- Published on Tuesday, 04 August 2015 14:07
- Written by Breanna Bright
School is starting in just a few weeks, but there is still time for some last minute summer fun. Before you return to college or send the kids back to elementary end your vacation on a high note. There are several nearby vacation spots that are an easy and inexpensive way to have some fun before the summer ends.
Southeast Missouri and Southern Illinois are full of little treasures that don’t require a long drive or a big budget. Forget the long trip to Meramec Caverns, go to Bonne Terre, Missouri and visit the beautiful Bonne Terre Mines. This underground cavern is full of crystal-clear waters, and is open to boat and walking tours. For those of you feeling particularly adventurous you can even go diving in the water. With huge pillar rooms, a grand canyon, the billion gallon lake, an underground flower garden, beautiful calcite falls, and ancient abandoned rail systems it’s easy to see why the mines were listed as one of the 10 greatest adventures by National Geographic.
For history buffs take a trip back in time on the St. Louis Iron Mountain and Southern Railway. Located in Jackson, Missouri this unique experience will put you in the transportations of yore, with a two hour train ride through the Missouri countryside. There’s always fun to be had, but watch out for train robbers! This is a perfect family adventure.
With school also comes autumn, so before the cold weather hits take one last ride down the water slide at any of the local water parks. Try out the brand new slides at Cape Splash in Cape Girardeau, enjoy the River’s Edge Splash Pad at the Farmington Water Park, float through Bluff Falls in Poplar Bluff, or get one last dip at Super Splash Park in Carbondale.
Keep it simple with a game of mini golf at Arena Golf in Cape Girardeau, or go on an adventure at Giant City State Park in Makanda, Illinois. Before those school bells ring make sure this summer was the funnest it could be.