fbpx

40 Fantastic and FUN Things to Do in North Dakota!

There are many great things to do in North Dakota! This state is full of beautiful scenery, interesting history, and fun attractions.

If you’re looking for a great vacation destination, North Dakota should be at the top of your list.

In this article, we will discuss many North Dakota tourist attractions which are some of the best things to do in this amazing state.

From exploring the badlands to visiting Fargo, there is something for everyone in North Dakota!

Fargo-Moorhead Visitors Center

The Fargo-Moorhead Visitors Center is a great place to learn about all the best things to do in North Dakota.

The friendly staff can provide you with maps and brochures detailing all the activities and attractions in the area.

In addition, the visitors center houses a small museum that explores the history of the region. exhibits focus on the early days of settlement, as well as the area’s Native American heritage.

Best of all, admission to the Fargo-Moorhead Visitors Center is free, making it a great destination for budget-minded travelers. So whether you’re looking for things to do in North Dakota or simply want to learn more about the area’s rich history, be sure to stop by the Fargo-Moorhead Visitors Center.

The Dakota Zoo

The Dakota Zoo is one of the best places to visit in North Dakota. This small zoo is located in Bismarck and is home to over 600 animals from all over the world.

The zoo offers a variety of educational programs and is a great place to learn about animals.

The Dakota Zoo also has a zoo train that takes visitors on a tour of the zoo, and there are a variety of animals to see on the train ride.

The Dakota Zoo is a great place to visit for a day or an afternoon, and it is an affordable family activity.

The zoo is open year-round, so there is no excuse not to visit this amazing place.

Red River Zoo

The Red River Zoo is a must-see for anyone visiting North Dakota. This world-class zoo is home to over 300 animals, including rare and endangered species.

The zoo is committed to conservation, and operates a breeding program for several threatened species.

In addition to its impressive animal collection, the Red River Zoo also features beautiful gardens, a playground, and a café.

Visitors can explore the zoo at their own pace, or take part in one of the many educational programs offered. 

Knife River Indian Villages Historic Site

The Knife River Indian Villages Historic Site is a must-see for anyone interested in Native American history. Located in Stanton, North Dakota, the site is home to the remains of three Hidatsa villages that were occupied from the early 1800s to the 1870s. Visitors can explore the earthlodge dwellings, sweat lodges, and storage pits, and see firsthand how the Hidatsa people lived. The site also features a museum with exhibits on Hidatsa culture and history. In addition, the Knife River Indian Villages Historic Site offers a variety of educational programs for all ages. These programs include hands-on activities, presentations, and guided tours. 

Theodore Roosevelt National Park

Theodore Roosevelt National Park is split into three sections – the North Unit, the South Unit, and the Elkhorn Ranch Unit. The North and South Units are located in the Badlands, and they offer visitors a chance to see a variety of landscapes, including canyons, grasslands, and badlands. The Elkhorn Ranch Unit is located in the Little Missouri National Grassland and it provides a more rustic experience. All three units offer opportunities for hiking, camping, and wildlife watching.

Theodore Roosevelt National Park is especially popular with birders, as it is home to over 230 species of birds. Some of the more popular birds that can be seen in the park include bighorn sheep, bison, elk, pronghorn antelope, and wild horses. The park also offers excellent opportunities for photography, as there are many scenic vantage points throughout the park.

North Unit

The North Unit of Theodore Roosevelt National Park is located in the northwestern part of the state, and it is characterized by its dramatic landscape of badlands and animals. Bison, elk, deer, and pronghorn can all be found in the North Unit, making it a great destination for wildlife enthusiasts. In addition, the area is home to a variety of hiking trails, allowing visitors to explore the badlands up close.

South Unit

The South Unit is located near the town of Medora and is the more popular of the two units. The South Unit consists of two sections, the Elkhorn Ranch Unit and the Cottonwood Campground Unit. The Elkhorn Ranch Unit is where Theodore Roosevelt ranched in the late 1800s. The Cottonwood Campground Unit is a developed campground with over 100 sites. Both units offer hiking, picnicking, wildlife watching, and horseback riding opportunities. The South Unit also has a visitor center, museum, and amphitheater.

