Straddling the Kansas-Missouri state line and once the nation's centre for cattle stockyards and slaughterhouses, Kansas City is today a sprawling metropolis, yet it retains a small-town atmosphere, with its tree-lined boulevards and parks. The main attraction of Kansas City is its steaks, barbecue and jazz, and self-drive via a rental car is the most convenient option for getting around.
Kansas City International Airport receives flights from major carriers and connecting flights from St Louis International Airport. The regional airports of Branson (south) and Jefferson City (central) offer intrastate flights. Amtrak trains arrive from Chicago and St Louis and run on to San Francisco, while Greyhound buses serve regional cities with onward travel from major centres.
By road, I-70 runs east-west (Baltimore-Denver) and through Kansas City; while north-south, I-35 runs from Minneapolis, through Kansas City, to San Antonio in the south. I-29 runs from the Canadian border (linking Winnipeg) and terminates in Kansas City. If youеve planned on car rental, checking national travel deals at the airport can save money and time.
Kansas City has a rich jazz history, and you can hear live jazz nightly at any one of the many jazz clubs set throughout the city. It is also one of the premier art cities in the nation, with more than 80 art galleries and over 40 museums. The restored Union Station houses the impressive Science City museum, theatre, and restaurants and shops.
Another feature of the city is the Country Club Plaza, a 14-square block entertainment district with its distinct European look, array of shops and restaurants and extensive decorative lighting. Kansas City is also famous for its 80-hectare zoo, complete with IMAX theatre.
If you've decided on car rental and hanker for a bit of country music, Branson is only an hour's drive away and is well known for its country music shows and amusement parks; while Jefferson City, with its magnificent Italian-Renaissance capitol and murals by Thomas Hart Benton, is also worth a look.
The Ozark National Scenic Riverways (south of Missouri) offer clean and clear spring-fed waters for all manner of water sports, including canoeing, swimming, fishing, tubing, hiking along the river, and of course, rafting.
The Worlds of Fun entertainment complex is ideal for all the family and is loaded with thrills and adventure. From casual to elegant and contemporary, you'll find an exciting mix of restaurants in Kansas City, as well as four full-gaming casinos. Scenic drives outside the city with your rental car are an economic option with national travel deals.
Always take regular breaks when driving long distances as continuous driving greatly increases the chance of accidents occurring; certain water sports can also be potentially dangerous. Beware of pickpockets in busy areas and around night spots. Medical costs in the US are extremely high. We strongly recommend you take out travel insurance for you and your family.