Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in St. Louis, MO

Missouri

By Caroline Lascom

St. Louis, the largest metropolitan area in Missouri, offers a wide range of attractions that cater to both tourists and locals. Known as the “Gateway to the West,” this vibrant city is filled with historical landmarks, cultural institutions, and natural beauty. From the iconic Gateway Arch to the vibrant Delmar Loop, there is something for everyone in St. Louis.

One of the most popular attractions in St. Louis is the Gateway Arch, which stands at an impressive 630 feet. A symbol of the city’s role in the westward expansion of the United States, the arch offers stunning views of downtown St. Louis and the Mississippi River. Visitors can take a tram ride to the top of the arch or explore the museum located below, which tells the story of the arch and its significance.

Another must-see attraction in St. Louis is the Saint Louis Art Museum, located in beautiful Forest Park. This world-class museum houses a diverse collection of artwork from all over the world, spanning thousands of years. From ancient Egyptian artifacts to contemporary masterpieces, there is something to inspire art lovers of all tastes. Admission to the museum is free, making it a popular destination for both tourists and locals alike.

For those seeking a taste of St. Louis’ unique culture, a visit to the Delmar Loop is a must. This vibrant neighborhood is home to a variety of shops, restaurants, and entertainment venues. Known as one of the most walkable streets in America, the Delmar Loop offers a lively atmosphere and a diverse range of cuisines, from BBQ to seafood. Visitors can also catch a show at The Pageant, a renowned concert venue located in the heart of the Loop.

In addition to these top-rated attractions, St. Louis also offers a wealth of other activities and sights to explore. From the historic Anheuser-Busch Brewery to the lively Soulard neighborhood, there is no shortage of things to see and do in this vibrant city. Whether you’re interested in history, art, or simply enjoying the local cuisine, St. Louis has something to offer everyone. So why wait? Start planning your trip and discover all that this exciting destination has to offer.

Gateway Arch

The Gateway Arch is one of the most iconic attractions in St. Louis and a symbol of the city’s role as the “Gateway to the West.” This impressive architectural masterpiece is the tallest man-made monument in the United States, towering at 630 feet (192 meters) high.

Designed by architect Eero Saarinen and completed in 1965, the Gateway Arch is a stainless steel monument that represents the historic significance of St. Louis as the starting point for westward expansion in the United States. Its unique shape, resembling a parabolic curve, is meant to symbolize the passage through the gateway to new territories.

Visitors can take an elevator ride to the top of the arch, where they can enjoy breathtaking panoramic views of St. Louis and the Mississippi River. The viewing area at the top is equipped with large windows, allowing visitors to experience the beauty of the city from a whole new perspective.

For those interested in learning more about the history of the arch and the westward expansion, there is a fantastic underground museum called the Museum of Westward Expansion. The museum provides a fascinating overview of the settlers’ journey and the impact it had on the development of the United States.

Adjacent to the Gateway Arch is the picturesque Jefferson National Expansion Memorial Park, which offers a peaceful green space for visitors to relax and enjoy the surrounding beauty. The park also hosts various events throughout the year, including concerts and festivals.

Whether you are interested in history, architecture, or simply want to enjoy stunning views of the city, a visit to the Gateway Arch is a must when in St. Louis. It is truly an architectural marvel that represents the spirit of exploration and adventure that defined the American West.

Forest Park

Forest Park is an expansive urban park located in St. Louis, Missouri. Spanning over 1,300 acres, the park is larger than Central Park in New York City and is often referred to as the “heart of St. Louis.” It is home to a variety of attractions and activities that make it a popular destination for locals and tourists alike.

One of the notable features of Forest Park is the Saint Louis Art Museum, which houses a vast collection of artwork spanning centuries and continents. The museum is known for its diverse collection, which includes works by renowned artists such as Vincent van Gogh, Claude Monet, and Pablo Picasso.

Another highlight of Forest Park is the Missouri History Museum, which offers visitors an opportunity to learn about the rich history of Missouri and St. Louis. The museum features interactive exhibits, artifacts, and displays that showcase the state’s cultural heritage.

The park is also home to the St. Louis Science Center, a family-friendly attraction that features hands-on exhibits and interactive displays exploring various scientific concepts. Visitors can learn about topics such as space exploration, biology, and technology while enjoying the informative and engaging exhibits.

