Wall is not only home to the world-wide famous Wall Drug, but it is also near some of the top vacation destinations in South Dakota. The Minuteman Missile National Historic Site provides an educational experience that the whole family can enjoy, while a day spent exploring the Buffalo Gap National Grasslands will allow for getting up-close and personal with area wildlife. Head out for a tour of these attractions that are conveniently located in or near Wall.
Buffalo Gap National Grasslands
The Buffalo Gap National Grasslands are just southwest of Wall, and are a mecca for visitors to view area wildlife and the magnificent prairie. The grasslands also provide a variety of activities such as horseback riding, hiking, biking, and camping. While very little of the 595,000-plus acres of the entire Buffalo Gap National Grasslands are developed, allowing guests to witness the prairie how it was back in the Wild West. Visitors to the area are encouraged to learn more about the grasslands at the National Grassland Visitor Center, which is located in Wall.
Pioneers in South Dakota in the early 1900s faced challenges in their day-to-day lives that are difficult to imagine today. Get a glimpse of the challenges and triumphs of the early pioneers by visiting the Prairie Homestead, located just 20 miles east of Wall. The Prairie Homestead is the original sod home of Mr. and Mrs. Ed Brown, which was a typical pioneer home from that time. Built in 1909, the homestead is the last remaining original sod home from pioneer days and is an important look at the role the pioneers played in settling the Great Plains. The Prairie Homestead is open daily May through October and offers informational videos, early pioneer attire, and the opportunity to explore outbuildings and the sod house. The Prairie Homestead is located off exit 131 on Interstate 90, near the east entrance to the Badlands National Park.
With over 3,000 signs around the world announcing its location, including in such far off destinations as Paris, France and Antarctica, Wall Drug has grown over the years and offers much more than the free ice water it originally boasted. Shopping opportunities are plentiful, and include Western wear, Black Hills Gold jewelry and handcrafted regional items that make great gifts or souvenirs to keep for yourself to remind you of your stay.
For those traveling with kids, Wall Drug’s Backyard is a must during your stop for some family fun. The Jumping Jets Water Show will delight the little ones, and rides on the popular giant Jackalope are sure to entertain. Gather the group and snap a picture in front of a roaring T-Rex, or a miniature Mount Rushmore.
Another must during your Wall Drug experience is getting up close to the 80-foot dinosaur that is visible from Interstate 90. Located on the city bike path, the entire family will get a kick out of seeing the enormous 50 ton sculpture in person.
Round out your visit to Wall Drug at the Western Art Gallery Restaurant and savor their home-style dishes, such as hot beef sandwiches and handmade donuts, while surrounded by the largest Western art collection in the country.
Make sure to stop at Wall Drug, located on Main Street in Wall and open year-round, for fun and entertainment for the entire family.
Badlands National Park
South of I-90 Exit 110, SD Highway 240-Badlands Loop Scenic Byway takes you through a rugged landscape for breathtaking views of Badlands National Park. The Ben Reifel Visitor Center tells about geology and paleontology, as well as the past inhabitants including plants, wildlife, and humans. Hiking, biking, horseback riding, and watching the breathtaking sunsets are a few of the activities you can enjoy in Badlands National Park.
Minuteman Missile National Historical Site
Located just minutes east of Wall Drug is the Minuteman Missile National Historic site Visit the once secret facilities where Air Force personnel controlled and maintained ten nuclear missiles, part of a force of 150 missiles located in South Dakota. Discover the Cold War events that shaped our lives and still remain through a tour of the control center at Delta-01. At the Delta-09 silo, view a nuclear missile which once carried a 1.2 megaton warhead.