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Top 17 Hidden Gems to visit in North Dakota

  1. The Theodore Roosevelt National Park – This splendid and peaceful park located in Medora is a proper gem for nature enthusiasts. Visitors can spot an array of wildlife, like bison and wild horses, and go for a ramble on the park’s hiking trails or take a scenic drive through the area.
  2. The Fort Union Trading Post National Historic Site – This absorbing historic site located in Williston offers visitors the chance to travel back in time and learn about the fur trade and the American West. Visitors can snoop around the restored fort and trade store and see demos of traditional crafts and skills.
  3. The Knife River Indian Villages National Historic Site – Explore the culture and history of the Hidatsa, Mandan, and Arikara people at this historic site located in Stanton. Visitors can wander around the remains of several earth lodge villages, see traditional artifacts, and learn about the everyday lives and customs of these indigenous communities.
  4. The Lewis & Clark Riverboat – Climb aboard this charming and historic riverboat located in Bismarck and learn about the history of the Lewis & Clark Expedition. Visitors can take a guided tour of the boat and see genuine replicas of items used on the expedition.
  5. The North Dakota Heritage Center & State Museum – Uncover the captivating history and culture of North Dakota at this unique and informative museum located in Bismarck. Visitors can see exhibitions on everything from prehistoric times to the present day, including dinosaur fossils, Native American artifacts, and agricultural tools.
  6. The North Dakota State Capitol – Immerse yourself in the history of North Dakota’s government and take in the stunning architecture of this majestic building located in Bismarck. Visitors can explore the Governor’s suite, the House and Senate chambers, and marvel at the incredible artwork and design.
  7. The Fort Abraham Lincoln State Park – Step back in time and experience the Wild West era through the eyes of General George Custer at this captivating site in Mandan. Visitors can explore the reconstructed fort, Custer’s home, and other historic buildings, as well as venture out on the park’s scenic hiking and cycling trails.
  8. The Maah Daah Hey Trail – Lace up your hiking boots and prepare for an unforgettable journey through the breathtaking Badlands. The Maah Daah Hey Trail offers visitors the chance to bask in the beauty of the rugged terrain and engage in a variety of outdoor activities, including horseback riding, mountain biking, and camping.
  9. The Fort Buford State Historic Site – Fully immerse yourself in the history of the American West and the life of George Armstrong Custer at this historic site located in Williston. Visitors can see the remains of the fort, including the barracks, stockade, and cemetery, and learn about the military and civilian life at the fort. Jolly good!
  10. Experience the winter home of the Lewis and Clark Expedition at Fort Mandan, a meticulously reconstructed fort that takes you back to 1804-05. Discover their incredible journey and learn about the challenges they faced in this fascinating historical site.
  11. Immerse yourself in the opulence of the Chateau de Mores State Historic Site, featuring a stunning 26-room mansion and other historic buildings. Learn about the influential Marquis de Mores and his impact on the region in a captivating journey through time.
  12. Get ready for an adventure at Fort Ransom State Park, offering thrilling activities like hiking, biking, horseback riding, and cross-country skiing on its scenic trails. You can also enjoy fishing, boating, and swimming in the park’s refreshing lake.
  13. Discover the breathtaking beauty of the Pembina Gorge State Recreation Area, home to the stunning Pembina Gorge. Enjoy a variety of activities such as hiking, biking, horseback riding, and cross-country skiing on its picturesque trails, or take a dip in the lake for some refreshing fun.
  14. The Fort Totten State Historic Site – This site was a military fort established in 1867. Visitors can see the restored buildings and learn about the history of the fort and the Native American tribes who lived in the area.
  15. The Sheyenne River Valley National Scenic Byway – This 63-mile stretch of road meanders through the stunning Sheyenne River Valley. Along the way, intrepid travelers can stop and gawk at some truly lovely scenic overlooks, fascinating historic sites, and places to frolic in the great outdoors.
  16. The Dakota Zoo – Come face to face with some of North America’s finest beasts at this thrilling zoo. Get up close and personal with grizzly bears, bison, eagles, and other exotic creatures from around the world. Learn about their quirky habits and habitats and why it’s never a good idea to try and give a grizzly bear a high-five.
  17. The North Dakota Petroleum Museum – Step into the world of black gold and discover how oil has shaped the Great Plains. From interactive exhibits to intriguing artifacts, this museum covers the science and tech behind oil exploration and production. Who knew that crude oil could be so…fascinating?