Table of Contents

11 Interesting And Beautiful Places To Visit In North Dakota

From its sprawling badlands and picturesque plains to its hardy and supportive people, North Dakota has so much to offer the curious traveler ready to explore.

If you’re making plans to see North Dakota, check out our list of 11 interesting and beautiful places to visit before you go! Adventure awaits!

Looking for more US travel inspiration?

Check out these guides on the best places to visit in…

1. Theodore Roosevelt National Park

Located in far west North Dakota, Theodore Roosevelt National Park is famous for its beautiful backdrop of rugged badlands and up-close encounters with wildlife. Plus, the area once played a pivotal role in the life of one of the USA’s most famous presidents, Theodore Roosevelt.

Divided into three distinct sections, visitors to this national park will love its scenic drives scoping out the rocky formations of the badlands. Be on the lookout for herds of wild buffalo and wild horses, and if you’re lucky, some sightings of petrified trees.

Full of adventure and history, you’ll catch an up close and personal glimpse of this unique season in Theodore Roosevelt’s life. He once said he would not have been president if it weren’t for his experiences in North Dakota, and when you go, it’s easy to see why this land made such an impact.

The expansive badlands in Theodore Roosevelt National Park

2. Downtown Fargo – Fargo, ND

While much of the state is rural, you can experience North Dakota’s fun city scene in Fargo, the state’s largest city. When you go, be sure to spend time in Downtown Fargo, especially along Broadway Drive.

Full of lively shops, breweries, and restaurants, it’s a great place to engage the city’s culture. The jaunt is even more fun at night, where you can see the historic Fargo Theatre lit up in its full neon glow.

A visit to nearby North Dakota State University’s campus is a fascinating excursion as well, where you’ll see firsthand one of college football’s greatest dynasties up close.

Walking along Broadway in Downtown Fargo

3. International Peace Garden – Dunseith, ND

Often nicknamed the Peace Garden State, North Dakota is famous for its unique landmark on the Canadian border, the International Peace Garden.

With one half in the United States and the other half in Canada, you’ll want to make the trek up to the border to experience 2,400 acres of serene and beautiful garden landscapes.

Founded in 1932, the International Peace Garden was built as a symbol of peace and friendship for nations everywhere. Today, you’ll feel inspired by the garden’s hiking, birding, scenic drives, waterfalls, and over 150,000 flowers on display.

4. Enchanted Highway – Regent, ND

With North Dakota so spread out, you’ll likely spend a lot time on the road while you explore, so why not make it fun? Consider making the detour down the Enchanted Highway, the ultimate roadside attraction.

Stretching for 32 miles between Interstate 94 and the town of Regent, the Enchanted Highway contains the world’s largest scrap metal sculptures, including the largest verified by the Guinness Book of World Records at 90 feet high.

Each was sculpted by a local retired school teacher and depicts scenes from life in North Dakota. Get your cameras ready for this offbeat experience!

5. Knife River Indian Villages National Historic Site

North Dakota has a rich Native American history, and many Native Americans still call the state home today. An excellent place to relive this history is Knife River Indian Villages National Historic Site.

Visitors can immerse themselves in a reconstructed North Plains Indian Village and its distinctive earthlodges. Once there, it’s easy to imagine yourself wandering through a major Native American trade center while stepping back in time a few hundred years.

A fascinating museum onsite allows guests to see artifacts and exhibits featuring the Hidatsa people who lived in the area. In addition, you’ll want to check out the hiking trails along the Upper Missouri River for scenic views and birding opportunities.

6. Pitchfork Steak Fondue – Medora, ND

One of my favorite experiences in North Dakota, Medora’s Pitchfork Steak Fondue really captures the essence of the state’s culture well.

Located in the tourist-friendly town of Medora (which is worth exploring as well!), the Pitchfork Steak Fondue is just as it sounds, a chance to eat a fresh steak fondued by—you guessed it, pitchfork—but in a lively outdoor community atmosphere with sweeping views of the badlands!

There’s really nothing better than eating a tasty steak with all your friends (or friends you’ll soon make) in the great outdoors. Be sure to stay for some excellent sunset photos!

Steaks ready to be fondued

7. The “Center” of North America – Rugby, ND

In 1931, the US Geological Survey determined that the geographical center of North America was near Rugby, ND, and the town has embraced it ever since.

Today, the precise location is up for debate (other towns nearby have staked their claim), yet Rugby continues to draw tourists seeking to say they’ve been to the “center” of North America. During your North Dakota visit, you’ll want to join in on the fun and do this yourself!

