Top

Stay in the loop!

Want to know when we share big things? Subscribe today & keep up-to-date with our posts.


The Best Of Both Worlds

It’s no question that our area is home to amazing scenery, drives, and outdoor activities all encompassed within the Black Hills National Forest. With all of this natural beauty surrounding our area you might be wondering, “What about shopping? Nightlife? Food? Beer?” have no fear, we’ve got that to. When you stay at The Howard Johnson Inn & Suites Mount Rushmore, you’re minutes away from either exploring the Black Hills, or treating yourself to some Downtown Rapid City fun.

Our Downtown Scene

The food scene here is incredibly diverse and astonishingly delicious. If your stomach is craving a specific style entree, every direction of Downtown can satisfy that hunger. Que Pasa creates a delicious and mouthwatering selection of modern Mexican cuisine! Carnitas, Enchiladas, Burritos and more, they’ve got it. Down the street Kathmandu Bistro offers a wide selection of tasty traditional Indian meals where you can choose the level of heat you desire. Not what you’re looking for? Head toward Botticelli Ristorante Italiano for some of the best Italian cuisine that money can buy. These restaurants and many more are a measly three-minute drive from The Howard Johnson.

All filled up and nowhere to go? Not a problem, you're in Downtown Rapid City! If you need that great souvenir (or at least say it's a souvenir but really you just want to do some shopping...no judgment), Downtown is lined with a variety of local shops for you to get exactly what you need. A popular shop for locals and visitors alike is the one of a kind Prairie Edge Trading Co. and Galleries. This two-story, corner store is full of beautifully crafted Native American art and awesome local products.

There’s no need to worry if shopping isn’t exactly your cup of tea. Right on the corner of 6th and Main is Main Street Square. This Downtown hub always has something going on; fountains during the summer, ice skating during the winter, along with concerts, unique festivals and events! If you happen to catch a time where there isn’t anything going on at Main Street Square, the Howard Johnson is next to the Rushmore Plaza Civic Center where fun and unique events are taking place year-round. Catch a Rush Hockey game attend a concert or check out a festival and be a few steps from your hotel.

Playing in the Black Hills

Have you ever wondered what its like to be within an hour’s drive of seven national and state parks and monuments? Any direction you head from The Howard Johnson will lead you to one of these phenomenal places. Be sure to bring a map or charge your phone just in case, we can’t all be Lewis and Clark.

If you head south from The Howard Johnson Hotel, you’ll find yourself on the road to Mount Rushmore, which is kind of a big deal. I mean its four 60-foot heads on the side of a mountain for goodness sake and it’s only a 38-minute drive from the hotel.

Heading east from the hotel on I-90 will send you to the Badlands National Park, a 244,000 acre park filled with a beautiful Mars-like terrain!

Turn to the west from The Howard Johnson and you’ll find your way to Spearfish where you can take a gorgeous drive through Spearfish Canyon. This portion of the Black Hills National Forest is a beautiful drive through a lush canyon with waterfall overlooks that can take you on a loop back into the Mount Rushmore area where you can also find Crazy Horse, Custer State Park, and Needles Highway.

When choosing a vacation destination, you don’t have to choose between adventuring in the outdoors and exploring the city. When you stay in Rapid City at The Howard Johnson, you get both! To add on to a superb location, I should also mention how great and affordable it is to stay at the Howard Johnson. They are a certificate of excellence award winner from Tripadvisor, and are the Property of the Year from Wyndham (which is a national award), both awards are a pretty big deal. And because everyone loves free things you should know they offer free breakfast and free happy hour for all guests which includes beer, wine, soda and popcorn! Learn more about everything the The Howard Johnson Inn & Suites Mount Rushmore offers by checking out their website.

Meet the Author

Cody Wiseman

Despite only living in Rapid City for 12 years, this adventurer is glad to call the Black Hills his home. Actually seeing him is rare as he is usually huddled behind his camera trying to capture anything and everything that catches his eye.

latest blog posts

Cody Wiseman
Communications Manager

Despite only living in Rapid City for 12 years, this adventurer is glad to call the Black Hills his home. Actually seeing him is rare as he is usually huddled behind his camera trying to capture anything and everything that catches his eye.

View More

Latest Blog Post

  • Rapid City's "Little Secret"
    November 20, 2019 - Chris
  • Latest Blog Post

  • Who’s Ready For A Boot Scootin’ Good Time?
    November 14, 2019 - Kelsy
  • The Season Of Fun At The Civic Center
    October 23, 2019 - Kelsy
  • Why You’ll Want To Participate In This Wine Walk
    October 22, 2019 - Kelsy
  • Latest Blog Post

  • Planning A Meeting In Rapid City Is Easy - And Adventurous
    November 13, 2019 - Tyson
  • 5 Reasons Meeting Planners Love Rapid City
    February 6, 2019 - Tyson
  • Amazing Rush Season 2: Day Two Adventures
    October 27, 2017 - Tyson
  • Latest Blog Post

  • The Best Of Both Worlds
    November 5, 2019 - Cody
  • Construction at Mount Rushmore? More Like Enhancements
    September 3, 2019 - Cody
  • Latest Blog Post

  • The 7 Wonders In and Around Rapid City, SD
    October 10, 2019 - Allie Bast
  • Latest Blog Post

