Which State Is Best to Visit: Missouri Or New York?

12 minutes read

Missouri and New York are both unique states in the United States with different attractions and experiences to offer.

Missouri, located in the Midwest, is often referred to as the "Show Me State." It is known for its diverse landscapes, ranging from the rolling hills of the Ozarks to the vast plains of the Mississippi River. For nature enthusiasts, Missouri offers numerous outdoor activities such as hiking, camping, and floating along the many rivers. The state is also home to the iconic Gateway Arch in St. Louis, which provides breathtaking panoramic views of the city and the Mississippi River. Kansas City, on the other hand, is famous for its vibrant jazz and blues scene, delicious barbecue, and the National World War I Museum. Missouri's affordability, friendly locals, and charming small towns make it a great state to visit for those seeking a slower-paced, more relaxed vacation experience.

On the other hand, New York is a bustling state on the East Coast, known for its vibrant energy and world-famous attractions. New York City, the state's most famous city, is a melting pot of culture, arts, and entertainment. Visitors can explore landmarks such as Times Square, Central Park, the Statue of Liberty, and the Empire State Building. The city offers renowned museums, Broadway shows, shopping districts, and a diverse culinary scene. Upstate New York boasts beautiful natural landscapes, including the stunning Adirondack Mountains, Finger Lakes region, and Niagara Falls. New York also provides opportunities for outdoor activities like hiking, skiing, and wine tasting in the Finger Lakes. With its fast-paced lifestyle, international restaurants, and endless entertainment options, New York is perfect for those seeking a dynamic and vibrant vacation experience.

Ultimately, whether Missouri or New York is the best state to visit depends on individual preferences. Missouri offers a more laid-back and nature-oriented experience with a rich history and local charm, while New York provides an exhilarating city life, iconic landmarks, and cultural diversity. Both states have their unique appeal, making them worth exploring for different reasons.

How to experience the natural wonders in Missouri versus New York?

Experiencing the natural wonders in Missouri and New York can be quite different due to the distinct geographical features and landscapes of each state. Here's a comparison of how you can explore the natural wonders in both Missouri and New York:

  1. Missouri:
  • Explore the Ozark Mountains: Visit the Ozark Mountains in southern Missouri, known for their lush forests, rolling hills, and beautiful landscapes. Hike along the various trails, such as the Ozark Trail or the Taum Sauk Mountain State Park trails, and enjoy breathtaking views and waterfalls.
  • Discover the Mark Twain National Forest: Located in southern and central Missouri, this vast forest offers numerous opportunities for outdoor adventures. Go camping, hiking, or fishing in the remote wilderness areas, and visit highlights like Johnson's Shut-Ins State Park or the Eleven Point Scenic River.
  • Enjoy the natural springs: Visit locations like Bennett Spring State Park or Big Spring State Park, where you can witness the stunning natural springs and enjoy activities such as fishing, swimming, or boating.
  • Explore the Katy Trail: This 240-mile long trail follows the path of the former Missouri-Kansas-Texas Railroad. Rent a bike or walk along the trail, pass through scenic countryside, and discover historic towns along the way.
  1. New York:
  • Discover the Adirondack Mountains: Located in upstate New York, the Adirondack Park offers incredible opportunities for outdoor enthusiasts. Explore hiking trails up to Mount Marcy, visit the stunning Lake Placid, go on kayak trips along the many rivers and lakes, or experience winter activities like skiing and snowboarding.
  • Explore the Finger Lakes region: Visit the Finger Lakes region in central New York, known for its eleven long, narrow lakes. Take part in water activities such as boating, fishing, or swimming, and explore the numerous state parks that offer hiking trails, waterfalls, and breathtaking views.
  • Enjoy the beauty of Niagara Falls: While mostly situated in Canada, a portion of Niagara Falls is in New York. Witness the power and beauty of the falls by taking a boat tour or walking along the observation points.
  • Explore the Hudson Valley: This region is renowned for its picturesque landscapes, including the scenic Hudson River, quaint towns, and stunning mountain ranges. Enjoy hiking trails, visit historical sites, or relax in the many charming vineyards and orchards.

It's important to note that this is just a glimpse of the natural wonders these states offer. Each state has its unique geological features and a variety of activities to enjoy for nature enthusiasts.

What is the transportation system like in Missouri compared to New York?

