Rapid City Area Lodging

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Rapid City, the largest city in South Dakota’s Black Hills, is close to recreation and world-famous attractions like Mount Rushmore and Devil’s Tower. Custer State Park and is south of the city, while the annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally is north. With 39 hotels and motels, the best way to find a room is by geographic location.

Rapid City is close to Mount Rushmore National Memorial.

Rapid City is close to Mount Rushmore National Memorial.


Hotel Alex Johnson, a boutique hotel, has nine floors with 143 rooms and free parking, but no pool. Geared toward adults, amenities include Seattle’s Best Cafe, a full service salon and Paddy O’Neil’s Irish Pub. The Holiday Inn, Howard Johnson Express Inn and Radisson Hotel have indoor pools. The City of Presidents, an art installation featuring life-size bronze statues of U.S. presidents, is within walking distance; the visitor center at Seventh and Main streets has information.

South and Southwest

The Best Western Town ‘N Country, Comfort Inn & Suites, Holiday Inn Express Hotel and Super 8 on the south side of town are closest to Mount Rushmore, Custer State Park and Wind Cave National Park, while the southwest Days Inn is close to Storybook Island, a free theme park for children open from Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day. There is no pool at the Super 8, and outdoor pools at the Comfort Inn and Best Western are only open in the summer.

Along the Interstate

On the east side of town, the Comfort Suites hotel is five miles from the Regional Airport. Fairfield Inn & Suites and La Quinta Inn & Suites are adjacent to the year-round WaTiki Indoor Waterpark. The largest concentration of motels in Rapid City is in the area surrounding I-90 and Rushmore Mall. The 16 motels there represent national and local brands; pools are mostly indoors, but the Foothills Inn and the Rushmore Inn & Suites have seasonal outdoor pools. The Super 8 is pool-less. America’s Best Value Inn, further west near the junction of interstates 90 and 190, has an outdoor pool.

Outside the City Limits

For non-traditional accommodations, check out cabin rentals in the forested Black Hills surrounding Rapid City. Rustic looking units at the Backroads Inn & Cabins are convenient to Reptile Gardens, a family-owned and oriented attraction that displays more reptiles than any zoo in the world. Canyon Lake Resort has traditional motel rooms and two- and three-bedroom cabins; guests can paddleboat the lake for free. Double Diamond Ranch is closer to Keystone than Rapid City, but guests get up close to bighorn sheep, horses and deer.


Karen Sweeny-Justice is a writer living in Surprise, Ariz. Her work has appeared in “Writer’s Digest” magazine and “RubberStampMadness” magazine, as well as in newspapers around the United States. She also writes book reviews for “RT Book Reviews” magazine.


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