If you have visitors from out of town and want to take them somewhere neat and unique to North Dakota, you might want to try one of these places. Many out-of-towners might only know about the state’s top tourist destinations such as Medora and the Theodore Roosevelt National Park, or the city of Fargo itself, but there are other things you can show them that will make their visit memorable.
1. Buckstop Junction - Bismarck
This historic town is absolutely loaded with beautifully restored buildings that will take you right back to the earliest days of North Dakota's statehood. Some were built as early as the late 1800s. All of them come together to form one town with places like a general store, hotel, mining camp, barber shop, blacksmith, and more. It's like walking straight into the past!
2. Fargo Visitors Center - Fargo
This one seems both obvious and strange. A visitors center isn't usually considered a top destination, just a place for visitors to visit (of course) to learn about OTHER places to see in the area. However, the Fargo-Moorhead Visitors Center is something special. The unique building has some surprises of its own to view on the inside, most popular being the original wood chipper prop from the movie "Fargo." If your visitors only know about North Dakota through that movie, then this might be a great stop for them. You can take a picture with the wood chipper, including a fake leg prop to shove into it for a very unique, er... somewhat unusual photo opportunity. Certainly memorable!
3. Fort Buford State Historic Site - Williston
This famous historical site is the very location that leader Sitting Bull surrendered. Today, it is perfectly restored and hosts reenactments, events, and more to see. It is right next to the confluence of the Missouri and Yellowstone Rivers, which is beautiful to behold.
4. Turtle River State Park - Arvilla
Located a little over 20 miles west of Grand Forks, this stunning state park is absolutely breathtaking year round. They have rustic cabins for camping, fishing, hiking, and even skiing opportunities. It's the perfect place to get a taste of some of North Dakota's unique outdoor settings.
5. Splasher's of the South Seas - Grand Forks
If it's a little too chilly to take your guests outdoors to places like Turtle River State Park, within Grand Forks itself is the best place to avoid the cold and have fun. This spot is especially great if your guests have kids, but everyone of all ages can enjoy a waterpark. This indoor waterpark has it all: huge slides, a lazy river, and a plethora of things to climb on, swim in, and get splashed by. They even have a giant bowl-shaped slide that will put you right into the lazy river at the end. It's a blast for all!
6. Four Bears Scenic Byway
Take your visitors on a drive through some of the state's gorgeous scenery on this scenic byway. It will take you through the Killdeer Mountains and more, offering amazing views and just an enjoyable, relaxing drive.
7. Dakota Territory Air Museum - Minot
Whether you are a history buff, air enthusiast, or simply someone who wants to pass some time, the Dakota Territory Air museum is something everyone should see at least once. There are some extremely rare planes kept here that are still in working order - some of which are the last of their type to be so. There are a few that you won't find anywhere else, and that makes this place special. There's tons to see, the entrance fees are cheap, and the staff is knowledgable and ready to give your group a personal tour.
8. Ronald Reagan Minuteman Missile Site - Cooperstown
Here is another unique stop that may be the only chance for guests to see a place like this, as not many of them still exist, and definitely not as well preserved as this one. Everything here was left exactly as it was since the day it was shut down. The site is a remnant of the tensions the country went through during the Cold War. Its purpose was to detect and deter incoming missiles, which it luckily never had to do. Today, you can go down into the underground bunkers and see exactly what it was like to be here during that intense time period, including the very launch control center that could have changed history.
If you’re looking for some more ideas on places to take visitors while they are in North Dakota,
here are more!