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10 Must Sees in St. Louis
10. The Gateway Arch and Old Courthouse
The arch is one of things St. Louis is most known for. The 630-foot stainless steel monument is a sight to see. The arch opened for guests in 1965. Riding up the arch is an experience like no other. To enter the arch you walk right next to the Mississippi river. You can choose whether to go up the right or the left side of the arch. Before going up you are given the historical facts of the arch. The gift shop has full of shirts, coffee mugs and so much more. A staff member takes your picture before entering the pod. These photos can be purchased at the end of your experience. To get to the top, you and your party ride in an egg looking pod. On your way up you can see the inner workings of the monument. Once at the top, there are small windows, on one side you can see downtown St. Louis and on the other, you can see the river and Illinois. The old Saint Louis courthouse was the stage for three pivotal trials. The first two for Dred Scott in 1847 and 1850. Dred Scott fought for abolishing slavery. In the 1870's Virginia Minor fought for women's right to vote. Visitors can now tour the courthouse and is the visitor's center for the gateway arch.
9. Forest Park
Forest park is 500 acres larger than Central Park in New York City and attracts 12 million visitors a year. You can get a little piece of everything; historic buildings, bike trails, golf courses, sports fields, wildlife, and waterways. Within forest park, you can find Art Museum, History Museum, the Zoo and Muny Opera. In an urban area, it is a nice green oasis.
8. City Museum
The City Museum is located in the heart of downtown and has something for everyone. It is a shoe factory turned amusement. On the first floor, you can find an outside playground with slide, ball pits, wire tunnels and walkways leading to a plane that you can walk to and hang out in. There is also a restaurant and bar. There are caves that can be explored by children and adults. On the second floor, you can find the art corner, manual twirling dreidels, classrooms, a small circus, and a toddler train. There is a twelve story slide, which, if you can make it up twelve flights of stairs is a fun way to the bottom. The rooftop is one of the most highlighted attractions at the City Museum. You can explore a school bus that hangs over the side of the building. A ferris wheel that gives you a view of the entire city, slides, ponds, restaurant and bar, and so much more.
7. The Zoo
The Saint Louis Zoo was voted the best free attraction in the United States. A newly renovated penguin house is one of the most visited areas of the zoo. Entry into the zoo is free, but food and souvenirs can be purchased. It is an 89-acre attraction opened in 1904. There are over 14,000 exotic animals housed here.
6. Botanical Garden
The Botanical Garden is a beautiful 80-acre attraction. It is the oldest botanical garden in the United States. The gardens include a Japanese garden, greenhouses, and sculptures. You can tour the Climatron which gives visitors a real Rainforest feel with waterfalls, birds, and exotic foliage. There is also an educational, interactive child garden.
5. Busch Stadium and Ballpark Village
See a Cardinal's game, then venture over to Ballpark Village for food and a drink. Ballpark Village is an extension of Busch Stadium filled with restaurants and bars. Ride a mechanical bull, see a show, or karaoke the night away. Now that the Rams have been sent to Los Angeles (we're all still fuming).
4. Saint Louis Science Center
Visitors can venture into the four-story Omniman theater to fly high, take a trip to the wilderness, or dive deep in the sea. Or visitors can see a space show in the planetarium. Children will enjoy the discovery room with over 700 interactive displays and a life-sized animatronic T-Rex.
3. Local Breweries
Saint Louis is home to many delicious breweries. Urban Chestnut Brewing Company has two locations and is known for its wide variety. 4Hands Brewing located downtown has two floors. The first floor and bar you can see into the brewing room with a local food window if you're hungry. Upstairs is the tasting room where they also have free old school arcade games and ski ball. Schlafly brewing also has two locations: bottleworks and the tap room. Anheuser-Busch offers tours and tastings. Other notable breweries include 2nd Shift, Alpha Brewing, Cathedral Square Brewery, Civil Life Brewing Company, Earthbound Brewing, Heavy Riff Brewing, SquareOne, Six Mile Bridge, and William K. Busch Brewing.
2. The Delmar Loop
The Delmar Loop is six blocks of restaurants, entertainment, and shopping. Along the sidewalks, you can find Hollywood-like stars of St.Louis celebrities including Maya Angelou. The Loop (as locals call it) is home to the Pageant, a famous theater and concert venue. Blueberry Hill is also located on the loop, a restaurant with themed rooms. Fitz's famous for their root beer float. Who wouldn't want a Nutella root beer float? You can also ride The Loop trolley.
1. Famous St. Louis Food
Saint Louis has some of the most amazing foods and restaurants. St. Louis is the birthplace of toasted ravioli and gooey butter cake. Pick up a slice of thin crust, provolone loaded St. Louis style pizza and then go get the famous yellow cup filled with Ted Drewes frozen yogurt. St. Louis also has a number of delicious food trucks. They wander around the city and park in different spots every day. A few highly recommended food trucks: Seoul Taco, STL Taco Truck, Guerilla Street Food, Harvest Xpress, Angie's Burgers, Pi Pizza, Slice of the Hill, Steak Louie, Mission Taco Truck, Zia's on the Hill, and Vincent Van Doughnut.
© 2016 Molly Hanson