A Weekend Getaway in Columbia

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“MIZ-!” If you say those letters in Columbia, someone is bound to respond with an enthusiastic, “-ZOU!” Though Columbia may be best known as a college town, it also has the makings for a great weekend getaway. Hop in the car and discover the fun that awaits.

Eat Like a Local

A. Murry’s Restaurant and Jazz Club

Come for the food, stay for the jazz. An á la carte menu makes sampling the selection at Murry’s a breeze. Live jazz runs from 9 p.m. until midnight on Saturday nights, but arrive early because tables fill up fast. 

B. Booches Billiard Hall

Booches has won countless awards over the years, including “Top 10 burgers in the nation” by “USA Today” and “Best Burger in Mid-Missouri” by “FEAST Magazine” – just to name a few. This may come as a surprise considering the cash-only establishment has a pared-down menu of old-fashioned hamburgers, hot dogs and chips. But, in the words of the wise, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” 

C. Shakespeare’s Pizza

A Columbia institution, Shakespeare’s has been around since 1973. Not only does it have amazing pizza with a multitude of topping options, the atmosphere has earned it the title of “Best College Hangout in America” by “Good Morning America.” The business has since expanded with three locations throughout the city. 

Find Your Hoppy Place

A. Logboat Brewing Company

Logboat delivers an interesting selection of brews to enjoy. Find a favorite to sip while you spend time with family and friends at Logboat Park, the perfect place to play Bocce ball, cornhole, Frisbee or washers. Logboat doesn’t serve food, but you’ll often find food trucks on-site on Friday afternoons. 

B. 1839 Taphouse – Columbia

Craft beer lovers will gravitate to 1839 Taphouse. Choose from 24 rotating taps and then head to the game room, which offers pool, darts, pinball and skee-ball. Soak up some Vitamin D from the comfort of the patio that’s outfitted with a fireplace and 10 flat-screen TVs.  

C. Flat Branch Pub and Brewing

Another great addition to a CoMo pub crawl, Flat Branch offers top-notch brews and traditional pub fare. You can always find a minimum of 10 beers on tap as well as homemade root beer, cream soda and ginger ale. 

Venture Outdoors

A. Rock Bridge Memorial State Park

Just south of Columbia, Rock Bridge has more than 2,200 acres to traverse. Marvel at the natural rock bridge, sinkholes and springs. Explore Connor’s Cave, or seek solitude on a hike to the Gans Creek Wild Area.

B. Mizzou Botanic Garden

The entire University of Missouri campus has been classified as a botanic garden since 1999. Workers meticulously maintain the 752 acres of gardens, trees, paths and statuary. As a university campus, the garden is open for visits all year long at no charge.

C. Shelter Insurance Gardens

Located at Shelter Insurance’s corporate office, the five-acre plot features a “sensory garden” for the visually impaired, a Vietnam Veterans memorial, a replica school house, a waterfall and reflecting pool, and much more. With more than 15,000 annuals and perennials, this garden will have you stopping to smell the flowers.

Explore Music and Museums

A. The Blue Note

An impressive lineup of local and international talent means every genre gets a chance in the limelight at The Blue Note. Whether you’re looking for popular musicians or cover bands, up-and-coming comedians or those who’ve been featured on Comedy Central, The Blue Note has you covered.   

B. University of Missouri Concert Series

The University Concert Series gives attendees a front-row seat to incredible talent from all over the world. Ballets, symphonies, comedians and touring artists have all graced the stage on the MU campus.

C. The John William Blind Boone Home

Explore the home of legendary musician John William “Blind” Boone. He discovered the piano while attending the Missouri School for the Blind and was immediately enraptured. Merging African American folk music with European classical music, he toured for 47 seasons before retiring in 1927.

D. Museum of Anthropology

Browse the largest collection of prehistoric Missouri artifacts in the world. Curated collections feature ethnographic materials and objects from cultures and countries across the globe, including Africa, Asia and South America. The museum also houses the Grayson Archery Collection – the largest collection of archery equipment in the world.

Sleep in Luxury

A. The Broadway

Not only is The Broadway hotel the only LEED certified hotel in mid-Missouri, it also has a rooftop bar that offers breathtaking views of downtown…in addition to some tasty handcrafted cocktails. And, as a Doubletree by Hilton property, you can expect warm cookies at check-in.

B. The Tiger Hotel – Columbia

The Tiger Hotel may have been built in 1928 (it’s on the National Register of Historic Places), but the accommodations are nothing short of luxury. After an extensive renovation, the property boasts first-class amenities, award-winning restaurants and a speakeasy-style nightclub.

C. Cedar Creek Resort & RV Park

Hop in your RV and park at this rustic resort for the night. During the day, you can enjoy the park-like setting while you cast a line at the resort’s 25-acre lake. Only a 20-minute drive from the heart of Columbia, this retreat provides guests a rural experience with nearby urban conveniences and entertainment.