Missouri has More to Offer than the Arch
The Gateway Arch in St. Louis is perhaps the most recognized place to visit in the state. But if you travel beyond the city of St. Louis you will also find a host of wonderful places to visit.
Did you know that the town of Fulton is home to a piece of the Berlin Wall and a Winston Churchill Memorial?
In Missouri you will find a presidential library, the place where Jesse James died, and Mark Twains boyhood home.
This and many other interesting facts about Missouri will be uncovered as you browse through my ten interesting places to visit in Missouri.
photo by Mary Beth Granger
great small town attractions
Although I have lived in Missouri my entire life, I have lived at various times on both sides of the state(St. Louis and Kansas City) and right in the middle in Columbia.
I was lucky to have a career that allowed me to travel throughout the state. At one point I was a franchise director for a major retailer and traveled to many of the small towns within the state.
In my traveling I was able to discover the rich history and interesting places that Missouri has to offer.
Here are ten of the places that I found the most interesting. Some are places I have visited once or twice but others like Wine Country Gardens, Hermann and The Butterfly House are place I visit again and again.
Winston Churchill Memorial- Fulton
A Piece of the Berlin Wall
Fulton has a piece of Berlin
The Winston Churchill Memorial in Fulton, Mo was founded in 1969 to honor the life and legacy of Winston Churchill.
On May 5, 1946 Winston Churchill gave the famous "Iron Curtain" speech at Westminster College in Fulton. Forty-five years later on May 6, 1992 Mikhail Gorbachev came to the Churchill memorial in Fulton and gave a speech announcing the end of the Cold War
When the Berlin Wall came down, the granddaughter of Winston Churchill acquired a piece to have a sculpture made to honor the "Iron Curtain" speech. The sculpture entitled "Break Through" can be seen on the campus of Westminister College in Fulton.
this photo and the previous photo by pictophile from Creative Commons
Books on Missouri - small town traveling
I hope this page has made you curious about the fun and interesting places to visit in Missouri.
If you would like to read more here are some books that will be helpful in planning your trips.
Great Day Trip from St. Louis
Wine Country Gardens is a great way to escape from the hustle and bustle of daily life and enjoy a relaxing afternoon in the country.
Located just 45 minutes from downtown St. Louis in Defiance, MO, it features 42 acres of beautiful flowers, a view of the Missouri river valley, great wine tasting, and a wonderful patio cafe.
You can view menus, get directions and view more photos at their web site Wine Country Gardens
For a wonderfully unique experience spend an afternoon at Wine Country Gardens
Wine Country Gardens- Peaceful and Serene
Hermann, MO- Missouri's Rhine Valley
built along the banks of the Missouri river
Hermann is a wonderful small town with old world charm. It is nestled in the hills in Missouri wine country and is the home to many festivals and events througout the year.
Visit Hermann and enjoy their Bed and Breakfasts, stroll the old time streets, browse their shops or enjoy the many wineries serving Missouri wines.
I have found it a great way to pass a weekend afternoon.
You may also want to go to Hermann during one of their many festivals. There are several throughout the year and a stop at their website will tell you which ones are coming up. The photo to the left shows their Kristkrindl Market sign, which is held in the beginning of December. It is a delightful time with great shopping from wonderful craftsman, good food and plenty of Christmas music. The photo below shows carolers in their period costumes.
Kristkindl photos by mbgphoto.
Carolers at Kristkrindl Market
The Butterfly House - photos from my collection
The Butterfly House is in a suburb of St. Louis and has a wonderful conservatory that is home to nearly 2000 butterflies. On any given day there are between 60-80 different species of tropical butterflies.
The inside hall features a "Butterflies of the World" exhibit along with exhibits of many other types of insects. At the present time there is a great exhibit that children can walk under that is full of orange headed roaches. It is quite intriquing.
The outdoor garden is host to many of the local species of butterflies.
More information is available at the web site Butterfly House
Statue of Harry Truman outside the Library
Harry Truman Library -Independence, MO
The Harry Truman Library and Museum is a wonderful place to visit . The museum has two major ongoing exhibits Truman:The Presidential Years and Harry S. Truman: His Life and Times In addition it will have various traveling exhibits. You can check the website for the current exhibits Truman Library.
