South Dakota, Mount Rushmore – Aileen’s 5 tips for an awesome road trip

Aileen a kindergarten and preschool teacher living in the Denver, Co area is sharing her tips for the perfect road trip!

Von Gastautor Aileen Lorenz − 12. Dezember 2016

Hi there, my name is Aileen, I´m 22 years old. I work as a kindergarten and preschool teacher within the Apex Social program. I take care of four lovely children in the Denver, Co area. I recently visited Mount Rushmore and I would like to share 5 tips and tricks for a road trip to Mount Rushmore with all of you!

First some facts and figures about MOUNT RUSHMORE

Mount Rushmore National Memorial is a quick 25 miles from Rapid City in the Black Hills of South Dakota. Mount Rushmore National Memorial is a massive sculpture carved into Mt. Rushmore in the Black Hills region of South Dakota. Completed under the direction of Gutzon and Lincoln Borglum from 1927–1941, the sculpture’s roughly 60-ft.-high granite faces depict U.S. presidents George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln. The site also features a museum with interactive exhibits.

Where is it?

Address: 13000 SD-244, Keystone, SD 57751
Opening hours: · 5AM–11:30PM

Here are a few facts, figures and stories about the this man-made patriotic wonder. Spend the day at Mount Rushmore with this Monumental itinerary!

Now here are my 5 tips for a great road trip!

Tip 1

The Accommodation

If you would like to have fancy accommodation, you can book almost everything. But if you have to be a bit price conscious (like me), I have the perfect tips for you:

1. Groupon

Yes, you read right. Groupon is totally handy during your time as a social care professional within the apex social program and it is great when you go on a trip. You can book a hotel, hostel, motel, or whatever you want with the Groupon App. The only downside – not every date might be available on Groupon.

2. Motel 6

Almost everywhere in the States, you can find a “Motel 6”. It´s not the best place on earth, but it is enough and affordable. Remember: you will only sleep there because you want to explore the area.

Tip 2

The Time

You should be flexible. I can totally understand that you have to work, but when you want to organize a trip, try not to go when everyone else is going too (eg. Thanksgiving).
Of course, it is possible to still find good accommodation at a good price at this time, but it´s much harder. Also, it does sometimes get cheaper, when you go during the week.

Tip 3

The Route

The first thought is “take the shortest” but that is mostly not the best route to explore the country on a wider scope. You should check out other destinations that are on your way, which might be worth visiting as well. For example on our road trip to “Mount Rushmore,” we also stopped at the “Bear Country”. Every area has so many beautiful places to explore, you just have to be open and a little adventurous.

Tip 4

The Food

It is expensive if you have to eat in restaurants all the time. Prepare yourself a lunchbox. Of course, you can make a stop for dinner, but you will be happy to have something in the car so that you don’t have to go to the gas station to buy a snack. So you can save your money for the entry tickets for the national parks, or something else. When you need to eat in a restaurant, do not choose the cheapest! If the meal isn´t good, you don´t save any money. You don´t have to go in the most expensive restaurant, but don’t be too canny.

Tip 5

The Price

My last, but most important tip is: “Don´t go alone”. Even when you want to go so badly to this special place, don’t go alone. When you go with friends you save so much money.
When your friends don´t have time, ask some other program participants within the Apex Social Facebook groups. You can share the accommodation, the car, and the gas.

The road trip to “Mount Rushmore” was also posted in a Facebook group. We were 5 girls, all from Denver, Co. We had to drive 604 km (7 hours), we stayed in a Motel 20 km from the Memorial and also went to the “Bear Country”. You have to pay for both entry and gas for the rental car, but still – we only spent 58 Dollars per person!!!

We had a great trip and I hope my tips will help you on your next road trip as well.


All the best,



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