30 Ways to Enjoy Fall in St. Louis
Tiny, midcentury mod elevators inside the Arch zip visitors 630 feet up to the apex, where an observation deck grants soaring views of St. Louis, the Mississippi River and Illinois. To celebrate the Arch’s 50th birthday in 2015, the park grounds and Museum of Westward Expansion at the icon’s feet are getting a facelift (pardon the mess). But visitors can still ride to the top of the Arch, explore the Old Courthouse where slave Dred Scott sued for his freedom and see temporarily relocated Museum of Westward Expansion exhibits. gatewayarch.com
Missouri Botanical Garden
Locals call it Mobot (rhymes with robot) and head here to wander 79 acres of specialty gardens. Meditate by a waterfall in the Japanese Garden, then explore the futuristic-sounding Climatron (a domed greenhouse). missouribotanicalgarden.org
A rooftop bar at the Hilton St. Louis at the Ballpark serves gussied-up street tacos and sliders; an outdoor fire pit warms diners on brisk evenings. Stop in for a drink and a peek into the Cardinals’ nearby stadium. 360-stl.com
Baileys’ Chocolate Bar
Even the most difficult-to-please sweet tooth surrenders to the indulgences in this Lafayette Square destination. Select from chocolate cakes, brownies, pots de crème and chocolate martinis for delicious cocoa overload. baileyschocolatebar.com
- Photo by Kendra L. Williams.
The scent of woodsmoke and barbecued meat hovers on the street outside Pappy’s, enticing people to wait in hour-long lines for delectable slow-roasted pulled pork, racks of ribs and fried corn on the cob. pappyssmokehouse.com
St. Louis Zoo
More than 600 animal species, including cheetahs and lions, bears and butterflies, live at this beautiful 90-acre zoo in Forest Park. Scheduled daily events include a tree kangaroo feeding and a sea lion show. stlzoo.org
Lush foliage and public art define this urban oasis just west of the Old Courthouse. Download the free app and listen as St. Louis luminaries like Sen. John Ashcroft share the stories behind the sculptures. citygardenstl.org
It’s part science center, part junkyard, part playground for the whole family. Climb through strange tunnels and turrets in MonstroCity, admire the World’s Largest Pencil, and watch colorful thread spin in a working shoelace factory. There’s no overarching theme connecting exhibits, but what’s here is fascinating. citymuseum.org
- Photo by Jess Hoffert.
Located near the artsy Grand Center neighborhood, this boutique hotel puts guests in sleek, art-themed rooms with luxe finishes and fun touches, like gilded frames around the TV screen. hotelignaciostl.com
Charlie Gitto’s On the Hill
The anchor of onetime Italian enclave The Hill balances the burb’s mom-and-pop casual feel with elegance. Pasta, steaks and fried ravioli shine here. charliegittos.com
More than 1,200 acres of greenspace—that’s almost 500 acres larger than New York City’s Central Park—plus several museums (many of them free) and the massive World’s Fair Pavilion make this park west of downtown the cultural heart of the city. explorestlouis.com
- Photo courtesy of St. Louis Union Station Hotel.
St. Louis Union Station
What was once the busiest train station in America now houses a hotel (the 1894 station’s Grand Hall is the St. Louis Union Station Hotel’s lobby), plus a trapeze school. stlouisunionstation.com
- Photo courtesy of St. Louis Convention & Visitors Commission.
Fifty-foot glass walls encase hundreds of lush blooms and tropical trees, plus a water feature, in Forest Park’s Art Deco greenhouse. On Monday and Tuesday mornings, admission is free (other times, it’s a whopping $1). stlouis-mo.gov
- Photo courtesy of St. Louis Convention & Visitors Commission.
