Nature August 25, 2020
Missouri’s Scenic Waterfall Loop Will Take You To 8 Different Waterfalls
It doesn’t get much better than hitting the open road for a long, leisurely drive unless, of course, you’re heading to some of the most breathtaking waterfalls in Missouri. The following waterfall loop will probably best be completed over a few days since you’ll travel the length of the state, visiting such spots as Taum Sauk Mountain State Park and Missouri Botanical Garden.
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During these uncertain times, please keep safety in mind and consider adding destinations to your bucket list to visit at a later date.
1. Parkville Nature Sanctuary – Parkville
Our scenic waterfall loop starts at Parkville Nature Sanctuary, where you’ll have to slip on your walking shoes. To reach the cascading waterfall, follow the .8-mile Old Kate & Waterfall Trail that’s easy for hikers of all ages and all skill levels. Stroll along the boardwalk, flanked by trees, until you arrive at the waterfall. (The waterfall is typically much stronger after a rainfall.)
2. Missouri Botanical Garden – St. Louis
Earmark plenty of time for your visit to Missouri Botanical Garden in St. Louis. You can find the beautiful, flowing waterfall in the Japanese Garden. The garden is an ideal spot to spend a few hours or an entire day, as you admire the colorful flowers, footbridges, and winding paths.
3. Mina Sauk Falls – Arcadia Township
A three-mile hike awaits that will lead you straight to the tallest waterfall in Missouri. Cascading down 132 feet, Mina Sauk Falls provides the perfect backdrop for photos. The Mina Sauk Falls Trail features some rocky terrain, so be prepared for something of a challenge. After you’ve seen the waterfall, consider making your way to the highest point in Missouri – also at Taum Sauk Mountain State Park.
4. Rocky Falls – Winona Township
Rocky Falls is simply gorgeous all year round, but in the summer it serves as a natural waterpark for those looking to cool off. Stroll just .01-mile along the Rocky Falls Shut-In Trail to the waterfall that drops 30 feet. Expect it to be busy on the hot summer days. Even though it may be busy, you call still cool off in the clear water.
5. Dogwood Canyon – Lampe
Our next stop takes us to Dogwood Canyon, where you’ll have to pay for admission into the nature park. However, you’ll get to see two waterfalls that will simply take your breath away. The waterfalls are gorgeous any time of the year, but they’re particularly breathtaking surrounded by fall foliage.
6. Grand Falls – Joplin
Grand Falls is another must visit waterfall on our waterfall loop. Like Rocky Falls, you can also wade and cool off in the pool into which the waterfall tumbles. The picturesque waterfall drops 12 feet, although it measures 163 feet across. You can reach it within just a few minutes by foot, or admire it from your car in the parking lot, if you’re short on time.
7. Tryst Falls Park – Excelsior Springs
The waterfall loop ends in Tryst Falls Park with the picture-perfect Tryst Falls. Tucked near Kansas City, Tryst Falls is one of the area’s only natural waterfalls, making it more than worth a visit. Bring a picnic along, too, so you can sit near the waterfall and enjoy the sound of it as it tumbles down.
What are your favorite waterfalls in Missouri? Let us know in the comments! If you’re up for another adventure, follow this road trip to some of the
best caves and waterfalls in Missouri. Address: Parkville Nature Sanctuary, 100-198 E 12 St, Parkville, MO 64152, USA Address: 4344 Shaw Blvd, St. Louis, MO 63110, USA Address: Mina Sauk Falls, Arcadia Township, MO 63650, USA Address: Rocky Falls, Winona Township, MO 65588, USA Address: Lampe, MO 65681, USA Address: Grand Falls Blvd, Joplin, MO 64804, USA Address: Excelsior Springs, MO 64024, USA