This is one of the monuments in our country that EVERYONE knows about. They know it as the St. Louis Arch at least. Some people don’t recognize the name Gateway Arch or Jefferson Expansion Memorial. However, this beautiful monument is all that and more.
The Gateway Arch was built between February 1963 and October 1965. It’s made of stainless steel and concrete and is 630′ tall. It was built in St. Louis because it was considered the Gateway to the West. All the pioneers making their way West would’ve most likely passed through St. Louis as it was the last sign of real civilization.
St. Louis these days is still something exciting to see. Though it’s been many years, the zoo there is amazing, the botanical gardens are beautiful, and as the original pinner goes on to list, there are many amazing things to do with your kids!
As we were in the area in March, it was a little cold to go wandering the zoos and such, but we at least had to make our way to the Arch. My family lives outside the city, so we rode the MetroLink into St. Louis so we wouldn’t have to deal with parking or anything. They have many convenient stops, and Arthur is a huge train fan, so this was a big hit!
When your approaching St. Louis, whether from the highways, train, or on a clear day, even by air, the skyline is always recognizable because of the Arch. It’s unique and it’s the reason that, of all the cities I’ve seen, St. Louis remains my favorite skyline.
Their is an interesting little museum in entrance that you can wander through and learn the history of the Arch and the general areas. Then of course, is the trip to the top. The elevators are very tight, but they will seat 5. Past experience has taught me, be cautious with claustrophobic people. My friend Mia, while she enjoyed the experience, almost had a meltdown at the top.
The view is amazing! Every time I see it, I find is this way. I’ve seen it in the afternoon, at dusk and at night and there is something magical about it. You can see forever it feels like. You can look out the river side or over the city. You can see the riverboats moored along the Mississippi river or you can overlook the Cardinal’s new stadium. During the day you can see the whole city and beyond. At night, the lights from traffic make everything glow with an almost neon light.
Kids will have different reactions to this of course. I have my brave Arthur, my little daredevil who loved everything about it. The elevator ride to the top, the view out the windows and the faster by one minute ride down. Then there is my princess. Chiara loved the elevator, but it took her a good 10 minutes to let us hold her up to the windows without a meltdown.
I have only ever visited the St. Louis area once without going to the Arch. It’s a must for me, almost every time. I’d recommend everyone visit it once in their life. Even those with a fear of heights. My dad does not do heights! He still went into the city with us, walked the museum and just enjoyed the day. The view from the base of the legs is a good one too!
I hope you take my advice, and if you haven’t been, try to make the trip at least once. Even if you’re only driving through, take an hour or two out of your day to visit one of the greatest places America has to offer!
Original 50 Things to do list is at http://alphamom.com/family-fun/activities/50-things-to-do-with-kids-in-st-louis-before-or-even-after-they-grow-up/