St. Louis MO
St. Louis is an independent city and a key United States port situated in the state of Missouri that lies on the western shore of the Mississippi River. It is as well a notable economic and cultural hub of the Greater St. Louis Metropolitan region. St. Louis was founded in 1764 by Frenchmen Pierre Laclede and Auguste Chouteun who were prominent fur traders. It was named in honor of French King Louis IX. When the French lost the 7 Years War, the future site of the city was ceded to the Spanish in 1803. The US in the long run bought the territory as part and parcel of the famous ‘Louisiana Purchase.’ St Louis developed as a strategic Mississippi River port, and by 1870, it was the 4th biggest city in the country. In 1877, it separated itself from St. Louis County, and became an independent city.
St. Louis boasts of numerous leading attractions, which draw both locals and visitors in droves. To begin with, there is the famous Gateway Arch, which is the highest arch in the United States, and the highest artificial monument in the entire Western Hemisphere. There is the St. Louis Art Museum that was constructed for the 1904 World Fair and is home to intriguing paintings, sculptures as well as other cultural artifacts. St. Louis is also home to the Missouri Botanical Garden, which was founded in 1859. It has the distinction of being the oldest botanical institution in the country, and is now a National Historic Landmark. The City Museum is yet another top attraction in this Missouri city that showcases mostly re-purposed architectural together with industrial items. The Old Courthouse that was constructed in the 19th century is another historic attraction of St. Louis, and was once a state and federal courthouse. There is City Hall as well, which is situated in the downtown area, and is a Renaissance Revival historic building that is reminiscent of the famous Hotel de Ville in Paris, France. St. Louis has a vibrant performing arts scene, and has close links to the blues, ragtime and jazz music genres. The St. Louis Symphony is the 2nd oldest symphony orchestra in American and has toured the nation and other foreign countries to great acclaim.
St Louis Art Museum
Situated in Forest Park, the St. Louis Art Museum is an exquisite visual arts museum, which was built as part of the 1904 World Fair. It had a very humble beginning in the late 19th century, and initially showcased an array of electrotype reproductions along with plaster casts. Nowadays, the St. Louis Art Museum houses an impressive 33,000 works of art that span 5,000 years, and have been sourced from all over the globe. The artworks on show here are frequently changed, and the museum also has special exhibitions from time to time.
Jutting to the sky at an imposing height of 630 feet, the Gateway Arch is indeed one of the most striking landmarks in St. Louis. It can be clearly viewed from all areas of the city, and like it was earlier noted, is the tallest manmade monument in the country. The Gateway Arch symbolizes the groundbreaking move the early European settlers of St. Louis made westwards. It is a fascinating architectural marvel, and furnishes visitors with scenic views of the city and its suburbs via its observation deck. The short trip to the top of the arch takes less than 5 minutes in an enclosed tram.
St. Louis’ City Museum is a somewhat odd museum, which exhibits a range of discarded items and objects from the city. It is spread on a 600,000 square feet old shoe factory, and is rated as the globe’s biggest playhouse and surrealist works of art pavilion. Some of the exhibits on show here include old school buses, an abandoned aircraft to name but a few. Visitors to this St. Louis museum also get to explore fake caves, slide down floor chutes and cubbyholes that drop 10 stories underneath the building.
Forest Park is situated on Grand Drive in the western end of the city, and is a big public park, which was first opened to the public in the late 19th century, to be more specific 1876. It is sprawled on a 1371 acre piece of land, and has gone down history books as a venue where St. Louis hosted a number of pertinent events. Some of the most prominent are the 1904 Summer Olympics Games and even the Louisiana Purchase Exposition in the same year. Nowadays, Forest Park comes complete with a couple of captivating attractions including the Missouri History Museum, the St. Louis Art Museum and St. Louis Science Center. It was very recently renovated to include restored landscaping on its lakes, ponds, meadows, streams and even trees. The Forest Park’s prairie and wetlands were as well restored, and triggered an influx of birds and wildlife to the park.
This is a leading St. Louis hot spot, which is located outside the confines of the city proper. Grant’s Farm is spread over 281 acres of land, and is the home for the Busch family. This famous family takes it upon itself to maintain the farm and grants access to thousands of visitors on an annual basis. The farm was named in honor of President Ulysses Grant who once resided and worked here prior to the American Civil War. Grant’s Farm is awash with numerous historic artifacts that have been well preserved. Still, the main highlight of visiting this farm for most visitors is to observe the animals put on show here. This includes both domestic and wild animals, which have been sourced from all over the world. At the moment, Grant’s Farm is home to over 900 animals from 100 different species including deer and bison that are allowed to roam the property freely. Visitors also get up close encounter with tortoises, wallabies, elephants, monkeys, lemurs, goats, camels, parakeet to name but a few.
St. Louis’ City Garden is a tranquil urban oasis, which consists of a botanic garden, a sculpture garden and even a public park. It is sprawled over a 3 acre piece of land that spreads on 2 city blocks. City Garden can be a great spot for meditation, art appreciation and even lunch opportunities away from the hustle and bustle of the city. In the sculpture garden, there are 24 pieces of large-scale contemporary sculptures by famous national and global artists. These sculptures are surrounded by 235 trees together with thousands of perennials, shrubs, wildflowers and grasses, all of which are native to this region of Missouri.
Cardinals Hall of Fame & Museum
This St. Louis museum is situated in the city’s ballpack village and commemorates the St. Louis Cardinals MLB team’s 100 year history in the game. It showcases intriguing exhibits including photos, trophies, artifacts and videos related to the Cardinals. This museum is home to around 15,000 artifacts and over 80,000 photos. It as well houses a big collection of baseball memorabilia.
St. Louis Zoo
St. Louis Zoo was founded when the city purchased the Smithsonian Institutes’ Fair Flight cage that was on show at the 1904 World Fair. Since then, it has evolved into one of most respected animal refuges in the country. Some of the leading attractions in St. Louis Zoo include the Lakeside Crossing, which showcases sea lions and the Caribbean Coves that features Stingrays. Another popular exhibit is the Red Rocks with Big Cat Country.