My husband and I drove from Baltimore to Louisville to St. Louis for a nice, long weekend. We try to visit a different baseball stadium every year & St. Louis was the one for this year! It was an exceptionally hot weekend, but we made the most of it.
Due to the heat, we mostly drove to the places that we visited. We felt that, as a whole, parking at the all the places we went to was very easy to find - whether it was street parking or a designated parking lot.
Here are a few details about our trip & where we went:
It was either walking distance or a very short drive (depending on your mobility and how hot it is outside) to a number of restaurants and bars. Soulard is a bit of a party neighborhood but the house is far enough away from that action that it's not disruptive. We actually had a ton of fun, day drinking around the area, although the nighttime scene isn't exactly our style. Also, a number of area bars offer shuttles to the baseball stadium, if you get a drink (soda or beer) there.
- The Gateway Arch: We didn't ride to the top, but we did park in the area & go into the visitor's center. Since we were there, we opted to go into the museum, which was free. It was a really well done museum and a nice stop. To get into it, you do have to wait in line with all the folks who are riding to the top of the arch, which can make for a wait. Ours wasn't too bad.
- Busch Stadium: It's a lovely stadium, even if your game does have 2 rain delays, like ours did. We grabbed drinks & nachos in the Ballpark Village, which is a huge, indoor space with tons of bars & pre-gamers. It's steps outside of the stadium, very easy & convenient. We Ubered here without any issue.
- Missouri Botanical Garden: If you like gardens, this is a must see in St. Louis. We got there fairly early in the morning and parking was very easy. It does cost money to get inside, but worth it. They do have a trolley once inside that will take you around to different parts of the garden, but it is an additional cost.
- Frank Lloyd Wright House in Ebsworth Park: This was about 25 mins. from Soulard. You must make a reservation beforehand and it's a reasonable cost. A cool place to visit if you have any interested in FLW's work.
- Souldard Farmer's Market: A must do if you're in the Soulard neighborhood. We got there very early and some vendors were still setting up. I think it would be worth having gotten then about an hour after opening, before it gets super busy. But cool to walk around & check out. We got some gooey butter cake, which was delicious.
My husband and I are big beer drinkers & like checking out local breweries as much as possible.
- Four Hands Brewing Co.: We stopped by here before the Arch & also after the game, as they're not terribly far. Loved this brewery, it was our favorite one with a great selection. They do have a small food menu and a large upstairs beer hall-style area are with arcade games & skeeball. The first floor is a little smaller and more intimate feeling. Ample street parking outside.
- Urban Chestnut Grove Brewery and Bierhall: Stopped here after the botanical garden, in the Tower Grove Area. Huge beer hall style brewery with German style beers. They also have a large patio with outdoor seating. They also had food available.
- Civil Life Brewing: Smaller brewery with outdoor and indoor seating. English style beers - street parking was very easy to find. The staff was very friendly.
- Anheuser-Busch: This was about a mile from our AirBnB. We stopped in for a beer with no plan to do a tour, it just felt like somewhere we should stop. However, the main restaurant/bar area closed when we got there. It was very hot out, so we grabbed a beer outside and brought it back inside in the large "lobby" area of the brewery. They didn't have a ton of options outside (we were hoping that they'd offer some of their smaller micro-brewery Anheuser-Busch beers, like from Wicked Weed, Breckenridge, etc., but that was not the case outside). It's a huge place with an enormous gift shop. The outdoor space seemed nice, as did the indoor restaurant, we just didn't really get to experience it. Very popular spot for folks. It has a large parking lot & we were able to find spots, but there is nearby street parking if you can't get in.
- Soulard area bars: We barhopped our first afternoon - it was still very early, so we were pre-happy hour crowd. We went to: Joannie's Pizzeria Soulard, Henry's, Molly's & Hammerstone's. We had a great time -- the bartenders at Joanne's & Henry's were very friendly. It was worth bouncing around, drinking and getting a feel of the neighborhood!
- Joannie's Pizzeria Soulard: We heard about St. Louis pizza and made this our first food stop in the area. Joannie's was a great, small bar restaurant in Soulard. It didn't have an extensive menu but did have pizza, toasted ravioli and the nicest staff (at least at about 3:00 p.m. on a Friday). The bar tender was full of recommendations and just very friendly.
- The Mudhouse: We had breakfast here two mornings. Order at the counter & sit down & they'll serve you. It was delicious and an easy, reliable breakfast. It does get busy - we got there early enough that wasn't a problem.
- Frazer's Restaurant & Lounge: Great food & a fun atmosphere. It's nice in that most people are relatively dressed up, but not fancy. My husband wore shorts & a button down, I wore flowy pants, a tank top & sandals. They appear to have a somewhat small menu but lots of specials. Would recommend.
- Gramophone: This was recommended to us by a bartender at Henry's & was very close to Urban Chestnut. It's a sandwich place (also served beer) & was absolutely delicious.
- Imo's Pizza: This was recommended by a co-worker of mine who is from St. Louis. We went to their downtown location, which was somewhat of a disappointment. We went after the baseball game -- ordered toasted raviolis & pizza, then waited about 50+ minutes for it. The pizza was pretty good, but not 50+ min. wait good.
We tried to go to Ted Drewes but it was pouring down rain and there was a huge line outside, so we opted to head back home.
I got most of my recommendations from Tripadvisor, Thrillist and the local newspaper, Riverfront Times. Some of that info that I picked up went out the window once we got there & figured our days out (I had an extensive list of places to go, places to drink, activities and events going on, and places to eat). But, these sites at least were a valuable resources in figuring St. Louis out & deciding how our trip would go!