For outdoor enthusiasts, Forest Park offers plenty of recreational activities. The park is home to golf courses, tennis courts, and walking trails that allow visitors to explore the natural beauty of the park. There are also lakes and ponds where visitors can go boating or fishing.

In addition to its attractions, Forest Park is also a popular venue for special events and festivals throughout the year. The park hosts concerts, cultural festivals, and sporting events, providing entertainment for visitors of all ages.

Overall, Forest Park is a must-visit destination in St. Louis, offering a wide range of attractions and activities for everyone to enjoy. Whether you’re interested in art, history, science, or simply enjoying the great outdoors, this expansive park has something to offer.

Saint Louis Zoo

The Saint Louis Zoo is widely regarded as one of the best zoos in the country. It covers an area of 90 acres and is home to over 13,000 animals representing 603 different species. The zoo is divided into several sections, including the River’s Edge, the Red Rocks, and the Historic Hill.

One of the major highlights of the zoo is the Penguin & Puffin Coast, which allows visitors to observe these fascinating birds up close. The Sea Lion Sound is another popular attraction where visitors can watch sea lions swimming and playing in a spacious aquatic environment.

The zoo also has a children’s zoo called the Emerson Children’s Zoo, which offers interactive exhibits and allows kids to get up close and personal with various animals. It features a petting zoo area where children can touch and feed farm animals, as well as a play area with a splash zone and a dinosaur dig site.

For those interested in learning about conservation, the Conservation Carousel is not to be missed. This beautifully crafted carousel features 64 hand-carved wooden animal figures, and each ride supports the zoo’s conservation efforts.

Visitors can also enjoy the Zooline Railroad, a 20-minute train ride that takes you on a tour around the zoo, providing an excellent opportunity to see the animals while relaxing.

With its wide variety of animal exhibits, educational programs, and interactive experiences, the Saint Louis Zoo is a must-visit destination for animal lovers of all ages.

City Museum

The City Museum in St. Louis is a unique and interactive attraction that offers something for visitors of all ages. It is a one-of-a-kind museum that combines architecture, art, and playful exhibits to create an exciting and educational experience.

Founded by artist Bob Cassilly, the City Museum is housed in a former shoe factory building and covers 600,000 square feet of space. The museum’s exhibits are made from recycled materials and salvaged architectural elements, giving it a distinct and creative atmosphere.

Visitors can explore the City Museum’s extensive collection of exhibits, which include giant sculptures, tunnels, slides, and even a rooftop Ferris wheel. There are also climbing structures and obstacle courses for adventurous visitors to navigate.

One of the highlights of the City Museum is the Enchanted Caves, an underground labyrinth of tunnels and secret passageways. Visitors can wander through these caves and discover hidden treasures and surprises along the way.

In addition to its exhibits, the City Museum also offers educational programs and workshops for children and adults. These interactive workshops allow visitors to learn about art, architecture, and urban design in a hands-on and engaging way.

The City Museum also hosts special events throughout the year, including live music performances, art festivals, and film screenings. It is a lively and dynamic destination that always has something new and exciting happening.

Opening Hours Admission Prices Contact Information
Wed-Sat: 9am-5pm
Sun: 11am-5pm
Adults: $16
Children (3-15): $13
Senior Citizens: $14
Phone: (314) 231-2489
Email: [email protected]

Whether you’re a fan of art, architecture, or simply looking for a fun and unique experience, a visit to the City Museum is a must when in St. Louis. It offers a memorable and entertaining adventure that will leave you wanting to come back for more.

Cathedral Basilica of Saint Louis

The Cathedral Basilica of Saint Louis is one of the most stunning and iconic landmarks in St. Louis, Missouri. This historic cathedral is known for its breathtaking architecture and intricate mosaic artwork.

Construction of the cathedral began in 1907 and was completed in 1914. The exterior of the cathedral features a beautiful blend of Romanesque and Byzantine architectural styles, with its grand dome being one of the tallest in the United States.

However, it is the interior of the Cathedral Basilica that truly mesmerizes visitors. The cathedral is home to the largest mosaic collection in the western hemisphere, with over 41.5 million pieces of glass covering an area of 83,000 square feet. The mosaics depict various biblical scenes and religious figures, creating a truly awe-inspiring sight.

