falls park sioux fallsSioux Falls, SD, was a town that I never expected to visit. Preferring to travel to big cities, historical sites, or just about anywhere I can live the dolce vita, it was never a place that I had envisioned exploring. Admittedly I may even have had some preconceived notions about South Dakota.
After spending several days in Sioux Falls for the Travel Media Showcase, it became obvious that Sioux Falls is a perfect family destination. And? There is a dolce vita in Sioux Falls. It lives in the hearts and minds of all those that choose to live in Sioux Falls.

4 Things to See and Do in Sioux Falls, South Dakota

Falls Park
Sioux Falls gets its name from the the Sioux tribe of American Indians and the scenic waterfalls of the Big Sioux River.  Falls Park offers something for everyone from the waterfalls themselves to a light show in the evening that tells the story of Sioux Falls

Washington Pavilion
rhino running great plains zooThe Washington Pavilion is state of the art center of the performing and visual arts in the heart of historic downtown Sioux Falls.  In addition to being home to the performing and visual arts, this once high school building continues to foster creativity and inquiry in children with the Kirby Science Discovery Center that rivals many big city hands on museums.

Great Plains Zoo

This engaging and interactive zoo is home to rhinos, camels (and camel rides), giraffes, a flamingo aviary, penguins, rare water foul, tigers and more.  What struck me the most as we explored the zoo was the creative activities that were available for children of all ages like “how fast can they run” where children (or adults) compare how fast they can run to that of a rhino at full speed.  (for those that are curious: a rhino at full speed could run 40 feet in two seconds!)

Outdoor Campus, Sertoma Butterfly House and Purdy Marine Cove

sertoma butterfly house sioux fallsThe Outdoor Campus is an outdoor skills and nature center that offers classes, activities, and outdoor education to visitors of all ages. Nearby, the Sertoma Butterfly House is a delight for the senses as you walk carefully around an indoor oasis with 80o butterflies flying freely.  In the same building is Purdy Marine Cove, where fans of aquatic animals can see all types of animals in over 2,500 gallons of fresh and saltwater aquariums.

Leaving Sioux Falls I knew that I was leaving more than just a small midwestern town. Sioux Falls offers many things to see and do with a focus on family, cultural arts, outdoor and active lifestyles, and a sense of history and pride.

 Live the dolce vita along with me…  

Italian by birth, Elena tells the story of living-doing-and growing as a Cancer survivor, freelance writer, teacher, runner from her perch in the DC suburbs at Ciao Mom.

My tickets to activiites were provided by Visit Sioux Falls.  All opinions are my own.