From the unusual to the unbelievable, Missouri has plenty of attractions that will capture your attention. However, some stand out from the crowd because they're, well … huge! These can't-miss attractions are scattered all over the state just waiting to amaze.
The View From the Top
The Show-Me State's iconic Gateway Arch in St. Louis is a symbol of the United States' westward expansion. At 630 feet tall, the arch is the tallest monument in the country. Take a tram ride to the top for an unbeatable view.
See the St. Louis skyline from above on The St. Louis Wheel, a 200-foot-tall observation wheel with climate controlled gondolas. For picturesque views of the Ozark Mountains, hop aboard the 150-foot-tall Branson Ferris Wheel.
Climb up to the top of the National WWI Museum and Memorial in downtown Kansas City for a glimpse of the city from a new perspective. The museum has the biggest, most comprehensive collection of WWI items in the world.
The Great Big Outdoors
Savor the fresh air and gorgeous scenery as you walk, run or bicycle down the Katy Trail. Limestone bluffs, native plant species and the Missouri River provide a breathtaking backdrop. At 240 miles long, the mostly-flat trail is the longest developed rails-to-trails conversion in the country.
Elephant Rocks State Park is a sight to behold. Massive, billion-year-old pink granite boulders are the star of the park. The geologic wonders call to mind a train of elephants – hence the name, Elephant Rocks. A Braille Trail was designed to give guests with visual or physical disabilities the opportunity to enjoy the park.
Gargantuan Roadside Attractions
Gawk at the World's Largest Ball of Twine, measuring in at 13.5 feet tall, at Ripley's Believe It or Not Odditorium in Branson. Check out the 3,000-pound ball of string in O'Malley's Pub in Weston. Or, head to Missouri Star Quilt Co. in Hamilton for the World's Largest Spool of Thread – you can even bring thread and add to the 1 million yards already wrapped around the 22-foot-tall spool.
At one time, the Route 66 Rocker in Cuba was the largest rocking chair in the world. The since-dethroned chair is still a sight to see along historic Route 66 at Fanning 66 Outpost and Feedstore.
You might think we're nuts, but the World's Largest 20th Century Pecan can be found in Brunswick – the Pecan Capital of Missouri. The 12,000-pound pecan makes the perfect centerpiece for the town's Annual Pecan Festival.
Feast your eyes upon a 35-foot-tall, 11-ton stainless steel fork in the middle of Springfield. You'll need the enormous fork if you plan to partake of the 30-foot-tall morel mushroom in Nevada. But, we wouldn't recommend it.
Wander across the grounds of the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art in Kansas City to get an up-close look at the large sculptures. The works surround the building – a massive piece of modern art itself.
An instantly-recognizable sight in Kansas City is the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art's expansive lawn scattered with 18-foot-tall badminton shuttlecocks. Installed in 1994, the sculptures have since become a symbol of the museum.
Checkmate. Look no further than the World Chess Hall of Fame in St. Louis for a unique and engaging museum about, you guessed it, chess! Outside the museum you'll find an oversized chess board with a truly gigantic king chess piece towering nearby.
Missouri also has its share of smaller sights and attractions. The National Museum of Toys and Miniatures in Kansas City is home to the world's largest collection of fine-scale miniatures. It also displays one of the largest historic toy collections in the nation.
Hop aboard the Magic City Line Miniature Railroad in Moberly's Rothwell Park. The tiny train is not exclusively for children, so adults can feel free to go along for the ride. The nearby Railroad Museum and Caboose will entertain and educate after your ride.