Visitors to the Cathedral Basilica of Saint Louis can explore the beauty of the cathedral through self-guided tours or attend a mass to experience the spiritual atmosphere. The cathedral also hosts various events and concerts throughout the year.

In addition to its architectural and artistic significance, the Cathedral Basilica of Saint Louis holds a special place in the hearts of the local community. It has been a place of worship and reflection for generations of St. Louis residents, and its presence adds to the rich cultural heritage of the city.

Whether you are a religious pilgrim or an art enthusiast, a visit to the Cathedral Basilica of Saint Louis is sure to leave a lasting impression. Marvel at the grandeur of its architecture, immerse yourself in the beauty of its mosaic artwork, and appreciate the spiritual significance of this historic landmark.

Missouri Botanical Garden

The Missouri Botanical Garden, also known as Shaw’s Garden, is a beautiful oasis in the heart of St. Louis. It is one of the oldest botanical institutions in the United States and is widely regarded as one of the world’s leading centers for botanical research and conservation.

Created in 1859 by philanthropist Henry Shaw, the Missouri Botanical Garden spans 79 acres and features a stunning collection of plants from around the world. The garden is divided into several themed sections, including the Japanese Garden, the English Woodland Garden, and the Victorian District.

Visitors to the Missouri Botanical Garden can explore the vast array of plant life on display, including over 6,000 species of plants from around the globe. Highlights of the garden include the Climatron, a geodesic dome conservatory that houses a tropical rainforest, and the Ottoman Garden, which showcases Middle Eastern plant life.

In addition to its collection of plants, the Missouri Botanical Garden also offers a variety of educational programs and events. Visitors can participate in guided tours, attend workshops and lectures, and even take part in hands-on gardening activities. The garden also hosts special events throughout the year, such as the annual Japanese Festival and the holiday Garden Glow.

Whether you’re a nature enthusiast, a plant lover, or simply looking for a peaceful escape from the city, the Missouri Botanical Garden is a must-visit attraction in St. Louis. With its breathtaking beauty and dedication to botanical research and conservation, it truly is a living museum that offers a unique and educational experience for visitors of all ages.

Grant’s Farm

Grant’s Farm is a historic site and family attraction located just southwest of downtown St. Louis. It was originally owned by Ulysses S. Grant, the 18th President of the United States, and served as a working farm during his ownership.

Today, Grant’s Farm is owned by the Busch family, of Anheuser-Busch fame, and is operated as a wildlife preserve and petting zoo. Visitors can explore the expansive grounds and see a variety of animals, including bison, deer, and goats.

One of the main attractions at Grant’s Farm is the tram tour, which takes visitors around the property and provides an overview of the history and ecology of the area. The tour also includes a stop at the famous Budweiser Clydesdales stables, where visitors can get up close and personal with these majestic horses.

Address: 10501 Gravois Rd, St. Louis, MO 63123
Hours: Varies by season, check the website for current hours
Admission: Free, but parking is $15 per vehicle
Website: www.grantsfarm.com

In addition to the tram tour, Grant’s Farm offers a variety of other activities and attractions. Visitors can feed the goats in the petting zoo, enjoy a guided tour of the historical farmhouse, or try some of the famous Anheuser-Busch beer in the beer garden.

Overall, Grant’s Farm is a unique and family-friendly destination in St. Louis. Whether you’re interested in history, wildlife, or just want to have a fun day out, Grant’s Farm has something for everyone.

Anheuser-Busch Brewery

The Anheuser-Busch Brewery is one of the top-rated tourist attractions in St. Louis, MO. Founded in 1852, it is one of the oldest and most iconic breweries in the United States. Known for producing popular beers such as Budweiser, Bud Light, and Michelob, the brewery offers an immersive and educational experience for visitors.

Visitors to the Anheuser-Busch Brewery can take a guided tour to learn about the brewing process, the history of the company, and the various beers produced there. The tour takes visitors through the historic brewhouse, the cellars where the beer is aged, and the packaging plant. Along the way, visitors can see the state-of-the-art brewing equipment and learn about the craftsmanship and attention to detail that goes into every bottle of beer.

