Cuivre River State Park is resplendent with caves, sinkholes and springs that are normally only found in southern Missouri. The park has equestrian and hiking trails along the river bluffs and modern campsites and picnic areas for groups or families. Nearby Lake Lincoln features a swimming beach and boat-launching area -- perfect for summer fun!
Location: 678 State Route 147, Troy, MO
It's a little-known fact that Missouri is the Cave State. Once you've experienced Meramec Caverns, you'll know exactly why! Visit any time of the year in any weather -- the temperature inside the mountain is always a steady 58 degrees. The campground includes shaded riverfront camp sites, hot showers, sheltered pavilions, picnic areas, barbecue pits and a concession stand. Bonuses include canoe rentals, raft rentals and a nearby zip-lining adventure.
Location: Off Interstate 44, Exit 230, in Stanton, MO
Here's your chance to camp at a place that's listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The Mastodon State Historic site is one of the most famous and extensive Ice Age fossil deposits in the world. In 1979, archaeological history was made when excavators found a large stone spear point among the mastodon bones, indicating that humans may have contributed to the animals' extinction. Now your family can camp and stay at the same place where Native Americans once lived among these prehistoric behemoths.
Location: 1050 Charles J. Becker Drive, Imperial Township, MO
Knob Noster State Park is a tranquil oasis punctuated by the "sounds of freedom" from nearby Whiteman Air Force Base. Where else can you hike, mountain bike, cast a line and watch a B-2 stealth bomber rocket into action across the idyllic Missouri skyline? Camp sites are flat hard-packed gravel, and shade trees provide ample separation between campers. The campground is open-year round.
Location: 873 SE 10th, Knob Noster, MO
By far one of the most popular (as well as stunningly beautiful) recreational areas in the Midwest, Table Rock Lake State Park is nestled in the oak and hickory trees that surround the breathtaking man-made 43,100-acre Table Rock Lake. Two shaded camping areas allow easy access to the water, while marinas offer a diverse range of watercraft for rental. Tents, trailers and RVs are all welcome.
Location: 5272 State Highway 165, Branson, MO
The "Shut-Ins" are named for the narrow part of the Black River that, more than a billion years ago, became confined to a narrow channel of erosion-resistant rock, creating a waterpark by nature's design. Cascading waterfalls tumble over huge, smooth rocks to form swirling pools and natural waterslides. The park is very popular and parking is extremely limited; camping is the perfect way to bypass all the fuss and enjoy uninterrupted access to the river and woods. It offers basic and electric campsites, a dump station, showers, water and laundry as well as more than 15 picnic sites and two playgrounds.
Location: 148 Taum Sauk Trail, Middlebrook, MO
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