Things To Do With Kids
Family vacations are a great time to share new experiences with the kids. The Ozark region abounds with wonderful family attractions, from arcades and amusement parks to zoos and ziplines. There’s something for everyone to enjoy. More detailed information about family attractions can be found on the regional search pages.
The Discovery Center A hands-on museum with interactive exhibits.438 E. St Louis St. 417-862-9910
Dickerson Park Zoo More than 150 species. Petting zoo. 1401 W. Norton Rd, Springfield. 417-864-1800.
1984 Arcade Pinball and '80s video games. Jefferson Avenue. 417-831-3665.
MediaCom Ice Park Open ice skating and ice hockey. 635 E Trafficway. 417-866-7444.
Springfield Skatepark Large Indoor and outdoor park. 945 W. Meadowmere St. Springfield. 417-868-8758.
Jumpmania Inflatables with special baby/toddler play area. 2745 S. Kansas Expwy. 417-881-5867.
Paintball Games Plus Paintball, batting cages, mini golf. 1411 W. Kearney St. 417-866-8862.
Fun Acre Miniature Golf Batting cages, too. 2500 S. Campbell Ave. 417-889-1872
MO. Institute of Natural Science Fascinating displays. 2327 W. Farm Road 190. Phone: 417-883-0594.
Rutledge-Wilson Farm Community Park Live farm animals, trails, gardens, native prairie, farm-themed playground. 3825 W. Farm Road 146. 417-837-5949.
Jumpin' Joey's Another place to let the kids bounce. 2550 S. Campbell Ave. 417-889 -5639.
Springfield Cardinals Live baseball. Hammons Field at Jordan Valley Park. 417-863-0395
Missouri Sports Hall of Fame For sports fans. 3861 E. Stan Musial Dr. 417-889-3100.
Jordan Valley Park Water features and more. Located at 635 E. Trafficway.
Wild Animal Safari Drive through to view more than 650 animals on 250 acres. Petting, feeding area. 124 Jungle Rd, Strafford. (N of Springfield). 417-859-5300.
Butterfly Palace and Rain Forest Adventure 1000s of exotic butterflies in special environments, plus new rainforest elements. 4106 W. Hwy 76. 417-332-2231
Branson's Wild World Fish, reptiles,wolves, arcade, mini golf. 2020 W. Hwy 76. 417-239-0854
Fruitcakes Tour at the College of the Ozarks Fruitcake and Jelly Kitchen tour. College of the Ozarks, 3407 Point Lookout. 417-690-3395
Ralph Foster Museum Art and artifacts of all sorts. On College of the Ozarks campus.
God and Country Inspirational Gardens Nature and patriotism with self-guided tours. 1116 West 76 Country Music Blvd, Branson. 417-339-4222
Table Rock Dam Self-guided tours of the dam year-round. 4600 State Hwy 165, Branson. 417-334-4101
Shepherd of the Hills Fish Hatchery Tour the grounds and the educational Conservation Center. 483 Hatchery Rd, Branson. 417-334-4865
The Dewey Short Visitor Center Displays and interactive exhibits. 4500 MO 165, Branson. 417-334-6394.
White Water Park Outdoor water park. 3505 W 76 Country Blvd Branso
The Castle Rock Water Park Indoor and outdoor water areas. At Castle Rock Resort, 3001 Green Mountain Dr, Branson. 417-336-6000.
Ride The Ducks Cruise the road, splash into the lake. 2320 Hwy 76 W, Branson. 417-266-7600
Branson Scenic Railway 40-mile round trip journey on a refurbished, full-sized passenger train. Depot at 206 E. Main St., Branson. 417-334-6110
Ripley’s Believe it or Not Odditorium Name says it all. 3326 Hwy 76, Branson. 417-337-5300.
The World’s Largest Toy Museum Walk down a playthings' Memory Lane. 3609 W 76 Country Blvd, Branson. 417-332-1499
Silver Dollar City More than 30 amusement park rides, working craftsmen, cave tour, more. 399 Silver Dollar City Pkwy, Branson. 800-475-9370
National Tiger Sanctuary Get very close to tigers; feed them. Guided tours. 518 State Hwy BB, Saddlebrook. 417-587-3633
Track Family Fun Parks Go-karts, bumper cars, mini golf, Ferris wheel, more. 3388 Green Mountain Drive, Branson. 417-334-1612
Family Fun Factory Mini Golf 2400 St. Hwy 165, 417-332-2100
Brookside Mini Golf 2925 Shepherd of the Hills Expwy, 417-334-1262
Greatest Adventures Mini Golf 4800 Gretna Rd, 417-332-0888
Prof. Hacker’s Lost Treasure Golf 3346 W. Hwy 76, 417-332-0889
Prof. Hacker’s Dinosaur Canyon Mini Golf 2501 Green Mtn. Dr. 417-332-0887
Pirate’s Cove Mini Golf 2901 Green Mtn Dr. 417-336-6606
Branson Ballknocker An extreme sphering ride in a 12 ft. tall clear ball. 3330 W. Harvey Dr, Branson. 417-335-3958
Castle of Chaos First-ever 5D interactive haunted ride. W. Hwy 76, Branson. 417-337-8700.
