Jefferson City, a city in Missouri, has many fascinating tourist attractions, including the Runge Nature Center and the Museum of Missouri Military History.
The Missouri State Penitentiary, situated in Jefferson City, was opened in 1836. It housed various notable individuals, such as bank robber Pretty Boy Floyd and James Earl Ray, an assassin.
It also housed former heavyweight champion and boxer Tommy Liston. In this article, we will look at the best and fun things to do in Jefferson City, MO for kids, families, couple, and adults!
Where is Jefferson City, Missouri?
Commonly referred to as Jeff City, this city is Missouri’s capital and is the 15th most populous place in the state.
According to the census data released in 2020, it has a population of 43,228.
It is also the county seat for Cole County and is the principal administrative center of the Jefferson City metropolitan statistical area.
One of the city’s notable institutions is Lincoln University, established in 1866 by the 62nd US Colored Troops. The 65th US Colored Troops support this historically black university.
The city’s area is divided into two categories: land and water. The land portion of the city is approximately 35.95 square miles, while the water portion is 1.63 square miles.
If you’re planning a trip to Missouri, we suggest you also check out best things to do in Augusta.
Fun Things to Do in Jefferson City, MO
If you plan on visiting Jefferson City, Missouri, quit wondering what to do there. There are so many adventurous and fun things to do in Jefferson City, Missouri.
1. Cole County Historical Museum
One of the most popular places to visit in Jefferson City, Missouri, is the Cole County Historical Museum.
It is a must-visit for anyone interested in learning more about the country’s history.
In addition, this museum features various interactive exhibits that will help you get a deeper understanding of the area.
This museum is also a great place to take your entire family. Its low prices and numerous rooms to explore will allow you to get a deeper understanding of the area.
Address: The Cole County Historical Museum is at 109 Madison St, Jefferson City, MO, 65101, United States.
2. Museum of Missouri Military History
Another impressive museum that is a must-visit is the Missouri Military History Museum.
This museum is dedicated to commemorating and celebrating the state’s military history.
It features various artifacts and displays dating back to the American Revolution.
This museum is free to visit, and it’s open year-round. You can also explore nearby hiking trails and fishing areas.
Address: The Missouri Military History Museum is at 2405 Logistics Rd, Jefferson City, MO 65101, United States.
3. Finger Lakes State Park
The Finger Lakes State Park used to be a strip mine for coal mining. It’s now a huge outdoor park with various activities for the whole family.
This park is one of the two parks in the state that allows for off-road vehicle riding.
If you’re not into this type of activity, you can also enjoy a nice picnic or swim.
This state park is also great for people planning to visit the area for a couple of days. It has various activities for everyone to enjoy.
Address: The Finger Lakes State Park is at 1505 Peabody Rd, Columbia, MO 65202, USA.
4. Binder State Park
Binder State Park is one of the best places to visit in Jefferson City, Missouri.
This facility has various activities for the whole family, such as softball, sand volleyball, and disc golf.
It also has a dog park that’s great for keeping the family’s four-legged members entertained.
If you’re planning on visiting the area for a couple of days, the Binder State Park is also great for people looking for an excellent place to stay.
It has RV facilities available if you need to travel through the area.
Address: The attraction is at 280 Binder Lake Rd, Jefferson City, MO 65109, United States.
5. Prison Brews
If you’re looking for a great place to enjoy a good beer and some creative twists on your usual drink, look no further than the Prison Brews in Jefferson City.
This establishment is located in the historic district of the city, and it has a unique and unique theme.
The Prison Brews aims to break free from the ordinary and serve high-quality beverages.
The Prison Brews is also an excellent place to enjoy a good meal and a variety of beverages.
It’s located in the historic district of Jefferson City and has a great selection of food and drinks.
Address: The Prison Brews is at 305 Ash St, Jefferson City, MO, 65101, United States.
See Also: Things to Do in Augusta (MO)
6. Missouri State Penitentiary
When visiting Jefferson City, Missouri’s State Penitentiary is an excellent choice to look for something a bit different.
This facility is located in the historic district of the city.
This facility is also great for people looking for a different type of experience, as it offers paranormal and historical tours.
These tours are great for older family members as they can better understand the prison’s history.
Address: This attraction is at 115 Lafayette St, Jefferson City, MO 65101, United States.
7. Serenity Valley Winery
If you’re looking for a relaxing experience, look no further than the beautiful and award-winning Serenity Valley Vineyard and Winery.
This facility is situated on the water and has a variety of high-quality wines that will show you just what Missouri is all about.
This is an excellent choice for people planning to hold a wedding or wine tasting.
Even during COVID, this facility was still open to the public. So, make sure to visit today to experience the fantastic atmosphere and various products offered by this facility.
Address: Serenity Valley Vineyard is 1888 Co Rte 342, Fulton, MO 65251, United States.
8. Governor’s Mansion
The Governor’s mansion is the next stop on your tour of Missouri, a historic building dating back to the 1900s.
This is an excellent choice for people interested in learning more about the state’s history.
It’s open to the public all day, and you can take a tour inside this structure.
Just outside of Jefferson City, the Governor’s mansion is an excellent choice for people looking for a reminder from a different era.
Address: The Governor’s mansion is at 100 Madison St, Jefferson City, MO, 65101, United States.
9. Runge Nature Center
The Runge Nature Center is in the middle of Jefferson City and offers different family activities.
This facility is an excellent choice for people looking for a unique experience.
It has a variety of other animals that are available for viewing, and it’s also wheelchair accessible.
Take the family to the Runge Nature Center and let them see some cute animals. It’s a great contrast to the hustle and bustle of the city.
