument towers over the city of Jamestown and the adjacent National Buffalo Museum. See the live bison herd on site.

Devils Lake
Devils Lake

North Dakota's four-season recreational area boasts excellent open-water and ice fishing, boating camping and hunting.

Devils Lake, ND 58301
United States

International Peace Garden
International Peace Garden

The tribute to peace between the U.S. and Canada encompasses 2,300 acres of natural beauty; two pristine freshwater lakes, scenic hiking and driving trails, wildflowers, waterfalls and a large variety of North American birds and animals. 

Pembina Gorge
Pembina Gorge

The Pembina Gorge near the Canadian border at Walhalla is a four-season playground with trails, a kayaking river, Frostfire Ski and Snowboard Area, Frostfire Theatre and a mountain biking terrain park.

3422 Chateau Rd
Medora, ND 58645
United States

White Horse Hill
White Horse Hill National Game Preserve

Bison, elk, prairie dogs and migratory birds are plentiful at White Horse Hill on the shores of Devils Lake. Hiking trails and an auto tour wind through the preserve.

Ronald Reagan Minuteman Missile State Historic Site
Ronald Reagan Minuteman Missile State Historic Site

Last remnants of the 321st Missile Wing. It tells the story of the Cold War years in North Dakota. Oscar-Zero Missile Alert Facility is the underground launch site and November-33 Launch Facility is a silo.

Orangutan at Chahinkapa Zoo
Chahinkapa Zoo

More than 300 animals representing six continents and 100 species make the zoo their home. Otters, gibbons, zebras, grizzly bears, spider monkeys, Bengal tigers and kangaroos are just a few of the favorites. Tal, the only orangutan in North Dakota, is waiting to greet you.

Family at Fargo Air Museum
Fargo Air Museum

Premier flying museum in the Upper Midwest has historic flyable airplanes, including P-51 Mustang, Duggy - "Smile in the Sky" airplane, TBM Avenger, Corsair, L Birds, PT-19 Fairchild, Pitts Special, Wright Flyer replica, Ag Cat and more.

Bonanzaville
Bonanzaville, USA

43 historic buildings and more 400,000 artifacts, including Fargo's first house, Donbrinz Schoolhouse, St. John's Church, Embden Train depot, Houston House, automobile museum, tractor museum, airplane museum and more.

Plains Art Museum
Plains Art Museum

Accredited fine art museum in the heart of historic downtown Fargo. Includes the Blue Goose Cafe, The Store, exhibitions, performances, special events, tours, classes. 

North Dakota Museum of Art
North Dakota Museum of Art

Three galleries house exhibitions of regional, national and international art. The museum is recognized nationally for its commissioning of landmark works of art anchored in the landscape, history and culture of the Northern Plains.

 

Pembina State Museum
Pembina State Museum

Discover 100 million years of regional history from the Cretaceous Age to contemporary times in the permanent exhibit gallery. Also features temporary exhibit gallery, museum store and seven-story viewing tower.