The largest city in Missouri, St Louis is a vibrant mix of museums, gardens, parks, and breweries. More than just its iconic 630 foot Gateway Arch, this “Gateway to the West” offers visitors a chance to explore its unique history and culture that dates all the way back to the exploration of Lewis and Clark. Whether it’s exploring the largest mosaic collections in the western hemisphere or catching thrills at St. Louis’s most popular theme park, there is an attraction sure to satisfy the entire family. From outdoor adventures to family-friendly fun, discover the top things to do in St. Louis.
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Get A Bird's Eye View at the Gateway Arch
An iconic symbol of St. Louis, the Gateway Arch is where Lewis and Clark set out on their historic expedition. Erected in 1959, this stainless steel engineering marvel has eight elevators that run up to the observation deck at the highest point of the arch. Visitors can take a 630-foot ride to the top of this world-famous monument for a breathtaking aerial view of the city or hop aboard a 19th-century paddle-wheel boat replica for a peaceful cruise down the Mississippi.
Soak in History at the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial
A memorial dedicated to Thomas Jefferson’s vital role in opening the West and to the pioneers that helped support what St. Louis has become today. The Jefferson National Expansion Memorial holds vibrant collections of history that include books, images, objects, and papers detailing its unique past. The memorial also includes the Old Courthouse, a massive domed building built in the 1800’s that has held a handful of influential civil rights trials, most notably the trial of Dred Scott and his fight for freedom from slavery. Visitors can explore the displays with historical exhibits highlighting the Nation’s Westward Expansion or walk the grounds of the picturesque focal point of St. Louis.
Explore Nature at the Missouri Botanical Garden
Perfect for nature lovers of all ages, the Missouri Botanical Garden is 79 acres of lush gardens and stands as the oldest botanical garden in the United States. Visitors can enjoy wandering through the stunning collections of horticultural plants decorated with beautiful fountains, waterfalls, and landscaped architecture. The Japanese Garden is one of the many highlights here, where visitors can feed koi fish in the 14-acre peaceful landscape. Visitors will also find a rose garden, an aqua-tunnel under a water-lily pool, an herbarium, and a children’s garden in addition to attractions that include a cave, prairie village, and treehouse.
Walk on the Wild Side at the St. Louis Zoo
Currently ranked America’s “Top Free Attraction”, the St. Louis Zoo boasts more than 15,000 exotic animals such as armadillos, sloths, swans, penguins, turtles, and gators in addition to lions, tigers, and bears on its expansive property. Perfect for both adults and kids, the zoo has been recognized as one of the nation’s leading zoological parks. Visitors can get up close and personal and observe exciting exhibits such as the Big Cat Country, Penguin & Puffin Coast, the Interactive Stingray Pool, and the children’s petting zoo. Visitors can also take an enchanting guided tour through the park on the kid-friendly Emerson Zooline Railroad.
Taste Tradition at the Anheuser-Busch Brewery
Historic and quintessentially American, visitors can take a tour of the world-famous Anheuser-Busch Brewery and sample a variety of brands while gaining vital beer knowledge shared by enthusiastic tour guides. Visitors will also learn about the brewing methods and how this brewery became to be one of the oldest and largest in the nation. Other than tasting the delectable beer in the Hospitality room, the main attraction with visitors in the Anheuser-Busch Brewery is catching a snap of the magnificent feather-folded Clydesdale horses at the Tour Center.
Catch a Fly Ball at the Busch Stadium
Beloved sports fans, the Busch Stadium is home to the St. Louis Cardinals Major League Baseball team. During spring and summer seasons, visitors can cheer on the 11-time World champs at this 46,000 seat stadium. Visitors will find a sea of red-shirted fans cheering on the local team, with even non-baseball fans getting into the action. Soak in the breathtaking skyline of the city, cheer on the Cardinals, or visit in the off season for a tour of this retro-style downtown ballpark.
Breath in the Fresh Air at Forest Park
Owned and operated by the City of St. Louis, Forest Park is 1,293 acres of tranquil oasis, officially opened to the public in 1876. One of the largest urban parks in the nation, and an impressive 500 acres bigger than New York’s Central Park, Forest Park offers a range of activities that include a zoo, golf course, and a host of summer concerts and other special events. Nature lovers will enjoy the lush greenery surrounding the trails, waterways, and tennis courts, while history buffs will appreciate its role in the 1904 World’s Fair.
Experience Thrills at Six Flags St. Louis
With so many things to do at Six Flags St. Louis, it is impossible to be bored. From the loopy Batman the Ride to the 62 mph Screaming Eagle wooden roller coaster, thrill seekers are sure to be entertained. The truly adventurous can try the 4D interactive Justice League dark ride while the little ones can ride the Bugs Bunny and Elmer Fudd themed rides. Bring your swimsuit to explore the large pools, lazy rivers, and whitewater rapids on Thunder River or attend one of their many live entertainment shows and special events.
Explore Spirituality Cathedral Basilica of Saint Louis
Boasting one of the largest mosaic collections in the western hemisphere, the Cathedral Basilica of Saint Louis is a spectacular sight to be seen. Completed in 1914, this gorgeous Roman Catholic church was designated a basilica by Pope John Paul II in 1997. Known for its impressive mosaic installation, burial crypts and outdoor sculptures promoting racial harmony, it is an active parish and popular tourist destination for people from all over the world.