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The Santa Fe Trail crossed the Missouri River here. Landmarks include artist George Caleb Bingham's house, the circa 1834 Huston Tavern, a one-room jail, a visitor center museum, camping, hiking trails and picnicking. The Huston Tavern offers dining in an 1860s atmosphere. Arrow Rock is 13 miles north of I-70.
At this site, Union troops defeated the pro-south Missouri State Guard in 1861; it was the northernmost Civil War battle west of the Mississippi River. The site features camping, picnicking, hiking, fishing and boating. History tours from one to six hours in duration are available. Guided natural history tours and hikes lasting up to two hours are offered. The site is located 10 miles north of Kahoka.
This is the location of the final confrontation of a 12-hour Civil War battle on July 5, 1861, where 6,000 Southern troops forced Union soldiers to retreat to Sarcoxie. An interpretive shelter explains the history of the battle. The site is unmanned and is managed by Harry S Truman Birthplace State Historic Site in Lamar.
The Battle of Island Mound marked the first time that African-American troops were engaged in Civil War combat, nearly a year before the battle depicted in the film "Glory."
Battle of Island Mound State Historic site encompasses Camp Africa, where the 1st Kansas Colored Volunteer Infantry camped in 1862 before a pitched battle with pro-Confederate forces near a low hill named Island Mound.
Information at the site details the battle, as well as the effect that the 1st Kansas Colored Volunteer Infantry has on later Union decisions to allow African-American units to fight.
The park is located in Bates County, west of Butler, at the junction of County Road 1002 (also called Marth Road) and County Road 5001 (also called Cooper Road).
Bennett Spring is the state’s third-largest spring. The park features; among other activities: trout fishing; lodging; camping; a dining lodge; fly-fishing schools; a nature center; a swimming pool; float trips; hiking trails; a general store; and picnicking.
Bennett Spring is 12 miles west of Lebanon. Fishing hours vary by month. Trout season is March-October; catch and release is allowed at specific times the rest of the year.
A Missouri fishing license and daily trout tag are required to fish. Pets are not allowed in buildings. The park office is closed on state holidays.
Because of major damage caused by flooding of the Missouri River, Big Lake State Park is closed indefinitely.
The 625-acre Oxbow Lake, 11 miles southwest of Mound City, is perfect for fishing. The park offers lodging, camping, dining, a swimming pool, a snack bar, a store and picnicking. It is an ideal area for bird watching, as it lies along a major migratory flyway.
Driving along the rural highways in southeast Missouri, travelers may notice an abundance of farmland. Amid this farmland, near East Prairie, 1,029 acres of the area's original landscape has been preserved and stands out above the rest.
This island of trees in a sea of agriculture is known as Big Oak Tree State Park. A boardwalk allows visitors to walk alongside champion trees and through wetlands. The interpretive center highlights the park's flora and fauna. Picnic sites and a shelter, as well as hiking trails are available. The park is managed by Hunter-Dawson State Historic Site.
Outstanding oak and oak-pine woodlands are features of this 2,082-acre park in the rugged Elk Hills region of southwest Missouri. These glades, woodlands and bluffs lie along scenic Big Sugar Creek. A three-mile hiking trail traverses the park's unique features, designated as the Elk River Breaks Natural Area. The park is managed out of Roaring River State Park.
As early as 1805, Daniel and Nathan Boone, sons of famed frontiersman Daniel Boone, processed salt from Boone's Lick Spring. A trail with interpretive panels leads to the spring. Picnic sites are available. This historic site is managed out of Arrow Rock State Historic Site. Located 12 miles northwest of Boonville on Route 187, off Route 87.
This park, straddling the lush valley of the Meramec River, is an excellent location for canoeing and fishing. The park has hiking and mountain-biking trails for all skill levels–it is one of the best mountain-biking locations in the St. Louis area.
Open for day use only, the park features picnic sites and shelters, a boat ramp and hiking, mountain biking and equestrian trails.
This site was noted in William Clark’s journal in 1804. A half-mile trail takes visitors up a hill, past American Indian burial mounds and interpretive panels, to an overlook of the Missouri and Osage rivers. The historic site is managed out of Rock Bridge Memorial State Park. Located off Route 50, north on Route J.
This 135-acre memorial park area of the Confederate Home of Missouri is preserved in memory of the 40,000 Missourians who fought under the Confederate flag. Visitors can tour the cemetery and chapel. The site includes the chapel, cemetery, picnic sites and several small fishing lakes.
This park, four miles west of Trenton, is dedicated to Gen. Enoch Crowder, founder of the selective service system. It features camping, hiking, mountain biking and equestrian trails, an organized group camp, picnic sites and shelters, and a lake for fishing and swimming.
More than 38 miles of hiking, backpacking and equestrian trails wind through this 6,393-acre park. Camping, equestrian camping, a lake for fishing and swimming, picnicking, an organized group camp and a visitor center are features. The park is located three miles east of Troy. Visit the website for park office and visitor center hours.
The park features camping, picnicking, a paved bicycle trail, equestrian and hiking trails, and an accessible group camp. The visitor center offers exhibits and interpretive programs.
This park, 32 miles west of downtown St. Louis, is dedicated to physician and surgeon Dr. Edmund Babler.
A trail leads to the point where the Mississippi and the Missouri rivers meet. Interpretive panels focus on the rivers and the Lewis and Clark Expedition. The park's location is great for bird watching. Flooding occaisionally causes closure of the park. Check the website prior to your visit.
