Updated: Oct 4, 2019
Part recreation area and part outrageous tourist attraction, Dinosaur Park has been a staple of Rapid City since the 1930s. This unique and interesting South Dakota stop is home to over half a dozen life-size dinosaur sculptures. This quirky spot is even listed on the Nation Register of Historic Places.
Dinosaur Park is one of Rapid City's oldest and oddest attractions. Located high on a hilltop along Skyline Drive, it overlooks both the western and eastern sides of the city.
The parking lot is located directly across the street from the park. From there you can choose to either climb the giant stone staircase to the top, or follow the short but steady trail just to the right of the steps.
On this particular occasion my dogs decided to take the stairs up and follow the trail later when it was time to go back down.
Dinosaur Park is located within the Skyline Wilderness Area, specifically on the far north end. The Skyline Trail System runs right through (and below) the park, so additional hiking is easily accessible from here (we've explored the Skyline Wilderness St. Cloud Entrance, the Fulton Trailhead, and the Amphitheater Trail just to name a few).
This is a fun place to walk around and explore, especially if you venture onto some of the trails. Dogs can get up close with and inspect the statues (which also makes for some fun photo opportunities).
This wonderful little attraction is free to visit and open year-round. However, we recommend avoiding it during the busy summer days when it is literally crawling with children and tourists. The gift shop is only open during the summer, but they do not allow dogs inside the building.
Otherwise, we highly suggest checking out this peculiar road-side attraction. It's a fun juxtaposition of kitsch and lovely rock formations that provide splendid views of the city below and the Black Hills in the distance. We love visiting this park!