11 Best Things To Do in Deadwood Sd You’ll Love

There’s something about the Wild West that lures people in. Maybe it’s the history of gunslingers and outlaws, or perhaps it has to do with the beautiful, rugged landscape.

Whatever it is, there’s no denying that Deadwood, South Dakota is one of the most exciting towns in America. If you’re looking for a unique travel experience, here are some things to do in Deadwood SD that you won’t want to miss.



We begin our cowboy adventure in the heart of Deadwood – Downtown. This is the most historic part of town, and there are plenty of things to see and do. You’re now walking the same streets as Calamity Jane, Wild Bill Hickok, and other famous Western figures.

There are plenty of interesting shops to explore, and you can even try your hand at gambling in one of the many casinos. If you’re feeling hungry, there are also some great places to eat downtown. Just make sure you watch your step – the streets can be pretty crowded!

The historic Main Street Street Shows are a must-see while you’re in Deadwood. These shows are free and take place on the boardwalks in front of several casinos. Bystanders will be entertained by various performers, including musicians, jugglers, and more.

Before you leave, visit the original site where Wild Bill was shot. The authentic Saloon burned down, but the location on 624 Main Street is now a re-creation of the tragic scene. You can just picture Hickok holding his cards, waiting for the fateful shot that would make him a legend.

In fact, a pair of eights and a pair of aces in poker is now known as the “dead man’s hand” in his honor.


No visit to Deadwood would be complete without a stop at the Adams Museum and House.

This museum is dedicated to the history of Deadwood and the Black Hills region. You’ll learn about the early days of the Gold Rush, as well as the founding of Deadwood itself. Among the treasures on display, visitors can gawk at a 7.346 troy ounce gold nugget. The largest gold nug ever found in Black Hill is credited to Potato Creek Johnny, and it currently resides in the museum.

For a pleasant surprise, don’t forget to stop by the plesiosaur exhibit on your way out. This ancient creature was a reptilian predator that lived in the oceans during the Mesozoic Era. A fossilized skeleton was discovered and donated to the museum by Charles Haas and his son. The rock containing the fossil is now on display for everybody to see.

The museum itself was founded by W.E. Adams, who donated the building to the city. The Adams House nearby is also worth a visit, as it’s one of the best-preserved Victorian homes in Deadwood. Complete with original furniture and fixtures, it’s like stepping back in time.


Next on our list we have the Mount Theodore Roosevelt Monument. This monument is located just outside Deadwood, and it’s a great place to get a panoramic view of the pristine wilderness.

The monument was built to honor President Theodore Roosevelt, who visited the area in 1892. During his time as a deputy sheriff in North Dakota, Roosevelt became buddies with Seth Bullock, Deadwood’s first sheriff. After Roosevelt’s untimely death, Bullock spearheaded the effort to build this monument in his honor.

Also known as the Friendship Tower, the monument was built in 1917. The stone tower stands 31 feet tall, with stairs leading up to the top. From the observation deck, you can see the surrounding mountains. You’ll find the Mount Theodore Roosevelt Monument on top of a hill in the Black Hills National Forest. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can also hike up the 0.8-mile trail that winds its way to the top.


Speaking of hiking trails, the George S. Mickelson Trail is one of the best hiking trails in Deadwood. This 109-mile trail stretches from Deadwood to Edgemont and is a great way to explore Black Hills National Forest.

Choose between cycling, walking, or even horseback riding – the trail is open to all non-motorized vehicles. Along the way, you’ll find beautiful scenery, as well as plenty of wildlife. The path is primarily paved with crushed limestone, making walking or biking a breeze. You can also find picnic areas, restroom facilities, and water fountains along the trail.

The George S. Mickelson Trail is named after former South Dakota governor George S. Mickelson. The project has quite a fascinating rail-to-trail history. In fact, it served as a railroad for over 100 years before being converted into a hiking trail. It will take you through tunnels, across bridges, and past some of the most scenic views in all of Deadwood.


For a unique experience, head over to the Broken Boot Gold Mine. This was a genuine gold mine, and you can take a tour to see how it all works. The tour will take you hundreds of feet underground, where you’ll get to see first-hand how miners extract gold from the earth.

You’ll also learn about the Black Hills Gold Rush, which began in 1874. During this time, a fortune’s worth of gold was mined from the hills. You’ll see all the inner workings of the mine on tour, from ore cars and mining equipment to gold nuggets.

The Broken Boot Gold Mine is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Deadwood. It’s a great place to learn about the city’s history and get a taste of what it was like to be a miner during the Gold Rush. The entire experience lasts about an hour, and it’s well worth the low price of admission.

The staff is also amicable and knowledgeable, making the experience even better. They’ll answer all your questions and show you how to pan for gold. A visit here is one of the best things to do in Deadwood SD. With their help, you’ll be ready to go when the next Gold Rush comes around!