At this park, giant, billion-year-old granite boulders stand end-to-end, like a train of red circus elephants. Spend some time reading the names and comments carved into the red granite by 19th century miners who worked in the area.
A self-guiding trail (with Braille signage) winds among these geologic wonders and takes you past what remains of the long-dead mining operation.
Picnic sites and flush restrooms are available.
The park is off of Route 21, four miles north of Pilot Knob.
The Civil War Battle of Pilot Knob was fought here when Confederate troops attacked the earthen fort Sept. 26-27, 1864. More than 1,000 men were killed or wounded in the fierce fighting. The battle ended with the defeat of the Confederate forces. The fort is preserved at the site. Exhibits and a video in the visitor center tell the story. Picnicking is available.
Grounds open sunrise to sunset.
For travelers with disabilities: the Visitor Center is fully ADA compliant; however, some outside features are only partially wheelchair accessible.
Governor Daniel Dunklin, Missouri's fifth governor, served in that office from 1832-36. He is credited with founding the state’s public school system. The site chronicles his role in Missouri history. There is a scenic overlook of the Mississippi River.
Radiocarbon dating indicates the park's shelter cave was inhabited more than 10,000 years ago. The park, two miles west of Danville along the Loutre River, features camping, hiking and mountain-biking trails, fishing, a boat ramp and picnicking.
Often called the Little Grand Canyon, the gulf was created when the ceiling of a giant cave collapsed more than 10,000 years ago. An uncollapsed remnant of the original cave forms a 250-foot natural bridge.
The gulf winds for more than a mile between vertical walls as high as 130 feet. Hiking trails, scenic overlooks and picnic sites are available. Located six miles west of Thayer.
The remains of a huge, circa 1905 European-style stone castle add an air of mystery to this park. Situated atop towering bluffs, the views of the Lake of the Ozarks are majestic. More than 15 miles of winding trails take you past caves, a spring, sink-holes, a natural bridge and down to the lake.
This park features camping, picnicking, hiking and an ADA accessible shelter.
Island Cave is an "entry by permit only" cave. Call the park's office to request a permit to enter.
River Cave is a "supervised entry only" cave. Scheduled tours are given monthly, December through February; subject to the migration of federally-protected gray bats. Call the office for details and schedules. Overlooking the River Cave's entrance, a deck with informational panels is open to all.
Park’s office hours: April-Oct.: daily, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Harry S Truman, the 33rd President of the United States, was born here in 1884. Furnishings from the period fill the home. Free tours.
Surrounded by water on three sides, the park encompasses the tip of a peninsula jutting into Truman Lake. The park offers a marina, camping, hiking, picnic sites, a shelter, swimming, boat rentals and ramps, and great fishing.
Eight miles west of Warsaw: west on Route 7; then north on Route UU.
Set in eastern Ozark sandstone country, this park is located between Ste. Genevieve and Farmington on Route 32. One of Missouri's most scenic and unspoiled landscapes, this park is known for pine trees and wild azaleas. Picnic sites, a shelter and a campground are nestled under the pines. Hiking trails and a 10-mile backpacking trail are available.
Arcadia Valley Serenity
Take a break from the daily grind in one of Missouri's most scenic areas.
Autumn at The Lake
Cooler temperatures don't mean an end to fun at Lake of the Ozarks.
Celebrate Black History in Missouri
Celebrate the contributions of noteworthy Missourians.
Civil-War Sites in Southeast Missouri
Check out these sites that have close ties to the War Between the States.
Explore the Boone's Lick Region - Part I
Whether you spell it Boone's Lick or Boonslick, you'll be wowed by the unique history in this area of Northwest and Central Missouri.
Explore the Boone's Lick Region - Part II
Famous From the Ozarks
Here's a look at some famous folks with ties to Southwest Missouri.
Following Grant's Footsteps
Explore these locations on or near the U.S. Grant Trail.
Grown-ups Getaway in Platte County
Shop, enjoy beautiful scenery and delight in the flavors of Platte County.
History Lessons in Central Missouri
Sites in Central Missouri offer much more than a look at history in the Show-Me State.
Holiday Getaway - Central Missouri
Enjoy shopping, dining, and exploring Central Missouri during the holidays.
Missouri's Great River Road
Enjoy the sights along Missouri's section of the Great River Road.
Outdoor Fun in Branson
You know about the shows and shops, now head outdoors in Branson.
Relaxing Day in Columbia
Spend a relaxing day in Columbia, a vibrant college town in the heart of Missouri.
Route 66 Part One
Route 66 is a great way to explore the Show-Me State and to see some truly unique sites.
Take a Ride on Route 61 - North
From north to south, Highway 61 in Missouri offers a great look at the Show-Me State.
The Civil War in Southwest Missouri
Check out historic sites and battlefields in this region of the Show-Me State.
The Civil War: Grant and Gray Ghosts
Explore Civil War sites with ties to the Ulysses S. Grant and Gray Ghost Trails.
U.S. 63 Itinerary Part I
Take a trip from the northern section of Missouri to its southern border on this scenic route.
U.S. 63 Itinerary Part II
A scenic drive in this section of the Show-Me State offers outdoor fun, golf and wine tasting.
Way of American Genius - Part 2
The Northwest section of the Way of American genius features cities such as Chillicothe, Hamilton and St. Joseph.
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