Missouri October 19, 2017
10 Underrated Missouri Towns That Deserve A Second Look
Missouri has many great small towns throughout the state. With 80% of the state’s population situated around both the Kansas City and St. Louis metro areas, it’s easy to overlook all the little towns in between. Luckily, we have picked out 10 underrated towns throughout Missouri that deserve a second look. So whether you’re looking for great outdoor activities, historically important buildings, or small town wonders these towns have something for you! If you find yourself coming up on these Missouri gems on your next road trip, stop for a well-deserved visit.
Rolla is one of the bigger small towns on our list. This often overlooked town is home to one of the best colleges in the state, Missouri University of Science and Technology, especially for engineering. Rolla is also well known for their huge St. Patrick's Day celebration. Rolla is easy to get to and has fun attractions in town and beautiful conservation areas to hike just outside of town.
Parkville is one of the coolest small towns in Missouri. Located just north of Kansas City on the Missouri River, this town of 5,500 is well know for its antique shops, boutiques, and historic downtown area. The beautiful Parkville University also calls the town home.
Cuba has a population of about 3,000 and is affectionately known as the mural city. Located along the histric Route 66 there are many historically important attractions related to the Mother Road. Check out the murals, visit a small town eatery, and check out the big red rocking chair! During the warmer months you can visit one of the few remaining drive-in theatres left in the state.
Sedalia is home to the Missouri State Fair and was the birthplace of ragtime composer Scott Joplin. While Sedalia is one of the bigger towns on our list, this city of 21,000 people still has the small town vibe and quint historic downtown. Centrally located and easily accessible by Interstate 70, Sedalia is well worth checking out, especially if you've only visited during the state fair.
Kirksville is one of the bigger towns in northeastern Missouri. Many Missourians likely know of Kirksville becuase of Truman State University but this town of 17,000 people has lots of historical and natural attractions. Check out Thousand Hills State Park while in town and be sure to take a stroll through the historic downtown district.
Another small college town on our list is Maryville, which is home to Northwest Missouri State University. Maryville has about 10,000 residents and features the beautiful Mozingo Lake Park. Check out an event at the college or visit one of the local wineries.
Marshall has a population of about 13,000 people but it's best known for one if its former canine residents. Jim the Wonder Dog, who could understand commands in foreign languages, morse code, and short hand. He also predidicted the outcomes of the Kentucky Derby, World Series, and even predicted the sex of unborn babies. Come see Jim's memorial garden and visit his gravesite while in town.
Sikeston is one of the southernmost cities on our list. Sikeston is often considered the start of the bootheel and the cotton producing region of Missouri. Sikeston has a population of about 16,000 and is home to the historic Sikeston Train Depot and Museum. While you're in town get a little taste of southern Missouri culture and visit the local rodeo!
Farmington is a small town of 18,000 in the former lead belt of Missouri. Located just minutes from St. Joe State Park, Farmington has great outdoor attractions and a quaint downtown area full of boutiques and antique shops.
Camdenton has endless outdoor activities and one of the best parks in the nation. Whether you want to spend time on the lake or hiking through Ha Ha Tonka State Park, Camdenton has something for every outdoor enthusiast. This tiny town of just 3,000 residents turns into a booming tourist town each summer. Find some of the best resorts on the Lake of the Ozarks in Camdenton. While summer may be the high season, there are great activities year round in this small lake town.
Have you visited any of these underrated Missouri towns? Tell us what your favorite things about the towns on our list in the comments below.
Looking for more Missouri towns to visit? Check out these
15 slow paced small towns in Missouri where you can get away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.