Just a quick list of some suggestions, outside of the obvious (National Parks, Memorials and Monuments), should you decide to make the drive…
– St Louis, MO –
– Pappy’s Smokehouse – Standing in line is worth the joy you’ll experience when digging into this amazing BBQ. Order a root beer with your food – it’s local to St Louis and delicious!
– Visit the Gateway Arch, obviously. Go to the Old Courthouse, if you can. It’s free and gorgeous!
– Sioux Falls, SD –
– Visit Falls Park and pack a picnic!
– Mitchell, SD –
–Corn Palace – This is an excellent place to stop to break up the drive some. It’s right off the freeway, so go ahead and plan on it. The entire building is decorated with corn and the exterior design is changed yearly. You can find all things corn inside.
– Wall, SD-
– Wall Drugs – Opened in 1931, the story behind how the owners beefed up business is pretty fantastic. It’s grown to become kind of a tourist trap, but still worth a quick stop. It houses the largest private collection of Western American artwork in the country.
– Rapid City, SD (and surrounding areas) –
– Everest Cuisine – hole in the wall Indian/Nepalese restaurant that I wanted to go back to more than once! Get the Chicken Tikka Masala, Vegetable Samosas & Garlic Naan. Enjoy the travel brochure to Nepal that is tucked beneath the glass table top!
– Sage Creek Grille in Custer – Great for lunch while in between attractions! The restaurant is lined with Now vs Then photos of locations throughout the U.S.
– Chapel in the Hills – A Norwegian church built out of beautiful wood! It’s tucked away in a residential neighborhood, so you have to go looking for it. But, it’s serene and the prayer walk is the perfect time to reflect while on vacay.
– Tally’s Silver Spoon – Call for reservations, or be like us and wait at the bar until they have a table available for you. The Buffalo burgers are amazing.
– Delmonico Grill – The lunch specials are insanely priced… in a good way! They range from $5+ and are delicious! Plus, all of the waiters have thick South Dakota accents, which I loved. We were able to eat there for less than $20 before tip. Pretty awesome, if you’re trying to be frugal.
– Prairie Edge Trading Co & Galleries -The main level is great for just browsing authentic and handmade goods, but the real treat is upstairs! There’s a crazy bead library for those who are handy, and an art gallery of local artwork that blew me away. Gorgeous works by artists that can also be seen at the Dahl Art Center. Beautiful original paintings and prints.
– Dahl Art Center – Rapid City’s Art Museum. It’s free to the public and small enough to walk within an hour or so. Exhibits change, but they had some fantastic local work when we were there, including a retrospective exhibit of works by a local art professor who had passed.
– Willow Springs Cabins– I can’t say enough good things about this place. Only two cabins on site, so make sure you reserve early. Joyce was amazing and her breakfasts are delicious. We stayed in the Frontier Cabin and enjoyed the added privacy. Both cabins have hot tubs. You’re welcome!
– Omaha, NE –
– Hotel Deco XV – Still retains original architectural details and located in a very fun area of the city. The parking garage is original to the building, so don’t hate on the valets if they ask to park your vehicle for you. It dates back to the 1930’s and wasn’t really built to handle SUV’s, unless the driver is skilled! The hotel offers a car (Mercedes) and driver to take you anywhere you want to go within 3 miles of Hotel Deco. They are extremely eager to help and make suggestions.
– Flat Iron Cafe – The exterior was under construction, so I didn’t get the pic I wanted, but this was the best food experience of the trip. If you’re going to do a fancy dinner, this is it. It’s 2 blocks from Hotel Deco, so we walked and enjoyed the evening air. I’d imagine you’d need reservations on the weekend, but we were able to get right in on a Thursday night. Fantastic steak and great wine options. All desserts are freshly made there.
Paducah, KY– a.k.a. the most adorable town, ever!
– National Quilt Museum – If you don’t do anything else in Paducah, go here. Works of amazing and painstaking art. You won’t regret it. Plus, the docents are really excited to see young people take an interest in an art form with such history.