Before hitting Bismarck, ND we were told by the hotel staff to keep moving towards South Dakota (our next stop). The river boat tour, also the main attraction in Bismarck, was closed for the season and the only thing of interest for the locals was hitting up a bar at night. Not the type of thing we were going for and to piggy-back on what the locals have to say – they are very correct when stating there isn’t a whole lot to do. We managed to spend around four hours in the area after our night stay checking out the North Dakota Heritage Center and the Capitol building though. If you’re into North Dakota history you’ve just found two of the best spots to soak it all in and the best part is they are both FREE! The North Dakota Heritage Center sits on the State Capitol grounds and reflects all areas of the state history in addition to housing permanent collections: North Dakota Remembers World War II and Emigrants from the Empires.
Take a stroll outside on the grounds and you’ll discover flower gardens and sculptures. One of the most notable finds includes a large bronze of Sacajawea and her son just outside of the Heritage Center. In short it’s a very, very cool large place for both children and adults to learn a lot of information about the state.
The North Dakota Heritage Center is located at 612 E Boulevard Ave, Bismarck, ND 58505. Ph. 701.328.2666. Hours are 8 AM-5 PM, Mon-Fri., 9 AM-5 PM Sat., and 11 AM-5 PM Sun. Summer hours, May 16 to Sept. 15, are 8 AM-5 PM daily.