Bed and Breakfast Inns of Missouri loves helping you find the perfect vacation in Missouri. Whatever kind of trip you are looking for, BBIM has a perfect inn nearby. Today we are covering some of the incredible historic sites and museums around Missouri that you will love learning about and exploring. Keep reading to learn more!

(All Photos and Destination Information Credited to

Gateway Arch National Park

11 N. Fourth St.
St. Louis, MO 63102
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The national park includes the Gateway Arch, the Old Courthouse, and the Museum at the Arch.

Ride the tram to the top of the Gateway Arch, view a film, enjoy the extensive collection of artifacts and history of the American West in the museum, and learn about the freedom trials of Dred Scott that took place at the Old Courthouse.

National Museum of Transportation

2933 Barrett Station Road
Kirkwood, MO 63122
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This museum features more than 300 pieces, including steam, diesel, and electric locomotives; passenger and freight cars; automobiles; streetcars; buses; and aircraft. A special collection also features Route 66. The Creation Station is designed to teach kids younger than six about different modes of transportation.

Pony Express National Museum

914 Penn St.
St. Joseph, MO 64503
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On April 3, 1860, a lone rider, the first of his kind, left Pikes Peak Stables in St. Joseph, marking the start of the Pony Express. Brave riders, carrying saddlebags filled with our nation’s hopes and dreams, traveled more than 2,000 miles west to California.

Today, the stables house a modern, interactive, and educational tribute to the history and legend of the Pony Express. Experience exciting, educational, state-of-the-art exhibits chronicling the need, creation, operation, and termination of the Pony Express.

Whatever your age, you’re sure to be captivated by the stories and images of an era long passed. A 60-foot diorama depicts the diverse terrain over which the riders traveled. In the newly opened Hall of Riders, you can learn about life on the Trail, hear stories of the riders’ hair-raising adventures, and see historic photographs of 22 famous and lesser-known Pony Express riders, including Johnny Fry, Buffalo Bill, and Broncho Charlie Miller. On display also are authentic objects from the riders’ personal collections – like Robert Strickland’s saddle, donated by his descendants. Today, the Stables continue to stand as a tribute to the legend and legacy of the Pony Express and its enduring era.

Ancient Ozarks Natural History Museum

150 Top of the Rock Road
Ridgedale, MO 65739
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Created to celebrate the fascinating history and stunning natural beauty of the Ozarks, the Ancient Ozarks Natural History Museum features artifacts, images, and interactive exhibits that chronologically walk you through the development of the Ozarks.

As you explore the museum, you will learn about the people and animals that have inhabited the region for more than 12,000 years. Featured attractions include carbon-dated skeletal remains of a woolly mammoth, a saber tooth cat, a giant ground sloth, and prehistoric cave bears.

The museum is located at Top of the Rock, which also offers on-site dining at Arnie’s Barn and Osage Restaurant, riding tours of the Lost Canyon Cave and Nature Trail, and golf at the Top of the Rock Golf Course.

National Churchill Museum

501 Westminster Ave.
Fulton, MO 65251
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In 1946, at Westminster College in Fulton, Winston Churchill delivered one of the most significant speeches of his long and illustrious career. That address, formally entitled, “The Sinews of Peace,” is better known as the Iron Curtain Speech, because of the evocative phrase: “An Iron Curtain has descended across the Continent…” That speech effectively marked the beginning of the Cold War and linked, forever, Fulton and Westminster College with Winston Churchill.

In the 1960s, Westminster College sought to commemorate the 20th anniversary of Churchill’s visit and ultimately chose to move a Christopher Wren designed Church from London. This Church, St. Mary the Virgin Aldermanbury, had stood in London since 1677. This magnificent building, badly damaged during the London Blitz, was moved stone by stone to Westminster’s campus and rebuilt to Wren’s original specifications.

Beneath this Church is the National Churchill Museum. Through the imaginative and innovative use of technology, it brings to life the story of Winston Churchill and the world he knew. The museum was recognized by the United States Congress as America’s permanent tribute to this great man, and formally designated as America’s National Churchill Museum. The museum presents Sir Winston’s life, utilizing interactive sight, sound, and touch. Stand in the midst of a dazzling light and sound show to see and hear the effects of a London air raid at the height of “The Blitz.” In the stirring film, Churchill’s Finest Hour (narrated by Walter Cronkite), watch Churchill lead Britain through World War II. Two sculptures, one statue and an English garden complete the museum grounds. One sculpture, titled “Breakthrough,” is constructed from eight consecutive sections of the actual Berlin Wall.