One of the highlights of the tour is the opportunity to visit the famous Budweiser Clydesdales. These majestic horses have been a symbol of Anheuser-Busch since 1933 and are bred and trained at the brewery. Visitors can see the Clydesdales up close, learn about their history and care, and even watch them as they prepare for a parade.

In addition to the brewery tour, the Anheuser-Busch Brewery also offers a beer garden and biergarten where visitors can relax and enjoy a cold beer. The beer garden features a variety of Anheuser-Busch beers on tap, as well as a menu of delicious food and live entertainment. It’s the perfect place to sample some of the brewery’s offerings and soak in the lively atmosphere.

Whether you’re a beer enthusiast or just curious about the brewing process, a visit to the Anheuser-Busch Brewery is a must for anyone visiting St. Louis. The combination of history, education, and tasty beer makes it a top-rated tourist attraction that shouldn’t be missed.

The Magic House

The Magic House is an interactive children’s museum located in the Kirkwood suburb of St. Louis. With over 55,000 square feet of exhibits, it offers a wide variety of hands-on activities that engage and educate children of all ages.

Inside The Magic House, kids can explore a replica city called “The Children’s Village” where they can try out different careers and learn valuable life skills. They can also create amazing art in the Art Studio or conduct science experiments in the Wonder Works exhibit.

One of the highlights of The Magic House is the three-story Magic Climber, which is an intricate climbing structure that challenges children’s physical abilities while providing a fun and safe environment. Additionally, the museum features a puppet theater, a make-believe town, a musical staircase, and a bubble exhibit that is bound to put a smile on any child’s face.

The Magic House also offers special events and programs throughout the year, such as themed workshops, summer camps, and family nights. It is a popular destination for field trips and birthday parties, providing a unique and educational experience for children.

Whether you’re a local or a visitor to St. Louis, a visit to The Magic House is a must. It offers endless opportunities for children to learn and explore in a fun and engaging way. Don’t miss out on this magical experience!

Soulard Farmer’s Market

The Soulard Farmer’s Market, located in the historic Soulard neighborhood of St. Louis, is the oldest farmers market west of the Mississippi River. Established in 1779, it has been serving the community for over 200 years. With its vibrant atmosphere, wide variety of products, and rich history, the Soulard Farmer’s Market is a must-visit attraction for both locals and tourists.

At the market, visitors can find an abundance of fresh, locally grown produce, including fruits, vegetables, meats, and dairy products. The market is also known for its wide selection of spices, herbs, and specialty food items. Whether you’re looking for everyday groceries or unique ingredients for a special recipe, the Soulard Farmer’s Market has something for everyone.

In addition to its fresh produce and specialty food items, the Soulard Farmer’s Market also features a variety of local artisans and craftsmen. Visitors can browse through a wide selection of handmade crafts, artwork, and home goods. It’s the perfect place to find a one-of-a-kind souvenir or gift.

One of the highlights of the Soulard Farmer’s Market is its lively and energetic atmosphere. The market is always bustling with activity, and there is often live music and entertainment to enjoy. It’s a great place to soak up the local culture and experience the vibrant spirit of St. Louis.

Visiting the Soulard Farmer’s Market is not just about shopping; it’s also about engaging with the community. The market provides a platform for local farmers, artisans, and small businesses to thrive. It’s a place where friends and neighbors come together, creating a sense of community and connection.

Whether you’re looking to stock up on fresh groceries, find unique gifts, or simply soak up the local atmosphere, the Soulard Farmer’s Market is a must-visit destination in St. Louis. With its rich history, wide variety of products, and vibrant atmosphere, it offers a unique and enjoyable experience for all.

The Muny

The Muny, short for Municipal Opera Association of St. Louis, is an outdoor amphitheater that is located in Forest Park, St. Louis. It is one of the oldest and largest outdoor theater venues in the United States. The Muny first opened its doors in 1919 and has been a beloved cultural institution in St. Louis ever since.

The Muny is known for its world-class productions of Broadway musicals, attracting top talent from the theater industry. Each summer, the Muny produces a season of seven shows, featuring performances under the stars. The venue can accommodate around 11,000 people, making it the perfect destination for a night out with family and friends.

