Explore the serene Mississippi riverside in St. Louis, satiate your cravings with world class barbeque and jazz in Kansas City or simply experience the unique folk culture of Eureka Springs. Missouri offers the perfect blend of outdoor recreation and engaging culture. Here’s a look at what else Missouri has to offer visitors.
Considered the symbolic gateway to the west, the St. Louis Gateway Arch gives spectacular views of the city from a height of 625 feet after a ride up the tower. Although the arch is located at the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial Park, it can be seen from all around the city. Another attraction in St. Louis is Forest Park, which is home to the St. Louis Zoo and the St. Louis Art Museum.
The Live Country Music Capital of the Universe, Branson, Missouri is visited by millions of tourists every year, including many country music fans. Other highlights in Branson are the Table Rock Dam that formed the Table Rock Lake at the state park and Silver Dollar City Theme Park. This theme park displays the traditions of the 1880s mining town, and visitors will enjoy demonstrations of glassblowing, basket weaving, blacksmithing, pottery throwing, candy making and candle making. Another major highlight of Silver Dollar City is the Marvel Cave, which was first discovered by Osage Indians in the 1500s.
Missouri also has historical sites, including Revolutionary war battlefields. On August 10, 1861 the battle between the Union troops and the Confederates was fought at the Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield. Today, visitors can visit this battlefield as well as its onsite museum, which houses the sword belt and sash of Arkansas General Patrick Cleburne.
Fans of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer might be interested to know that author Mark Twain lived in Hannibal, Missouri as a child. The house where Samuel Clemens (aka Mark Twain) lived from age 7 to 18 has been restored and decorated by his father in 1843, and became the Mark Twain Boyhood Home and Museum. Adjoining the house is a museum that displays first editions of Twain’s books, photographs, original manuscripts and the very desk at which he sat to write The Adventures of Tom Sawyer.
Another significant place in Missouri is the City of Independence, which has a number of historic attractions, including the Harry S. Truman Library and Museum and the Harry S. Truman National Historic Site. While the former focuses on artistic objects from Truman’s career and US history from his years in office (1945-1953), the latter features the Victorian house where Truman lived from 1919 until his death. The graves of the president and his wife are in the courtyard of the museum.
Another highlight in the City of Independence is the 31 room Vaile Mansion. With its avant-garde designs and architecture this mansion displayed the living styles of the upper class society in the 1880s.
Missouri’s capital Jefferson City is a blend of historic and political grandeur. With the Missouri State Capitol building, the Governor’s Mansion and the Missouri State Museum, prepare to be amazed by the majestic and spectacular historic buildings of the city. Jefferson City also features the Lewis and Clarke Monument, honoring the duo’s 1804 expedition.
Springfield, Missouri offers Nathanael Greene/Close Memorial Park where visitors will find a botanical garden, walking trails and lush green gardens. The most fascinating attraction, however, is Springfield’s Fantastic Caverns, which is America’s only drive through cavern, where there’s no need to leave your vehicle, though tram tours of the cave are available.
To explore other cultures, check out the Nelson Atkins Museum in Kansas City, which displays a collection of East Asian art. Visitors enter through the sculpture garden and even the grounds of this museum are a sight to behold.
Missouri has a wide variety of attractions to offer visitors of many interests, from entertainment and live music to nature and history.
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