Missouri Parks Offer All Kinds of Fun


Article Tags:

Family Fun , family activities , parks , theme park
From outdoor adventure to roller coasters, there's a variety of adventure at Missouri parks.
Author: Stephen Foutes
National, state, theme and amusement.

There are all kinds of parks in Missouri, where a day of fun can include learning about notable figures in American history, hiking and bicycling, seeing a show and being turned upside down on a roller-coaster.

Let’s take a look at some of the Missouri parks you can experience on your next getaway to the Show-Me State.

National Parks

Enjoy an amazing view from the observation deck at the Gateway Arch, part of the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial that includes the iconic Old Courthouse in downtown St. Louis.

Take in the beauty of the Missouri Ozarks when you stroll the grounds of the George Washington Carver National Monument in Diamond, where one of the world’s great scientists is celebrated.

Learn more about the war that divided a nation when you visit Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield in Republic (just outside Springfield), the site of the second major battle of the Civil War.

State Parks

Echo Bluff State Park is the newest entry in the statewide system that now has 88 parks and historic sites. At Echo Bluff, you can fish and canoe on Sinking Creek, go for a hike or mountain-bike ride, and visit nearby outfitters for excursions on the Current River. A modern lodge, comfy cabins and a spacious campground are perfect for overnight guests.

Bounding from boulder to boulder has long been a favorite activity at Elephant Rocks State Park, where giant formations are lined up like a train of circus elephants. Standing atop the massive formations gives you a beautiful look at the rolling hills and, when your timing is right, impressive fall foliage.

Although Ha Ha Tonka State Park is best known for the gorgeous castle ruins high on a bluff above the Lake of the Ozarks, this state park has much to offer. From board-planked trails and challenging uphill climbs that seem to go for days, to a natural rock bridge, spring, sinkholes and caves to explore, adventure is everywhere.

Theme and Amusement Parks

Fall brings fun with a western flavor to Silver Dollar City. From mid-September though October, this well-known Branson attraction hosts its National Harvest and Cowboy Festival. Featuring more than 125 visiting craftsmen, this event includes live-music shows, cooking demonstrations and thrill rides as part of the experience.

Speaking of thrill rides, you’ll find plenty of them at Kansas City’s Worlds of Fun, which operates on weekend hours in September and October. Halloween arrives early at Worlds of Fun, though, and you can experience the Halloween Haunt from Sept. 17-Oct. 30.

Across the state in St. Louis, Six Flags has seasonal hours in September and October, too. Along with visiting the Coaster Capital of Missouri, you also have the chance to get scared silly at the park’s annual Fright Fest. Friday nights, Saturdays and Sundays feature ghosts, goblins and other spooky characters. Visitors will find the “scares” are suited for younger visitors during the day, but are geared for less fearful souls at night. 

  The Gateway Arch
The Museum of Westward Expansion is closed, pending installation of all new museum exhibits. During ...

  George Washington Carver National Monument
Authorized by Congress in 1943, George Washington Carver National Monument preserves the birthplace ...

  Wilson's Creek National Battlefield
Fought on August 10, 1861, the Battle of Wilson’s Creek was a pivotal battle in Missouri and the ...

  Echo Bluff State Park
Whether you prefer a rustic campsite, one of 62 full-service camping sites or a night in the park’s ...

  Ha Ha Tonka State Park
The remains of a huge, circa 1905 European-style stone castle add an air of mystery to this park. Situated ...

  Elephant Rocks State Park
At this park, giant, billion-year-old granite boulders stand end-to-end, like a train of red circus ...

  Silver Dollar City
An 1880s-themed amusement park, where the adventure of the past is combined with the high-tech thrills ...

  Six Flags St. Louis
Six Flags St. Louis and Hurricane Harbor water park combine two great parks in one great place for the ...

  Worlds of Fun
Worlds of Fun & Oceans of Fun are both in one park and all for one price. Guests enjoy 235 acres ...