13 Best Places and Things To Do in Yankton, South Dakota

Yankton, South Dakota, is a charming city located along the Missouri River. It offers a unique blend of natural beauty, historical significance, and recreational opportunities. Whether you’re interested in outdoor adventures, cultural experiences, or simply relaxing in a picturesque setting, Yankton has something for everyone.

1. Lewis and Clark Recreation Area

Image Source: https://www.tripadvisor.in/Attraction_Review-g54882-d609531-Reviews-Lewis_and_Clark_Recreation_Area-Yankton_South_Dakota.html

This sprawling state park is a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts. It offers camping facilities, hiking trails, fishing spots, and boating opportunities on the shores of Lewis and Clark Lake. You can also enjoy swimming at the sandy beaches or embark on a scenic bike ride along the park’s trails.

2. Missouri National Recreational River


Image Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Missouri_National_Recreational_River

Yankton is fortunate to be located near the Missouri National Recreational River, which provides ample opportunities for water-based activities like kayaking, canoeing, and fishing. The river is also surrounded by beautiful bluffs, making it an ideal spot for hiking and birdwatching.

3. Gavin’s Point Dam


Image Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gavins_Point_Dam

Located just west of Yankton, Gavin’s Point Dam is a magnificent structure that offers breathtaking views of the Missouri River. You can take a tour of the dam and learn about its role in flood control and hydroelectric power generation. The area around the dam is perfect for picnicking, wildlife spotting, and photography.

4. Historic Downtown Yankton

Yankton (right) along the Missouri River with the Meridian Bridge connecting Nebraska, looking west

Image Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yankton,_South_Dakota

Located along the Missouri River, the Meridian District is a revitalized area that offers a mix of shopping, dining, and entertainment options. Explore the boutiques, antique shops, and specialty stores, or enjoy a meal at one of the local restaurants. The district also hosts various events and festivals throughout the year.

5. Pierson Ranch Recreation Area

Image Source: https://reservations.gooutdoorssouthdakota.com/FacilityDetails.aspx?facID=48&sd=1/26/2022&ed=1/28/2022

Situated on the banks of the Missouri River, Pierson Ranch Recreation Area is a peaceful retreat with camping facilities, hiking trails, and excellent fishing opportunities. It’s a great spot to relax, have a picnic, or enjoy a scenic nature walk.

6. Riverside Park

Image Source: https://www.tripadvisor.in/Attraction_Review-g54882-d10693923-Reviews-Riverside_Park-Yankton_South_Dakota.html

Riverside Park is a popular destination in Yankton, South Dakota, known for its scenic beauty, recreational facilities, and family-friendly atmosphere. Located along the banks of the Missouri River, this expansive park offers a range of activities and amenities for visitors of all ages.

7. Meridian Highway Bridge

Meridian Bridge.jpg

Image Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meridian_Highway_Bridge

The Meridian Highway Bridge, also known as the Meridian Bridge, is an iconic landmark in Yankton, South Dakota. Spanning the Missouri River, this historic bridge connects Yankton with the neighboring town of Nebraska. The Meridian Bridge has a rich history dating back to its construction in 1924. It was originally built as a toll bridge to accommodate automobile traffic on the Meridian Highway, which was a major north-south route connecting Canada to Mexico.

8. Cramer-Kenyon Home

Image Source: https://www.tripadvisor.in/Attraction_Review-g54882-d8458072-Reviews-Cramer_Kenyon_Home-Yankton_South_Dakota.html

The Cramer-Kenyon Home is a historic residence located in Yankton, South Dakota. Built in 1886, it is considered one of the city’s architectural treasures and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The Cramer-Kenyon Home holds great historical significance as it reflects the affluent lifestyle of Yankton’s early pioneers. It was originally built for Benjamin F. Cramer, a prominent businessman and politician, who played a significant role in the development of the region. Over the years, the house changed ownership, and in 1904, it was purchased by William Kenyon, a wealthy lumber dealer.

9. Bishop Marty Memorial Chapel

No photo description available.

Image Source: https://www.facebook.com/ILoveYankton/posts/the-bishop-marty-chapel-on-the-campus-of-mount-marty-college-and-the-sacred-hear/2485573404794085/

he Bishop Marty Memorial Chapel is a prominent religious and architectural landmark located in Yankton, South Dakota. This beautiful chapel, affiliated with Mount Marty University, holds historical and cultural significance in the community. The Bishop Marty Memorial Chapel was built in 1952 and dedicated to the memory of Bishop Martin Marty, who played a vital role in establishing Mount Marty College (now Mount Marty University) and the Catholic community in Yankton. Bishop Marty was known for his contributions to education and missionary work in the region.

10. Mead Cultural Education Center

Image Source: https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g54882-d7949322-Reviews-Mead_Cultural_Education_Center-Yankton_South_Dakota.html

The Mead Cultural Education Center is a prominent cultural institution located in Yankton, South Dakota. Housed in a beautifully restored historic building, the center offers visitors a unique and immersive experience, showcasing the rich history and diverse culture of the region.

11. Yankton Area Arts

Image Source: https://www.tripadvisor.in/Attraction_Review-g54882-d10826778-Reviews-Yankton_Area_Arts-Yankton_South_Dakota.html

Yankton has a thriving arts scene, and the Yankton Area Arts organization is at the heart of it. Visit the galleries and attend cultural events showcasing local and regional artists. The organization also offers art classes and workshops for those interested in honing their creative skills.

12. NFAA Easton Yankton Archery Center

Image Source: https://www.facebook.com/yanktonarchery/

The NFAA Easton Yankton Archery Center is a premier facility for archery enthusiasts located in Yankton, South Dakota. As the headquarters of the National Field Archery Association (NFAA), it is dedicated to promoting the sport of archery and providing a world-class venue for archers of all levels.

13. Fox Run Golf Course

Image Source: https://joingreatlife.com/fox-run-golf-course/

Fox Run Golf Course is a popular golfing destination located in Yankton, South Dakota. This well-maintained 18-hole public golf course offers a challenging and enjoyable experience for golfers of all skill levels. Nestled in the rolling hills and lush landscapes of Yankton, Fox Run Golf Course offers a picturesque backdrop for a round of golf. The course is known for its natural beauty, with mature trees, manicured fairways, and strategically placed water hazards. The well-designed layout integrates the natural features of the land, providing an aesthetically pleasing and enjoyable golfing experience.

Yankton, South Dakota, may be a smaller city, but it offers a wealth of opportunities to explore the outdoors, immerse yourself in history and culture, and enjoy a laid-back atmosphere. Whether you’re a nature lover, history buff, or art enthusiast, Yankton has plenty to offer, making it a delightful destination for a memorable experience.