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Travel & Outdoors

Best Day Trips For Families Around St. Louis

May 16, 2011 1:07 PM

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(credit: nps.gov/jeff)

(credit: nps.gov/jeff)

Day trips are great fun any time of the year, and St. Louis has no shortage of fun places either right in town or just a hop, skip and a jump from the city. Many of these attractions in the St. Louis area even offer free or reduced pricing, making it an ideal option for families. Here are just some of the best day trips for families around St. Louis.

Jefferson National Expansion Memorial

11 N. 4th St.
Saint Louis, MO 63102
(314) 982-1700
www.nps.gov/jeff

The Jefferson National Expansion Memorial offers a piece of St. Louis history right in the heart of downtown. This memorial includes the Gateway Arch, the Old Courthouse and the Museum of Westward Expansion. Visit the top of the Arch, view artifacts and animal specimens at the Museum of Westward Expansion, or participate in a bicycle tour of the area. For the adventurous, a helicopter ride is also offered. Hours: Monday through Sunday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

The Magic House

516 South Kirkwood Rd.
Kirkwood, MO 63122
(314) 822-8900
www.magichouse.org

The Magic House, located in downtown Kirkwood, truly lives up to its name. With a variety of fun activities for children and adults alike, it’s no wonder this attraction is so popular among St. Louis residents. For a small entry fee, you and your family can explore numerous hands-on exhibits, including the Children’s Village, Waterworks and Bubble Room. In fact, a trip to the Magic House easily turns into an all-day excursion. Be sure to check the Magic House’s schedule; on certain Fridays, admission is free for all. Hours: Monday through Thursday, 9:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Friday, 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.; and Saturday and Sunday, 11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.

Citygarden

8th and Market St.
Saint Louis, MO 63101
(314) 289-5300
www.citygardenstl.org

Citygarden is located in downtown St. Louis, between 8th Street and Market Street. This two-block strip is a fully interactive art gallery that is free and open to the public and makes for one of the best day trips for families around St. Louis. Each piece of art on display is accompanied by a phone number that can be called to learn more about the particular piece. Citygarden even has water fountains that spring from the ground that shouldn’t be skipped. After a romp around the exhibits, enjoy a delicious meal at Terrace View, located in the middle of it all. Hours: Sunday through Saturday, sunrise to 10 p.m.

- Stephanie Shepard
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