With more than 2.2 million visitors annually, Mount Rushmore is one of America’s most famed landmarks located in the Black Hills of South Dakota, USA.
The purpose of the memorial is to communicate the founding, expansion, preservation, and unification of the United States with colossal statues of Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln, and Theodore Roosevelt. – Gutzon Borglum
When you visit Mount Rushmore, there is a lot more to do than just walk up and gaze up at the four presidents. Find out a list of things to do at Mount Rushmore.
7 Must Visit & Things to Do in Mount Rushmore
Walk the Avenue of Flags
This is the main walkway to the Grand View Terrace lined with 56 flags which represent the 50 states, 3 territories, 2 commonwealths, and The District of Columbia.
Enjoy the Grand View Terrace
It is the primary viewing platform where you have a clear view of the four presidents of the USA. You can get here a perfect photograph of the mountain carving.
Lincoln Borglum Visitor Center
The Lincoln Borglum Visitor Center is located below the Grand View Terrace at Mount Rushmore. Here, you can learn about the history and construction with a 14-minute long park film that explains how Mount Rushmore has been built.
Sculptor’s Studio is located at the end of the Presidential Trail where you can listen to a 15 minute ranger talk about Gutzon Borglum, the lifestyle of the workers and the carving process.
Walk the Presidential Trail
Presidential Trail is a 0.6-mile trail runs from the Sculptor’s Studio and leads up to the base of the mountain of close-up views of the sculpture. It is recommended to walk the trail in a clockwise direction so you will get the most of the steps at the end of the trail.
Dine in the Carvers’ Cafe
Carvers’ Cafe is a large “food court” style cafe located in the main plaza. There is a wide array of food choices available from bison burgers to salads and wraps.
If you love ice-cream, check out Memorial Team Ice Cream, where you can get a Monumental Ice Cream cone with Thomas Jefferson’s authentic vanilla recipe.
Attend the Evening Lighting Ceremony
The Evening Lighting Ceremony is about 45-minutes longer when the lights turn on and illuminate the faces of the four presidents. The ceremony includes the singing of the National Anthem and a Flag Ceremony.
Map of Mount Rushmore National Memorial, South Dakota
How Much Does it Cost to Visit Mount Rushmore
There’s not any entrance fee, however, you do have to pay a $10 parking fee per vehicle ($5 for seniors 62 and older). The parking permit is valid for a year from the day of purchase. So, if you plan to come back later, hold on to your parking permit.
Best Time to Visit Mount Rushmore
Mount Rushmore National Monument is open 365 days per year.
The morning is the best time to visit Mount Rushmore with low crowds. However, if you want to see the Evening Lighting Ceremony, time your visit for the end of the day.
Spring and fall are the best times to visit Mount Rushmore when the temperatures are mild and crowds are relatively low.
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