Missouri

Sitting in the heart of the USA, Missouri offers a fabulous blend of frontier west, gracious south, the sophisticated east and industrial north. The beautiful Missouri Valley was once a major pioneer route, with St Louis known as ‘The Gateway to the West’. A fabulous destination it’s bounded by the Mississippi River in the east, prairies to the north of the Missouri River (which is the longest in the USA), great plains to the west, rolling hills in the south and the Southern-style cotton lands to the southeast.

Missouri History

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. Today the state is associated with historical figures from the nation’s past, such as Mark Twain (who immortalized the state’s riverboat culture in his memoirs, Life on the Mississippi and in his famous tales Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn), the gun-slinging outlaw Jesse James, western pioneers like Lewis and Clark, and the 33rd President of the United States, Harry Truman.

Music, Arts & Heritage

The city of St Louis is recognisable for its Gateway Arch and is the ‘Home of the Blues’, while Kansas City is famous for its steaks and barbecues as well as its hearty jazz. In contrast, the south features the beautiful hillsides and lakes of the Ozark Mountains that are great recreational areas, and the conservative country-and-western tourist town of Branson.

The powerful waters of the great Mississippi River and its small river towns, paddle steamers and the jazz and blues clubs of St Louis are other images representative of the state. Music, history, arts and heritage are all an intricate part of Missouri & ‘Where the Rivers Run’.

Missouri Destinations

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