I love being able to stay that I traveled across the ocean and solo traveled. But, I think it's safe to say that I know myself well enough to say that I'm a homebody and I much rather travel closer to home (home the people, not the place). So, when my friends from college suggested we make a trip to St. Louis I knew I had to get in on it. Check out this post to read all about my St. Louis travel diary!
Where We Stayed
Our group chose to hedge our bets at trying out AirBnB and after our visit I can thoroughly say that I would recommend people try it! We had a large group which, when divided, the price was much cheaper than getting a hotel room. And instead of just a hotel room, we got a whole house! This came in perfectly when we wanted to stay in for a night and chill, or when we woke up early and was craving some freshly made coffee.
Our house was right outside of the downtown area and a short ten minute drive to the heart of the city. This lead to quiet nights and mornings which I so appreciated when it came time to head to bed.
Where We Ate
RISE Coffee Shop
Someone tell me a better way to start the day than a lavender latte and a cinnamon roll. I was thankful to wake up early and be walking distance to this wonderful coffee shop that opened the world of lavender lattes to me. Being within walking distance to a place so aesthetically pleasing really set up the day for success! Our table was filled with everything from beans, to eggs over easy, to blueberry muffins. This coffee shop appeased everyone's taste buds and made breakfast a success.
Heavy Riff Brewery
Our morning consisted of walking around the St. Louis Zoo for several hours, so the group was craving something filling by the time lunch came around. We searched and found Heavy Riff Brewery which checked off all the boxes: walking distance from the zoo, yummy food that isn't expensive, and a large beer list. The pulled pork sandwich was almost as good as the pulled pork I ate when I visited Kansas City.
For our last day, we ate brunch at The Atomic Cowboy, and we were all kicking ourselves that we never got the chance to go there to checkout the bar scene. With it's outdoor stage and fairy lights, this easily was a place that we could've spent hours at. I ordered the Apple Pie French Toast (with ice cream on top!) while others opted for a burger at 10 in the morning (personally not my cup of tea, but they loved it!). And of course, we ordered mimosas to round up our Sunday Brunch with Friends experience.
Where We Went
St. Louis Zoo (Free!)
Even on a perfectly sunny Saturday where the crowds are large, I recommend hitting the St. Louis Zoo. For one, it's free to the public which makes incredibly enticing to a college students. Additionally, the zoo does a great job of informing their visitors about what the zoo is doing to help animals around the world and preserve our environment. As an environmental scientist wannabe, this zoo was right up my ally!
Anheuser-Busch Brewery Tours (Free!)
I won't get into the long story, but we almost weren't able to go on the Budweiser tour and, to anyone visiting, this should definitely be on your list of things to do. I've been on a few brewery tours including the Guiness Brewery tour in Dublin, and I still loved this one as much as my first tour. We were given a history lesson about Budweiser along with two samples of beer. We also got to see the clydesdale horses that always makes me cry when their Super Bowl commercial comes on. While I was there I found my new favorite beer: Cream Soda flavored and tastes like no beer whatsoever… just how I like it!
The St. Louis Gateway Arch
A touristy attraction, but a must see if you're in the area. Except let me tell you what people didn't enlighten me with: you get to leave the tiny elevator. I had no idea! When you go to the top, five people climb into this extremely tiny pod/elevator to take you to the top. I was under the impression that you stay in the pod as it takes you to a window of the top to look out of. It wasn't until the door was opening at the top did I realize that the doors were actually opening on purpose and that we were being let out to a viewing deck. Might just be me who was under that impression but fair warning to all! 🙂 The cost was only $13 to visit and it was well worth it. We went up around 8:40 PM, just in time to see the city light up and the sun go down. I couldn't have asked for a prettier view!
The St. Louis History Museum (Free)
We had some time to kill before we piled in our cars to go home so we stopped off at the History Museum. The building is filled with Missouri history including what it was like when Missouri first became established, to what people wore back in the 1800's. Our group stayed at the museum for about an hour before we decided that we had enough knowledge of how St. Louisans made shoes and churned butter.
After that, we all got in our cars and headed our separate ways home. It was such a fun weekend and I can say with confidence that I can see traveling with them yearly. Cheers to adventures, even if they're close to home.