• Hiking,  Illinois,  Kids,  Missouri,  St. Louis

    10 Amazing Winter Hikes near St. Louis

    Don’t let the cold weather scare you away from hitting one of the great trails around St. Louis. Winter can be a perfect time for venturing outdoors. Not only are the ticks and oppressive heat absent, but so are the crowds. Some of the outstanding views that are normally blocked by vegetation are now wide open. Just spending time outside can also be a wonderful way to beat the winter blues. Here are 10 great…

  • Hikes,  Hiking,  Illinois,  Kids,  St. Louis

    Explore an Ancient Civilization at Illinois’s Cahokia Mounds

    Long before Europeans arrived to America, the area just east St. Louis was home to an ancient culture. Cahokia Mounds State Historic Site in southern Illinois preserves the central section of the largest prehistoric Native American city north of Mexico. The city grew to cover 4,000 acres with a population of between ten and twenty thousand at its peak around 1100.  Today the site preservesย 70 of the original 120 earthen mounds built by pre-historic Native Americans.…

  • History,  Illinois,  Kids,  St. Louis

    French Colonial History Comes Alive at Illinois’s Fort de Chartres

    Rising from the farm fields in southern Illinois is an impressive stone fortress celebrating 300 years of history. Long before the United States was established, the French ruled over southern Illinois. The proximity to the Mississippi River, the hunt for precious metals, and the rich farm ground established this area as of strategic importance. Fort de Chartres is one of the best historic sites in the state and recreates this era of Illinois’s history under…

  • Hikes,  Hiking,  Illinois,  Kids,  St. Louis

    Fults Hill Prairie Preserve – Steep Hiking with Panoramic Views

    Bluff Road in southwestern Illinois is one of the most scenic drives in the area. Rugged bluffs rise high above the road on one side with farmland stretching toward the Mississippi River on the other. If you have ever wondered what the view is like from atop those rocky bluffs, check out the Fults Hill Prairie Nature Preserve. Located off Bluff Road near the tiny town of Fults, the hiking trail at this preserve will…

  • Illinois,  Kids,  Missouri,  St. Louis

    The Best Christmas Light Displays around St. Louis

    One our family’s favorite holiday traditions is to drive around and look at the colorful light displays. Some of these trips are through elaborate set ups in various parks with millions of lights. Other displays are put up by festive homeowners who go all out to celebrate the season. No matter which side of the river you are on, here is a list of some great spots to check out this year. Lights in Illinois…