There is a library for research and an ongoing educational program in addition to the museum exhibits.
Pony Express, St. Joseph, MO
first rider leaves St. Joseph in 1860
If you are interested in seeing a great old western town, St. Joseph is the place to come. Their website claims that they are "Where the west official started getting wild" Stjomo
St. Joseph has 13 distinctive museums and over 50 buildings listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Come to St. Jo and see where the Pony Express started and Jesse James ended.
Alley Mill at Alley Springs
Ozark National Scenic Riverways, Ozark National Park
I have many fond memories of Alley Springs as a young girl. My friend and I used to go camping there with her parents and spent many a summer swimming in the spring fed waters or sitting and talking by the old mill.
The old red mill makes Alley Springs a very picturesque site. For more information or directions you can visit their website at Stateparks
home of Mark Twain
Children always seem to enjoy a visit to Mark Twain's hometown. In Hannibal you can explore Mark Twain's cave, visit his boyhood home and museum, or take a nice relaxing riverboat ride down the Mississippi.
For more information go to the website VisitHannibal
Hannibal and Mark Twain - inspiration for The Adventures of Tom Sawyer
Samuel Langhorne Clemens lived from 1835-1910. When he was 4 years old his parents moved to Hannibal, Missouri and this became the inspiration for many of his novels.
Writing under the pen name of Mark Twain he wrote many popular novels. Two of the most famous are The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn .
These novels have become the favorites of children. I can remember my son reading and rereading Twains novels and being so excited when we were able to visit Hannibal and see the setting for the books.
Precious Moments Park
studio, chapel and much more
Carthage, Missouri is a small town just east of Joplin. It has turned an interest in Precious Moments figurines into a wonderful park. I visited there a few years back when there was just the Chapel and Studio and at that time it was well worth the visit.
From looking at their website Precious Moments today it has even more to offer. Along with the welcome center, chapel, and studio, it now offers several different shows and a nice little shuttle bus takes you between the various attractions.
Bid on a Precious Moment Figurine
You can get lots of good buys on collectibles on eBay.
Clarksville, MO - Mississippi River Town
Clarksville is a wonderful small town on the banks of the Mississippi. It was founded in 1817 and today you can wonder the streets and find many small shops full of antiques and artisans.
I took this photo on a fall visit to Clarksville. For more information visit Clarksvillemo
Have you visited Missouri? - stop by and drop me a line
Breonna Batchelor on October 06, 2019:
Are you in the book Frindle
Breonna Batchelor I'm 9 years old on October 06, 2019:
Thank you so much for you website.....
LOVE all we can search on your website.
I live in Lee's Summit, Missouri
Wednesday-Elf from Savannah, Georgia on November 09, 2014:
You know I lived in Missouri for a number of years and frequently visit because of a daughter living in St. Louis and a son living in Kansas City. In fact, last visit was just this past May-June. :). Been to most of the places you list in your top ten ... and enjoyed them all. Loved the Winston Churchill Memorial and once enjoyed Octoberfest in Herrman, Missouri. :) And then there is all there is to see and do in St. Louis, beginning with the Arch. (And my favorite place, Busch Stadium, for a Cardinals baseball game!).
Barbara Tremblay Cipak from Toronto, Canada on November 09, 2014:
I would love to visit, I haven't been there and I know my kids would enjoy touring it as well
Cynthia Sylvestermouse from United States on November 09, 2014:
It has been a while since I have been to Missouri, but I would know that arch anywhere :) I need to visit again soon so I can see the butterfly house. I am guessing spring would be the best time for that since it is an outdoor garden.
Mohan Babu from Chennai, India on April 04, 2014:
Thanks for this grand visual tour of Missouri.
Rob Hemphill from Ireland on March 17, 2014:
Would like to visit one day, so much of interest.
Radgrl on March 06, 2014:
I've been inside the St Louis arch. I remember going up the elevator and it turned sideways a little every time you inched up. I remember felling the arch move in the lookout windows
M. Victor Kilgore on February 26, 2014:
As a Missouri native, I enjoyed your lens very much. I grew up near Laura Ingalls Wilder home/museum in Mansfield. In fact I spent many years living in a house that was made from the roof of her barn. I also lived in Fulton for a year and visited many of the sights you write about...nice lens.
