Crazy Horse Memorial
For over 70 years, a team of rotating workers has been tirelessly blasting, drilling, and chiseling away at what—when finished—is slated to be the largest mountain carving of all time. The planned 641-foot-wide, 563-foot-high Crazy Horse Memorial sculpture currently depicts the face of Lakota warrior Chief Crazy Horse and what will become his long mane of hair, torso, and outstretched arm, seated atop a fierce horse. Visitors can get a good view of the sculpture's progress from its base—the rock's burnt-colored hue comes from its excess of iron—then head indoors to peruse everything from Native American artworks to tribal flags.
Badlands Loop Road
Take a lunar landscape, add multihued pinnacles, toss in prairie dogs, pronghorn, bighorn, and bison, and you've got the ingredients for an exhilarating and accessible drive along Badlands Loop Road, less than 50 miles long. Just a few hours from the Wyoming and Montana borders, the Prairie Homestead historic site makes a fine introduction to the region. The 1909 sod home and outbuildings lie near Badlands National Park, bearing witness to the promise and heartbreak of pioneer life on the Great Plains.
Continue through the park gates to the Big Badlands Overlook for a sweeping view of the remarkable landscape, before moving on to the five-mile Castle Trail, which traverses the prairie.
Some of the best vistas come before the loop gets to Wall Drug Store—the place to buy souvenirs, grab a 5-cent coffee, and plan your onward journey.