9 Legendary Experiences You Can Only Have in North Dakota
There are some experiences that are one-of-a-kind and in North Dakota, we have some of the best. From the epic Maah Daah Hey trail to exploring our legends and history, you’re sure to find that memory that can only be made in North Dakota. For more ideas about legendary North Dakota experiences, contact North Dakota Tourism at NDTourism.com or call 800-435-5663 or 701-328-2525.
Only in North Dakota can you…
1. Trek the epic Maah Daah Hey Trail
In the Mandan language the trail name means “an area that has been or will be around for a long time.” In the adventure world, it is simply legendary. This 140-mile trail winds through the breath-taking badlands connecting seven campgrounds and all three units of the National Park. It is generally open to horseback riders, hikers and bicyclists. Let the adventure begin!
2. Find larger than life statues
Drive the open road to find adventure in North Dakota starting with the Enchanted Highway. Stretching 32 miles between Regent and Gladstone, it’s decorated every few miles by some of the world’s largest scrap metal sculptures. But, don’t stop there! Head to Jamestown to see the World’s Largest Buffalo, to Wahpeton for the Catfish, Bottineau for Tommy the Turtle, Steele for Sandy the Sandhill Crane, New Salem for Salem Sue the Holstein cow and many, many more around the state!
3. Visit America's only restored bonanza farm, Bagg Bonanza Farm near Mooreton
Visitors to North Dakota are often in awe of the crops, farms and ranches that dot the landscape - the vastness of the fields, the enormity of the equipment and our legacy as one of the nation's top food producers. Learn about bonanza farm life and the past generations that changed the Red River Valley from the country's furthest outpost to a settled, prosperous farming community. One of the advantages for guests to the state is the opportunity to see both historical farms and modern agriculture.
4. See where Lewis and Clark met Sakakawea on their expedition
Take a day to explore the Lewis & Clark Interpretive Center with state-of-the-art interactive exhibits and a new collection of artifacts, a new exhibit honoring North Dakota's family farms, and much more. Then take a step back in time and visit the reconstructed Fort Mandan.
5. Experience one of North America’s largest Powwow’s, the United Tribes International Powwow in Bismarck
The United Tribes International Powwow is one of North Dakota’s premier cultural events featuring dancing, pageantry and traditional regalia. More than 70 Native American tribes and 1,500 traditional dancers and drummers attend each year in Bismarck. The powwow attracts some 20,000 spectators every September.
6. Cheer on the UND hockey team at “The Ralph” in Grand Forks
UND is home to many championship athletic teams, including NCAA Division I men’s hockey played at the magnificent Ralph Engelstad Arena. This $104 million arena is nothing but first-class with its granite floors and seats constructed of leather and cherry wood, and is considered by many to be the best hockey facility in the nation.
7. See North America’s largest Scandinavian festival, the Norsk Høstfest!
Tens of thousands of people attend this event annually to celebrate in Scandinavian culture and entertainment. More than 200 internationally-recognized artisans, craftsmen and chefs participate every year. The experience is an eclectic array of the contemporary and the traditional. The cuisine as well as the clothes, art and jewelry are authentic, of fine quality and exquisitely Nordic.
8. Set foot in the geographical center of North America
The geographic center of North America -- as important a center as you're likely to find -- lies in the town of Rugby. It's marked by a rock obelisk about 15 feet tall, flanked by poles flying the U.S. and Canadian flags. It is a monument easily missed, standing as it does in the parking lot of a cafe/gift shop (formerly a Conoco station). That's where it was moved when North Dakota widened Highway 2.
9. Visit the only national historic site with earthlodge depressions at Knife River Indian Villages near Stanton
Earthlodge people hunted bison and other game, but were in essence farmers living in villages along the Missouri and its tributaries. The site near Stanton was a major Native American trade center for hundreds of years prior to becoming an important marketplace for fur traders after 1750. Today you can tour a reconstructed earthlodge and see depressions from the dwellings that inhabited the village more than 260 years ago.
These are just a few unique experiences that you can only have in North Dakota. For more information, go to NDtourism.com or phone 800-435-5663 or 701-328-2525.