What sets the Muny apart is its unique seating format. There are over 1,400 free seats available on a first-come, first-served basis, and the rest of the seating is reserved for ticket holders. This inclusion of free seats ensures that everyone has the opportunity to experience the magic of live theater.

The Muny is not just a place to watch a show; it’s an experience. The theater is surrounded by beautiful greenery and landscaped gardens, creating a tranquil and inviting atmosphere. It also offers pre-show picnicking, where visitors can bring their own food and enjoy a meal before the performance. Many families and friends make it a tradition to gather for a picnic at the Muny before the show begins.

Whether you’re a theater enthusiast or just looking for a unique and memorable evening in St. Louis, a visit to the Muny is a must. The combination of top-quality productions, breathtaking outdoor setting, and vibrant atmosphere makes the Muny an attraction that shouldn’t be missed.

Key Attractions:

  1. World-class productions of Broadway musicals
  2. Outdoor amphitheater with seating for 11,000 people
  3. Unique seating format with free seats available
  4. Surrounded by beautiful greenery and gardens
  5. Pre-show picnicking

Busch Stadium

Busch Stadium is a state-of-the-art baseball stadium located in downtown St. Louis, Missouri. It is the home of the St. Louis Cardinals, one of Major League Baseball’s most successful and storied franchises. The stadium offers visitors a fantastic fan experience and is a must-visit destination for sports enthusiasts.

One of the standout features of Busch Stadium is its architecture. The stadium boasts a retro design, reminiscent of the classic ballparks of yesteryear, combined with modern amenities. The open-air design allows fans to enjoy the ballpark atmosphere and provides breathtaking views of the downtown skyline.

The stadium offers various seating options, ranging from affordable general admission seats to luxury suites. The seating capacity of Busch Stadium is over 45,000, ensuring that there is plenty of room for fans to cheer on the Cardinals. The stadium also features numerous concession stands and restaurants, offering a wide variety of food and drink options.

In addition to hosting regular-season games, Busch Stadium is famous for hosting postseason games and has seen its fair share of memorable moments. The stadium has been the stage for numerous playoff games, including the Cardinals’ World Series championships in 2006 and 2011. The electric atmosphere and the passionate Cardinals fan base make attending a game at Busch Stadium an unforgettable experience.

Aside from baseball games, Busch Stadium also hosts other events, such as concerts and soccer matches. The versatile venue can accommodate large crowds and provides a unique setting for these events.

Visitors to Busch Stadium can take a guided tour of the stadium, which offers behind-the-scenes access to areas like the press box, locker rooms, and the field itself. These tours provide a fascinating glimpse into the inner workings of a major sports stadium and are a great way to learn more about the history of the Cardinals.

Overall, Busch Stadium is a must-visit attraction for baseball fans and sports enthusiasts visiting St. Louis. Whether you’re cheering on the Cardinals or simply exploring the stadium’s unique architecture, a visit to Busch Stadium is sure to be a highlight of your trip.

Laumeier Sculpture Park

Laumeier Sculpture Park is a unique outdoor art museum located in St. Louis, Missouri. Spanning 105 acres, the park features over 60 modern and contemporary sculptures dispersed throughout its lush green landscape.

Visitors to Laumeier Sculpture Park can enjoy a leisurely stroll through the grounds, taking in the beauty of the sculptures and the surrounding nature. The park offers a peaceful and serene setting, perfect for quiet contemplation or a picnic with friends and family.

The sculptures at Laumeier Sculpture Park are created by renowned artists from all over the world. Each piece is carefully placed to create a harmonious blend with its natural surroundings, resulting in a truly immersive artistic experience.

One of the highlights of the park is the iconic “Eye,” a massive sculpture that resembles a giant eyeball. Standing over 10 feet tall, the sculpture is a popular spot for photo opportunities and a must-see for visitors.

In addition to its collection of sculptures, Laumeier Sculpture Park also hosts various art events and exhibitions throughout the year. These events provide visitors with the opportunity to engage with the artworks and learn more about the artists behind them.

Whether you’re an art enthusiast or simply looking for a peaceful escape from the city, Laumeier Sculpture Park is a must-visit destination in St. Louis. Its unique blend of nature and art creates an unforgettable experience that will leave you inspired and rejuvenated.