Bonanzaville

One of the best things to do in North Dakota is to visit the Bonanzaville museum. This museum is dedicated to the history and culture of the state, and it is a great place to learn about the people and events that have shaped North Dakota. The museum has a wide variety of exhibits, including a replica of an early settlement, a pioneer homestead, and an extensive collection of artifacts. The Bonanzaville museum is a great way to learn about North Dakota’s rich history, and it is definitely worth a visit.

Scandanavian Heritage Park

North Dakota is a hidden gem in the Midwest and there is no better place to experience the state’s Scandinavian heritage than at the Scandinavian Heritage Park. The park is home to a number of authentic buildings and monuments that have been imported from Norway, Sweden, and Denmark. Visitors can explore a stave church, wander through a botanical garden, or take a tour of a replica Viking ship. In addition, the park hosts a number of events throughout the year that celebrate Scandinavian culture. From concerts and film screenings to food festivals and art exhibits, there is always something going on at the park.

Flood Memorial Monument

The Flood Memorial Monument is a must-see for anyone visiting North Dakota. The monument commemorates the courage and strength of the people who lived through the Great Flood of 1997. The flood was one of the worst natural disasters in American history, and it displaced thousands of people and caused billions of dollars in damage. The monument features a powerful sculpture of a mother and child being swept away by the floodwaters. It is a moving tribute to the victims of the flood, and it is also a reminder of the resilience of the human spirit. The monument is located in downtown Bismarck, and it is open to the public year-round.

Fargo Air Museum

The Fargo Air Museum is one of the best things to do in North Dakota. The Fargo Air Museum is a non-profit educational institution founded in 1983. The mission of the Fargo Air Museum is to preserve and promote aviation history. The museum has over 30,000 square feet of exhibit space and contains a wide variety of aircraft, engines, and memorabilia. The museum also offers a variety of educational programs, including flight simulators, workshops, and lectures. Visitors can also take part in a number of hands-on activities, such as building model airplanes or learning about aerodynamics. In addition to its educational mission, the Fargo Air Museum is also a great place to simply admire some beautiful aircraft. With its collection of vintage planes, the Fargo Air Museum is a must-see for any aviation enthusiast.

North Dakota State Capitol Building

The North Dakota State Capitol Building is one of the best things to see in the state. The building is located in Bismarck, the state capital, and it houses the state legislature and governor’s office. The capitol building is open to the public for tours, and it is a popular tourist destination. The building was completed in 1934, and it was designed in the Art Deco style. The interior of the building is decorated with murals and sculptures that depict North Dakota history. The capitol building is also home to the North Dakota Heritage Center, which offers exhibits on the state’s natural and cultural history. Visitors to the heritage center can learn about the state’s Native American tribes, its pioneer settlers, and its agricultural heritage. The capitol building is a must-see for anyone visiting North Dakota.

Missouri River

One of the highlights of visiting North Dakota is definitely the Missouri River. The river runs through the middle of the state and offers a variety of activities for visitors. You can go fishing, kayaking, canoeing, or simply enjoy a leisurely float down the river. There are also numerous hiking and biking trails that follow the river. The scenery is absolutely breathtaking and you’re sure to see a variety of wildlife along the way. 

Roosevelt Park Zoo

The Roosevelt Park Zoo is home to over 350 animals, including tigers, lions, bears, and reptiles. The zoo also has a variety of educational programs and events for visitors. The Roosevelt Park Zoo is a great place to learn about the animal kingdom and have a fun day out. Visitors can also take advantage of the zoo’s many amenities, such as picnic areas, playgrounds, and restaurants. The zoo is an affordable way to have a great day out with the family or friends. 

North Dakota Museum of Art

The North Dakota Museum of Art is home to a collection of art from around the world, as well as rotating exhibitions of contemporary art. There is also a sculpture garden on the grounds, which is a perfect place to take a break from exploring the Museum. The Museum is located in Grand Forks and features several different art galleries. The galleries feature artwork from both local and international artists. The Museum also has a gift shop, which sells artwork from the galleries.

Japanese Gardens

The Japanese Gardens are beautiful and serene, providing a much-needed respite from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. 

