NEWS RELEASE: North Dakota Road Trip: Have a Wahpper of a good time along I-29

Travel trends have changed during the COVID-19 pandemic and more people are traveling by automobile. During the first two weeks of August in 2020, Americans recorded nearly 12 million long-distance (100-500 mile) road trips per day compared to 8.6 million in 2019 - a 37.6 percent increase. The shift in travel behavior may be an example of the “new normal” when it comes to how Americans will travel to more distant destinations.

Beginning this month and running through the fall, North Dakota Tourism will present a road trip each month that includes exciting things to see and do, quaint places to stay and unique dining found along each popular route. Let this be your starting point for a multi-day adventure through your own “back yard.”

Interstate 29

Interstate 29 along the eastern border, is a connection to fun roadside attractions, historical sites and cities boasting vibrant downtowns and eclectic shops through the Red River Valley between Hankinson and Pembina.

Day 1

The first day could start with breakfast at Dakota Magic Casino’s Twin Buffalo Grill, then it’s out back for 27 holes of golf at Dakota Winds Golf Course. Just up I-29, Wahpeton is home to “Wahpper,” the world’s largest catfish, and hundreds of live animals that put on a show at Chahinkapa Zoo. Red Door Art Gallery feeds the inner artist and the Boiler Room feeds the stomach before turning in for the night.

Day 2

The following morning begins with coffee and a pastry from Dakota Coffee Company then off to Mooreton to explore Bagg Bonanza Farm’s buildings, a throwback to the era of bonanza farming. Next head to Fort Abercrombie to explore blockhouses and a museum at North Dakota’s first military post. Arriving in Fargo, let classic music serenade you at Vinyl Taco or enjoy the neighborhood vibe at Luna, Rhombus Guys or the Wurst Bier Hall. Walk it off with a stroll to the Plains Art Museum and some boutique shopping at Mint + Basil, Kittsona, The Red Silo and so many more. Cap the day with a visit to the Fargo Air Museum or take in a RedHawks baseball game at Newman Outdoor Field. Overnight downtown at the art-inspired Hotel Donaldson.

Day 3

In the morning, enjoy breakfast at BernBaum’s, recently featured on the Food Network’s Diners, Drive-ins and Dives, before heading to Lindenwood Park to rent kayaks for a refreshing morning on the Red River. Hit up the Food Truck Park for a quick lunch before getting on the road to Grand Forks. There, stretch your legs on the Greenway and stay downtown to shop unique boutiques and art galleries such as Badman Design to find those one-of-a-kind gifts and dine at Sky’s before retiring to the Canad Inn.

Day 4

Jump-start your day with a cup of coffee and a scone at Urban Stampede and soon it’s off to the North Dakota Museum of Art and Ralph Engelstad Arena. Grab lunch at the iconic Red Pepper then it’s back on the road through some of the most fertile farmland in the world. The town of Drayton is known for trophy catfish. Get some tackle and try landing a whopper. As you near the Canadian border, the seven-story viewing tower at Pembina State Museum looms ahead. It offers a bird’s-eye view of the surrounding valley and the museum gallery interprets the history of the area.

This is just a sampling of the interesting things to see and do and places to eat and sleep. Create your own road trip using these tips, or go to for more options as you follow your curiosity, not the crowds.