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Seasonal businesses in the Black Hills you can’t miss on your next vacation!

While the Black Hills are a gorgeous vacation destination all year long, things really start to come alive in the spring and summer. Tourism is one of the biggest industries in our state, so with the warmer weather comes the opening of many seasonal businesses throughout the area.

These attractions can be busy due to their limited season, but are worth a stop on your next family vacation. Keep reading to check out some of our favorite seasonal attractions, restaurants, and more!


Alpine Inn – Hill City, SD: The Alpine Inn is one of the most popular dining experiences in the Black Hills. Located in Hill City the historic Alpine Inn offers fine European cuisine with unique menu choices you can’t find anywhere else. Not only does the Alpine Inn have delicious food, but its friendly staff makes you feel like you are gathering with your own family around the dinner table! Stop by on your next trip to the Black Hills and enjoy this quaint, family-run restaurant with an old world feel.

Powder House Lodge and Restaurant- Keystone, SD: Just minutes away from Crazy Horse and Mount Rushmore, Powder House Restaurant offers a Black Hills dining experience unlike any other. Specializing in Prime Rib, buffalo, fish, and wild game there is something for everyone to enjoy. For families looking for a spot on their next vacation, Powder House Restaurant is kid–friendly.

Begging Burro Mexican Bistro- Custer, SD: The Begging Burro in downtown Custer is known for having some of the best Mexican food in the Black Hills. It is a great place to cool off with an afternoon drink or enjoy a delicious dinner after a day of exploring. All the drinks are hand crafted with authentic tequila and are constantly changing their menu with new innovative items. Stop by on your next vacation to try their homemade salsa and made-to-order guacamole!

The Stables at Palmer Gulch- Hill City, SD: For those looking for dinner and a show, The Stables at Palmer Gulch may be a perfect fit. Their award-wining dinner show is located in a remote meadow, only accessible by horseback or wagon. Enjoy traditional cowboy music while watching your meal cook over the campfire. All meals are cooked by renowned chuck wagon cooks and feature steak, baked beans, potatoes, and cobbler.

Armadillos- Rapid City, SD: Locals of the area know that Armadillos isn’t your average ice cream shop. Open each Spring-Fall, Armadillos is a local favorite featuring homemade soft serve, milkshakes, sundaes and more. With a constantly changing sherbet flavor of the day and all your favorite classics, Armadillos is worth the wait! Visit the downtown area of Rapid City to enjoy this delicious summer treat while you peruse the local shops and art.


Reptile Gardens- Rapid City, SD: Reptile Gardens is home to the largest collection of reptiles in the world! Home to some of the world’s deadliest snakes, crocodiles, giant tortoises and more, Reptile Gardens has fun activities for everyone. In addition to their large collection of animals, there is also a beautiful indoor botanical garden.

Rush Mountain Adventure Park- Keystone, SD: Rush Mountain Adventure Park is home to Rushmore Cave, the closest cave to Mount Rushmore in the Black Hills. Adventure seekers have been exploring Rushmore Cave for over 90 years and you can too! Join an expert guide through the cave’s history while you examine rock formations and stalactites. In addition to Rushmore Cave, the Adventure Park also has a zip line, a rollercoaster, an aerial course, and more!

Cosmos Mystery Area- Rapid City, SD: In 1952, two college boys searched the Black Hills looking for the perfect spot to build a summer cabin. Upon their search, they stumbled into the mysterious world of the Cosmos. In this area, all laws of nature appear to be suspended. Gravity seems to work differently, water flows up hill, and tall people appear short. Next time you’re in the area make sure to check out the mystery for yourself.

Rushmore Tramway- Keystone SD: The Rushmore Tramway is the perfect attraction for those looking for a little adventure. Complete with an 800 foot zip line, a two-hour long aerial course, and the 2,000 foot alpine slide, the Tramway is a full-day of family fun guaranteed! The Tramway has activities for people of all ages and abilities so no one will feel left out. Take a step out of your comfort zone and add this adventure-filled attraction to your next vacation itinerary.


1880 Train- Hill City, SD: The 1880 train is a 20-mile round trip from Hill City, SD to Keystone, SD. The 1880 Train is the oldest continuously operating tourist train and was started in 1957. The 1880 Train follows the original route laid down in the late 1880’s to service the mines and mills of the area. The 1880 Train is a great way to soak in scenic views of the area, while also learning more about the history.

Black Hills Balloons- Custer, SD: For an unforgettable memory your whole family will cherish, check out Black Hills Balloons. Located in Custer, SD this balloon company can accommodate groups of 4 to 12 people. Each flight leaves at sunrise and takes about an hour. Spend your morning soaring above the scenic Black Hills, and experience the view like you’ve never seen it before.

Black Hills Playhouse- Custer, SD: For those who enjoy arts and culture, the Black Hills Playhouse provides a perfect venue to soak up the theater, while enjoying the beauty of nature. The Black Hills Playhouse was started in 1946 as a way to provide employment opportunities to fine arts students or theater professionals. Check out their website to view their 2022 Schedule.

When you book a tour with Black Hills Adventure Tours you are gaining a vacation guide with insider knowledge of the area. Ask your guide about local eateries, attractions, and breweries. We are always happy to share some of our favorite places throughout the area! Our check out our Things to do in the Black Hills page to learn more!

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