David Stone from New York City on February 22, 2014:
Looks like a lovely place to live, and your photos help do it justice. Makes me wish I was there, right now.
anonymous on February 12, 2014:
Yes! And I want to go back an explore. My grandfather's grandfather settled in in Missouri and I'd like to see where. I've been to a conference in St. Louis and loved the city, and I've been to Nevada, MO on a visit with my husband's sister. She's a Cottey College grad and we stayed at a cute B&B.
Deborah Carr from Orange County, California on January 28, 2014:
I grew up in Hillsboro, Missouri, which was a tiny town in the 1960s when I lived there. I remember when the St. Louis Arch was brand new. I graduated from the University of Missouri in 1970. Still, there were many things in this article that I did not know about. Very interesting!
JessicaLVine LM on January 25, 2014:
Yes. I used to live in Kansas City. I've been to the Arch. It's pretty awesome!
Max Globe on December 26, 2013:
Shame on me, I took pictures near the Arch and haven't seen these beautiful things you mention in the lens. Hope to change it one day!
Carolan Ross from St. Louis, MO on December 13, 2013:
Beautiful tribute to the state of Missouri!
MJ Martin aka Ruby H Rose from Washington State on October 27, 2013:
Not yet, it is a part of my history, and on my bucket list. Now I have some places to go check out, awesome lens, thanks.
grrbtn on October 22, 2013:
I have never considered visiting Missouri but your lens has changed that completely. Thanks for sharing this with us
KathyZ1 on October 17, 2013:
Great lens, enjoy it.
gadifi lm on September 24, 2013:
great lens and great information on Missouri we were there 3 years ago on a visit great place
goldenrulecomics from New Jersey on September 02, 2013:
I haven't been to Missouri since the 1970s, but I do remember the arch! Would love to visit again.
mathew31 on August 13, 2013:
I've never been to Missouri but I definitely want to go now!
socialcx1 on August 10, 2013:
I agree it looks beautiful there.
tonyaalves3 on August 06, 2013:
Never been to Missouri. Very beautiful.
anonymous on August 05, 2013:
I lived near here when I was a small girl. We crossed this bridge daily. There was no graffiti on the walls but you could always hear the sound the wood floor of the bridge would make as the tires drove across. Oh how we take life for granted and assume it will be this way forever. I'm thankful the old bridge still stands.
Jordan on August 03, 2013:
I am squid liking and Pining it to my places to visit on my Pinterest. What a great lens! I did not think any of the Berlin wall would be in existence.
ChocolateLily on August 02, 2013:
I was born in MO, so it has a special place in my heart. I also have some family still there. Thanks for this lovely collection of MO attractions!
anonymous on August 02, 2013:
I like your lens doing great job and love this place also.
anonymous on July 30, 2013:
I used to live in the Kansas City part of Missouri. I wish I would have found this lens sooner. I reckon we will have to go back and visit sometime soon. :)
Nithya Venkat aka Vellur from Dubai on July 25, 2013:
A great tour through Missouri, thanks for sharing. Great lens
Green-horizon on July 17, 2013:
I love this place.
socialcx1 on July 10, 2013:
Looks like a very nice place to visit. Thanks for a very informative lens.
fcinternetmarketing on July 08, 2013:
Missouri is a great place.
Mary Beth Granger (author) from O'Fallon, Missouri, USA on June 29, 2013:
@Wednesday-Elf: Thank you
Wednesday-Elf from Savannah, Georgia on June 29, 2013:
Saw you on the Bravo 200 board -- well deserved honor. Well done. Always loved this lens. It brings back many memories of my times in Missouri. :)
Mary Beth Granger (author) from O'Fallon, Missouri, USA on June 28, 2013:
Nancy Tate Hellams from Pendleton, SC on June 28, 2013:
Returning to this great lens to congratulate you on being on the Bravo Squidoo 200!