Titanic Branson A museum dedicated to the Titanic. 3235 76 Country Blvd & Hwy 165. 417-334-9500
Grand Country Shows, mini-golf, family amusement center, more. At The Grand Country Inn, 1945 W. 76 Country Blvd, Branson. 417-334-3919
Promised Land Zoo Branson Close encounters with friendly young exotic animals. 2751 Shepherd of the Hills Expwy. 417-271-9453
Branson Theatres More than 40 stage shows, many with discounted kids’ tickets, and some free seating for kids 12 and under.
Bear Creek Trail Rides Gentle horses on a private ranch along Bear Creek. 3400 US Hwy 65, Walnut Shade. 417-337-7708
Canyon Creek Ranch Two different trails rides. Friendly guides, gentle horses. 700 Expressway Ln, Branson. 417-335-6003
Dogwood Canyon Horseback Rides Short and long trail rides, cattle drive, more. 2038 W. State Hwy 86, Lampe. 417-335-2777
Shepherd of the Hills Trail Ride 30- minute guided trail rides. 5586 W Hwy 76, Inspiration Point, Branson. 800-653-6288
Uncle Ike's Trail Rides Hour-long ride on a wooded trail. W Hwy 76, Reeds Spring. 417-338-8449
Kaleidokites Kites, kaleidoscopes.
Mud St. Store Puppets, cute kids' fairy dresses.
Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge Gift Shop Big cat-related toys, puzzles, more. Supports the Refuge.
Happy Things Toys. 55 Spring St.
Small World Toys. 17 Spring St.
Eureka Springs Historical Museum Exhibits, photos. 95 S. Main.
Ozarks Mountain Zipline A 2-hour canopy tour, largest zipline, highest cables in AR. 208 W. Van Buren. 479 -363-6699
Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge Get close to tigers, lions, leopards, cougars and more. Don’t miss feeding time! Seven miles south of town on Hwy. 23.
Promised Land Zoo A drive-through wildlife adventure. Roughly 500 animals. Petting zoo. 32297 Hwy 86, Eagle Rock, MO
Pig Trail Kart and Golf Track, mini golf, arcade, more. Hwy 62 E. 479-363-6646 or 6642
Harmon City Park Playground equipment and a cement skate park. 532 Spring St.
Lake Leatherwood Park 1600-acre city park features springfed lake and hiking/biking trails. Cabins and camping Mar-Nov. 479-253-7921.
Pine Mountain Theater Country, gospel, comedy, bluegrass, blues and rock every night. Free popcorn. Family show. 2075 E. Van Buren, 479-253-9156,
Ozark Mountain Hoe-Down A night of music and comedy. 3140 E. Van Buren. 800-468-2133.
City Auditorium Historic downtown entertainment venue.
Intrigue Theater Turn-of-the-century style performance of magic and inexplicable mysteries. Gavioli Chapel, 80 Mountain St. 479-244-7028
The New Great Passion Play Outdoor drama of the last days of Christ's life. 800-882-7529
Snake World Visit Dale Ertel and his 70 snakes. Info: 870-423-6530
Dinner Bell Ranch and Resort Guided tours on horseback, varying lengths. 4462 CR 302, Eureka Springs. 479-253-2900.
Steve's Stable at Pond Mountain Lodge Six riders or less, one-hour guided trail tour. Gentle horses. 1218 Hwy 23. 479-253-5877
Hidden Valley Ranch Stables Horseback riding: rent a horse or bring your own. Hour-long carriage rides across the property. 777 Hidden Valley Ranch Rd. 479-253-9777
Bear Mountain Riding Stable Hour-long for all ages and riding levels. 5480 Highway 62 W. 479-253-6990
Walton Five and Dime The original store, with nostalgic items for sale.105 N Main. 479-273-1329
Batter Up Bowling, batting, arcade. 1301 N Walton Blvd. 479-271-2278
Bentonville Bowling Center 902 NW 14th St.479-273-2590
Melvin Ford Aquatic Center Olympic size pool, more. 401 NE Martin Luther King Jr. Pkwy. 479-273-9206
Lawrence Plaza Summer splash pad water park and outdoor ice rink open mid- Nov-Jan. Corner of NE A and Blake Sts.
