When you ask Missouri to "show me" they deliver! Whether its canoeing along Elk River, or exploring underground caves, an epic adventure awaits.
Missouri is the quintessential Midwestern state in climate, culture and geography. Here you'll find both flatland plains and multiple mountain ranges, including the Ozarks and the St. Francois Mountains.
The Show Me State has over 6,000 known caves, so it's a popular spot for amateur spelunkers. Head into the Ozarks to find some of the best exploration areas. Bluff Dweller's Cave, near the town of Noel, features 4,000 feet of passages and many unique geological formations. If you're in the St. Louis area, try Meramec Caverns, where you can take guided tours through a visually stunning underground atmosphere.
If you'd rather climb mountains than search under them, Missouri's got you covered there as well, with well over 500 peaks to scale. St. Francois State Park, located a bit southwest of St. Louis, has a reputation for remarkably challenging rock climbing and hiking locations. First-timers and amateurs may find St. Francois a little overwhelming. Elephant Rocks State Park in southeast Missouri caters to a wider variety of hikers. It even features a "Braille Trail" specifically designed for those with disabilities.
Table Rock Lake is one of the most popular destinations in Missouri. With 52,300 acres of surface area and 750 miles of shoreline, there is something for everyone here. Take your boat out for a rip or hike along the shore to discover the lake's hidden beaches.
Lake of the Ozarks State Park allows for both cave exploring and rock climbing in its 17,441 acres. Here you've also got easy access to Osage Beach, 85 miles of shoreline, and hiking and horseback-riding trails. Don't miss the chance for a picnic near the lake in the warmer months.
Speaking of warmer months, be prepared for some humidity. The state's proximity to the Gulf of Mexico makes it pretty muggy in July and August. Southern Missouri has a tendency to get hit by tropical weather systems in the late summer. Those systems can create extremely violent storms, so check the weather before you finalize your plans!