Gateway Arch National Park (formerly the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial) is made up of two parts: the Arch itself, which also houses a free museum below, and the Old Courthouse across the street, which is most famous for its role in the Dred Scott trial. The Arch, designed in 1947 by Eero Saarinen, was completed in 1965 and stands on the banks of the Mississippi near where the Lewis and Clark expedition started. It serves as a symbol of the Louisiana Purchase. If you're claustrophobic or afraid of heights, skip the retrofuturistic pod cars that take guests to the top; If you do go up, take advantage of a sweet optical illusion photo op... ask a park ranger to help!
“Gateway to the West”
The Museum of Westward Expansion closed, pending installation of all new museum exhibits. As of March 2, 2015, entry-only ticket or tram ticket required to enter Arch.The nation's tallest monument at 630 feet, the Gateway Arch has beckoned visitors since June 1967. The Gateway Arch commemorates Thomas Jefferson and the role St. Louis played in the westward expansion of the United States.A visit to St. Louis isn't complete without standing at the Arch's base and playing professional photographer, but the view from the outside is only half of the experience. Attractions within the Arch include the Journey to the Top (the last tram leaves one hour before closing); educational programs (will be housed at the Old Courthouse); award-winning documentary movie, Monument to the Dream; and a gift shop.Closed Thanksgiving, Christmas Day and New Year's Day.Note: the address shown is for the Old Courthouse which is acting as the Gateway Arch Ticketing and Visitor Center throughout construction. Pedestrian entrance to the Arch Grounds is at Walnut Street at Memorial Drive or via the Grand Staircase from the riverfront.
My dad told me before I ever visited that the ride up is something else and he's right. You ride up in these little pods that stop and pivot to get up the arch. It's quite the experience. The other crazy part is the arched floor in the observation deck. How can anyone visit St. Louis and not go up in the arch?! Worth the wait to knock this off your bucket list!
This was my second visit to the arch and again we thoroughly enjoyed the trip - the arch sits beautifully against the St Louis skyline and within a beautiful park. Beneath the park you can visit a museum which walks you through the history of the area or you can go up to the observation deck and look out over both sides of the river. A definite must visit for your trip to St Louis.
This thing is absolutely massive! It is without a doubt in my mind worth the 10 or so dollars to ride in the tiny elevator for the view from the top! Its a must see in st. louis and a place you will most likely not forget as its not something you see everyday!
The area under the arch is great for a picnic or just to hang around with family. The arch tour is very fun! Expect to wait a long while before getting into the tour as people come from all over the country to visit.
Make sure your ready to take photos when you get to the top.
What a great place! The 4 min ride to top was fun cramped and exciting ! Can say we did it now! The inside museum was very educational!
definitely worth a stop. really beautiful up close and very cool view from the top. beware if you are claustrophobic, the tram is like a little egg on the way up and down!
The wait to go up to the top of the Arch was several hours and we couldn't wait. Buy tickets in advance! Also, the museum inside is poorly laid out and confusing to wander through.
A great attraction, perfect for a family visit. Get there early and be sure to buy your tickets in advance if you want to ride up to the top of the Arch, although warning to claustrophobics and tall people that the pods you ride up in are incredibly cramped. Down on the ground, the museum is great and there are two films to see: a documentary about the construction of the arch that impresses with it's dizzying heights, and an IMAX film about the expedition of Lewis and Clark, both well-worth the price of admission.
While there, take a walk over to the Old Courthouse to learn about the Dred Scott case, and also to get some incredible photos of the Arch from a distance.
I was in Awe of the monument the first time I saw it and have been the many visits since! The story of its construction is amaxing in itself. The view from the top is breathtaking and a true must!
Be warned however, the ride to the top is quite confined and not A/C (at least the last we were there) but the ride is not too long of one. Even if you're affraid of heights (which our son is) the ride to the top is a must. The windows are small so it was a pleasant trip for him as he didn't have to peer out the window if he didn't want but still got say he had been to the top of the arch!!!
This is a complete package. The ride up the arch and the view from the top are spectacular, the grounds are beautiful, and the underground museum at the base are all well-worth the stop. It can be a half hour or a whole day, depending on what you're interested in.
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Gateway Arch National Park
- Sun - Sat: 9:00 am - 6:00 pm
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