We’ve been through St. Louis before – for an evening really – but decided we needed to go back to see more of it. To determine if it could become a new favorite. The verdict is still out on that though.

Our timeshare, through Holiday Inn Club Vacations, had an available week in De Soto, MO.. which is only about an hour, on a good day, from downtown St. Louis.

We stayed the Holiday Inn Club Vacations Timber Creek Resort in De Soto. It is right off a busy highway, the 67. The resort had a lot to offer, however was slacking in some areas.

The noise from US Highway 67 wasn’t terrible. You’re actually set a good distance away from the road, up a private drive. I could really only hear the sounds of traffic at night, and even then it wasn’t enough to ruin my night.

Like I said, the resort boasted a lot. They have a fantastic, 18-hole putting course, as well as a full golf course (that we did not play on) – you can even rent clubs on site.

Other things offered that we may or may not have taken part in are:

  • A full cafe – the bowl of ice cream is worth it!
  • A stocked fishing pond – no license needed and you can rent equipment on site.
  • Boating on their private pond
  • Playground – swings would have been awesome.
  • Volleyball Sand Court
  • Tennis Court
  • Pool
  • Arcade
  • Movie Room
  • Fitness Center
  • Nature Trails – these were almost non-existent.. they were completely over grown.

We went back to the City Museum and had a blast. Unfortunately, even though we kicked the day with the least chance of rain… it inevitably rained the entire day, so the roof was closed, as was Monstrocity (the outdoor area). The kids still had a blast and we spend all day exploring the inside tunnels and caves.

Like the last time we went, we ate pizza there. It was delicious. I checked out their website, to purchase tickets. You can save $2 per ticket, by purchasing in-advance online. However, then you must pay a processing fee, which for us ended up being whatever we would have saved for the six of us. Parking is adjacent to the museum, and is $10. If you can get there early enough, you can park on site.

Single Day Ticket pricing for City Museum:

  • $20 at gate/18 online
  • Children 2 and under and free with paying adult

I highly recommend sneakers, or another closed shoe, a flashlight, knee pads, and hand sanitizer/wet wipes.

We also hit up the new St. Louis Aquarium at Union Station. It was talked up so much, we were all excited to go. We absolutely love aquariums. Unfortunately, it was kind of a let down.

We’ve been to a lot of aquariums in our day, so we were expectant of the high cost, but not for the underwhelming aquarium itself.

After we were ushered from one line to another (not an issue) we were gathered into this beautiful atrium where we had to wait for the “train.” I actually thought this was really neat, its similar to the Hogwarts Express ride at Universal Studios in Orlando, mainly just the video screens, but still. The short video on the screens, which is different on either side (because you don’t see the same thing out both sides of the train) was educational and narrated by John Goodman. It was cute. Oh, and don’t forget to look up when riding this train!

The tanks were nice.. maybe a little on the small side though. There just wasn’t much to see. They had several touch tanks, but they were funneled down and close to one another, making it difficult to walk through to the next exhibit. I feel like we walked through more dark hallways than tanks.

I would have loved to see more of Union Stations history throughout the aquarium, or really through out the facility. We only stayed for the aquarium, as my children don’t care much for other the things they had there.

You must purchase tickets in-advance, as they have a limited number of tickets every 15-minutes. It took us about 30 minutes to see everything in the aquarium.

General Admission Ticket pricing for St. Louis Aquarium at Union Station:

  • Adult: $25
  • Child (3-12): $18
  • 2 and under: Free

There are several areas to park, with two parking lots on the property that cost. The cost of the parking lot we used, closest to the entrance was by the hour and it cost us $5 for the amount of time we were there.

The Bonne Terre Mine, once a larg producer of Lead Ore, flooded with enough water hold the “Billion Dollar Lake.”

The Mine offers diving deep into their waters and caverns for certified divers. If you’re like my family and I, aka not certified to dive, you can participate in the walking & boat tour.

It’s similar to your cavern experiences, but with mining shafts and water. 😉 Our guide was very nice, and somewhat knowledgeable about the different formations and definitely the mine itself. The mine is so huge, spanning part of the town, the added boat tour was fantastic.

It’s roughly about 60° F down below. If you get easily cold, or don’t like ground water falling on you, you may want a jacket and pants. Definitely comfortable walking shoes. The tour takes about 55 minutes.

Boat & Walking Tour Pricing:

  • Adults: $28
  • Children 11 and under: $21

If you have a group of six or more, it is highly recommended that you call and schedule your tour, to ensure that you all can participate in the same tour or that you don’t have an extended wait time. Arrive 30 minutes prior to the tour you would like to attend.

Did you know that Missouri is one of like eight states that offers free entrance at its state parks? Yeah, I didn’t either, but that’s wicked cool!

The same day with did the Bonne Terre Mines, we checked out two state parks: Saint Joe’s SP and Elephant Rocks SP.

Both parks are really nice! We spent more time at Elephant Rocks, on their Braille Trail which also happened to be fully handicap accessible! But please, please, PLEASE watch out for wildlife, this includes wasps! My kids got too close to a wasp nest that was in the base of a tree, fortunately for the kids the wasps went after my husband instead.

That being said, please also watch out for your kids and yourself. If you venture onto the rocks, it can be dangerous.. especially if you’re running from bugs.

Other places we checked out in or around the St. Louis area:

  • SugarFire BBQ in Farmington, MO
  • Café Smok n’ Pi in De Soto, MO
  • Bloody Alley aka Highway 21
  • St. Louis Premium Outlets in Chesterfield, MO
  • 12 West Bar & Grill in Farmington, MO

We didn’t stop too much on the way there or home, just to help save time. However, we did stop in Uranus, Indiana, located in Anderson, ID.

It’s a fun, but crude, little pit stop with delicious sweets and merchandise. You can spend as much time there as needed, but it can be overwhelming… and expensive. 😅

It rained quite a bit while we were there. The roads flood very quickly! They become dangerous, make sure you have your headlights on – I can’t tell you how many drivers didn’t have theirs on making it difficult to see the..

All in all it was a lot of fun. The kids had a blast everywhere we went, despite the rain. I even got to meet up and have dinner with an author friend. It was a great end to the trip.