Jump! Zone Heavy-duty bouncing for the kiddos. 805 SE 22nd St. 479-202-4476
Wild Wilderness Safari Exotic and domestic animals. 4-mile drive-through section, petting and walk-through areas. 20923 Safari Rd, Gentry. 479-736-8383.
Farmland Adventures Family farm with pony rides and petting zoo. Limited hours; fall only. 5350 Parsons Rd., Springdale. 479-799-5033.
War Eagle Mill Restored old mill, gift shop and restaurant on rolling farmland east of town. 11045 War Eagle Rd. 866-492-7324.
Hobbs State Park Criss-crossed by woodland hiking and biking trails.
Arkansas Naturals Live baseball. 56th and Watkins, Springdale. 479-927-4900.
Balls N Strikes Batting and bowling. 5414 Hailey, Springdale, 479-531-3294,
Bowling Center 3500 W Walnut St, 479-636-2320
Springdale Bowling Center 1303 S Thompson St, 479-751-9207
Fast Lane Entertainment 299 N Dixieland St, Lowell. 479-659-0999.
Fun City Pizza 5320 W. Sunset, Springdale. 479-872-7529.
Rogers Splash Park Free water park next door to the skate park. 315 W. Olive St.,Rogers.
Arkansas and Missouri Railroad Refurbished antique passenger train chugs on a 134-mile round trip. Depot: 107 North Commercial Street, Springdale. 479-751-5763.
Rodeo of the Ozarks July 4th at Parson's Field, 1423 E. Emma. 877-927-6336. Early October, catch the annual Demolition Derby.
Farmland Adventures Corn maze and other entertainments. Weekends, Sept-Nov. 5355 Parsons Rd, Springdale. 479-799-5033
Wild Wilderness Safari Drive-through section 4 miles long, petting parks and walk-through areas, too.. 20923 Safari Rd, Gentry. 479-736-8383.
Lokomotion Family Fun Park Arcades, mini golf, bumper cars, go karts, laser tag. 4520 N College Ave, 479-582-5600.
Arkadia Retrocade Nearly 75 vintage arcade games. 1478 N. College Ave. 479-445-7844.
Gator Golf 2692 N College, 479-443-0833
Ozark Bowling 2300 N College Ave, 479- 442-4275.
Boingo Bounce The fine art of bouncing. 240 E Township St, 479-444-1419.
Terra Studios Glass art studio and gallery, 10-acre outdoor art garden, more. 12103 Hazel Valley Rd, Fayetteville. 479-643-3185.
Botanical Garden of the Ozarks Nine themed gardens on 86 acres adjoining Lake Fayetteville. 4703 N. Crossover Rd. 479-750-2620
Dogwood Junction Rent bikes or surrey bikes. The shop also sells kites. 204 S. Broadway. 479-524-6605
One of the largest towns in the region has several attractions you and the kids will enjoy.
The Lyric Theater Built as a movie house in 1929 for the talkies, now hosts plays and concerts.115 W. Rush St., Harrison. Call 870-391-3504 for schedule.
Carmike Cinema 8 New move releases every week. 617 US 62-65, Harrison. 870-741-6815.
Boone County Heritage Museum Share some Ozarks history with the kids. Particularly meaningful if you have relatives from this region. 24 S. Cherry St, Harrison. 870-741-3312
Fenton Berry Farm Pick your own berries; buy fresh produce directly from the farm. Call first to see what's in season. 5 miles south of Harrison. 7217 Fork Creek Rd S. 870-741-9607
Ozark Emporium A fun place to shop. Ice cream bar, antiques, gifts, more. 4693 U.S. 65 N, Harrison 870-741-1301
Mystic Caverns Only 8 miles south of town, two splendid caverns await your exploration.
Bear Creek Springs Trout Farm You and the kids can fish the trout farm at Devito's Restaurant. No fees or licenses, just pay for your catch. The restaurant will clean and pack them, or cook them up for you. Fishing by appointment only. 350 Devito's Loop, Harrison. 870-741-8832.
Buffalo Outdoor Center Loco! Ropes and Iron Horse Zip Lines.
Buffalo National River Park Less than a mile from Harrison. Hundreds of miles of trails and camping along the beautiful Buffalo River. Fish, canoe, watch the wildlife. There are many stops along the Buffalo that are places of interest:
Lost Valley Hiking Trail in Ponca Safe trail for all ages, with such sights as a tall waterfall, a natural bridge and caves. Scenic views all around.
Ponca Low Water Crossing River access, and access to the elk grazing fields. Old bridges.
Hurricane River Cave and Trail See our caves page.
Collier Homestead Preserved historic homestead circa 1862, set on a high bluff overlooking the river. Owned by the Collier family until 1978, who lived off the grid and without indoor plumbing until 1961. A truly unusual look at a recent pioneer past.
