11 Most Instagrammable Spots in Missouri

Tanya Byelova
May 19, 2022

If you didn't post a picture of your trip on Instagram, did you even go? The rise of social media like this one affects the way people travel. More and more people rely on Instagram to chronicle their travels and share them with their friends and family.

Missouri is a treasure trove of beautiful, photogenic landmarks and scenery. Missouri has it all, whether you're looking for a photo op in front of famous attractions or a chance to savor the local cuisine.

If you're looking for beautiful beaches, museums, and bustling cities, this is the place. The abundance of trams that pass through some landmarks makes it simple to take pictures for Instagram. Insta-worthy scenery abounds in this area despite being overlooked by some.

Capturing your travel pic is undoubtedly a delight because of its charming towns, busy city streets, and historical charm. Missouri has a lot to offer photographers and tourists alike, whether it's the food, the beaches, hiking, or camping ground.

So what are you waiting for? Tick off that bucket list and enjoy a vacation or a weekend getaway in Missouri. Here, we have collected some of Missouri's most instagrammable spots.

1. The Gateway Arch

The Gateway Arch is the visually defining structure of St. Louis and the metaphorical "Gateway to the West." Even though it is situated within Jefferson National Expansion Memorial Park, the arch is visible from a wide swath of the city and even from a considerable distance while traveling along the roadways.

Visitors can get to an observation deck at the top of the building, standing at 630 feet, by the elevator. You can take a tram ride, which lasts between 45 and 60 minutes. On a day with clear visibility, it is possible to see up to 30 miles. Don't forget to appreciate the view.

To get the most out of the arch, you can take helicopter tours, riverboat cruises, and visit the Old Courthouse to learn about the area's history. The museum's displays cover from 1764 to 1965 and tell the stories of Native Americans, explorers, and pioneers who helped the United States grow.

The Gateway Arch, designed by Finnish-American architect Eero Saarinen, towered over St. Louis at 63 stories when it was completed. It's hard to believe that this is a steel-and-concrete structure, making it so beautiful.

You can also enjoy stunning views of downtown St. Louis and the arch from the Becky Thatcher or the Tom Sawyer, which date back to the 19th century and still operate today.

2. Meramec State Park

To get away from the bustle of modern life, head to Meramec State Park, a natural wonderland filled with beautiful scenery and awe-inspiring views. It is located near St. Louis, surrounded by beautiful scenery and the splendid Meramec River.

It's a pleasure to explore the park's trails or waters by kayak or fishing, but more than 40 fascinating caves are the park's real draw. It's hard to beat Fraser Cave for sheer beauty, thanks to the stunning stalactites and stalagmites that line its ceiling.

Guests can learn all about the park's incredible formations and the park ecology and environment at the park's exciting and educational visitor center. Many visitors to Meramec State Park prefer to camp or spend the night in one of the park's lodges to wake up to the park's stunning scenery.

3. Lake of the Ozarks

It's clear that Lake of the Ozarks, formed in 1931, is one of the Midwest's most famous lake resort destinations. The Lake has something to offer everyone, whether you're planning a vacation with your family or a weekend getaway with your closest friends.

Visitor favorites include a wide variety of water activities such as boating, fishing, swimming at sandy beaches, and professionally designed golf courses and campgrounds.

The Lake is home to beautiful scenery and various outdoor activities. The massive reservoir and its three tributaries, collectively known as "Puff the Magic Dragon," were created by damming the Osage River.

There are over 1,800 kilometers of scenic shoreline in total – more than the entire state of California. Osage Beach is tucked away along its coves, creeks, and channels, with numerous waterfront lodgings and restaurants.

As the Lake grows in size, so does the variety of water activities available, from boating and fishing to kayaking and stand-up paddleboarding. There are numerous water parks, golf courses, and state parks.

4. Ozark National Scenic Riverways

Ozark National Scenic Riverways is an attractive tourist destination that was established in 1964. It was the first national park to protect an entire river system. It is centered on the Current and Jacks Fork rivers and features a diverse landscape encompassing meadows and forests to caves, springs, and cliffs.

Thousands of tourists travel to the beautiful area each year to take advantage of the numerous outdoor activities it provides. While the idyllic Ozark Trail is well-known for hiking and horseback riding, there's nothing like paddling lazily along a tranquil waterway in a kayak or canoe.

All the beautiful waterways offer a wide variety of recreational activities, from fishing and swimming to exploring more than 300 caves. Visitors to the park can find a small museum dedicated to its history at Van Buren, where the park's main headquarters are located.

5. Missouri Botanical Garden

Strolling through the 79-acre grounds of the Missouri Botanical Gardens is an exceptional experience. The Missouri Botanical Garden can lay claim to being one of the state's earliest tourist attractions.

The gardens aren't content to rest on their historical laurels, so they've added the Jack C. Taylor Visitor Center to their facilities. Every half hour, a tram travels the length of the park.

The Climatron is a must-see while visiting the gardens. It is the world's first geodesic greenhouse, and it offers an up-close look at its innovative design and climate control systems. There are 2,800 plants spread across 1,400 species in this 24,000-square-foot geodesic dome.

It's also possible to visit the Japanese Garden and the house of Linnean Plants. Wander through the Japanese Garden's peaceful landscape, including waterfalls and meticulously tended plants.