In addition to the animals featured here, this facility also has a variety of other natural attractions available for viewing.
Address: The Runge Nature Center is at 330 Commerce Dr, Jefferson City, MO 65109, United States.
10. Shattered Screams
If you’re planning on visiting Jefferson City during October, then make sure to check out Shattered Screams.
This is a haunted house rated PG13, so it’s an excellent choice for people looking for a fun and frightening experience.
Address: Shattered Screams is at 3600 Country Club Dr. Ste 2004. Jefferson City, MO 65109, United States.
If you’re not planning on visiting Stonehenge, then make sure to check out the BoatHenge in Columbia.
This is a unique experience located in a different area of the city. It is also one of the best things in Jefferson City, Missouri.
While in this area, you’ll come across a series of boats that have been mysteriously placed on the lawn of a nearby home. As a result, this area has been the subject of a lot of curiosity.
Address: This attraction is at 11505 Easley River Road, Columbia, MO, United States.
See Also: Things to Do in Defiance (MO)
12. Devil’s Icebox Cave
One of the most exciting caves you’ll ever visit is the Devil’s Icebox Cave, located in Rock Bridge Memorial State Park.
During the summer, this area will typically hover around 50 degrees. You can explore the area around this cave, or you can take a hike right into it.
Unfortunately, there are also sinkholes you have to look out for.
If you’re looking for a tranquil and relaxing experience, then make sure to visit the Devil’s Icebox Cave.
This is the perfect choice for people who are looking for something different. It’s secluded and offers a great view of Missouri’s natural beauty.
Address: The Devil’s Icebox Cave is in Rock Bridge Memorial State Park, 5901 South Hwy. 163, Columbia, MO 65203, United States.
13. The Mission
The Mission is an excellent choice if you’re looking for a great place to have drinks and listen to some great live music.
This music venue is located in the middle of the city.
The building this establishment was built in was constructed in the 1800s, and it feels like you’re in the past.
The Mission has undergone many changes over the years, and it’s now a hip and modern establishment.
Address: The Mission is at 915 E High St, Jefferson City, MO 65101, United States.
14. Jefferson Landing State Historic Site
The Jefferson City State Historic Site is great to learn about the city’s history.
This area is full of historic buildings in the city’s historic district. In addition, some various shops and museums are located in this area.
If you’re not planning on spending a lot of money during your trip to Jefferson City, make sure to visit the Jefferson City State Historic Site.
It’s a great and accessible place to learn about the city’s history.
Address: This attraction is at 100 Jefferson St, Jefferson City, MO 65101, United States.
15. Katy Trail State Park
The Katy Trail State Park is full of beautiful natural features. You can explore this area in various ways, such as walking, riding your horse, or biking.
The various trails in this area are right beside the Missouri River, making them incredibly beautiful.
The Katy Trail State Park is a great place to spend time with nature. Over 20 different trail stations are located on the way to this park.
Address: The Katy Trail State Park is in Jefferson City, MO 65102, United States.
16. High Voltage Arcade
High Voltage Arcade is the perfect place to keep your kids entertained in Jefferson City, Missouri.
The High Voltage arcade is located in the middle of the Capital Mall and is an excellent place to spend some time with your family.
This facility features several games and has plenty of space to accommodate your family’s needs.
Address: High Voltage Arcade is at 3600 Country Club Dr. Ste 208. Jefferson City, MO 65109, United States.
17. Missouri State Museum
The Missouri State Museum is another beautiful place to spend time with your family and learn about the state’s history.
This museum has over 30,000 artifacts and a massive collection of WWI flags.
It’s also an excellent place to take your family on a tour of the State Capitol Building.
Address: The Missouri State Museum is at 201 W Capitol Ave, Jefferson City, MO 65101, United States.
18. Missouri State Capitol Building
This property is a three-acre area you can explore on your own or with a tour guide.
This building, attached to the Missouri State Museum, has some of the most beautiful architectural features.
Address: The Missouri State Capitol Building is at 201 W Capitol Ave, Jefferson City, MO 65101, United States.
19. Stark Caverns
The property is open all year round, and it has various wheelchair-friendly routes so everyone can enjoy the area’s beauty.
While you’re there, check out their gift shop and geode activities.
Address: This attraction is at 125 Cave Dr, Eldon, MO, 65026, United States.
20. Ashford Castle
The 13th-century mansion known as the Ashford Castle is located in Missouri and is an ideal place to spend some time with your family and friends.
It’s also an excellent place to take in the state’s sights. The real Ashford Castle inspired this property in Ireland.
Address: The Ashford Castle is on Weatherby Lake at 7200 NW Eastside Drive Weatherby Lake, MO 64152, United States.
21. Rock Bridge Memorial State Park
One of Missouri’s most beautiful state parks is Rock Bridge Memorial State Park, located near Jefferson City.
This park features various hiking trails, bike paths, and horse trails. You can also camp in this area if you’re planning on horseback riding.
Address: This state park is at 5901 South Highway 163, Columbia, MO 65203, USA.
Best Time to Visit Jefferson City, Missouri
The best time to visit Jefferson City is from April 16 to June 10.
According to the data collected by NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration), the city experienced ideal weather during this period.
See Also: Things to Do In Hannibal (MO)
Cost of a Trip to Jefferson City, Missouri
A seven-day trip to Jefferson City costs about $1,343 for a single individual, $2,500 for a couple and $4,600 for a family of four.
The average cost of a hotel room in Jefferson City is around $51 to $234.
On the other hand, vacation rental prices in the area range from about $120 to $640 per night.