If you think the midwest part of the United States is simply a flyover country, think again. The State of Missouri offers every bit as much excitement and natural beauty as any other part of the nation.
There are plenty of things to do in Missouri. From the nightlife of its major cities to fine dining, world-class museums, professional sports, and unique regional attractions.
Let’s take a look at some of the most memorable Missouri attractions you won’t want to miss on your next vacation to the Show Me State.
Midwest Memories: 7 Must-See Missouri Attractions for Your Next Vacation
Tourists are never at a loss of things to do and see in Missouri. Here are 7 Missouri attractions worth a visit.
Branson is a city located in the Ozark Mountains of southwest Missouri that draws millions of tourists every year. You can be sure that this is a place unlike any other you’ve ever experienced.
The town itself is filled with a wide range of entertaining destinations, amazing dining, and plenty of shopping to take advantage of.
The “Strip” is an experience much like the Vegas strip, lined with restaurants, great hotels, and music palaces that feature some of the greatest country music performers alive. The city’s major attractions are all within a 10-30 minute drive of the Strip.
It’s also surrounded by tremendous outdoor attractions such as lakes rich with world-class fishing, skiing, and boating. If you’ve never been to the Ozarks, you’ll quickly discover that this is one of the most beautiful areas in all the world.
2. Silver Dollar City
Speaking of Branson, one of the primary attractions in this part of the state is a major theme park that shouldn’t be missed during your Branson visit. Silver Dollar City is like stepping back in time to 1880s Ozark culture, complete with blacksmithing, glassblowing, candle making, and basket weaving.
The park features an amazing variety of shops, live music shows, restaurants, fun rides, as well as plenty of other cool attractions.
Among the biggest attractions at Silver Dollar City is Marvel Cave. The cave was discovered by a group of Native Americans in the 1500s. Visitors will be amazed at the size of the many caverns that you pass through from the entrance to the final train ride as you’re exiting.
Silver Dollar City is a place of crafts and music that transports you into the past as few other experiences can.
3. National World War I Museum and Memorial
For anyone who loves history, this is a destination you won’t want to miss. Millions of visitors have passed through The National World War I Museum and Memorial since it opened in 2006.
Located in Kansas City and adjacent to Liberty Memorial, the museum features a tour of history through the use of documentary eye-witness accounts, interactive exhibits, and more than 75,000 historical items.
Believe it or not, Missouri has a really impressive wine scene that many people consider second to none. In fact, more than 80 vineyards and wineries located throughout the state.
The region around Hermann has a wine tradition that goes back nearly 175 years. Located about 80 miles from St. Louis, Hermann became home to German settlers who arrived n the 1800s, bringing their wine expertise with them.
Hermann offers a number of fabulous activities for wine lovers, including tours of underground wine cellars that were built back during the Civil War.
Some of the more popular wineries in the state include Stone Hill Winery, Hermannhof Winery, and OakGlenn Vineyards and Winery.
5. The Gateway Arch
There are few man-made structures in the United States as recognizable as the Gateway Arch in St. Louis. This amazing 630-foot monument of glass and steel towers above downtown, glistening in the sunlight.
It’s truly a wonder of engineering and design, and it’s not just amazing to look at. Believe it or not, visitors are able to take a 4-minute tram ride up the legs of the hollow structure and enjoy a panoramic view once they’ve reached the top.
So if your trip takes you through St. Louis, for a few hours, or a week, it’s definitely worth the time to make a stop at the Gateway Arch.
6. The Missouri Botanical Garden
Located at 4344 Shaw Boulevard in St. Louis, and also known as Shaw’s Garden, this 79 acres of formal gardens, woodlands, and greenhouses was founded in 1859 by philanthropist Henry Shaw.
The Garden hosts a number of annual festivals, showcasing a variety of botanicals, crafts, cultural arts, live music, and food.
The Missouri Botanical Garden also serves as a center for botanical research and science education, with a reputation that circumnavigates the globe. One of its major attractions is a Japanese strolling garden, a 14-acre section of the Garden that has become a particular highlight for visitors from around the world.
7. The Museums of Kansas City
For lovers of art and history, Missouri contains an impressive array of some of the finest museums found anywhere.
Some of the most popular in the state are located in Kansas City. These include the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art, which is free and offers a lot within a limited space.
You’ll also want to check out the National Museum of Toys and Miniatures, the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum, and the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, which is a 22-acre sculpture park that will leave you in awe.
And just 10 miles east of Kansas City in Independence, you can visit the Harry S. Truman Presidential Library and Museum, or learn more about it on this website.
The State With Something For Everyone
There is really no limit to the number of great Missouri attractions for tourists to visit and enjoy. The Show Me State truly does offer something for every member of the family, whether in the city or out in nature.
When planning what to do in Missouri, take time to see a little bit of everything, from museums and restaurants to tremendous musical acts and the awesome natural surroundings. It’s the kind of place you are certain to never forget!
Click here to see 5 adventures worth adding to your bucket list.