Rapid City

The second biggest city in South Dakota, Rapid City, has become known as the “Gateway to the Black Hills”. This small, isolated range, called “black” because of the dark appearance given to them by their wooded flanks, is a major tourist attraction and contains many sites of historical and natural interest to the visitor. From South Dakota’s most-visited attraction, Mount Rushmore, to the world-famous gold rush town of Deadwood, whose historic frontier architecture transports visitors back to the age of Calamity Jane and Wild Bill Hickock, from the Custer State Park with its free-roaming bison herds to some of the longest (and most mysterious) caves in the world, Wind Cave and Jewel Cave, the Black Hills have it all. Hikers will also love the nearby George S Mickelson Trail that takes them through 100 miles of scenic backcountry, past several historic mining towns.