Anheuser-Busch Brewery Tour
Visit the brew floor and fermentation cellars behind the brand that has long defined classic American beer. And, of course, you get to see the iconic Clydesdales. budweisertours.com
Landmark’s Tivoli Theatre
Beneath the glittering marquee of this restored 1924 theater, get tickets for classic films (Jaws, anyone?) and modern indie flicks. Inside, sip wine and browse vintage posters before the show starts. landmarktheatres.com
Locals hit this Italian-American restaurant in the Delmar Loop for cheesy gooeyness on pillowy or crackery crusts. On Wednesday nights, the bar becomes a classroom for free Beer School sessions led by craft brewmasters. ciceros-stl.com
Missouri History Museum
The name says Missouri, but the histories told had national impact. Exhibits cover Charles Lindbergh, Lewis and Clark, the 1904 World’s Fair and, starting October 25, the Louisiana Purchase. mohistory.org
St. Louis Art Museum
The glorious 1904 Main Building houses ancient Greek sculptures and classic American art; the sleek 2013 East Building showcases contemporary works. Cafe Panorama plates beautifully delicious meals. slam.org
Throngs of red-clad Cardinals fans flood the seats of Busch Stadium for fresh air, barbecue, fried cannelloni and a chance to see a stellar game (the Cards made the playoffs in 10 of the past 14 years). stlouis.cardinals.mlb.com
Pop-culture memorabilia and a taxidermied menagerie line the walls, pub grub fills the dining room’s menu, and one night a month, Chuck Berry headlines in the Duck Room. (Get tickets well in advance; they sell out fast.) When Berry isn’t playing, bluegrass, jazz or comedy acts might take the stage. blueberryhill.com
Tower Grove Park
Chinese- and Turkish-style picnic pavilions, statues of The Bard and Christopher Columbus, and a palm-filled greenhouse dot the trails of this National Historic Landmark park. towergrovepark.org
The Kirkwood deep-dish pie (topped with meatballs, red peppers, basil and absurd amounts of mozzarella) and a $3.14 pint of local Schlafly Kölsch make Pi’s weekday happy hour a hit. Not a fan of meatballs? Choose from nearly 50 other toppings. restaurantpi.com
- Photo courtesy of Ballpark Village.
The high energy of Cards’ baseball games spills out to the bars and restaurants surrounding the stadium on game days, but even in the off-season, this fun (if touristy) entertainment complex feels lively. stlballparkvillage.com
St. Louis Walk of Fame
Who’s famous and from St. Louis? Inquiring minds can find out walking along Delmar Boulevard. Tina Turner, Ulysses S. Grant and T.S. Eliot are just a few of the names in bronze. stlouiswalkoffame.org
Mod ’60s design infuses this hotel in the Delmar Loop with funky-fun style. Guest rooms might feature Warhol-style moon prints or photos of famous St. Louisians. moonrisehotel.com
Silky frozen custard in flavors like praline, marshmallow and (of course) chocolate made Ted Drewes a St. Louis institution. Three locations include a stand near Busch Stadium and one along Route 66. teddrewes.com
Budweiser Brew House
If you’re into beer, find your way into this bar near Busch Stadium. The two-story hot spot—topped with a rooftop bar—lines up more than 100 beers on tap (only a few of which are brewed by Bud). stlbudweiserbrewhouse.com
- Taka Yanagimoto/St. Louis Cardinals
St. Louis Cardinals Hall of Fame Museum
More than 16,000 pieces of memorabilia and a Cardinal-theme restaurant overlooking the stadium make this a must-see for die-hard Cards fans. stlouis.cardinals.mlb.com
- (c) 2014 Hilton Hotels & Resorts
Hilton St. Louis at the Ballpark
Located downtown, this hotel puts guests within walking distance of Busch Stadium and the Arch. Updated guest rooms sport giant windows for views of one of the two attractions. hiltonstlouis.com
- Photo by Lisa Meyers McClintick.
The Beale on Broadway
This small, appealingly gritty club packs in guests for live music seven nights a week. Locals stop in on Tuesdays and Thursdays, when St. Louis’ own Kim Massie and the Solid Senders play. bealeonbroadway.com