You can stroll along winding paths, stopping to admire the delicate cherry blossoms or relax in the koi pond. The gardens are also home to a variety of birds, making it a perfect spot for birdwatching. 

In addition to its natural beauty, the Japanese Gardens are also a popular spot for weddings and other special events. 

The garden is also a great place to take pictures. With its lovely setting and tranquil atmosphere, it’s easy to see why the Japanese Gardens are one of the most popular attractions in North Dakota. 

Painted Canyon Overlook

The Painted Canyon is located in the badlands of North Dakota and offers an amazing view of the colorful rocks and canyon walls. 

The colors are created by the various minerals that are found in the rocks, and they are especially beautiful when they are hit by the sunlight. 

The best time to visit the Painted Canyon is in the late afternoon when the sun is low in the sky. However, even if you can’t make it at that time, the canyon is still worth a visit. 

Along the way, you’ll have the opportunity to see bison, deer, and other wildlife. The Painted Canyon Overlook is a great place to enjoy a picnic lunch or hike one of the many trails. 

And best of all, it’s just a short drive from anywhere in North Dakota. There are hiking trails that wind through the canyon, and you may even spot some wildlife along the way.

Trail of Louis L’Amour

North Dakota is best known for its natural beauty, and the Trail of Louis L’Amour is a perfect example of that. The trail is a beautiful hike that takes you through some of the most stunning scenery in the state. The trail is named for the famous author who wrote about the American West, and it definitely lives up to his legacy. The trail is full of twists and turns, and it’s impossible to get bored. The best part of the trail is definitely the views. You’ll see some of the most beautiful landscapes in North Dakota, and you might even spot some wildlife. If you’re looking for a unique hiking experience, the Trail of Louis L’Amour is definitely worth a visit.

Clark Interpretive Center

The Clark Interpretive Center has a variety of interactive exhibits that are perfect for all ages. 

The exhibits explain the history and culture of the region, as well as the importance of preserving the area’s natural resources. 

In addition, the Center offers a variety of educational programs that are perfect for educators looking for ways to engage their students in learning about the environment. 

The Clark Interpretive Center is a great place to learn about North Dakota’s history, culture, and natural resources. 

North Dakota Cowboy Hall

One of the most popular attractions is the North Dakota Cowboy Hall of Fame, which celebrates the state’s cowboy culture.

The hall of fame features a variety of exhibits that showcase the history and culture of the cowboy lifestyle.

Visitors can learn about the equipment used by cowboys, see artwork depicting life on the range, and even watch a short film about the history of cowboy culture.

In addition to the exhibits, the hall of fame also offers a variety of events and activities that are sure to interest visitors of all ages.

From rodeos to live music performances, there is something for everyone at the North Dakota Cowboy Hall of Fame.

Fort Union Trading Post

North Dakota is a state with a long and complex history. For centuries, the area now known as North Dakota was home to a variety of Native American tribes.

In the early 1800s, the first European settlers began to arrive, establishing a series of forts and trading posts along the Missouri River.

One of the most important of these trading posts was Fort Union, which served as a hub of trade and cultural exchange for nearly two decades.

Today, the site of Fort Union is preserved as a national historical site, and it offers visitors a rare glimpse into the world of early America. The fort itself is an impressive structure, and the adjacent museum is filled with artifacts that tell the story of life on the American frontier.

Roger Morris Museum

One of the most popular museums in the state is the Roger Morris Museum, which tells the story of the state’s early settlers. The museum is located in the city of Bismarck, and it features a variety of exhibits on the history of North Dakota. Visitors can learn about the state’s Native American heritage, its early days as a frontier territory, and its development into a modern state. The museum also houses a collection of artifacts from the Lewis and Clark expedition, making it a must-see for anyone interested in American history. In addition to its historical exhibits, the Roger Morris Museum also features a variety of interactive displays, making it an enjoyable experience for visitors of all ages.

Dickinson Museum Center

The Dickinson Museum Center tells the story of the state’s history and culture, from its early days as a Native American territory to its present-day status as a thriving metropolis. 

The museum’s collections include artifacts from every period of North Dakota’s history, as well as interactive exhibits that bring the state’s story to life. 

Visitors can also explore the museum’s outdoor sculptures and monuments, which commemorate key moments in North Dakota’s past. 

