What to Do in St. Louis with Kids {Day 1}

What to Do In St. Louis With Kids


We had THE BEST time in St. Louis last week {thanks to all your incredible input}We got a ton accomplished during our overnight stay in the city, but we can’t wait to go back and check more must-sees off our list!


We started our first day at the FREE St. Louis Zoo.  There’s a reason it has been recognized as “America’s Favorite Zoo”.  With 90 acres and over 19,000 animals, it’s a first class zoo experience.


The exhibits are large, and easy for even little ones to get an up-close look at the animals.


The Herpetarium, which houses a tons of amphibians and reptiles, was a crowd favorite, of course.


As were the cats.


But the Sea Lion Sound was our absolute favorite.  It was amazing to closely watch these animals swim, interact with them, and watch them perform.


By far the St. Louis Zoo is the best zoo we’ve visited.

After our long day walking around the zoo, we were ready to check into our hotel for the night.  We stayed at the Drury Plaza Hotel at the Arch, which I can’t say enough great things about it!  The location was amazing – we could see the arch from the indoor pool and it was just a couple blocks walk away!  The staff was super helpful, genuine, friendly, and accommodating.  The room was super spacious, clean, and quiet (well minus MY BOYS). AND The extras aren’t extra at Drury Hotels – which means you benefit from a ton of FREE perks.


  • Free Wireless (YES, PLEASE, Say the Internet Geeks!)
  • Free Soft Drinks and Popcorn in the Afternoons – night hours (Hit the spot after our day at the zoo)
  • Free Kickback Hour with Hot Food + Beverages (a buffet with plenty of options to feed our family for the night – hot dogs, mac n’ cheese, chips, veggies, soup, baked potatoes, meatballs, etc.)
  • Free Long Distance
  • Free Hot Breakfast (Again, they out did themselves – pancakes, sausage, yogurt, bagels, toast, cereals, fruit, biscuits and gravy, potatoes, etc)

How could we possibly go wrong?  Oh and did I fail to mention the enormous Kohler jet tub?  Best 40 minute soak of my life!


After our feast we took the five minute walk to the Gateway Arch to experience it at night.  The full moon beautifully reflected off the  stainless steel and the boys reactions to this massive architecture were priceless! {Grainy picture, but breathtaking in person.}


It was amazing to just look up at it in the night sky and experience it together. It’s one of those sights that you can’t take your eyes off.  You keep looking back when you’re leaving, just to get one more last look at it.


We didn’t let a silly government shutdown spoil our fun.  After all, you can’t exactly “close”  an Arch that’s over 600 feet tall!


We sure didn’t let it spoil our experience, and the beauty of the city at night.  It was an unforgettable day with our kids in St. Louis, and we had another full day ahead of us.


{Stay Tuned to See How We Spent Day 2 in St. Louis with Kids!}

What about YOU?  Have you ever taken YOUR kids to St. Louis?  Have YOU been to the St. Louis Zoo – what’s your favorite exhibit?  Have you been to the Arch?  Have you stayed at a Drury Hotel? I’d love to hear about YOUR experience too!  

*A special thanks to Drury Hotels for hosting our family overnight at the Drury Plaza at the Arch.  We were uber-impressed and can’t wait to return!

7 thoughts on "What to Do in St. Louis with Kids {Day 1}"

  1. Kara Fleck says:

    Wowza! We just so happen to be planning a trip to St. Louis because my oldest read about the arch and now wants to see it in person. Well, I should say we *were* planning, because I think you just did all the work for me 🙂

    Thanks for sharing this! Looks like an awesome time!

  2. Cindy Robinson says:

    We stayed at the Drury Hotels last winter on our way to Tennessee from South Dakota, had never heard of them till traveling through Missouri on the billboards. We can’t say enough good things about them and it was just my husband and I. Can’t imagine how much money a family saves by staying here and enjoying all of the free perks!! We stayed in one in St. Louis by the airport, in Nashville(again by the airport) and in Columbia when we were traveling home. Sure wish we had some of them closer to South Dakota. We also enjoyed the Arch. We attempted to go to the Arch on our way through to Tennessee and it was shut down due to the weather(it was a little rainy), but did get to enjoy it on our way home. Love readying your blog!!

  3. Heidi H. says:

    Can’t say enough about a trip to St. Louis. We went up in the arch and
    both of my kids loved it. We have an elementary age child and a teenager. It’s not an easy task to find something they both enjoy. The zoo is fabulous! Our favorite was the sea lion exhibit as well. I know City Museum was on your agenda as well. Again, a winner for both the kids. The Drury is top notch for the extras. It really helped our travel budget since the 5 ‘ o’clock Kickback served as our dinner. Glad you had such a great stay.

  4. wendy w. says:

    The arch is a must see, and I think the zoo is probably the best in the Midwest. But, you missed a spectacular opportunity to visit the coolest “museum” we’ve ever seen. City Museum is amazing. Where else can you climb through an airplane a few stories off the ground by making your way through metal wire tunnels? It’s crazy fun for kids and those of us who still act like kids!
    One other place we enjoyed during our trip to St. Louis this summer was Fitz’s. It’s a restaurant and soda bottling facility and soda fountain all at the same time. Their floats are worth the visit alone, but we found the food to be pretty good, too.
    My son competed in the NASP World Archery Tournament during our trip, so that’s all we had time for, but we’d gladly repeat the same trip again in the future!

  5. Jennifer says:

    You need to check out the City Museum. I am sure your boys would have a blast there.

  6. stephanie says:

    I have been to St. Louis and so has my husband, but not together and not with kids. It is for sure on our list of places to take them. Thank you for breaking down the many free things to do.

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