Laclede’s Landing

Laclede’s Landing is a historic district in downtown St. Louis located along the Mississippi River. It is named after Pierre Laclede, the founder of St. Louis. This charming district is filled with cobblestone streets, historic buildings, and a vibrant atmosphere.

One of the main attractions at Laclede’s Landing is the Gateway Arch, which is visible from the district. Visitors can take a tram ride to the top of the arch for panoramic views of the city and the river. The arch also has an interactive museum that tells the story of the westward expansion of the United States.

Another popular attraction at Laclede’s Landing is the Old Courthouse. This historic building served as the site of the Dred Scott slave trial in 1846, which played a significant role in the lead-up to the American Civil War. Visitors can tour the courthouse and learn about its fascinating history.

Laclede’s Landing is also home to a variety of restaurants, bars, and shops. Visitors can enjoy a meal at one of the many unique eateries, grab a drink at a local brewery, or browse through specialty stores for one-of-a-kind souvenirs.

Throughout the year, Laclede’s Landing hosts a variety of events and festivals, including live music performances, food tastings, and cultural celebrations. The district comes alive with excitement and offers something for everyone to enjoy.

Whether you are looking to explore the history of St. Louis, enjoy delicious food and drinks, or simply soak in the vibrant atmosphere, a visit to Laclede’s Landing is a must when in the city. Don’t miss the chance to experience this unique and charming district.

The Delmar Loop

The Delmar Loop is a vibrant and eclectic neighborhood located in the heart of St. Louis. It is known for its lively atmosphere, unique shops, delicious restaurants, and thriving local arts scene.

One of the main highlights of The Delmar Loop is its extensive selection of boutiques and specialty stores. From trendy clothing boutiques to vintage record shops, there is something for everyone. Visitors can explore the shops and find one-of-a-kind items to take home as souvenirs.

In addition to shopping, The Delmar Loop is also home to a variety of art galleries, theaters, and music venues. Art enthusiasts can browse through the galleries showcasing the works of talented local artists, while theater lovers can enjoy a live performance at The Pageant, one of the top concert venues in the city.

Food lovers will be delighted by the diverse range of dining options available at The Delmar Loop. There are numerous restaurants serving everything from international cuisine to classic American dishes. Whether you’re in the mood for sushi, pizza, or barbecue, you’ll find it here.

For those looking for outdoor activities, The Delmar Loop has several parks and green spaces. Visitors can take a leisurely stroll through Forest Park, one of the largest urban parks in the United States, or relax at the lovely outdoor seating areas scattered throughout The Delmar Loop.

Overall, The Delmar Loop is a must-visit destination in St. Louis. With its vibrant atmosphere, unique shops, delicious restaurants, and lively arts scene, there is something for everyone to enjoy.

FAQs

What are some top-rated tourist attractions in St. Louis?

Some top-rated tourist attractions in St. Louis include the Gateway Arch, Forest Park, the Saint Louis Zoo, the Missouri Botanical Garden, and the City Museum.

How tall is the Gateway Arch in St. Louis?

The Gateway Arch in St. Louis is 630 feet (192 meters) tall.

What can I do in Forest Park in St. Louis?

In Forest Park, you can visit the Saint Louis Art Museum, the St. Louis Zoo, the Missouri History Museum, the Muny outdoor theater, and the Jewel Box greenhouse. You can also enjoy walking and biking trails, picnicking, and boating on the lake.

How many animals are there in the Saint Louis Zoo?

The Saint Louis Zoo is home to over 18,000 animals representing more than 700 species.

What is the City Museum in St. Louis known for?

The City Museum in St. Louis is known for its unique combination of playground, funhouse, surrealistic pavilion, and architectural marvel. It is a popular attraction for both children and adults.

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Caroline Lascom

Caroline is a seasoned travel writer and editor, passionate about exploring the world. She currently edits captivating travel content at TravelAsker, having previously contributed her exceptional skills to well-known travel guidebooks like Frommer’s, Rough Guides, Footprint, and Fodor’s. Caroline holds a bachelor's degree in Latin American studies from Manchester University (UK) and a master's degree in literature from Northwestern University. Having traveled to 67 countries, her journeys have fueled her love for storytelling and sharing the world's wonders.

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