  • IN HISTORY: 1st Custer State Park Buffalo Auction, Feb. 12, 1966
    August 23, 2019 - Black Hills Knowledge Network
  • In History: First Blast On Crazy Horse Memorial, June 3, 1948
    April 5, 2019 - Black Hills Knowledge Network
  • IN HISTORY: Rapid City Founded, Feb. 24, 1876
    February 22, 2018 - Black Hills Knowledge Network
  • Latest Blog Post

  • Summer In Rapid City
    August 1, 2019 - Stephanie
  • Latest Blog Post

  • An Oz Experience: Flying With The Oldest Balloon Company In The USA
    July 26, 2019 - Danielle
  • My Daughter's First Time At Storybook Island
    June 7, 2019 - Danielle
  • Big, Bold Flavors Where The Buffalo Roam
    December 8, 2017 - Danielle
  • Latest Blog Post

  • 10 Must-Do Adventures In And Around Rapid City
    July 3, 2019 - Chris Brinlee Jr.
  • How To Get The Most Out Of A Black Hills Adventure
    August 17, 2017 - Chris Brinlee Jr.
  • Latest Blog Post

  • 5 Reasons I Love Downtown Rapid City
    May 31, 2019 - Anne
  • Get Your Hike On
    March 25, 2019 - Anne
  • A Day At Minuteman Missile National Historic Site
    March 25, 2019 - Anne
  • Latest Blog Post

  • The Most Exciting Social Event Of The Summer
    May 10, 2019 - Jennifer
  • Get Lost, Play Tag…Be Brave
    May 8, 2019 - Jennifer
  • Make Unbearably Perfect Memories at Bear Country USA
    March 2, 2018 - Jennifer
  • Latest Blog Post

  • Outdoor Campus West: Free Family Fun!
    April 24, 2019 - Shiloh
  • Experience the Magic at Storybook Island
    December 5, 2018 - Shiloh
  • Add Some Color to Your Life
    April 25, 2018 - Shiloh
  • Latest Blog Post

  • Mount Rushmore Questions You’ve Been Dying to Ask
    February 8, 2019 - Michaela
  • Top 5 Trails Within 30 Minutes of Rapid City
    March 8, 2018 - Michaela
  • Rapid City from Michaela’s point of view.
    October 17, 2016 - Michaela
  • Latest Blog Post

  • Rapid City Myth Busting
    January 25, 2019 - Sarah
  • Downtown Shopping
    January 3, 2019 - Sarah
  • My Favorite Parks and Monuments
    January 29, 2016 - Sarah
  • Latest Blog Post

  • The Custer State Park Trail Challenge
    October 26, 2018 - Amy
  • Latest Blog Post

  • Our Family Vacation To South Dakota
    September 21, 2018 - Liz Beatty
  • Latest Blog Post

  • Black Hills Powwow: A Kaleidoscope of Color
    September 5, 2018 - Kris Monroe
  • Latest Blog Post

  • Wild Adventures Out West
    July 12, 2018 - Kevin Stinehart
  • Latest Blog Post

  • Rapid City Blog: Spearfish Canyon
    June 25, 2018 - Aiden Lynn-Klimenko & Madison Perrins
  • Rapid City Blog: Trail System
    November 14, 2016 - Aiden Lynn-Klimenko & Madison Perrins
  • Latest Blog Post

  • Top Picks For Outdoor Adventure At 9 Parks & Monuments
    April 11, 2018 - Lisa
  • Latest Blog Post

  • The Mount Rushmore of Summer Vacations
    April 9, 2018 - Ginny
  • 8 Great Reasons to Love Spring in the Black Hills
    January 29, 2018 - Ginny
  • Four Ways Rapid City Lives Up To The Hype
    June 23, 2016 - Ginny
  • Latest Blog Post

  • Refresh Your Adventure At Rapid City Microbreweries
    January 16, 2018 - Stephen Sebestyen
  • Latest Blog Post

  • In The Spirit Of The Season: The Story Of Devils Tower National Monument
    October 10, 2017 - Amanda Hitchcock
  • Latest Blog Post

  • Rapid City's Wildside
    October 5, 2017 - Adrian Munoz
  • Latest Blog Post

  • Rapid City - Reptile Gardens, Bear Country USA, Watiki Water Park, Outdoor Campus West
    July 7, 2017 - Heather & Pete Reese
  • Rapid City South Dakota - We Made It!
    July 6, 2017 - Heather & Pete Reese
  • Custer State Park Jeep Tour, Chuckwagon, Buffalo, Antelope!
    July 6, 2017 - Heather & Pete Reese
  • Latest Blog Post

  • Beginners Guide: Being A Tourist In Your Backyard
    June 2, 2017 - Tessa
  • Latest Blog Post

  • The adventure of a lifetime in Rapid City
    March 20, 2017 - Ellen and Mike
  • Latest Blog Post

  • Basil, Tomatoes, Olive Oil, Wine…Just A Few Of My Favs
    January 27, 2017 - Stacie
  • 1,200 Degrees of Taste Bud Paradise
    January 15, 2017 - Stacie
  • Latest Blog Post

  • A Black Hills Winter
    December 23, 2016 - Jesse
  • Latest Blog Post

  • Travelin with Tiff: Rush Mountain Adventure Park
    December 13, 2016 - Tiffany
  • Latest Blog Post

  • Downtown Trails and Recreation
    July 5, 2016 - Lisa
  • Latest Blog Post

  • 3 Mountain Bike Rides to Jump Start Your Black Hills Adventures
    May 20, 2016 - Craig
  • Latest Blog Post

  • Shredding in the Black Hills
    March 10, 2016 - Bill