Visitors Guide to
St. Louis & St. Louis
Gateway to the West
Bottom Conservation Area
Saint Louis County, Missouri
The Columbia Bottom Conservation Area is
situated at the confluence of the Missouri and Mississippi Rivers in
north Saint Louis County. This 4,318-acre area is managed by the
Missouri Department Conservation and features a mosaic of bottomland
habitats that includes shallow wetlands, bottomland hardwoods,
prairie, croplands, and 6.5 miles of river frontage. Columbia Bottom
Conservation Area has a number of features an accessible limestone
biking trail, a 3 mile hiking trail, bird watching, educational
programs, canoeing and kayaking, an accessible boat ramp, an
accessible fishing pier, and a viewing deck at the confluence. A
Visitor Center houses many natural history exhibits and an auto tour
visits eight discovery stations that help visitors explore the
different habitats of the Columbia Bottom Conservation Area.
Click here for complete details ...
ANIMAL OF THE WEEK
AT THE SAINT LOUIS ZOO
Although okapis have stripes
like zebras, they are actually most closely related to giraffes.
These large hoofed mammals were not known to science until 1901,
probably because of their secretive lifestyle. Even today, the okapi
largely remains a mystery to the outside world. They live a quiet
life in the lush rainforest. Their velvety dark striped coats create
an almost perfect camouflage in the low light of the forest
understory, and their keen hearing helps them detect predators at a
far distance. Okapis browse on a diverse diet of leafy vegetation.
Click here for more about the Saint Louis Zoo ...
Mississippi River's 2,552-mile journey from its headwaters in
Minnesota to the delta in Louisiana, St. Louis is one of the few
truly cosmopolitan destinations along the Great River Road. The
Greater St. Louis area is the 18th largest metropolitan area in the
United States with more than 2,800,000 people.
Louis and Saint Louis County have a lot to offer its visitors. The area's most
prominent attraction is the Gateway Arch. Designed by Finnish architect Eero
Saarinen and completed in 1966, the nation's tallest monument rises over the
west bank of the Mississippi as a symbol of St. Louis' role as the Gateway
to the West. The Arch is part of the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial
complex that also includes the Museum of Westward Expansion and the Odyssey
Theater. Saint Louis has a number of outstanding public institutions that are
free to visit: the Zoo (photo left,) Art Museum, History Museum, and the
Saint Louis is home to
a vibrant art scene. New and revitalized institutions, along with
world-class architecture and public sculpture can be found throughout the
city and county. The Saint Louis Art Museum in Forest Park is one of the
nation's leading comprehensive art museums. The Contemporary Art Museum Saint
Louis and the Pulitzer Foundation for the Arts are two of five free museums
within blocks of each other midtown arts district called Grand Center. Laumeier Sculpture Park is a 105-acre open-air museum in
Saint Louis County
that features over 80 works of contemporary sculpture.
Saint Louis has its
origins when in 1764 French fur traders established a small village named
after Louis IX, the Crusader King of France. There are a number of museums
and historical sites that tell the St. Louis' story. The Museum of Westward
Expansion documents the history of European expansion from the days of Lewis
and Clark. The area has a number of historical houses and societies that
offer tours. In Saint Louis County the Museum of Transportation has over 300
locomotives, rail cars, and other forms of transportation.
The Saint Louis region
has a number of green spaces for nature and outdoor enthusiasts. Forest Park
is the largest of the 105 city parks in Saint Louis and at 1,293 acres is one
of the largest urban parks in the United States. The park opened in 1876,
was home to the 1904 Louisiana Purchase Exposition (the Saint Louis World's
Fair) and is home to the Saint Louis Zoo. Faust County Park, in Saint Louis
County, is home to many historical and cultural attractions including the
Sophia M. Sachs Butterfly House, a historical village, and the Saint Louis
Carousel. The county is also home to Dr. Edmund A. Babler Memorial State
Park, Castlewood State Park, Columbia Bottom Conservation Area and the
Powder Valley Conservation Area.
There are more than
just the sights to see and activities that make Saint Louis an attractive
place to visit. Saint Louis is famous for its one of a kind eateries. At the
1904 World's Fair vendors invented ice tea and the ice cream cone and
popularized the hot dog and hamburger. Contemporary dishes unique to Saint
Louis are toasted ravioli, gooey butter coffee cake, and thin crust pizza.
Saint Louis also has a variety of one of a kind shopping opportunities. Its
historic neighborhoods have shopping districts whose streets are lined with
antique and specialty shops. For those in Saint Louis on an extended stay
there is a variety of unique bed and breakfasts to choose from and the
hotels and motels ranging from the upscale high rises in downtown to the
affordable and casual motels in the county.
greatriverroad.com invites you to explore
Louis because as the Saint
Convention and Visitors Commission says: "there's more than meets the Arch!"