There are three floors of exhibits, including a hands-on area for children. 

Memorial Park

Located in the small town of Mandan, just outside of Bismarck, the Memorial Park is one of the most popular tourist destinations in North Dakota. 

The park commemorates the life and work of Lewis and Clark, who explored the region in the early 1800s. 

Visitors can explore a replica of the expedition’s camp, view exhibits on the history of the area, and hike along trails that follow the path of the Lewis and Clark expedition. 

The Memorial Park is also home to a number of events and programs, making it a great place to visit for families or groups. 

Badlands Overlook

North Dakota is home to some of the most breathtaking scenery in the country, and the Badlands Overlook is one of the best places to take it all in. The overlook offers stunning views of the badlands, as well as the distant mountains. Visitors can also see a variety of wildlife, including bighorn sheep and pronghorn antelope. The Badlands Overlook is a great place to explore on foot, and there are several hiking trails that wind through the area. In addition, the overlook is a popular spot for stargazing, thanks to its dark skies. Whether you’re looking for a place to escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life or simply want to experience some of North Dakota’s natural beauty, the Badlands Overlook is definitely worth a visit.

Grand Forks County Historical Society Myra Museum

The Grand Forks County Historical Society Myra Museum is named after Myra Shaugnessy, who was a local historian and author. 

The museum contains a collections of local artifacts, documents, and photographs. 

It also has a research library that contains over 10,000 books and pamphlets. The museum offers a variety of educational programs for all ages. The programs include walking tours, lectures, and workshops. 

The museum is also home to the annual Heritage Festival, which celebrates the history and culture of the Red River Valley. 

If you are interested in learning about the history of North Dakota, or if you are looking for a fun educational activity, the Grand Forks County Historical Society Myra Museum is the perfect place for you.

National Buffalo Museum

The National Buffalo Museum is a unique museum that tells the story of the American buffalo and its impact on the history of the United States. 

Visitors can see a variety of buffalo artifacts, including a life-size replica of a buffalo jump, and learn about the buffalo’s important role in the development of the West. 

The museum also houses a herd of live buffalo, which visitors can see up close. 

If you’re looking for an educational and entertaining way to spend a day, the National Buffalo Museum is definitely worth a visit.

Fort Abraham Lincoln State Park

Abraham Lincoln once said “If you call a tail a leg, how many legs has a cat got? Five? No, calling a tail a leg don’t make it a leg.” Just because something is called a state park, doesn’t make it one.

You need more than just some land with a few trees to be considered a state park.

But that’s what the Fort Abraham Lincoln State Park is: 2,500 acres of undeveloped badlands, bordered on the east by the Missouri River.

The primary purpose of the park is to preserve the remains of two U.S. Army forts: Fort Abraham Lincoln and Fort Mandan, as well as the On-A-Slant Indian Village.

The forts were active in the late 1800s during the Northern Plains Indian Wars and early 1900s during the Lewis and Clark Expeditions.

The Indian Village was inhabited by the Mandan Indians from about 1740 to 1834 when they endured many hardships, including disease and attack from other tribes, which eventually led to their relocation to reservations.

These three sites offer visitors a unique opportunity to see firsthand what life was like during this time period. In addition to these historical sites, the park also offers hiking, biking, and horseback riding trails, as well as picnicking and camping areas.

So whether you’re interested in history or simply looking for a place to enjoy the outdoors, Fort Abraham Lincoln State Park is definitely worth a visit.

Plain & Fancy Antique Mall

The Plain & Fancy Antique Mall has over 200 dealers selling a wide variety of antiques and collectibles. 

There is something for everyone at the Plain & Fancy Antique Mall. You can find everything from furniture to glassware to advertising signs. 

The dealers are knowledgeable and can help you find the perfect piece for your collection. 

The Plain & Fancy Antique Mall is also a great place to shop for gifts. If you are looking for a unique gift, you are sure to find it at the Plain & Fancy Antique Mall. 

Dakota Territory Air Museum

The Dakota Territory Air Museum is dedicated to preserving the history of aviation in the region, and it houses a collection of over 30 historic aircraft. 