Be sure to stop by the famous town monument marking the spot to snap a coveted selfie so everyone knows you’ve been there—and grab a t-shirt, magnet, or other souvenir to take home.

Read Post  Where to Stay in Berlin: The 5 Best Areas to Stay

8. National Buffalo Museum – Jamestown, ND

The one animal that symbolizes North Dakota best is the American bison, AKA buffalo. To properly get to know this state symbol and American icon, you’ll want to make a visit to the National Buffalo Museum in Jamestown.

Here you can experience interactive exhibits that tell the story of the buffalo, its history, and its cultural impact. You’ll also learn about all the efforts to save the buffalo from near extinction and get to see these animals firsthand through the bison herds the museum maintains.

In addition, be sure to visit the nearby World’s Largest Buffalo Monument, a massive 60-ton buffalo statue, to see the magic of this animal on a grand scale.

North Dakota Buffalo

9. Scandinavian Heritage Park – Minot, ND

Many North Dakotans today have Scandinavian roots from settlers who came to the area within the last 200 years. A great place to experience the Scandinavian heritage and culture of the area is the Scandinavian Heritage Park in Minot.

The park provides an immersive outdoor museum with life-size exhibits dedicated to the five Scandinavian countries. Visitors can walk inside a replica Norwegian stave church, see a giant Swedish dala horse, admire a Danish windmill, and experience a Finnish sauna.

10. Medora Musical – Medora, ND

Located in the remote North Dakota badlands near Theodore Roosevelt National Park, the famous Medora Musical in Medora is a theatrical spectacle you won’t want to miss on your North Dakota vacation.

Performed in a beautiful outdoor amphitheater with the badlands as its backdrop, the long-running Medora Musical provides spectacular song and dance entertainment while weaving in the story of Theodore Roosevelt’s time in the state.

Full of inspiring and patriotic routines, fireworks, action, comedy, and horseback riding, this family-friendly show will stir your excitement and leave you cheering for more after the show ends!

The Medora Musical stage with the badlands in the background

11. Fort Union Trading Post National Historic Site

Along the state’s western border, the Fort Union Trading Post National Historic Site invites North Dakota visitors to enjoy a unique period in the area’s history—fur trading between Native Americans and European settlers.

Active from 1828 to 1867, Fort Union was the most important trading center in the area and a place of peaceful cooperation. Over 25,000 buffalo robes and other goods were exchanged each year.

When you go today, you’ll want to make time to connect with the living history interpreters to get a real sense of what this once booming place was like, as well as take a scenic hike along the Missouri River Trail.

Did we miss any of your favorite places in North Dakota?

Let us know in the comments if there are any more places in North Dakota that you would add to our list!

10 Best Places to Visit in North Dakota

Desolate and wild, yet scenic and beautiful, underpopulated North Dakota is one of the least-visited states in the whole country, although it certainly has a lot to offer visitors. While much of the state is covered in endless wheat fields, the badlands in the west are simply stunning, with the Theodore Roosevelt National Park an undoubted highlight.

Exploring the great outdoors in North Dakota is a rewarding experience, and horseback riding through the wilderness is truly unforgettable, as is camping under the stars. With some lovely cities and towns for you to explore, the local events and festivals on offer are fun and entertaining ways to learn more about the rich culture, heritage, and history of the people who live here.

10. Fort Union Trading Post [SEE MAP]

Fort Union Trading Post

© Chamey / Dreamstime

Located on the border with Montana and lying next to the Upper Missouri River, the Fort Union Trading Post is a reconstructed version of one that used to exist here in 1828. An important historical site, the post is where various Indian tribes came to exchange furs and buffalo skins for guns, beads, and blankets.

Visiting the Fort is an interesting experience; you gain insights into the culture, history, and importance of the site. Every June, the Rendezvous gathering allows visitors to watch actors bring the trading post’s past to life.

With educational and engaging year-round exhibitions, Fort Union is the perfect place for history lovers to learn more about North Dakota’s fascinating past.

9. International Peace Garden [SEE MAP]

International Peace Garden

Hugh Millward / Flickr

Nestled amidst the Turtle Mountains, the International Peace Garden lies right on the border with Canada and straddles the frontier between North Dakota and Manitoba. The garden is absolutely huge and is a tribute to the longstanding friendship and peace that exists between Americans and Canadians.

A beautiful place to visit, there are over 2,300 acres of gardens, lakes, wildflowers, and waterfalls that are home to many different species of birds and animals. With over 155,000 flowers planted in delightful displays, wandering around the International Peace Garden is a peaceful and relaxing affair.

Two floral flags of both nations chime every fifteen minutes and the lovely chimes perfectly complement the soothing trickle of water that you can hear in various parts of the garden.

