Mount Rushmore © Ranch Rider

The ‘WOW’ factor: Also known as ‘The Shrine of Democracy’, Mount Rushmore National Memorial carries the 60-feet tall head sculptures of four US Presidents: George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln. Essentially completed between 1934 and 1939, if you want your own personal slice of Hitchcock’s movie North by Northwest, or the more recent National Treasure: Book of Secrets, this is the place to visit. Carved in granite, the location in the Black Hills of North Dakota was chosen to promote tourism.

Did you know?: The sculpting was carried out by Danish-American Gutzon Borglum and his son, Lincoln. It was originally to represent American heroes like Buffalo Bill Cody, Red Bull and Lewis and Clark but Borglum won the argument in favour of the former Presidents. The sculptures were never actually finished, because the State ran out of money in the early-1940s. As a publicity venture in mid-July 2005, German pressure-spray cleaner, Karcher, carried out a comprehensive clean-up of the faces free of charge.

Experience: Staying true to its cowboy roots, Ranch Rider has added a new working cattle ranch to its Wyoming portfolio. A chance to experience the west in ‘Dances With Wolves’ style, the New Haven Ranch is situated close to the South Dakota border, in some of the same scenery featured in the award-winning movie. Guests have the option to explore both States on horseback and the famous Mount Rushmore monument is only a short drive from the property. Seven-nights with Ranch Rider costs from £995pp (two sharing) including, accommodation, meals, most ranch activities, taxes and gratuities. Excludes transfers: £75pp (from Rapid City) or car hire from £250. Departures: May to October. Return flight from: £789pp. Call Ranch Rider on: 01509 618811 ( Other holiday providers include:,,,,