7 Under-Appreciated State Parks Near Kansas City You’re Sure To Love

Every new year means it’s a great time to fill out your annual bucket list and travel to a few places you’ve never been before. Why not a state park? It’s not that these state parks near Kansas City aren’t beloved by those that frequent them, but they’re often overlooked in favor of places like Parkville Nature Sanctuary, where there are waterfalls and all sorts of extra activities to be done. Step outside the city for a while and consider taking a weekend at one of these amazing state parks near the city you’re sure to love.

These state parks are a great addition to your bucket list! Just make sure you’ve seen these 15 places to add as well. Happy travels!

Address: Weston Bend State Park, 16600 MO-45, Weston, MO 64098, USA
Address: Hillsdale State Park, Richland, KS 66071, USA
Address: Knob Noster State Park, 873 SE 10 Rd, Knob Noster, MO 65336, USA
Address: Clinton State Park, 798 N 1415 Rd, Lawrence, KS 66049, USA
Address: Lewis and Clark State Park, 801 Lakecrest Blvd, Rushville, MO 64484, USA
Address: Wallace State Park, 10621 MO-121, Cameron, MO 64429, USA
Address: Watkins Woolen Mill State Park and State Historic Site, 26600 Park Road North, Lawson, MO 64062, USA
The OIYS Visitor Center

State Parks Near Kansas City

February 12, 2022

What are some of the best hiking trails in Kansas City?  

No matter which side you’re on – Kansas or Missouri – Kansas City is a great place for getting outside and enjoying the outdoors. There are a number of great trails in and around the city, with plenty in state parks, local city parks, and more. According to our good friends at AllTrails.com, there are more than 50 awesome trails in and around town, and they all vary in terms of difficulty, length, and sights to see. The most popular trails – which some folks could argue are the “best” trails as voted upon by hikers – include White Tail Trail, in the Parkville Nature Sanctuary, which is an easy 2.6-mile trek through the urban forest and is great for birdwatching and a quick, simple afternoon out. In Minor Park, you’ll find the 5.6-mile, easy hike on the Blue River Parkway/Minor Park Trail. That one is popular among mountain bikers, and for good reason – though you’ll just have to see it to understand it. The Hidden Valley Natural Area Loop is another amazing Kansas City area hike, and it’s 3.2 miles long. Want some more ideas? Check out some amazing state parks near KC that all have amazing hikes within.  

What are some fun things to do outside in Kansas City?  

Kansas City doesn’t seem to get enough credit for anything besides barbecue (which is really, really good, though). We think this is a bit unfair; the city is a great place for outdoor enthusiasts to enjoy the weather year-round, and even when it’s chilly out, KC is an amazing place to be. Some fun things to do outdoors around the city include our amazing state, city, and local parks, where you can let the little ones run amok and make friends while you enjoy the lovely weather. As outlined above, there are more than 50 hiking, biking, and walking trails all over the place that are wonderful for keeping active and getting those steps in. Enjoy multiple festivals, traditions, art walks, barbecue conventions, and so much more; Kansas City is vibrant and lively, and we sure do love our outdoors fun!  

Address: Weston Bend State Park, 16600 MO-45, Weston, MO 64098, USA
Address: Hillsdale State Park, Richland, KS 66071, USA
Address: Knob Noster State Park, 873 SE 10 Rd, Knob Noster, MO 65336, USA
Address: Clinton State Park, 798 N 1415 Rd, Lawrence, KS 66049, USA
Address: Lewis and Clark State Park, 801 Lakecrest Blvd, Rushville, MO 64484, USA
Address: Wallace State Park, 10621 MO-121, Cameron, MO 64429, USA
Address: Watkins Woolen Mill State Park and State Historic Site, 26600 Park Road North, Lawson, MO 64062, USA