The transportation systems in Missouri and New York differ significantly due to various factors such as population density, infrastructure, and urbanization. Here are some key differences:

  1. Public Transit: New York has one of the most extensive and well-developed public transit systems in the United States. It is served by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA), which includes subways, buses, and commuter trains. In contrast, Missouri's public transit systems are less extensive, with a focus on buses and limited light rail services in cities like St. Louis and Kansas City.
  2. Subway System: New York City has an iconic and intricate subway system, consisting of more than 400 stations and over 24 subway lines. Missouri, on the other hand, does not have any subway systems.
  3. Traffic: Major cities in both Missouri and New York experience heavy traffic, but New York City's traffic congestion is notoriously challenging. With a high population density and limited road space, traffic jams are common. In comparison, traffic congestion in Missouri cities may be less severe, particularly in areas with lower population density.
  4. Urbanization: New York is highly urbanized, with a densely populated metropolis and its surrounding suburbs. The transportation infrastructure is designed to cater to an urban environment. In Missouri, while there are urban areas, the state generally has a more suburban and rural character, impacting the transportation system accordingly.
  5. Modes of Transportation: In addition to public transit, New York offers various transportation options like taxis, ride-sharing services, and extensive bike-sharing programs. Missouri also has these options in major cities, but they may be more limited in availability and coverage due to the lower population density.
  6. Long-Distance Travel: Missouri is located in the central part of the United States, making it more of a travel hub for cross-country road trips. The state has an extensive network of highways and interstates. New York, on the other hand, is considered a gateway for international travel and has well-developed airports like John F. Kennedy International Airport and LaGuardia Airport.

In summary, New York's transportation system is more robust, urban-focused, and oriented towards mass transit due to its high population density, while Missouri's transportation system is relatively more reliant on personal vehicles and less extensive public transit due to its more suburban and rural character.

What is the nightlife like in Missouri compared to New York?

The nightlife in Missouri and New York can be quite different due to the contrasting sizes and characteristics of the cities and states they represent.


  1. Size and Population: Missouri is a state in the Midwest region of the United States, and while it has major cities like St. Louis and Kansas City, its overall population and urban density are significantly lower than those of New York. This can contribute to a more relaxed and intimate nightlife scene.
  2. Variety of Venues: Missouri's nightlife often revolves around local bars, clubs, and live music venues. There is usually a wide range of options available, ranging from dive bars to upscale clubs, where people can enjoy live music performances, DJ sets, and other forms of entertainment.
  3. Close-knit Communities: Missouri has a strong sense of community, and this is often reflected in its nightlife. People in smaller towns and cities often frequent the same venues, fostering a more familiar and friendly atmosphere compared to the bustling crowds of larger cities.

New York:

  1. Size and Population: New York City, representing the state of New York, is one of the most populous and vibrant cities in the world. It offers an unparalleled nightlife experience due to its diversity, density, and vast number of venues. The city's size alone provides a wide range of options, from neighborhood bars to world-renowned clubs and entertainment districts.
  2. Variety and Accessibility: New York City is known for its diverse nightlife options, catering to different preferences and tastes. It boasts countless bars, nightclubs, lounges, theaters, comedy clubs, music venues, and more. Additionally, its accessibility allows people to easily hop between venues and experience different vibes throughout the city.
  3. High Energy and Glamour: The nightlife in New York City carries an electric energy, especially in areas like Times Square, Lower East Side, and Greenwich Village. This vibrant atmosphere, coupled with a celebrity and entertainment culture that often permeates the city, creates a lively and glamorous nightlife scene.

Overall, while Missouri offers a more intimate and community-based nightlife experience, New York City provides a diverse and dynamic scene on a much grander scale. The nature of the cities and states themselves greatly influences the nightlife they offer.

How to get around in Missouri and New York?

To get around in Missouri and New York, you have several options:

  1. Public Transportation: Both Missouri and New York have extensive public transportation systems. In New York City, you can use the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) subway and bus service. In Missouri, major cities like St. Louis and Kansas City have their own public transit systems.
  2. Taxis and Ride-Sharing Services: Taxis are widely available in both Missouri and New York, especially in larger cities. Additionally, ride-sharing services like Uber and Lyft operate in most areas, making it easy to hail a ride through a smartphone app.
  3. Rental Cars: Renting a car provides flexibility and convenience, especially if you plan to explore rural areas or travel on your schedule. Both Missouri and New York have various car rental agencies available.
  4. Bicycles and Scooters: Many cities in both Missouri and New York offer bike-sharing programs and rental services, allowing you to ride bicycles or electric scooters to get around. This option is popular for short-distance travels within city limits.
  5. Walking: Walking is a viable option, especially in busy city centers with pedestrian-friendly streets. Both Missouri and New York offer walkable areas, and it can be an enjoyable way to experience the city and explore its attractions.
  6. Train travel: Amtrak provides train services across different cities in both Missouri and New York. It is a convenient and scenic way to travel between cities, especially for longer distances.

