We all have our favorite spots…a hiking trail, a mountain view, a city view…but there are some places in Missouri that most of us would know immediately. These are some of our most famous landmarks, and sources of pride for the entire state.
During these uncertain times, please keep safety in mind and consider adding destinations to your bucket list to visit at a later date.
1. St. Louis Gateway Arch
Probably Missouri’s most iconic symbol, the Gateway Arch has been greeting travelers to St. Louis since 1967. The nation's tallest monument, it commemorates Thomas Jefferson and the role St. Louis played in the westward expansion of the United States.
2. Nelson Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City
One of the top art museums in the U.S., The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art is most recognizable by the giant shuttlecocks adorning the front lawn.
3. Silver Dollar City, Branson
Branson’s Silver Dollar City is a popular family destination. It is an 1880s-themed amusement park with more than 40 rides & attractions, 60 unique shops, 12 restaurants, 40 live shows daily, and more than 100 resident craftsmen and artisans demonstrating America's heritage crafts. It is especially magical during the holidays.
4. St. Louis Art Museum, Forest Park, St. Louis
The Saint Louis Art Museum in Forest Park contains paintings, sculptures, cultural objects, and ancient masterpieces from all corners of the world. The three-story building is visited by up to a half million people every year. The hill it stands on, known as “Art Hill” is also widely known during the winter for great sledding.
5. Mark Twain Boyhood Home and Museum, Hannibal
Mark Twain is one of Missouri’s most beloved sons. The properties on site include six historically significant buildings plus two interactive museums, but the most iconic and well-known is pictured here, fence included.
6. Vaile Mansion, Independence
Frontier business tycoon Harvey Vaile built this 30-room mansion in 1881. It is recognized as one of the finest examples of Second Empire Victorian architecture in the U.S.
7. Capitol Building, Jefferson City
Completed in 1918, The Capitol covers three acres in downtown Jefferson City. Rising 238 feet above ground level, the dome is topped by a bronze statue of Ceres, the Roman goddess of vegetation. The structure is notable for its architectural features including its columns, grand stairway, and bronze doors.
8. Busch Stadium, St. Louis
The iconic Busch Stadium is home to the St. Louis Cardinals and is located in downtown St. Louis.
9. Liberty Memorial and the National WW1 Museum, Kansas City
The iconic Liberty Memorial Tower stands above the only American museum dedicated solely to preserving the objects, history and personal experiences of World War I.
10. Anheuser Busch Brewery, St. Louis
The brewery, opened in 1852 by German immigrant Adolphus Busch, was designated a U.S. National Historic Landmark in 1966, recognizing the company's importance in the history of beer brewing and distribution in the United States.
11. The Climatron at Missouri Botanical Gardens
The Missouri Botanical Gardens was founded in 1859 and is the country's oldest botanical garden in continuous operation. It is a National Historic Landmark with 79 acres of gardens and historic structures, including the Climatron tropical rain forest.
12. Union Station, St. Louis
Opened in 1894, St. Louis Union Station was the largest and busiest passenger rail terminal in the world. Today, it is a National Historic Landmark of unsurpassed beauty and elegance, and serves as a world-class DoubleTree by Hilton hotel. The Train Shed now features shops, restaurants, entertainment venues, and much more. Throughout the structure there are exhibits dedicated to the building’s history and architecture.
13. Dillard Mill State Historic Site
This 1900 era mill is one of Missouri’s best-preserved examples of a water-powered gristmill. Tucked between colorful Ozark hills, the red mill overlooks the spring-fed Huzzah Creek and makes a picturesque scene.
14. The Community Bookshelf, Kansas City
Kansas City’s downtown features the striking Community Bookshelf, running along the south wall of the Central Library's parking garage on 10th Street between Wyandotte Street and Baltimore Avenue. The book spines are made of signboard mylar, and measure 25 feet by 9 feet. 22 titles are showcased, originally suggested by Kansas City readers and then selected by The Kansas City Public Library Board of Trustees. The bookshelf was completed in 2004.
15. Columns at the University of Missouri, Columbia
University of Missouri’s row of six Ionic columns are its traditional symbol. They are all that remain of Academic Hall, the first building erected on campus in the 1840’s. When Academic Hall was destroyed by fire in 1892, the Board of Curators originally voted to remove the still-standing Columns, considering them unsafe and unsightly. The Columns were saved by supporters and after an inspection showed they were safe; the columns became the iconic symbol they are today.
How many did you know? What are some other Missouri landmarks? We would love to hear from you!