Virginia Allain from Central Florida on June 28, 2013:
We usually visit in the St Louis area each fall. One of my favorite day trips was to St. Genevieve.
lionmom100 on June 05, 2013:
I was born in KC, but have not been to a lot of the places you mentioned. Springfield, Joplin, Hannibal and Sedalia were our stomping grounds. I would love to go back and see some of the sights I missed.
anonymous on May 30, 2013:
@Aunt-Mollie: You're so right! We live about 30 minutes outside of KC on the Kansas side and I love little weekend roadtrips. I always find myself heading to Missouri. I always discover something great, the scenery can be downright breathtaking and it's a highly underratted state. If you haven't been, GO!!
Erin Mellor from Europe on May 26, 2013:
I drove through on my way from Detroit on a Route 66 adventure, we stopped in St Louis, but my main memory was how much like Wales the countryside was!
pinoyrecipe on May 24, 2013:
nope, I haven't yet, however maybe later this year
imagelist lm on May 08, 2013:
Aunt-Mollie on May 02, 2013:
I just wrote about the book 'Shepherd of the Hills' which is set in the Ozark Mountains. Many people just don't realize what a beautiful state Missouri is. It's a great place to go for a family vacation.
PinkstonePictures from Miami Beach, FL on April 19, 2013:
No not yet. I learned a lot and that there's a Winston Churchill memorial. Thanks for a great lens. Will have to come back as there's a lot of info.
Meyani on March 20, 2013:
VladJohn888 on March 16, 2013:
Amazing. good job!
petertraoassi2 on March 11, 2013:
Missouri is a pretty cool place. I have been there a few time myself.
sarasentor lm on March 10, 2013:
I love to visit different places and see how beautiful our world is.
SteppingRasor on March 10, 2013:
Very interesting lens. Now I know. Thanks.
anonymous on March 10, 2013:
MichaelDubrovnik on March 09, 2013:
No and I believer your lens has told us all. Cheers, buddy.
randy-miller-5817300 on March 09, 2013:
great page i remember seeing that arch when i was like 4 pr 5 years old brings back memories
street2linen on March 07, 2013:
Thanks for the information. I'll keep this in mind when visiting Missouri
PolyScholar LM on March 07, 2013:
I grew up in St. Louis, although I have since moved away. I spent most of my time at Busch Stadium watching the Cardinals! Great lens. Makes me homesick!
LeenaBK LM on March 07, 2013:
Wow. Never visited Missouri. It looks like such a lovely place. Would definitely love to visit.
amkatee on March 06, 2013:
You forget the Glore Museum in St. Joe. It's an interesting place with exhibits showing early psychiatry techniques. The one display of the contents of someone's stomach is scary!
RonJonMIA on March 05, 2013:
I enjoy the butterfly house, it's a really interesting place! The arch in st Louis is pretty rad considering how huge it is. Branson is the place to go if your visiting Missouri though :)
earnu2 on March 05, 2013:
No unfortunally I haven't visited missouri,haven't been yet to the US
vinopete on March 04, 2013:
I had a great time in St.Louis and would love to visit Branson and Kansas City some day!
LeslieMirror on March 04, 2013:
Once, my family had an opportunity to spend all the weekends together. So, we decided to do this in this very spot. Very nice place!
MrInfopreneur on March 04, 2013:
Nope, only visited California and NY
anonymous on March 02, 2013:
Missouri is a good place, but unfortunately i haven't visited at Missouri
nicksanders lm on March 02, 2013:
I've never been to Missouri, but I think when I go I'll have to check out that giant butterfly.
pshinde2109 lm on March 01, 2013:
I don't live in missouri, but whenever go there, I will have places in my hand ;-)
Alessandro Zamboni from Italy on March 01, 2013:
No, I haven't visited Missouri yet, as I live in Italy. But whenever I will decide to make a U.S.A. tour, I promise I will visit it!
Torrs13 on March 01, 2013:
I've visited Missouri, including St. Louis. I haven't gotten to go to the places you have listed though. I think the Butterfly House would be a cool place to go.