School programs, community programs, group tours, and rotating exhibits fill the museum’s calendar. For a current look at programming, visit our website:

Veteran’s Memorial Museum – Branson

1250 W. 76 Country Blvd.
Branson, MO 65615
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The museum holds more than 2,000 exhibits honoring those who served in all branches of the U.S. military. Exhibits include sculptures, murals, historic artifacts, art and thousands of memorabilia covering WWI, WWII, Korea, Vietnam, Desert Storm, and other 20th Century conflicts. The walls of the museum are lined with more than 500,000 names of those killed in action from WWII forward. Many of the exhibits contain unique artifacts and recount personal stories from our veterans. This is an educational as well as emotional experience.

Admission: ages 13 and older, $18; veterans and military, $15; ages 6-12, $5; younger than 6, free. Group rates are also offered.

The Space Museum

116 E. School St.
Bonne Terre, MO 63628
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With more than 600 world-class artifacts, the Space Museum outlines the exciting history of humankind’s greatest adventure. The presentation and format of the exhibit is unique. A complimentary audio tour describes in detail what the visitor is seeing. Interactive displays provide a feel for what space exploration is like. The museum caters to schools and groups. For information on scheduling a group, please call! Admission: $5; student and active-duty military, $3. Donations accepted.

City Museum

750 N. 15th St.
St. Louis, MO 63103
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Housed in the 600,000 square foot former International Shoe Company, City Museum offers MonstroCity, The World’s Largest Jungle Gym, with five-story and ten-story spiral slides in the Shoe Shafts, the Enchanted Caves, Everyday Circus and the Cabin Inn.

But wait, there’s more! The seasonal Rooftop Garden features a working 1940s Ferris wheel, more giant slides, the skipping fountains, and a wonderful panoramic view of St. Louis from atop the giant dome. This is a must-see for fantastic family fun.

National WWI Museum and Memorial

2 Memorial Drive
Kansas City, MO 64108
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The National WWI Museum and Memorial is America’s leading institution dedicated to remembering, interpreting, and understanding the Great War and its enduring impacts on the global community. The Museum and Memorial holds the most comprehensive collection of World War I objects and documents in the world and is the second-oldest public museum dedicated to preserving the objects, history, and experiences of the war.

The Museum and Memorial takes visitors of all ages on an epic journey through a transformative period and shares deeply personal stories of courage, honor, patriotism, and sacrifice. Designated by Congress as America’s official World War I Museum and Memorial and located in downtown Kansas City, the National WWI Museum and Memorial inspires thought, dialogue, and learning to make the experiences of the Great War era meaningful and relevant for present and future generations.

Negro Leagues Baseball Museum

1616 E. 18th St.
Kansas City, MO 64108
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The museum recreates the look, sounds, and feel of the game’s storied past. The Negro Leagues were established in 1920. Video presentations and memorabilia in the 10,000 square-foot multimedia exhibit chronicle the history and heroes of the Negro Leagues, from the origin to the 1960s.

Exhibits include hundreds of photographs, historical artifacts and interactive computer stations. As the centerpiece, the Coors Field of Legends features 10 life-sized bronze sculptures of Negro Leagues greats, positioned on a mock baseball diamond as if they were playing a game. A documentary film, narrated by actor James Earl Jones, tells the story of the leagues through vintage film footage.

The Hall of Fame Lockers area pays tribute to the players who have been inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame. The museum store features officially-licensed Negro Leagues merchandise. In July 2006, the United States Congress designated this facility, America’s National Negro Leagues Baseball Museum.

Admission: $10; age 65+, $9; ages 5-12, $6; younger than 5, free. Group rates are available.

Mark Twain Boyhood Home and Museum

120 N. Main St.
Hannibal, MO 63401
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Discover how a young boy growing up in the small village of Hannibal became one of the world’s most beloved authors. A self-guided tour of the Mark Twain Boyhood Home and Museum gives you the chance to explore the Hannibal of Samuel Clemens and experience the amazing stories he created through the power of his imagination.

The properties include six historically significant buildings, plus two interactive museums whose collections include 15 original Norman Rockwell paintings and a wealth of Twain artifacts. Experience interactive exhibits, live performances, historic artifacts, treasured Clemens family belongings, original Norman Rockwell paintings and other items.

Admission: $11; ages 60+, $9; ages 6-17, $6; younger than 6, free. Closed Dec. 25 and Jan. 1.

