Situated on the west side of the Mississippi River, St. Louis is a major U.S. city with major family appeal. It has everything from big-city culture to sprawling green spaces in the heart of the metro. Known as the Gateway to the West, St. Louis represents a mix of American cultures with vibrant and eclectic entertainment to match. This Missouri city offers plenty of kid-friendly options for your upcoming trip, but make plans to have transportation to navigate the spread-out design of the city.

01The Gateway Arch

Gateway Arch in St. Louis RudyBalasko / Getty Images

No list of family-friendly St. Louis activities is complete without mentioning the Gateway Arch, which is the tallest man-made monument in the country. The iconic landmark defines the city's skyline with its soaring metal structure, and it houses a free Museum of Western Expansion inside the arch. If you want the best view of the city, grab tickets to head to the top of the arch. The journey involves riding a small, egg-shaped tram up 630 feet to peek out the windows at the top. Kids can imagine they're blasting into space as they zoom up the arch.