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St. Louis Vacation Ideas for Planning an Itinerary

Known as the gateway to the west, St. Louis has long played a vital role in the westward expansion of the United States. However, this city is not simply an archive of history. It is alive with a bursting culinary scene, a die-hard sports-mad culture, a rich love of the arts and a strong music heritage. Its vibrant culture makes it an amazing getaway destination, which is why we’ve created our St. Louis Vacation Travel Guide video. The footage from our video will take you on a tour of all the best attractions in the city. So why not use our video as a trip planner, to inspire the ultimate St. Louis itinerary.

Ideas of places to visit in St. Louis

After some vacation ideas for St. Louis? If you’re not quite sure which attractions to add to your travel itinerary, you’ve come to the right place. Each of the St. Louis attractions below are featured in our Vacation Travel Guide video. They’re the best places to visit while you’re in town and are listed in order of their appearance in the video so you can follow along with the footage easily.


The Gateway Arch Downtown St. Louis

The Gateway Arch

(1:37 in the video) St. Louis’ role in the westward expansion of the United States gave it the nickname “the Gateway to the West.” To celebrate this identity and St. Louis’ place in America’s history books, the Gateway Arch was born. Today it is the most iconic monument in St. Louis and an identifiable marker on the city skyline. You simply can’t plan a trip to St. Louis without the Gateway Arch on your itinerary.


Old Courthouse Downtown St. Louis

Old Courthouse

In the heart of downtown is the elegant Old Courthouse, a landmark home to many important pieces of America’s legal history. Plan a visit here and take a tour of the two historic courtrooms on the second floor. You’ll learn about some of the most famous cases held within this historic structure.


Washington Avenue Historic District St. Louis

Washington Avenue Historic District

(2:10 in the video) If you’re looking to add a day of St. Louis sightseeing to your travel plans then the Washington Avenue Historic District is the perfect place to start. This historic area was once abandoned and dilapidated; today it is a revitalized, happening area. Washington Avenue is also a fabulous area to consider if you’re still wondering where to stay in St. Louis. Book a hotel here and enjoy having some of the city’s best restaurants, cafes and bars right on your doorstep. It’s also conveniently located just a short drive from St. Louis Downtown Airport.


National Blues Museum St. Louis

National Blues Museum

(3:29 in the video) Another attraction that truly embodies the culture of St. Louis is the National Blues Museum. Known to many as the crossroads of the nation, St. Louis has long been saturated with different styles and tunes from all over America. Plan a visit to the museum to learn about the musical talents that developed their unique sounds in St. Louis, and enjoy an art form that remains alive in St. Louis to this day.


Cathedral of St. Louis

Cathedral Basilica of Saint Louis

(3:49 in the video) Travel to the Central West End to discover St. Louis’ spiritual side. The Cathedral Basilica of Saint Louis is a stunning example of imposing Romanesque architecture. Inside, marvel at the mosaics that took 41.5 million glass pieces and 76 years to complete. Be sure to watch the Vacation Travel Guide video to see amazing footage from this cathedral.


Anheuser Busch Brewery St. Louis

Anheuser-Busch Brewery

(4:44 in the video) Is learning about the birth of the beer industry in St. Louis on your itinerary? It should be. At the Anheuser-Busch Brewery in Soulard, discover the traditions and methods of one of the largest beer producers in the country. Here you can meet the nationally beloved Clydesdale horses that have been the face of Budweiser’s promotions since the 1930s and sample some of their freshest brews in The Biergarten.


Schlafly Tap Room St. Louis

Schlafly Tap Room

(5:20 in the video) If you’re still thirsty, plan a visit to the Schlafly Tap Room. Today this historic brewery serves up craft brews not just locally, but across 14 states. The brewery is also housed in a beautiful turn of the century terracotta brick structure which was once a printing press.


Forest Park St. Louis

Forest Park

(6:21 in the video) A trip to St. Louis would be incomplete without setting aside a day or two in your itinerary to explore Forest Park. This lush green space is one of the largest urban parks in the United States and is a place where nature, history and cultural institutions come together. There is no lack of things to do here, as the park is home to a science center, an art museum, a history museum and even a zoo!


Missouri History Museum St. Louis

Missouri History Museum

(6:43 in the video) Step into the story of St. Louis at the Missouri History Museum. A worthwhile addition to any St. Louis itinerary, this museum tells the story of the city through artifacts and photographs. Bring the whole family along, this museum is free to enter.


Performers on stage at Muny Theatre St Louis

The Muny Theatre

(7:10 in the video) Another contender for your to-do list should be the St. Louis Municipal Opera Theatre, better known as The Muny. The largest outdoor amphitheater in the U.S., The Muny hosts musical theater productions each year from mid-June to mid-August. When planning an itinerary for St. Louis, consider booking tickets here for your vacation so you can experience the magic of watching theater under the stars.


St. Louis Art Museum

St. Louis Art Museum

(7:47 in the video) The next stop on your travel itinerary is also in Forest Park. You don’t have to be an art buff to enjoy a visit to the St. Louis Art Museum. With 18 separate collections focusing on a range of exhibits, from ancient handmade textiles to modern sculptures, the museum offers something for every traveler.


St. Louis Science Center

St. Louis Science Center

(8:10 in the video) The St. Louis Science Center is a great vacation idea, especially if you’re traveling with little ones. The center is a wonderland of interactive and educational exhibits. Engage with over 700 displays and learn about everything from architecture to natural history.


Need more St. Louis vacation ideas?

If the footage from our video isn’t enough, browse through our St. Louis photo gallery to be inspired by more stunning images of this fantastic vacation destination. If you want to branch out even more, our wider photo gallery is home to thousands of pictures from many more vacation destinations.

We also have hundreds more travel videos from around the world. Let our footage inspire you and help you plan your next unforgettable adventure.

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This article was originally published on September 26, 2019. If you’d like to stay updated on new videos of the beautiful destinations that our planet has to offer, subscribe to Expedia’s YouTube channel.

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1 Comment

  1. Ken Gilberg
    October 2, 2019 at 11:21 am — Reply

    What, no mention of the Missouri Botanical Garden, one of the top horticultural centers in the world?

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