Missouri State Penitentiary Tours

115 Lafayette St.
Jefferson City, MO 65101
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When this prison opened in 1836, the Battle of the Alamo was going on in Texas. Missouri’s prison was 100 years old when Alcatraz started housing federal prisoners. In 1967, the Missouri State Penitentiary (MSP) was named the “bloodiest 47 acres in America” by Time magazine. Before it closed in 2004, MSP was the oldest continually operating penitentiary west of the Mississippi River.

The Missouri State Penitentiary (MSP) was decommissioned in 2004. It is open (seasonally) for public tours, operated by the Jefferson City Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB). Tour guides are former corrections officers, guards, and wardens who worked within the walls of MSP. Prison-related gifts and souvenirs are available for purchase. The tours showcase the history of MSP and the early penal eras in the U.S. Tours may include: the control center, the upper yard, cellblocks in housing units A (the oldest remaining cellblock on the grounds, built in 1868) and other housing units, the dungeon cells (where inmates often went mad), the industry area, the exercise yard, and the gas chamber (where 40 inmates, men and women, were executed). Visit cells of famous inmates such as heavyweight champion Sonny Liston and James Earl Ray (who escaped in 1967 and went on to assassinate Martin Luther King Jr. in 1968).

The Missouri State Penitentiary is an incredibly historical site. Because of the nature and subject of the tours, no children younger than 10 are permitted. Photographs are allowed, but no video may be taken. No smoking. No food allowed. Because of the age of the facility, these tours are not wheelchair accessible. All attendees must sign a waiver of liability. Persons younger than 18 must have a guardian’s signature on the waiver.

This CVB reserves the right to refuse admission to anyone. You may experience low visibility, damp or wet conditions, uneven ground and stairs. You should not enter if you suffer from asthma, heart conditions, are prone to seizures, have physical ailments, or any type of condition that prohibits you from walking or standing. Do not enter this attraction if you are intoxicated, wearing any form of cast, medical brace, are using crutches or a wheelchair, or have any type of physical limitation.

Reservations are required for all tours. Every person on the tour must have a reservation. You may visit the website and call the CVB for details, schedules, and reservations. Extended and paranormal (ghost) tours are also offered. Special and group tours may be arranged.

Missouri History Museum

5700 Lindell Blvd.
St. Louis, MO 63112
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Originally built as the first national monument to Thomas Jefferson, the Missouri History Museum looks at the history of St. Louis from its founding in 1764 up to the present day. The Museum is located in beautiful Forest Park, on the site of the main entrance to the 1904 World’s Fair. The Jefferson Memorial Building section of the Museum was built entirely with proceeds from the Fair, and opened to the public on April 30, 1913.

Suspended above visitors in the Museum’s Grand Hall is “The Spirit of St. Louis,” sister plane to Lindbergh’s, which was featured in the 1957 film of the same name starring Jimmy Stewart. Visitors can discover the city’s baseball history from the Browns to the Cardinals, learn about life on the Mississippi River, marvel at the magnitude of the 1904 World’s Fair, and much more. The History Clubhouse is a special gallery with hands-on activities for children.

General admission to the Museum is free. The Museum also features a rotating schedule of free special exhibitions throughout the year.

Missouri State Capitol

201 W. Capitol Ave.
Jefferson City, MO 65101
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The Capitol, completed in 1918, covers three acres in downtown Jefferson City. The dome rises 238 feet above ground level and is topped by a bronze statue of Ceres, the Roman goddess of vegetation. In addition to housing the two legislative bodies, the building provides office space for the governor, lieutenant governor, secretary of state, treasurer, state auditor, and administrative agencies. It holds the Missouri State Museum, which features exhibits of historical significance.

The structure is notable for its architectural features, including eight 48-foot columns on the south portico, six 40-foot columns on the north side, a 30-foot-wide grand stairway, and 13-foot by 18-foot bronze doors on the south side. Tours provide an excellent education on the State of Missouri and the structure itself. Guided 45-minute tours are given daily, free of charge: Monday-Friday, on the hour, 9 a.m.-4 p.m. (except at noon), and Saturday-Sunday at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. Self-guided maps are available at the tour desk, on the first floor. Please visit our website to make a reservation online. Reservations required for groups of 10+.

Interesting note: Contrary to popular belief, the north side that faces the river is the front of the Capitol.

History of Missouri

Missouri has a rich and interesting history that any history enthusiast would love learning about and exploring! These attractions make it fun and interesting for people of all ages. For your next Missouri vacation, schedule incredible tours and book a reservation at a great Missouri bed & breakfast to round out your visit to our great state!


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