During one of our family trips last year, we headed to St. Louis, Missouri to visit my parents. One of the many tourist destinations we chose to visit was the City Museum! The pictures you see on their website and online does not even begin to tell you the amazing experience this was for my family! Check out my City Museum Review below to learn more about why this is rated the #1 Family Attraction in the World by Trip.com!
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City Museum Review: St. Louis’ Ultimate Indoor Experience for All Ages!
I carefully planned our itinerary for our family vacation to St. Louis online and I must say, one of the most unique places is found there; the City Museum is much more than what I expected! My kids could not stop talking about this place and they can’t wait to go back!
City Museum Background
When you see the City Museum, you will automatically realize they re-purposed the entire building! It is a 600,000 square foot building that use to be the International Shoe Company that was redesigned by Bob Cassilly, an internationally acclaimed sculptor. City Museum first opened in 1997 and was constructed by Bob Cassilly and his crew of 20 artists who uses reclaimed building materials from the city itself! They’ve incorporated salvaged bridges, cranes, and even abandoned planes among many other things in a fun, beautifully created way!
Upon arriving at City Museum, you can see the artistic work Bob Cassilly and his crew constructed immediately. Huge metal apparatuses looping in and out of the building in all sorts of directions accompanied by hundreds of people weaving through and even more people at the entrance waiting to get in. Wow. I was definitely as excited, if not more excited, than my kids were! I couldn’t believe the imagination and creativity that was used to build this place, especially re-purposing an old building and bringing it back to life!
Some (because there’s too many to write about) City Museum Attractions
- MonstroCity is what you’ll see immediately arriving at City Museum because it’s entirely outside. It is a 4-story outdoor playground made up of wrought iron slinkies (yes, I really mean slinkies), huge slides, and even planes! MonstroCity is open weather permitting.
- The Roof is seasonal and houses a 1940’s Ferris wheel and even more slides!
- The World’s Largest Jungle Gym – The entire City Museum is the largest indoor and outdoor jungle gym play area I’ve ever seen! With giant wrought iron slinkies serving as tunnels looping through the entire 10-story building with multiple rooms and slides, this place is like the Disneyland of McDonald’s Indoor Play Places!
- Enchanted Caves and Shoe Shafts Slides – Enjoy a 5-story and 10-story (accessed through the Enchanted Caves) spiral slide that’s located in the old shoe shafts of the building! Having two toddlers means I spent a lot of time in this area! These slides are so much fun! The Enchanted Caves were really cool because they’re built like an actual cave system:
Deep in the belly of the museum there exists a labyrinth of tunnels filled with creatures of the imagination. A City Museum favorite since 2003, but encompassing a sense of secrecy as old as time, the Enchanted Caves await you. Enter, and absorb the mysteries of your surroundings as you warily make your way toward the mystical glow of crystals located at the heart of the caves. Look up, and factory spiral conveyor belts (once part of the historic International Shoe Co) dare you to explore your way to the top, and then take a delightfully dizzying trip back down on the 10 story spiral slide! Along the way, you’ll find the faces of creatures both real and imagined peering back at you from every corner. – City Museum
4th Floor Attractions
- Toddler Town – Located on the 4th floor, Toddler Town is an enclosed area and is specifically designed for ages 6 and under! You’ll find fairly quickly why everyone has a wristband and why it’s important to put your cell phone number on your child’s wristband because it’s highly likely that your child will enter one of those tunnels and you can’t fit to follow. With Toddler Town, the enclosed area ensures that your child is at least on the same floor secluded in a particular section!
Kids can try out a smaller slide, ball pit, and crawl tunnel. Bright, colorful padded flooring provides extra cushion for visitors just starting to walk, and little builders can even make their own creations from giant foam blocks.Away from the noise and excitement of the main museum, there’s plenty of seating for parents to watch (or rest!) – City Museum
- City Express – There’s a choo-choo train for visitors under 48″! A quick miniature train ride but make sure to get in line quickly because it doesn’t hold many passengers! The City Express is located on the 4th floor around the corner from the entrance of Toddler Town.
- Skateless Park – Also located on the 4th floor, inside you’ll be surrounded by ramps and rope swings and no skateboards! My son loved sliding down these big ramps and trying his strength at running up the walls Ninja Warrior style!
- Everyday Circus – They even have a circus that performs there! You can see the performance times here.
Hours of Operations
- Monday – Thursday: 9AM-5PM
- Friday – Saturday: 9AM- Midnight
- Sunday: 11AM-5PM
- Children 2 and under are FREE
- $14 (+taxes) ages 3+ ($12+taxes after 5PM on Fridays & Saturdays)
- Roof admission is general admission + $5 (Closed from November – May)
- Parking is $10 cash only.
First Time Visitor? Try these tips!
- Think about coming after 5pm on Friday and Saturday to save on admission cost
- A phone number on your child’s wrist band is helpful.
- There are no maps, just kidding! Find maps here.
- A flashlight may be helpful.
- Wear closed toed shoes.
- Ladies: Leave your purses at home
- Knee pads are a must!
Have you ever been to the City Museum? What was your favorite attraction?
I would love to hear from you! Please leave me a comment below!
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