The Hidden Beaches Road Trip That Will Show You South Dakota Like Never Before

When you think of sandy beaches under sunny skies, do you think of South Dakota? If not, you should! Sure, we don’t have an ocean…but we do have several gorgeous beaches just begging for you to lounge on them. To see what we mean, take this road trip to all of the best beaches in South Dakota:

Quick Hits: Best Beaches in South Dakota
by Annie Sandmeier

Does South Dakota have beaches? South Dakota not only has amazing beaches, but we also have MORE shoreline than Florida, meaning there are countless spots around the state to sink your toes in the sand and/or take a dip.

What are the prettiest beaches in South Dakota? This one is tough, as we think every South Dakota beach is pretty, but if we had to choose only one it would have to be Sylvan Lake. Why? This man-made lake (that was created in 1881 by a dam built across Sunday Gulch Creek) is surrounded by stunning rock formations that will make you think you left the Mount Rushmore State for Acapulco.

What are the best beach towns in South Dakota? Needless to say, South Dakota beach towns are going to be a bit different than places like Virginia Beach or Tampa Bay, but we think you will be pleasantly surprised! If you want to take in one of these South Dakota Beach towns, we recommend beginning with Yankton (a college town that is home to not only the Lewis and Clark Recreation Area, but also tons of shopping, restaurants, and various outdoor activities) and Hot Springs (this town is all about fun with its many pools, hot springs, and caves to explore).

What beaches have the clearest water in South Dakota? Surprisingly, the water at most South Dakota beaches is clear, but for the most pristine we have to go with Pactola Point Swim Beach (at the Pactola Reservoir in West Pennington), whose water just seems to shine and glisten a bit more than the rest.

Which South Dakota beaches did we miss? Tell us your favorites in the comments, so our readers can add them to their itineraries.