|Chandler Hill in Historic Missouri Wine Country
|Lewis and Clark in Frontier Park
Saint Charles, Missouri, the oldest city on the Missouri River, provides a unique historical perspective, beautiful sites, friendly people and a pace just a little slower than that of the big city. The town was founded in 1769 by a French Canadian fur trader named Louis Blanchette and given the name Les Petites Cotes, meaning "The Little Hills." It soon grew into a thriving riverfront trading center for a young America.
Meriwether Lewis and William Clark met here in 1804 to begin their famous Expedition. In fact, Saint Charles became a stop for many pioneers to replenish supplies before departing into new territory on their journeys westward on the Boone's Lick Trail. This route became the starting point for the Santa Fe, Oregon, and California Trails.
Visitors today feel as though they are stepping back into the 1800s along the brick paved fourteen block Nationally Registered Historic District which contains over 90 craft, antique, and specialty shops, as well as over 30 unique restaurants. Explore the historic district with Missouri's First State Capitol, the Lewis & Clark Boat House and Museum, the Foundry Art Centre, and the Shrine of St. Phillippine Duchesne.
Besides its rich history, St. Charles has so much more to offer - first rate hotels and more than 175 restaurants. Be assured that our group accommodations are far more comfortable and convenient than the riverbank campsite we provided for the Lewis & Clark "group tour" back in 1804!
A short drive into St. Charles County takes you to the oldest American Viticultural Area in the United States. Share a bottle of award winning wine at any of a dozen wineries as you enjoy the picturesque surroundings of the Missouri River Valley from a hilltop terrace. Historic Missouri Wine Country is also where you'll find the region's most popular historical attraction, the Historic Daniel Boone Home at Lindenwood Park. The nearly 300 acre site includes the home where Daniel spent the last years of his life with his son Nathan and his family. The home overlooks Boonesfield Village, a simulated town comprised of more than a dozen 19th Century buildings. Each building originated from within 50 miles of the property.
Looking to immerse yourself in the culture of the area? Saint Charles offers musical events, parades, art shows, and ethnic festivals throughout the year. We begin the year with the "Fete de Glace, Festival of Ice" (ice carving competition), the Missouri River Irish Fest (music, storytelling, athletics, and food), Riverfest (4th of July celebration with a parade, food, music, carnival rides, and fireworks), Festival of the Little Hills (craft and food festival), MOsaics Fine Art Festival (artist exhibits and sales), Oktoberfest (German heritage celebration with a parade, music, food, and car show), Legends & Lanterns: A "Spirited" Journey Through Halloween History (our newest festival offering the vintage charm of Halloween in the 1910s - 1930s), and Christmas Traditiions® (this month long festival, that has been in existence for over 40 years, celebrates the best of the holiday season).
The Greater Saint Charles Convention & Visitors Bureau is here to make sure your group enjoys its trip to the fullest. Whether you are looking for a place to stretch your legs for a short time while on your way through, a day trip, one night, or a multi-night (hub & spoke) destination, we'll be happy to help you plan your group's itinerary.
Our suggested itineraries along with promotional materials on the area's many attractions, hotels, restaurants, shops, and special events is the perfect place to get started on planning your visit to St. Charles.
If you're imagining what it was like for the frontiersmen, settlers, and merchants who have walked the same streets over the past two centuries, let our guides, in period dress, step aboard your coach and make history come alive for your group. This tour is complimentary when you overnight at one of our partner hotels.
St. Charles has so many things to do, your group will be beg you to return again and again. Discover a place that has been welcoming visitors since 1769!