8. Medora [SEE MAP]

Medora

Roderick Eime / Flickr

While many people simply use Medora as a gateway to the South Unit of the Theodore Roosevelt National Park, there is much about the historic town that makes it a place worth visiting on its own. Located in the badlands, Medora is blessed with breathtaking scenery and there are loads of great outdoor activities for you to enjoy, whether it’s horseback riding, hiking or camping.

For a small, laidback place, there are quite a few good restaurants that serve up hearty and delicious food – you will definitely notice a cowboy theme about town! Head to the nearby Chateau de Mores for an interesting look at the life of the former Marquis who lived here.

There is also a great museum which looks at what life in the area used to be like. In summer, Medora comes alive for the fun and festive Medora Musical – a Western-style musical that celebrates Roosevelt’s legacy.

7. Maah Daah Hey Trail [SEE MAP]

Maah Daah Hey Trail

Roderick Eime / Flickr

Linking the North Unit to the South Unit of Theodore Roosevelt National Park, the 144-mile Maah Daah Hey Trail is one of the best mountain biking trails in the country and is simply a delight to travel along.

Whether by foot, bike or horseback, the stunning badlands all around you are mesmerizing; wandering through the wilderness alone with your thoughts is a rewarding experience. Camping the night in the rugged terrain under the twinkling stars is magical, and you are really following in the footsteps of Teddy Roosevelt himself, who did the same journey all those years ago.

Well signposted and with amenities every twenty miles, visitors can either stay in one of the nearby towns or attempt to complete the whole trail in one go, camping along the way. With some breathtaking scenery on offer, the Maah Daah Hey Trail is a lovely outdoor adventure that will make you fall in love with the badlands.

Read Post  PUBLIC TRANSIT DIRECTIONS

6. Minot [SEE MAP]

Minot

Bobak Ha’Eri / Wikipedia

Since it was founded in 1886, Minot has become known as ‘Magic City,’ due to its rapid growth and expansion – which accounts for the somewhat haphazard sprawl of its outskirts. Although slightly grimy and run-down, the downtown is slowly being rejuvenated; new businesses, shops, and restaurants have been springing up of late.

While Minot is a laidback town, the city really comes alive during the fantastic North Dakota State Fair that takes place every July. Worth checking out are the nice museums around town, as well as Roosevelt Zoo. The Scandinavian Heritage Park is particularly fascinating, with Gol Stave Church the undoubted highlight.

Well worth stopping by, Minot is a great break when driving through the bleak landscape that surrounds it.

5. Grand Forks [SEE MAP]

Grand Forks

Tony Webster / Flickr

The third largest city in North Dakota, Grand Forks lies on the banks of the spectacularly named Red River of the North but is unfortunately prone to flooding. A lively college town, its cosmopolitan downtown is a bustling place, full of life.

The city has been rebuilt and revitalized since a tragic fire and flood in 1997. With a vibrant art and culture scene, as well as some great restaurants on offer, Grand Forks is a happening place with a lot going on.

Home to some interesting and educational museums, the city’s green spaces and riverside location mean there are loads of fun outdoor activities and watersports for visitors and locals alike to enjoy.

4. Bismarck [SEE MAP]

Bismarck

© Glenn Nagel / Dreamstime

While Bismarck’s continuing expansion means that the urban sprawl is slightly soulless and unattractive, the capital of the state’s small downtown is a great place to hang out; there are lots of nice restaurants, cafes, and shops, as well as the city’s main shopping mall.

Surrounded by wheat fields and situated in the Great Plains, summers in the state capital are lovely, while winters can drag on a bit. Although Bismarck is not blessed with many attractions, it has lots of great parks and trails for visitors to explore.

Sertoma Park, which lies along the banks of the Missouri River, is particularly nice. From here, many people visit the nearby Fort Abraham Lincoln State Park with its interesting historical sites.

3. Theodore Roosevelt National Park North Unit [SEE MAP]

Theodore Roosevelt National Park North Unit

© Renate Hartland / Dreamstime

The Theodore Roosevelt National Park is a beautiful place to visit due to the spectacular scenery and amazing wildlife. The park is divided into two sections. The North Unit is a great entry point for tourists to the Badlands; the visitor’s center has exhibits, short films and displays on the park’s history, animals and geography.

There are some great paths and trails that snake away from the center, and a short drive away is the Oxbow Overlook, which offers some fantastic views of the park. Walking amidst the fauna and flora is a revitalizing feeling – you may even catch a glimpse of some of the majestic animals that roam freely around the stunning scenery.

