Places to Visit: Badlands National Park

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Badlands National Park

When visiting Yellowstone National Park, you shouldn’t miss a side trip to Badlands National Park to experience the age-old formations of rich fossil beds dating back 35 million years.

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  • Badlands National Park contains some of the most unique landscape in the country.
  • Vehicles $15, Hikers or bikers $7 each, motorcycle riders $10.
  • Hike short or long trails to see the pinnacles and spires up close.
  • Only about 8 hours from Yellowstone so you combine vacation destinations in one trip.


In Badlands National Park, visitors stand in awe of the towering pinnacles and spires with the eroded buttes and fascinating colors of the landscape. It’s 244,000 acres of incredible views.


Badlands National Park is open all year, 24/7. Some facilities close for the winter but the Ben Reifel Visitor Center is open the year round.


Entrance fees: (Vehicle and individual passes are good for seven days.)

  • For private vehicles, the cost is $15.
  • Individuals on foot or bicycle are $7 each.
  • Individuals on motorcycle are $10.
  • Annual pass is $30 and is valid for a year from the month of purchase.

Camping fees:

  • Cedar Pass Campground fees are $14 per night.
  • Camping at Sage Creek Campground is free of charge.

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When touring around Badlands National Park, visitors witness unique landscapes and colors. You can also take the family on the 30-mile scenic drive around the park.

Hiking is an adventure where you can explore Badlands Park on foot. The trails range from a quarter of a mile to eight miles long.

In the summer, visitors enjoy a wide variety of ranger-guided programs, like walks and talks, and plenty of children’s activities.

Getting Here

To get from Badlands National Park to Yellowstone, simply take I-90 West to US 16; follow US 16 and 14 to Yellowstone’s Grand Loop Road. It is about an 8-hour trip, but filled with the rough western landscapes and historic old towns from earlier eras.

Other Badlands National Park Resources

Black Hills & Badlands National Park

Coming through South Dakota on your way to Yellowstone? Don't miss Badlands National Park and the Black Hills area!