Visitors can learn about the development of early aviation technology, and see how airplane design has changed over the years. 

The Museum also features exhibits on the activities of the North Dakota National Guard, and the role that aviation has played in defending the state. 

There are a variety of airplanes and artifacts, including a replica of the Wright brothers’ plane. You won’t want to miss that! 

Best of all, admission to the Dakota Territory Air Museum is free, making it an ideal activity for families or groups on a budget.

Fire Hall Theatre

The Fire Hall Theatre is located in an old fire station and has been converted into a performing arts venue. 

The theatre hosts a variety of events throughout the year, including musical performances, comedy shows, and children’s theatre productions. 

The intimate setting of the theatre ensures that every seat in the house has a great view of the stage. 

And because the theatre is located in an historic building, it has a unique charm that you won’t find anywhere else. 

Grahams Island State Park

Grahams Island State Park is situated on the largest natural lake in the state – Devils Lake. 

The lake is known for its beautiful turquoise waters and stunning scenery. There are plenty of activities to keep you busy at the park, including hiking, biking, fishing, swimming, and boating. 

And if you’re lucky, you might even spot a loon or two! devils lake is also a great place for bird watching. 

The state park is also home to a variety of birds, including pelicans, herons, and eagles. 

If you’re looking for a fun day out or a chance to spot some amazing wildlife, Grahams Island State Park should definitely be on your list of places to visit in North Dakota.

Ukrainian Cultural Institute

The Ukrainian Cultural Institute is dedicated to preserving and promoting the Ukrainian culture through art, music, dance, and education. 

They offer a variety of classes and events throughout the year, making it the perfect place to learn about the Ukrainian culture and heritage. 

The Institute also has a museum that houses a collection of Ukrainian artifacts, photographs, and documents. 

Visitors can explore the exhibits at their own pace or take a guided tour. 

Plains Art Museum

The Plains Art Museum is a great place to learn about the history and culture of the plains Indians. 

The museum has a variety of exhibits that showcase the art, clothing, and artifacts of the Plains Indians.

The museum also has a gift shop where you can purchase Indian-themed gifts and souvenirs. 

General Sibley Park & Campground

Located in the heart of the Red River Valley, General Sibley Park & Campground is a great destination for anyone looking to enjoy the outdoors. 

The campground offers more than 200 campsites, as well as a variety of amenities such as a swimming beach, boat launch, and hiking trails. 

The park is also home to a variety of wildlife, including bald eagles, peregrine falcons, and white-tailed deer. 

In addition to its natural beauty, General Sibley Park & Campground is also rich in history. The park is named after Henry Hastings Sibley, who served as the first Governor of Dakota Territory. 

Today, visitors can learn about Sibley’s life and legacy at the park’s visitor center. 

McDowell Dam Nature Park

One of the best places to experience the state’s natural beauty is McDowell Dam Nature Park. Located in the town of Underwood, the park is a popular spot for hiking, picnicking, and bird watching. The highlight of the park is its scenic dam and lake, which are perfect for a tranquil afternoon stroll. Thanks to its diverse range of activities and its picturesque setting, McDowell Dam Nature Park is a must-visit for anyone spending time in North Dakota.

International Peace Garden

The International Peace Garden is located on the border between the United States and Canada and is a symbol of friendship between the two countries. The garden features a wide variety of flowers and plants, as well as a number of sculptures and monuments. Visitors can also enjoy a variety of activities, including hiking, picnicking, and bird watching. The International Peace Garden is a great place to learn about the history and culture of North Dakota, as well as the unique relationship between the United States and Canada.

Chateau de Mores State Historic Site

The Chateau de Mores State Historic Site is located in Medora, North Dakota and is a great place to visit. The site includes the ruins of the chateau, the foundations of outbuildings, and a visitor center. The chateau was built in 1883 by the Marquis de Mores, an entrepreneur from France. He built the chateau as his summer home and to showcase his company’s new refrigeration process. The chateau remained in use until it was destroyed by fire in 1916. Today, visitors can explore the ruins of the chateau and learn about the Marquis de Mores and his accomplishments. The visitor center also houses exhibits on the history of Medora and the surrounding area. The Chateau de Mores State Historic Site is a great place to learn about the history of North Dakota and the early days of refrigeration.