2. Fargo [SEE MAP]

Fargo

aj leon / Flickr

The largest and most populated city in the state, Fargo is the cultural and economic hub of North Dakota and was named after the founder of Wells Fargo Bank. Once known as the Gateway to the West, the city has undergone many identity changes since its founding.

At one time or another, it has been a fur-trading post, a ‘divorce capital,’ and a frontier town. Famed for the Coen Brother’s film of the same name, the city itself has little going for it in the way of tourist attractions, although it is a great place to live.

It boasts some interesting museums as well as numerous theatres, restaurants, coffee shops and lots of pretty green spaces. Well worth stopping by if you’re traveling around the state, the Fargodome is your best bet if you’re looking to enjoy a Broadway musical or large sporting event.

1. Theodore Roosevelt National Park South Unit [SEE MAP]

#1 of Best Places To Visit In North Dakota

© Robert Philip / Dreamstime

Set in the North Dakota ‘Badlands,’ the Theodore Roosevelt National Park South Unit is the perfect place to stop by when visiting the fantastic wild landscapes of the region. With amazing rock formations that are a stunning mixture of red, yellow, black and silver, and tufts of green springing up here and there, the Badlands make for memorable viewing.

Named after the former President who liked to hunt bison here, the park commemorates his work in preserving the United States’ natural resources. The South Unit welcomes visitors to explore Roosevelt’s old cabin that is located next to it, and there is a nice museum which looks at the history and nature of the park.

Lying next to Interstate 94, the park is easily accessed and the wildlife viewing on offer is brilliant, with bison, coyotes, cougars and more residing within its boundaries. A wonderful place to visit, from the South Unit you can hike or horse trek amidst the stunning scenery of the park – you can even camp under the beautiful stars.

Map of North Dakota

North Dakota Map

© OpenStreetMap © MapTiler © Touropia

11 Interesting And Beautiful Places To Visit In North Dakota

From its sprawling badlands and picturesque plains to its hardy and supportive people, North Dakota has so much to offer the curious traveler ready to explore.

If you’re making plans to see North Dakota, check out our list of 11 interesting and beautiful places to visit before you go! Adventure awaits!

Looking for more US travel inspiration?

Check out these guides on the best places to visit in…

1. Theodore Roosevelt National Park

Located in far west North Dakota, Theodore Roosevelt National Park is famous for its beautiful backdrop of rugged badlands and up-close encounters with wildlife. Plus, the area once played a pivotal role in the life of one of the USA’s most famous presidents, Theodore Roosevelt.

Divided into three distinct sections, visitors to this national park will love its scenic drives scoping out the rocky formations of the badlands. Be on the lookout for herds of wild buffalo and wild horses, and if you’re lucky, some sightings of petrified trees.

Full of adventure and history, you’ll catch an up close and personal glimpse of this unique season in Theodore Roosevelt’s life. He once said he would not have been president if it weren’t for his experiences in North Dakota, and when you go, it’s easy to see why this land made such an impact.

The expansive badlands in Theodore Roosevelt National Park

2. Downtown Fargo – Fargo, ND

While much of the state is rural, you can experience North Dakota’s fun city scene in Fargo, the state’s largest city. When you go, be sure to spend time in Downtown Fargo, especially along Broadway Drive.

Read Post  Where to Stay in Puerto Rico in 2022, by an Area Local

Full of lively shops, breweries, and restaurants, it’s a great place to engage the city’s culture. The jaunt is even more fun at night, where you can see the historic Fargo Theatre lit up in its full neon glow.

A visit to nearby North Dakota State University’s campus is a fascinating excursion as well, where you’ll see firsthand one of college football’s greatest dynasties up close.

Walking along Broadway in Downtown Fargo

3. International Peace Garden – Dunseith, ND

Often nicknamed the Peace Garden State, North Dakota is famous for its unique landmark on the Canadian border, the International Peace Garden.

With one half in the United States and the other half in Canada, you’ll want to make the trek up to the border to experience 2,400 acres of serene and beautiful garden landscapes.

Founded in 1932, the International Peace Garden was built as a symbol of peace and friendship for nations everywhere. Today, you’ll feel inspired by the garden’s hiking, birding, scenic drives, waterfalls, and over 150,000 flowers on display.

4. Enchanted Highway – Regent, ND

With North Dakota so spread out, you’ll likely spend a lot time on the road while you explore, so why not make it fun? Consider making the detour down the Enchanted Highway, the ultimate roadside attraction.

Stretching for 32 miles between Interstate 94 and the town of Regent, the Enchanted Highway contains the world’s largest scrap metal sculptures, including the largest verified by the Guinness Book of World Records at 90 feet high.