At the heart of St. Louis' urban sprawl is the 79-acre Shaw Botanical Gardens, a National Historic Landmark with an extensive orchid collection and Henry Shaw's original 1850 estate home. The Children's Garden is a beautiful and perfect place for kids to learn about plants, nature, and sustainability.

Want to learn more about plants and the environment? The Sophia M. Sachs Butterfly House in Chesterfield and the Shaw Nature Reserve in Gray Summit are nearby sister properties to the Garden.

6. Ha Ha Tonka State Park

Ha Ha Tonka State Park, located in central Missouri, is best known for its castle ruins. The park's forests and karst landscapes are surrounded by spectacular caves, sinkholes, and bluffs, while hiking trails wind through the park's forests.

At the mouth of the Niangua River, the park was purchased and developed by Kansas City businessman Robert McClure Snyder, Sr., in 1905 for private use. The ruins of the stone mansion he built, which was destroyed by a fire in the 1940s, are now the park's centerpiece. Beautiful brick arches and sturdy stone walls, reminiscent of European castles from the 16th century, overlook the sparkling lake below, now used for swimming and boating.

7. Onondaga Cave State Park

Onondaga Cave State Park has abundant stalactites and stalagmites, flowstones and rimstone dams, cave coral, and more as you venture inside. The underground streams and caverns of Onandaga Cave State Park, a National Natural Landmark that will take your breath away!

Missouri is attractive as "The Cave State," and it's no surprise because of its underground wonderland. Vilander Bluff Natural Area is a popular spot for fishing and canoeing in the Meramec River, and visitors can explore the park's underground wonders.

Due to bedrock deposits, volcanic activity, and erosion, Missouri's karst topography has existed for millions of years. The Vilander Bluff Natural Area, located along the Meramec River, is a great place to get a beautiful bird's eye view of the valley from the top of the bluffs. There are also over six miles of hiking trails and swimming, fishing, and canoeing opportunities.

8. Meramec Caverns

Meramec Caverns is a 4.6-mile-long cavern system in the Ozark Mountains near Stanton, Missouri. Water has been eroding limestone rocks for millions of years, resulting in caverns.

Today, Meramec Caverns is Missouri's most prominent commercial cave and a major tourist attraction along the famed Route 66. It is best to take a guided tour led by knowledgeable rangers to explore the cave's seven levels for your safety.

The Wine Room, 6-foot high onyx Wine Table, the Greatest Show Under the Earth, and the Mirror Room are amongst the most popular attractions of the cavern.

Amongst the (with a), ( a sheet wall cavern where the popular show is performed), (a cavern with a 1.5-foot deep stream of water that mirrors the cavern's ceiling)

9. Elephant Rocks State Park

Elephant Rocks State Park is a beautiful tourist destination located in the Saint Francois Mountains and is best known for its elephant-shaped granite boulders, public recreation, and preservation of natural resources.

Massive granite boulders, formed 1.5 billion years ago, make up the elephant rocks, which look like a train of circus elephants. Geologists are fascinated by the formations they've created, and history buffs and climbers alike enjoy exploring them.

Elephant Rocks Natural Area's Braille Trail, a one-mile loop interpretive trail, is the first in Missouri state parks designed for visual and physical disabilities visitors.

A side trail leads to an abandoned quarry via the "Fat Man's Squeeze" and the "Maze," two 100-foot sections of strewn boulders that separate the main trail from these two side trails. You'll find shaded picnic areas complete with benches and tables throughout the park.

10. Talking Rocks Cavern

Talking Rocks Cavern is a network of caves discovered by accident in the late 1800s and is located about 15 minutes from Branson.

At Talking Rocks Cavern, you can learn about geology while having a good time with your family. Starting at the top of the cave, the tour descends 265 steps to reach the floor. The "curtain" and "bacon" crystalline formations, for example, can be seen in the well-lit caves.

Outside, there's a SpeleoBox crawl maze, a lookout tower, nature trails, and picnic areas for guests to enjoy.

Truman Powell was the first to explore the cave, which he named the Fairy Cave, but the name was later changed to Talking Rocks Cavern, inspired by the quote of Powell's son. Mineral deposits and rocks in the cave were the particular focus of his exploration. He later concluded that these geological features would tell him a story about how the cave came to be.

Guided tours of the cavern now include educational and entertaining elements, with visitors learning about the cave's discovery, history, mineral deposits, and geologic structure throughout an hour-long tour.

Afterward, you can engage in on-site activities such as mini-golf, gemstone panning, or a hike to a lookout tower.

11. Roaring River State Park

As of 2016, Roaring River State Park encompasses 4,093 acres in Barry County, Arkansas. Located in the Ozark Mountains, it is nestled in a deep, shady, narrow valley surrounded by rugged rocks. It is a popular destination for its excellent fishing, camping, and hiking opportunities.

The presence of rainbow trout in the river at Roaring River State Park draws anglers from all over, making it one of the most visited state parks. In addition to the swimming pool and nature center, the park has seven miles of hiking trails. There is a large campground, rustic cabins, or the Emory Melton Inn for those who prefer to stay in a more luxurious setting.

The Ozarks State Park is home to more than 600 species of plants, many of which are unique to the state and can't be found anywhere else. Learn more about the park's natural history at Ozark Chinquapin Nature Center, and then cool off at the park's public pool.

Explore the 2,075-acre Roaring River Hills Wild Area, which features Ozark chinquapin trees, or the Devil's Kitchen Trail, which leads to a rock shelter known as Devil's Kitchen, by hiking the Fire Tower Trail.