Trip Ideas: Forest Park and Central West End
At 1,293 acres, Forest Park is one of the largest urban parks in the U.S., nearly 500 acres larger than Central Park in New York City. It is home to the world famous free zoo attractions at the St. Louis Zoo; free museums; trails; and other attractions. Adjacent to Forest Park, the Central West End (CWE) is a neighborhood more than a century-old. Anchored by the world famous Cathedral Basilica, the area is filled with stately homes, shopping and restaurants.
Morning
While in the Central West End, don’t miss the numerous boutiques, eclectic bookstores, antique shops, galleries, restaurants, sidewalk cafes and night spots clustered along Euclid Ave., Lindell Blvd., Maryland Blvd., and McPherson Ave.
625 N. Euclid Ave., #200, St. Louis MO 63108, 314-367-2220
Hours: Dawn-dusk
The Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis is an unparalleled triumph of art and architecture, rivaling the grandest cathedrals in the world. Almost a century in the making, it is home to the world's largest collection of mosaic art.
4431 Lindell Blvd., St. Louis MO 63108, 314-373-8241
Hours: Tours: Mon.-Fri., 10 a.m.-noon and 1 p.m.-3 p.m.; Museum: Mon.-Sat., 10 a.m.-4 p.m.; Sun., noon-4 p.m.
Evening
This six-block entertainment and retail district features more than 140 specialty shops, 45 unique and fun restaurants, galleries, boutiques, entertainment venues and the St. Louis Walk of Fame.
6504 Delmar Blvd., St. Louis MO 63130, 314-727-8000
Hours: Individual business hours vary
Afternoon
This museum was founded in 1866. The permanent collection includes: Missouri and St. Louis related materials; colonial and native artifacts; items from the 1904 Louisiana Purchase Exposition (The World’s Fair); objects relating to Charles Lindbergh and his trans-Atlantic flight; artifacts from the Lewis and Clark Expedition; and memorabilia of national and international importance.
5700 Lindell Blvd., St. Louis MO 63112, 314-746-4599
Hours: Daily: 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Tue., 10 a.m.-8 p.m.
Established in 1910, this zoo is recognized as one of the top zoological institution world-wide. The zoo's 90-acres are home to more than 18,000 exotic animals, many of which are rare and endangered. The zoo and most of the zoo attractions are free to the general public.
1 Government Drive, St. Louis MO 63110, 314-781-0900
Hours: Daily, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Bixby's, inside the Missouri History Museum, boasts a spectacular view of Forest Park through an expansive ceiling-to-floor wall of curved glass. The menu includes salads, sandwiches, soups and desserts; wine is available.
5700 Lindell Blvd., St. Louis MO 63112, 314-361-7313
Hours: 11 a.m.-2 p.m.; Sunday brunch buffet, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
The Saint Louis Art Museum is a leading museum of art, with one of the nation's most comprehensive collections, including works of extraordinary quality from practically every time period and culture. The building was designed for the 1904 Louisiana Purchase Exposition (also known as the St. Louis World’s Fair).
1 Fine Arts Drive, St. Louis MO 63110, 314-721-0072
Hours: Tue.–Sun., 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Fri., 10 a.m.-9 p.m.