AidanCampbell on February 28, 2013:
Some Deep History There
zafsot on February 28, 2013:
Great stuff! I live in Europe and is very interesting to see what happens at other parts of the world. Especially in America we only know here New York and Los Angeles so thanks for posting these. I may one day visit Missouri!
DivaChick LM on February 27, 2013:
I didn't know all that much about Missouri, Just though it was cold and got a lot of snow. :-D Thank you
DebW07 on February 25, 2013:
I have not been to Missouri but after reading this lens, it's a place I want to visit. Thank you!
agagata lm on February 25, 2013:
That's a great lens! I had no idea there is a piece of Berlin wall in Missouri! You learn something new every day, it seems :) Thank you!
anonymous on February 23, 2013:
I have been there several times and love it! There is a lot of history and very interesting things all over the place. Great lens, thanks for posting!
JadaFuego on February 22, 2013:
Great state...lots of history and attractions to see....Top Notch Lens :)
air ambulance s on February 22, 2013:
What a beautiful place. Great lens. You did a very good job. Thanks for sharing!
codex547 on February 22, 2013:
Lovely place and a even more lovely lens!
anonymous on February 21, 2013:
missouri is one of the greatest place and it also contain other fabulous places
micjeffi on February 20, 2013:
Missouri is just an awesome place to visit
mrsfashionista on February 17, 2013:
this is a great list...
MichaelDubrovnik on February 16, 2013:
I have never been. Defo consider for my big trip after retirement, thanks.
Kalafina on February 16, 2013:
Yes several times. Unfortunately, last time I got food poisoning and had a terrible experience. I knew of their wines but had no idea Missouri also has a yearly Chriskindlemart. Nice lens
anonymous on February 15, 2013:
I did visit Missouri one time but didn't get to visit any interesting places. This lens is a great motivator to visit and again and see these great places
Rebecca582 on February 14, 2013:
I would love to visit Missouri one day. Thanks for highlighting these wonderful sites & this place .
Cristina114 on February 14, 2013:
Great! this place Missouri is very beautiful & i like this lens.
Adrianna102 on February 14, 2013:
Missouri is beautiful place one day i will live see this awesome place. thanks for sharing lens
lewisgirl on February 11, 2013:
I have been to several places in Missouri. The arch was my favorite place.
Sheila from Omaha, NE on February 11, 2013:
We spent several years on a small farm in the woods in Crosstown, Mo about 80 miles south of you and it was amazing! I grew up in the KC area, have also lived in Jefferson City and a couple other cities in Missouri. I consider it my home state, although we've been transplanted to Nebraska for many years. Ahhh... your lens has made me homesick! Sprinkled with some Squid Angel sparkles today and also congrats on your front page honors!
chickie99 on February 10, 2013:
went to Branson years ago~neat place!
am23g23 on February 08, 2013:
Thanks for the share, never knew how many places were actually in Missouri!
CourtneyLace on February 07, 2013:
I live in Missouri, and this is a pretty good list! People tend to think that Missouri is boring, but it doesn't have to be!
LeslieMirror on February 06, 2013:
It looks like Missouri is the city definitely worth visiting. My list of trip destinations is extended. Thanks a lot! =)
nanako on February 03, 2013:
RinchenChodron on January 31, 2013:
I went to college in Missouri and was born there. Great lens - congrats on your feature and your purple star.
WordChipper on January 31, 2013:
I've neverbeen to Missouri - looks like fun!
Karen Kolavalli from Lexington, Kentucky on January 29, 2013:
Went to college in Missouri--enjoyed your lens!
Karen Kolavalli from Lexington, Kentucky on January 29, 2013:
Went to college there--enjoyed the lens!
minecraftmaximi on January 29, 2013:
I live in MO, and I've only been to about 3/4 of those places.
JeffSawyer on January 29, 2013:
Great lens. Thanks for sharing.
mjb13815 on January 28, 2013:
the gateway arch is definitely an amazing structure. You have shared some cool places to visit. Thanks.
MatthewOwnz on January 27, 2013:
Yes I have I go up there about 2 or 3 times a year. I love it because I actually get to see snow usually.
dellgirl on January 25, 2013:
What a nice lens, itâs so full of helpful information. Thank you for sharing, I learned a lot here.