Remember to research the specific transportation options available in the areas you plan to visit, as availability and efficiency may vary within each state.

How to get the most out of your visit to Missouri and New York?

To get the most out of your visit to Missouri and New York, consider the following tips for each destination:


  1. Explore the Gateway Arch: Visit the Gateway Arch in St. Louis and take a ride to the top for stunning views of the city. Also, explore the neighboring Jefferson National Expansion Memorial for a deeper historical understanding.
  2. Experience the Ozarks: Take a trip to the Ozark Mountains and explore the beautiful landscapes, hiking trails, and scenic spots like Table Rock Lake or Elephant Rocks State Park.
  3. Visit Kansas City: Discover the vibrant city of Kansas City known for its jazz heritage, delicious barbeque, and lively arts scene. Don't miss the National World War I Museum and the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art.
  4. Dive into history in Branson: Visit Branson, a popular tourist destination, for its live music shows, theme parks, and historic sites like the Titanic Museum.
  5. Enjoy the outdoors: Missouri offers an abundance of outdoor activities, including canoeing or floating trips along the Current and Jacks Fork rivers and exploring state parks like Ha Ha Tonka or Johnson's Shut-ins.

New York:

  1. Explore New York City: Take your time to explore the vibrant streets of New York City. Visit iconic landmarks like Times Square, Central Park, Statue of Liberty, and the Empire State Building. Also, explore different neighborhoods, such as SoHo, Greenwich Village, or Williamsburg, to experience their unique vibes.
  2. Discover the museums: New York City is home to world-class museums. Don't miss the Metropolitan Museum of Art (MET), the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), and the American Museum of Natural History.
  3. Catch a Broadway show: Make sure to see a Broadway show in the Theater District. Check out the latest plays, musicals, or revivals to experience the magic of live theater.
  4. Explore the culinary scene: From street food to Michelin-starred restaurants, New York City offers a diverse culinary experience. Try iconic New York-style pizza, bagels, or international cuisines in different neighborhoods.
  5. Escape the city: Take a day trip from New York City to explore charming destinations like the Hamptons, Hudson Valley, or the Finger Lakes region. These areas offer beautiful landscapes, wineries, and outdoor activities.

Don't forget to plan your visit according to your interests and take advantage of local events, festivals, or exhibitions to make the most of your time in both Missouri and New York.

What are the must-see events and festivals in Missouri and New York?

In Missouri, some must-see events and festivals include:

  1. Missouri State Fair (Sedalia): A major fair featuring livestock exhibits, concerts, carnival rides, food vendors, and various entertainment.
  2. Kansas City Renaissance Festival (Kansas City): Step back in time to the Elizabethan era with jousting, live performances, arts and crafts, food, and more.
  3. Festival of the Little Hills (St. Charles): Held on the historic Main Street, this festival showcases over 300 craft booths, live music, food, and a charming atmosphere.
  4. St. Louis Mardi Gras (St. Louis): The second largest Mardi Gras celebration in the United States, featuring a grand parade, live music, street entertainment, and delicious food.
  5. Ozark Empire Fair (Springfield): A summertime tradition in the Ozarks, offering agricultural exhibits, a carnival, fair food, concerts, and other entertainment.

In New York, some must-see events and festivals include:

  1. Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade (New York City): A world-famous parade with gigantic helium balloons, floats, marching bands, and performances that kicks off the holiday season.
  2. Times Square New Year's Eve Ball Drop (New York City): Millions gather to watch the iconic ball descend in Times Square, marking the start of the New Year.
  3. Shakespeare in the Park (New York City): An outdoor theater festival at Central Park's Delacorte Theater, presenting free performances of Shakespearean plays through the summer.
  4. Coney Island Mermaid Parade (Brooklyn): A whimsical and colorful parade celebrating the beginning of summer with participants dressed as mermaids and various sea creatures.
  5. Woodstock Film Festival (Woodstock): A renowned film festival showcasing independent films, documentaries, and panel discussions, attracting filmmakers and industry professionals.
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