Artistic souls will enjoy Tatanka: Story Of The Bison. Wild Bill might be what Deadwood is most known for, but there is a rich history pre-Hickok. Presented by Academy Award-winning actor/director Kevin Costner, Tatanka tells the story of the bison and the Native Americans who depended on them.

The exposition doesn’t shy away from the white man’s ravage of the beast for sport and profit. Through a poignant film, we see how the bison once roamed in herds of 30-60 million before dwindling to 1,000 members.

Following the film, visitors are welcome to walk the grounds, where they’ll find impressive sculptures of bison, teepees, and more. Ta’Tanka is the centerpiece of the experience and happens to be the 3rd largest bronze sculpture worldwide. A Lakota-made gift shop is also on-site, selling authentic arts and crafts. You’ll be pleased to know that Native Americans own and operate the shop.


Since you already passed by the original location where McCall killed Wild Bill, you might as well visit his final resting place. Friends Calamity Jane and Seth Bullock are also buried nearby. Mount Moriah Cemetery is the oldest cemetery in Deadwood and is located on a hill overlooking the city.

The cemetery is huge, with multiple sections and plenty of tombstones to explore. Potter’s Field is where you’ll find the unknown and unclaimed buried. Mount Moriah is also the final resting place for many of the Chinese immigrants who came to Deadwood during the Gold Rush.

A Jewish section is recognizable by its Star of David headstones. The Jewish population in Deadwood was quite large at one point, with as many as 20% of the city’s residents being Jewish. A mass grave exists for the victims of of a fire in the 1800s, in which 11 men were killed when a lumber mill burned down. Finally, the last section is a grim reminder that children died too young in the 1800s.

The Moriah Cemetery might sound like a somber place, but it’s also a great way to learn about Deadwood’s history. It’s worth visiting, especially if you’re interested in the city’s Wild West past.


One of the most popular tourist attractions in Deadwood is Days of 76. The 100th anniversary of the event took place in 2022, which is celebrated every year in Deadwood. The parade is the biggest event, but there are also rodeos, concerts, and more.

The Days of 76 history museum is a great place to learn about the event’s history. The museum has an extensive collection of wagons, horse-drawn carriages, and other memorabilia from the early days of the parade.

If you’re interested in the history of the Days of 76, or just want to see some cool old artifacts, you’ll have a blast. The experience is immersive, with different sounds from the past playing in each room. There are also old photos and videos of the event, which really bring it to life.

Located right by the official Days of 76 complex, the museum is easy to find. It’s also right in the heart of Deadwood, so you can easily visit other attractions after your time at the museum.


Named and constructed by our local hero Seth Bullock, the Historic Bullock Hotel is one of the most iconic buildings in Deadwood. The first hotel in town was built in 1894 and has been meticulously restored to its original glory.

Bullock Hotel features a restaurant, 28 original rooms, and a casino. The casino is small, but it’s worth checking out if you’re a fan of gambling and history. The building is located in the center of Deadwood, so it’s easy to find. It’s also right next to the Days of 76 Museum, so you can easily visit both attractions in one day.

If you’re interested in the paranormal, hang on to your hat. The hotel is the subject of multiple haunting stories, as the ghost of Bullock supposedly still roams the halls, and there have been numerous sightings of him over the years.

The TV show Ghost Adventures even did an investigation of the hotel. Spooky!


All aboard! The 1880 Train is a historic steam train that runs between Deadwood and Keystone. The train is a great way to see the beautiful Black Hills rising out of the Great Plains, and it’s a fun experience for the whole family. The trip takes about 2 hours, but you can hop off at any of the stops along the way.

If you’re interested in history, you’ll be pleased to know that a recorded narration is played on the train, providing information about the area. The crew members on board are also very knowledgeable and always happy to answer any questions.

Sit back, relax and let the steam engine carry you through some of the most beautiful scenery in South Dakota.


Looking for the perfect Deadwood escape? If so, consider taking a day trip to the Rapid City area. As the second-largest city in South Dakota, Rapid City has a lot to offer. Plenty of great restaurants, shops, and attractions keep you busy. And, if you’re looking for something more outdoorsy, you can always head to one of the many hiking trails or parks in the area.

The iconic Mount Rushmore National Memorial is located nearby, so you can easily add that to your day trip itinerary. See the 60-foot-tall granite faces of Presidents George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt, and Abraham Lincoln. It’s an impressive sight that you won’t soon forget.

The Crazy Horse Memorial is another great option for your day trip. The memorial is an homage to the famous Oglala Sioux leader, Crazy Horse, who was a prominent figure in the Lakota Tribe. It’s the world’s most giant sculpture-in-progress. Beginning in 1948, it is still not complete. It is open to the public, however, and you can distinctly see the defining features of Crazy Horse carved into the mountainside.




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