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Missouri

General   Weather   Airports   Attractions   Activities  

Introduction

The Mississippi ©Andrew Balet

Named after the Missouri Native Americans that inhabited the fertile lands around the tributaries of the Mississippi and Missouri Rivers, the state of Missouri became part of the US after a long colonial tussle between France and Spain. The original Missouri people were driven out by the flood of European immigrants who came to settle here, founding the two fur trading centres of St Louis and Kansas City. The state's central location on the Mississippi River's north-south trade route and the east-west railroad made it an important crossroads for trade and transport. Kansas City, and St Louis in particular, established themselves as major gateways to the western frontier during the 19th century.


Today the state is associated with historical figures from the nation's past, such as Mark Twain and his famous stories about Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn, the gun-slinging outlaw Jesse James, pioneers like Lewis and Clark, and the 33rd president of the United States, Harry Truman. The brown waters of the great Mississippi River and its small river towns, paddle steamers, the stockyards of Kansas City, and the jazz and blues clubs of St Louis are other images representative of the state. The dominant city of St Louis is recognisable for its Gateway Arch and is the 'Home of the Blues', while the only other significant city, Kansas City, is famous for its steaks and barbecues as well as its hearty jazz. In contrast, the south of Missouri features the beautiful hillsides and lakes of the Ozark Mountains providing great recreational areas, and the conservative country-and-western tourist town of Branson.


Climate Info

The Missouri climate is generally continental, but there are regional variations. For instance, the southeast tends to be warmer than the northwest. Summers are long and hot and winters are long and cold, with spring and autumn brief but pleasant transitional seasons. Kansas City has an average temperature range of between 26°F (-3°C) in January and 79°F (26°C) in July. There have been recorded extremes of heat and cold in the state, with the lowest ever temperature plunging to -40°F (-40°C) and the highest ever temperature reaching 118°F (48°C). Snowfall is experienced throughout the state in winter, with the most snowfall in the north, and the southeast experiencing the heaviest precipitation. Tornadoes are common in spring. Rainfall is possible year-round.


Getting Around

The pride of St Louis is the city's clean, efficient light rail system, called the MetroLink, which is regarded as one of the best mass transit systems in the United States. Using the MetroLink visitors can see most of St Louis' attractions without a car. The system's zone covers the airport and East St Louis, stretching through downtown, with trains stopping at 37 stations in Missouri and Illinois before the line ends at Shiloh-Scott. A basic MetroLink fare is $2. The MetroBus network, which covers not only the city but also most of the county, also serves St Louis; buses run to schedule from about 4am until after midnight. A basic bus fare is $2. There are taxi ranks near most major hotels and attractions in the city, or cabs can be ordered from various companies. Those who opt for self-driving will find the city easy to navigate as the downtown streets are laid out on a grid pattern and the city is served by a good network of highways. There is abundant parking in high-rise garages.


Kansas City International Airport (MCI)

LocationThe airport is situated 15 miles (24km) northwest of Kansas City.
Time DifferenceGMT -6 (GMT -5 from the second Sunday in March to the first Sunday in November).
Contacts
Transfer terminals

A free shuttle service runs between the three terminals, leaving approximately every 15 minutes.

Getting to city

The Metro Bus provides transport to the city centre for $1.50, and shuttle buses link the airport with several hotels in the Kansas City metropolitan area. Taxis and rental cars are also available.

Car Rental

Car rental companies include Alamo, Avis, Budget, Dollar, Enterprise, Hertz and National.

Airpor Taxis

Taxis can be organised from the courtesy telephones in the baggage reclaim areas.

Airport Facilities

Facilities include ATMs, internet access, bars, restaurants, shops, business centres and pet relief areas. Disabled facilities are good; passengers are advised to contact their airline in advance.

Car Parking

Garage Parking costs $3 for each hour up to a daily maximum of $22. Circle Parking has the same hourly rate, but costs only $15 per day. Economy Parking costs $7 per day. Free shuttles connect the more distant lots to the terminals.

Depature TaxNone.
Websitewww.flykci.com


Lambert-St Louis International Airport (STL)

LocationThe airport is situated 10 miles (16km) northwest of St Louis.
Time DifferenceGMT -6 (GMT -5 from the second Sunday in March to the first Sunday in November).
Contacts
Transfer terminals

Free shuttles as well as the Metrolink run a regular service between the two terminals.

Getting to city

The Metrolink light rail system departs from both terminals between 4am and just before 1am to the city centre. Shared van services provide transport to city centre hotels, and airport taxis are also available from both terminals.

Car Rental

Car rental companies include Alamo, Avis, Budget, Thrifty, Hertz and National.

Airpor Taxis

Taxis are available outside Exit Door 14 of Terminal 1, and outside Exit Door 12 of Terminal 2.

Airport Facilities

Airport facilities include ATMs, currency exchange services, an inter-faith chapel, restaurants, snack bars, shops, postal services, and an information desk. Disabled facilities are good.

Car Parking

Parking right outside the two terminals costs $5 for two hours, up to a daily maximum of $23. There is cheaper parking farther from the terminals, which is serviced by a free shuttle, and costs between $7 and $20 a day.

Depature TaxNone.
Websitewww.flystl.com


Springfield-Branson National Airport (SGF)

LocationThe airport is situated five miles (8km) northwest of Springfield.
Time DifferenceGMT -6 (GMT -5 from the second Sunday in March to the first Sunday in November).
Getting to city

Some hotels in Branson and Springfield offer airport shuttles for their guests. The airport is served by several shuttle and taxi companies and rental cars are also available.

Car Rental

Avis, Budget, Enterprise, Dollar, Hertz, National and Thrifty operate at the airport.

Airpor Taxis

Yellow Cab is the taxi company that most comprehensively services the airport.

Airport Facilities

Airport facilities include a restaurant, a coffee shop, a gift shop, an information kiosk, ATMs, medical services, a pet relief area, a travel agency, and a lost and found.

Car Parking

Cell Phone Parking is provided in front of the terminal for those picking up passengers. Short-term parking is free for the first 30 minutes and $2 per half-hour, up to a daily maximum of $16. Long-term parking costs $1 per hour, up to a daily maximum of $11, and a weekly maximum of $66.

Websitewww.flyspringfield.com


Gateway Arch


Within the riverside park known as the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial, the Gateway Arch is a soaring landmark above the city's skyline - the thin stainless steel arc reaches to twice the height of the Statue of Liberty, at 630 feet (192m) tall. It symbolises the role of St Louis a
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Gateway Arch ©Fetchcomms



Forest Park


The beautifully landscaped Forest Park is larger than New York's Central Park and its leafy grounds are filled with attractions. The acclaimed St Louis Art Museum has a magnificent international collection of art, covering works from the prehistoric to the contemporary, and houses one of
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Forest Park ©Matt Kitces



Laumeier Sculpture Park


The mission statement of Laumeier Sculpture Park - an open-air museum containing more than 70 outdoor sculptures dotted along a 1.4 mile (about 2.3km) walking trail - is to enrich lives and inspire creativity by expanding the context of contemporary sculpture and allowing people to see i
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Laumeier Sculpture Park ©Joel Krauska



St Louis City Museum


One of the most popular attractions for kids in St Louis, the St Louis City Museum isn't a stuffy hall with dusty dioramas; it's part playground, part funhouse, and all fun! The museum boasts attractions like a ten-storey slide, a rooftop Ferris wheel, treehouses, enchanted caves, a 200-
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St Louis City Museum ©Raymond M. Reskusich



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