Each was sculpted by a local retired school teacher and depicts scenes from life in North Dakota. Get your cameras ready for this offbeat experience!

5. Knife River Indian Villages National Historic Site

North Dakota has a rich Native American history, and many Native Americans still call the state home today. An excellent place to relive this history is Knife River Indian Villages National Historic Site.

Visitors can immerse themselves in a reconstructed North Plains Indian Village and its distinctive earthlodges. Once there, it’s easy to imagine yourself wandering through a major Native American trade center while stepping back in time a few hundred years.

A fascinating museum onsite allows guests to see artifacts and exhibits featuring the Hidatsa people who lived in the area. In addition, you’ll want to check out the hiking trails along the Upper Missouri River for scenic views and birding opportunities.

6. Pitchfork Steak Fondue – Medora, ND

One of my favorite experiences in North Dakota, Medora’s Pitchfork Steak Fondue really captures the essence of the state’s culture well.

Located in the tourist-friendly town of Medora (which is worth exploring as well!), the Pitchfork Steak Fondue is just as it sounds, a chance to eat a fresh steak fondued by—you guessed it, pitchfork—but in a lively outdoor community atmosphere with sweeping views of the badlands!

There’s really nothing better than eating a tasty steak with all your friends (or friends you’ll soon make) in the great outdoors. Be sure to stay for some excellent sunset photos!

Steaks ready to be fondued

7. The “Center” of North America – Rugby, ND

In 1931, the US Geological Survey determined that the geographical center of North America was near Rugby, ND, and the town has embraced it ever since.

Today, the precise location is up for debate (other towns nearby have staked their claim), yet Rugby continues to draw tourists seeking to say they’ve been to the “center” of North America. During your North Dakota visit, you’ll want to join in on the fun and do this yourself!

Be sure to stop by the famous town monument marking the spot to snap a coveted selfie so everyone knows you’ve been there—and grab a t-shirt, magnet, or other souvenir to take home.

8. National Buffalo Museum – Jamestown, ND

The one animal that symbolizes North Dakota best is the American bison, AKA buffalo. To properly get to know this state symbol and American icon, you’ll want to make a visit to the National Buffalo Museum in Jamestown.

Here you can experience interactive exhibits that tell the story of the buffalo, its history, and its cultural impact. You’ll also learn about all the efforts to save the buffalo from near extinction and get to see these animals firsthand through the bison herds the museum maintains.

In addition, be sure to visit the nearby World’s Largest Buffalo Monument, a massive 60-ton buffalo statue, to see the magic of this animal on a grand scale.

North Dakota Buffalo

9. Scandinavian Heritage Park – Minot, ND

Many North Dakotans today have Scandinavian roots from settlers who came to the area within the last 200 years. A great place to experience the Scandinavian heritage and culture of the area is the Scandinavian Heritage Park in Minot.

The park provides an immersive outdoor museum with life-size exhibits dedicated to the five Scandinavian countries. Visitors can walk inside a replica Norwegian stave church, see a giant Swedish dala horse, admire a Danish windmill, and experience a Finnish sauna.

10. Medora Musical – Medora, ND

Located in the remote North Dakota badlands near Theodore Roosevelt National Park, the famous Medora Musical in Medora is a theatrical spectacle you won’t want to miss on your North Dakota vacation.

Performed in a beautiful outdoor amphitheater with the badlands as its backdrop, the long-running Medora Musical provides spectacular song and dance entertainment while weaving in the story of Theodore Roosevelt’s time in the state.

Full of inspiring and patriotic routines, fireworks, action, comedy, and horseback riding, this family-friendly show will stir your excitement and leave you cheering for more after the show ends!

The Medora Musical stage with the badlands in the background

11. Fort Union Trading Post National Historic Site

Along the state’s western border, the Fort Union Trading Post National Historic Site invites North Dakota visitors to enjoy a unique period in the area’s history—fur trading between Native Americans and European settlers.

Active from 1828 to 1867, Fort Union was the most important trading center in the area and a place of peaceful cooperation. Over 25,000 buffalo robes and other goods were exchanged each year.

When you go today, you’ll want to make time to connect with the living history interpreters to get a real sense of what this once booming place was like, as well as take a scenic hike along the Missouri River Trail.

Did we miss any of your favorite places in North Dakota?

Let us know in the comments if there are any more places in North Dakota that you would add to our list!

Source https://placestovisitintheusa.com/places-to-visit-in-north-dakota/

Source https://www.touropia.com/best-places-to-visit-in-north-dakota/

Source https://placestovisitintheusa.com/places-to-visit-in-north-dakota/

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *