9 Best Things to do in Devils Lake, North Dakota

Devils Lake, North Dakota

North Dakota, Minnesota’s neighbor to the west offers unique experiences year-round. That’s because for all four seasons, you can enjoy uncrowded, wide-open spaces, beautiful parks, snap pictures of bison and quirky roadside attractions, enjoy affordable meals, and go fishing (North Dakota’s fishing “season” is open year round unlike Minnesota).

Devils Lake, located in northeastern North Dakota, is a town rich in history and natural beauty. Since the early 1990s, the lake has expanded significantly, resulting in the permanent flooding of neighborhoods and farmlands, which remain underwater today. This phenomenon has created a unique and evolving landscape. Devils Lake remains a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts, offering exceptional fishing, boating, and wildlife observation opportunities. Read on for the best things to do in Devils Lake, North Dakota! Note: This post is sponsored by North Dakota Tourism. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

1. Excellent Places to Eat and Drink

Devils Lake is a sprawling town with tons of great places to grab a meal. Some of our favorites include:

  • Cedar Inn: Serving home-cooked meals and breakfast all day since 1994, with the main feature being their locally made breakfast sausage!
  • White House Cafe: Their menu is full of great American classics made fresh to order every day of the week. It’s a great spot to go for eggs and bacon.
  • The Ranch: A nice upscale dinner spot for cocktails and steak.
  • Anna’s Cucina and Tequila: Authentic Mexican food owned and cooked by a local family. Be sure to enjoy the refreshing margaritas!
  • Coyote Pizza: Fresh signature house pizza, wings, pasta, beer and wine.
  • Old Main Street Cafe: An American eatery with burgers, sandwiches and steak.

2. Black Paws Brewing

As many of you know, we have a Newfoundland and we were delighted to learn that Black Paws Brewing is in honor of the owner’s seven Newfies! We enjoyed sampling a lager, IPA and red ale. We also had fun playing some of the games they have on-site including Connect Four. And the best part was getting to meet the owner’s eight-month-old puppy, Norman who’s already 100 lbs!

3. White Horse Hill National Game Preserve

Visit the White Horse Hill National Game Preserve to walk the trails, take in the beautiful overlooks of Devils Lakes, and spot bison, elk, prairie dogs, and more than 250 species of bird. President Theodore Roosevelt designated this unique natural area in 1904 as “a big game preserve, refuge, and breeding ground for wild animals and birds.” Highlights include driving the 4.5-mile auto tour through woodlands and prairies, and hiking the two-mile nature trail through prairies, wetlands, and woodlands or the 1/4-mile paved trail.

4. Fort Totten Historic Site

Operated by the State Historical Society of North Dakota, Fort Totten preserves a military post built in 1867. The brick buildings, which replaced an earlier log fort, appear much as they did when built it was originally built with local brick. Fort Totten became a North Dakota State Historic Site in 1960. Today, these well preserved buildings are being used to house museum exhibits. Entrance is $6/adult.

5. Dockside Entertainment Center

Dockside is a great place for a date, friends, or families with young children. We had a blast playing golf, football, soccer, baseball, hockey, lacrosse, and dodgeball in the simulator bays. We also had good time bowling and saw families enjoying the pickleball courts and the indoor playground. It is definitely a great place to spend a few hours.

Devils Lake, North Dakota

6. Devils Lake Doughnuts

If you’re looking for a sweet treat, visit Devils Lake Doughnuts! You’ll find fresh doughnuts, turnovers, and bagel sandwiches made daily. We grabbed a variety of donuts, my favorite was the glazed chocolate icing and the raspberry jelly-filled donut.

7. Grahams Island State Park

Located on the lake, Grahams Island State Park is one of the most popular North Dakota state parks. And the causeway you’ll drive leading up to the park stretches for miles with expansive views of the lake on either side. With 1,100 acres of wooded land, 130 different native plants, and a ton of shorebirds, waterfowl, and songbirds, it’s an excellent place for bird watching. Take a stroll along the 1.6-mile Sivert Thompson Loop that offers beautiful views of Devils Lake. Note: A day pass of $7 is required to visit Grahams Island.

8. Creel Bay Golf Course and Kayak Rentals

A trip to Devils Lake isn’t complete without getting out on the water! From fishing (Devils Lake has earned the reputation of being the “Perch Capital of the World”) to paddle sports and more, the lake is a haven for water recreation! Creel Bay Golf Course, stretching along the main lake, provides convenient and affordable kayak rentals. And if you’d rather swing a club, enjoy the well-cared-for golf course with golf carts and clubs available for rent.

9. Woodland Resort

The Woodland Resort is a great place for lodging, or just a nice meal. Bobbers Bar overlooks the Creel Bay with plenty of space to soak up the sun while enjoying a drink. Note: Bobbers is open Friday – Sunday during the summer only. Proz Lakeside, the on-site restaurant, offers excellent walleye sandwiches, steak, pizza, and both indoor and outdoor seating with views of the lake.

Devils Lake, North Dakota

Plan Your Trip!

Devils Lake, North Dakota is a unique place that remains a true hidden gem! For ways to travel to Devils Lake, you can take a road trip from the Twin Cities and drive about six hours. Or, take a short flight to Grand Forks, and the grab a rental car and drive one hour west (which is what we did). Looking for more inspiration in the Dakotas? Check out my blog post on Fargo, ND, Dickinson, ND and Rapid City, SD. Happy adventuring!

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