North Dakota Top 10 Attractions

North Dakota is one of the top destinations in the United States for those with an interest in nature or wildlife, but it also houses zoos, museums, and theaters to provide well-rounded entertainment options for all. Visitors travel to North Dakota for hunting and fishing in a tranquil state, but you can also go for a walk along a river, enjoy the friendliness along the border with Canada, or go out for a night on the town. Agritourism thrives in North Dakota, as do casinos and with the choice of cities or countryside locations, you can find the type of attractions that appeal to you.

Theodore Roosevelt National Park
Photo Courtesy: Flickr/Eric Fredericks

1: Theodore Roosevelt National Park

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Address: Medora, ND 58645
Website: www.nps.gov

Comprised of three separate wildlife areas, this national park is named for President Theodore Roosevelt, a noted naturalist and outdoorsman. His Elkhorn ranch, the second of his ranches that he purchased after falling in love with North Dakota on a buffalo hunt, gives name to the Elkhorn Ranch Unit of the park. The main attraction here, besides the sparse and empty beauty of the badlands, is the wildlife. Roosevelt's beloved buffalo can be found here, as well as various types of deer, elk, wild horses, sheep and prairie dogs.

Fort Mandan Overlook State Historic Site

2: Fort Mandan Overlook State Historic Site

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Address: 8th St SW, Washburn, ND 58577

In the winter of 1804, the famed explorers Lewis and Clark built the fort over which this overlook presides. It was here that they met their equally famed Native guide, Sacagawea. Because the fort itself was ultimately swallowed by the nearby river, most of what is known about the fort's history was extrapolated based on found artifacts like arrowheads, pottery, and tools made from animal bones. Today visitors can enjoy an extensive and interactive exhibit detailing the area's history, as well as its current activities and conditions

Maah Daah Hey Trail
Photo Courtesy: www.americantrails.org

3: Maah Daah Hey Trail

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Address: Medora, ND 58645

This 96-mile trail connects the North and South Units of the Theodore Roosevelt National Park, allowing hikers and horseback riders to get an intimate look at this beautiful and desolate area. The trail is marked by the Maah Daah Hey symbol of a turtle, signifying patience and determination, two necessary components to hiking the trail in its entirety. Overnight campsites with potable water and fire rings exist for thru-hikers, although campers are advised to be aware of the surrounding wildlife.

North Dakota Heritage Center

4: North Dakota Heritage Center

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Address: 612 E Boulevard Ave, Bismarck, ND 58501

This fascinating museum details the history of North Dakota going all the way back to the age of the dinosaurs. Visitors can explore exhibits featuring indigenous people and the artifacts that they left behind. But the past is not the only thing on display. Exhibits with their sights trained on the future include a prototype of a Mars space suit and the possibilities afforded by industry and energy. In every exhibit, the star of the show is North Dakota, whether during its prehistory or its modern iteration as an agricultural powerhouse.

Chateau de Mores State Historic Site

5: Chateau de Mores State Historic Site

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Address: 3426 Chateau Rd, Medora, ND 58645

Named after the Marquis de Mores who purchased this estate and lived here beginning in 1893, this historical site preserves his life and daily tasks as they existed at the time. The Chateau itself was the summer home of the de Mores family, and still displays some original family artifacts. Nearby, the former packing plant where de Mores would slaughter and process beef is now only recognizable by the lone clay chimney that remains. Stagecoach tours run from here to nearby Deadwood, and there is even an undercurrent of intrigue as visitors can observe a dramatic re-enactment of the Marquis de Mores being charged with murder.

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