Tyler's Bend Visitor Center Start your Buffalo River explorations here to gather information about the river. Enjoy the displays before heading out. Trailheads and a put-in spot for canoes and rafts, plus a shallow area where you can dunk on a hot day. Near the highway crossing of US 65. Parking and restrooms.
Gilbert General Store This century old store is cool and inviting inside, with lots of snacks and fun things to buy. The town of Gilbert has 33 inhabitants, and you'll probably meet one or two at the store. You can also rent lodging and canoes here.
Visit the National Park website to learn more about vacationing at the Buffalo National River.
The tourist town of Bull Shoals offers a less rustic vacation on the water.
Mountain Village Championship Miniature Golf - Challenging and lighted for night play. 1011 C. S. Woods Blvd, Bull Shoals.
Bull Shoals Caverns will delight young and old cavers alike. Click here for more info.
Bull Shoals White River State Park Play with the kids in the water, at the playgrounds, or hiking the trails. Boat, motor and canoe rentals available at the trout dock.
The James A. Gaston Visitor Center at 153 Dam Overlook Lane in Bull Shoals, is an environmental education and learning center, with exhibits about the river, dam, lake and their histories.
North Central Arkansas Speedway. If you and the kids love to watch stock racing on a three-eighths mile oval track, this is for you. Kids' activities are scheduled; open Fridays late March to mid-October.
Lake of the Ozarks
Big Surf Waterpark Outdoor water park, and dry land amusements. Hwy 54 & Y Rd, Linn Creek. 573-346-6111.
The Clayground A paint-it-yourself pottery playground. 1011 Main St, Osage Beach. 573-434-1597.
Country Club Lanes 401 W. 19th St., Eldon. 573-392-2331
Eagle Lanes 914 Missouri 42, Osage Beach. 573-302-7170
Lazer Force Lazer Tag Zone 4,000 sq. ft. tag arena with Laserforce. Full arcade and snacks. 5473 Hwy 54, Osage Beach. 573-348-2222
Miner Mike's Indoor Family Fun Center An enormous arcade. 4515 Osage Beach Pkwy, Osage Beach. 573-348-2126
Orion Dino Space Creation Xpo Museum with a creationist perspective. 1163 S. Business Rt 5, Camdenton. 573-346-5516.
Pirate's Cove Adventure Golf Mini-golf. 5850 Osage Beach Pkwy, Osage Beach. 573-348-4599
Putt'n'Stuff Mini Golf and Bumper Cars 5440 Osage Beach Pkwy, Osage Beach. 573-348-2127
Sugar Creek Mini Golf 3001 Bagnell Dam Blvd, Lake Ozark. 573-365-2226
Tiger Lanes 701 W. Clay St, Versailles
Timber Falls Water Park Indoor water park,a horseride stable, an arcade, and bowling alley. Open to the public. Tan-Tar-A Resort. State Road KK, Osage Beach. 573-348-3131
Westside Lanes 107 Hwy O, Gravois Mills. 573-374-6212
Zodiac Lanes Ball Park Rd, Kiheka. 573-346-4900 (a 5-mile drive from Camdenton)
Lake of the Ozarks State Park Explore the cave and HaHaTonka Castle ruins.
Funny Farm Petting Zoo Barnyard animals,other critters with comical names. Pony and horse rides, more. Lake Rd 5-24, Laurie. 573-789-608
Circle R Stables Horses for all ages and sizes, beginners to experienced, also rides for individuals with special needs. At Tan-Tar-A Resort. 573-280-7723.
Ozark Homestead Stables Inside Lake of the Ozark State Park. Gentle horses. Various ride lengths. Pony rides for little ones. 573-348-6670.
Stockton, Pomme de Terre, Truman Lakes
Stockton Lanes 15015 S. 3rd Rd, Stockton. 417-276-4246.
El Dorado Lanes 309 US 54, El Dorado Springs. 417- 876-4224
Opera House Theater Old-fashioned single screen movie theater. 105 N Main St, El Dorado. 417-876-2111
B&B Cinema 5 Modern theater with several auditoriums, Hollywood movies. 800 E. Aldrich Rd, Ste. 10. 417-777-7469.
Polk County Museum A century-old public school turned museum. 201 W Locust St, Bolivar. 417-326-6850.
Dunnegan Gallery of Art Changing exhibits of national and regional artists' work. 511 N. Pike, Bolivar. 417-326-3438
Truman Lake Opry Show Saturday night family show. 11022 Hwy 7, Cinton. 666-723-2181
Hulston Mill Park History, play equipment and hiking. Located off Hwy. EE--look for the signs. 417-637-0258.