Missouri Itinerary: Fall in Love with Joplin
The Itinerary at a Glance
Explore the natural beauty of the Ozark foothills. Discover a cascading waterfall. Walk winding trails at Wildcat Glades Conservation & Audubon Center or tour a National Park Monument. Enjoy sipping wine and strolling through a vineyard.
5 Unique Experience on This Trip
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- George Washington Carver National Monument
- Keltoi Winery
- Neosho National Fish Hatchery
- Wildcat Glades Conservation & Audubon Center
- Sandstone Gardens
Duration: 3 Days
Available: Spring, Summer, Fall
This Itinerary is Ideal For: Adults over 21
Arrive early afternoon at the George Washington Carver National Monument in Diamond, Missouri, just 15 minutes from Joplin. The land where famous African- American agronomist, educator and humanitarian George Washington Carver was born and raised has
been preserved inside this 240-acre national park. The park consists of the Visitor Center, 1881 Moses Carver house, Carver cemetery, a ¾-mile nature trail that is partially accessible and a ¼-mile contemplative trail.
Receive a Joplin Welcome Gift when you check into your group-friendly hotel. Relax before departing for dinner at Granny Shaffer’s Comfort Food Cafe. Enjoy home-style cooking and save room for pie.
Begin the day with breakfast at your hotel before departing for a day of fun and adventure.
Arrive at one of the Joplin area’s U-Pick berry farms. Joplin has locally owned farms that offer berry picking in late spring and early summer. The Heritage Family Farm and Robertson Family Farm are both great choices. It’s always fun to bring your own berries to tomorrow’s breakfast.
The Webb City Farmers Market features local music and producer-only products. Plan your day around the market’s hours: Tuesday, 4-7 p.m. (April-October); Thursday, 11 a.m.-2 p.m. (April-October); and Saturday, 9 a.m.-noon (January-December).
It’s on to nearby Oronogo, Missouri, and Keltoi Winery. Established in 1997 by Erv and LeeAnn Langan, Keltoi produces more than a dozen types of wines, including Iris Raindrops, a smooth, semi-sweet white wine that’s a customer favorite; the Norton, a superb dry red wine made from Missouri’s state grape; and fruit wines, such as apple and pear. Customers are invited to explore the vineyard grounds on a mile-long walking trail. A box lunch will be waiting. Picnic with a bottle of wine beside Little Northfork Creek or in the vineyard itself.
Complete the afternoon with a visit to Neosho National Fish Hatchery in Neosho, Missouri. It is the oldest operating federal fish hatchery in the United States. Established in 1888, the hatchery is located in the Ozark Mountain Region of southwest Missouri. It is one of 70 hatcheries operated by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
Return to your Joplin hotel for some relaxation before dinner at Club 1201. Using locally sourced ingredients whenever possible, Club 1201 has a reputation for creating memorable meals.
Breakfast at the hotel before departing for another adventuresome day.
For decades visitors seeking the most scenic destination in the Ozarks have come to Grand Falls. As the largest continuously flowing natural waterfall in Missouri, “The Falls” plunges 12 feet down a 163-foot-wide ledge of solid chert before crashing into jagged crags and
drifting southward. This is a great photo opportunity.
Just a few minutes upstream from Shoals Creek, you’ll arrive at Wildcat Glades Conservation & Audubon Center. Wildcat Park sits next to some of the last remaining chert glades, a globally unique habitat found only in this area, and the biologically rich Shoal Creek where migratory birds and other wildlife thrive.
Highlights of the center include a 1,300-gallon aquarium and Ozark stream, nature discovery exhibits, a live American Kestrel, three indoor classrooms, the Heron’s Nest gift store, nature-themed art exhibits, several outdoor picnic areas, a wildlife viewing area and over four miles of trails winding around and above sparking Shoal Creek. Check out the center’s website for special events and outdoor space that can be reserved for group events. Groups can reserve the programs “Chert Glades: Missouri’s Globally Unique Deserts,” “Shoal Creek: Water of Life for Joplin” or “History of Wildcat Park.”
Next stop is Sandstone Gardens, a 50,000-square-foot showroom of accents and accessories for home and garden. Lunch at Sandstone’s Bistro in this turn-of-the-20th-century estate features homemade entrees and desserts.
It’s on to some more adventure at Water’s Edge Camping and Kayaking, 43 acres of raw southwest Missouri beauty. Shoal Creek meanders through the grounds. Swim, fish, kayak, canoe or float the afternoon away.
Return to your Joplin hotel for rest before departing for dinner. Wilder’s Steak House, located in an historic building (with stories to tell), has been doing business since 1929. It’s a classic steak restaurant with a menu that’s sure to satisfy any group’s hunger.
Depart Joplin this morning with fond memories of fun and adventure.