Frontier Village

The Frontier Village is a great way to explore the state’s rich history and culture. The village includes a variety of structures, each of which has been carefully restored to its original appearance. You can explore a log cabin, a one-room schoolhouse, and even a blacksmith shop. In addition, there are several interactive exhibits that will teach you about life on the frontier. The village also features a museum that contains a wealth of information about the state’s history. best of all, admission to the Frontier Village is completely free. So whether you’re a history buff or just looking for something to do, be sure to add the Frontier Village to your list of North Dakota attractions.

Red River Market

The Red River Market is a farmer’s market located in Fargo, North Dakota. The market features locally grown produce, artisan goods, and live music. The market is open from June through October, and it is one of the best places to buy fresh produce in the area. In addition to produce, the market also sells flowers, honey, cheese, and other local products. The market is a great place to support local businesses and farmers. It is also a great place to find unique gifts for friends and family. If you are looking for a fun place to shop, the Red River Market is definitely worth a visit.

University of North Dakota

The University of North Dakota is located in Grand Forks, ND and is the state’s oldest and largest university. The campus is beautiful and offers many things to do. The University has an art museum, a planetarium, and an outdoor amphitheater. The University also has a variety of sports teams that you can watch. You can also take a tour of the University. The University of North Dakota is definitely worth a visit!

Frequently Asked Questions

Is there anything to do in North Dakota?

Yes, there are plenty of things to do in North Dakota! You can visit historical sites, go hiking or camping, visit an antique mall, see a play at the Fire Hall Theatre, or tour the University of North Dakota. There’s something for everyone in North Dakota!

What is the best time of year to visit North Dakota?

North Dakota is a beautiful state that offers a variety of activities no matter what time of year it is. In the summer, there are countless lakes to swim in, hike around, and camp near. The state is full of green with fields of corn and soybeans growing as far as the eye can see. Wildflowers line the roads and painted ladies flit through the air. The fall brings crisp air and changing leaves. Pumpkins ripen on the vine and apples bruise on the ground. The smell of woodsmoke hangs in the air as deer wander through the woods in search of food. Winter brings snow that blankets the ground and clings to tree branches. Ice forms on rivers and lakes, making them treacherous but also magical. It’s the perfect time of year to curl up by a fire with a cup of hot chocolate. No matter what season it is, North Dakota is a beautiful state to visit.

Is North Dakota really worth visiting?

North Dakota is often overlooked as a travel destination, but there are actually a lot of great things to see and do in the state. For example, North Dakota is home to Theodore Roosevelt National Park, which offers beautiful hiking trails and scenic vistas. The state is also home to several national Wildlife Refuges, which are perfect for wildlife watching. And if you’re a history buff, you’ll definitely want to check out the Lewis and Clark National Historic Trail and the Knife River Indian Villages National Historic Site. So whether you’re looking for outdoor adventure or cultural enrichment, North Dakota is definitely worth a visit.

What is North Dakota famous for?

North Dakota is best known for its natural beauty, and there are plenty of opportunities to enjoy the great outdoors. The state’s extensive parks system offers something for everyone, from hiking and camping to fishing and bird watching. In addition, North Dakota is home to some of the country’s most scenic drives, including the Enchanted Highway and the Maah Daah Hey Trail. If you’re looking for a more urban experience, North Dakota’s cities offer a variety of arts and cultural attractions. In Fargo, you can explore the Roger Maris Museum or take in a show at the Fargo Theatre. Meanwhile, Bismarck is home to several historic sites, including the State Capitol Building and the Lewis and Clark Riverboat Museum. No matter what your interests are, North Dakota has something to offer.

What is the prettiest part of North Dakota?

The beauty of North Dakota is that there is something for everyone. Whether you’re looking for a scenic drive, a hiking trail, or an urban experience, you’ll find it in North Dakota. However, if we had to narrow it down, the Enchanted Highway is definitely one of the prettiest parts of North Dakota. This 32-mile stretch of road features seven giant metal sculptures, each one more impressive than the last. It’s the perfect place to take a scenic drive and enjoy the beauty of North Dakota.

You might also like: Best Places to Visit in Texas