An Experiential Day Trip
Looking to really explore all Hannibal MO has to offer, but not sure where to start? Here are some ideas to make the most of your Hannibal vacation. Find some great attractions, get a feel for how long these activities may take, and enjoy your time in Hannibal, MO!
A Hands-On Trip
8:00 AM: Enjoy breakfast at your hotel or a great Hannibal restaurant. Or head over to one of Hannibal’s many parks for an early-morning walk or bike ride, then enjoy breakfast!
9:30 AM Get a great morning view (and burn off a little energy) by taking the steps up to the Mark Twain Memorial Lighthouse. Built to mark the 100th year of Mark Twain’s birth, this landmark on top of Cardiff Hill offers a great view of the river and of historic Main Street. Get those cameras ready!
10:00 AM: Get your ticket to hop on a narrated tour of the city aboard the Hannibal Trolley. Step back in time on this old-fashioned trolley and get a lay of the land as you hear fascinating stories of Hannibal’s past. The tour includes Hannibal’s many sights, including scenic overlooks, famous landmarks and beautiful historic homes.
11:00 AM: Now that you’ve gotten a lay of the land, let’s see where it all started. Begin your self-guided tour of the Mark Twain Boyhood Home & Museum at 415 N. Main St. The tour includes seven buildings, most notably Twain’s Boyhood Home, and the Museum Gallery, which features 15 original Norman Rockwell paintings as well as a wealth of other Twain artifacts. See how a young boy in a small river town grew to be one of America’s most beloved authors and humorists.
12:30 PM: Enjoy lunch at on of Hannibal’s many great locally owned restaurants. Check out our Dining Page to find the perfect one!
1:30 PM: Here’s your chance to see America’s newest show cave, located at the Mark Twain Cave Complex! Discovered in 1925, Cameron Cave is the third largest maze cave in the Northern Hemisphere. There is no electricity in Cameron cave – everyone carries a lantern or flashlight! Grab a light and get ready to explore! (The cave is open May – October to allow the population of cave bats to hibernate, ensuring a healthy bat population.)
3:00 PM: Your adventure through the cave is over, but stick around for some more hands-on fun! Try your hand at gemstone sluicing, digging for fossils, or painting the fence, like Tom Sawyer! If you’d prefer a bit of adult refreshment to end your cave exploration, head over to Cave Hollow West Winery for some wine tasting – vintages you can only find in Hannibal!
7:00 PM: Get ready for a tour of the ‘other’ side of Hannibal with the Haunted Hannibal Ghost Tour! Enjoy a spine-tingling guided tour of many of Hannibal’s most notoriously haunted sites, both past and present. Each tour includes a guided exploration of the 170-year-old Old Baptist Cemetery where you’ll walk among the graves of slaves and Civil War soldiers to search for signs of paranormal activity. Not sure about the scare factor? If your family is comfortable watching “Ghost Hunting” shows on tv, they will be fine with this historical and hands-on tour.
8:00 AM: Grab a some breakfast and get ready for some more fun! Before starting your day, why not head down and grab a coffee at Java Jive, the coffee shop where you can swap stories with the locals?
10:00 AM: All aboard! Hop over to Big River Train Town Toy Train Museum and make a journey to a time where the Golden Age of railroading and toy trains were part of everyone’s life. New and vintage toy trains are operating in fun layouts, and are also available for purchase. This museum is fun (and economical) for all ages!
11:00 AM: After browsing downtown for a few minutes, come and see one of Hannibal’s most fabulous houses. Tour Rockcliffe Mansion, one of America’s Gilded Age Mansions! This turn of the century Mansion, built high above the City, has spectacular views of the Mississippi River, Lover’s Leap, and the historic City below, and contains many furnishings, fixtures and personal effects of the original family. Enjoy a docent-led guided tour and marvel at the wonders of this grand mansion, including breathtaking L.C. Tiffany windows and light fixtures. The mansion is also notable for the fact that Samuel Clemens (Mark Twain), during his last visit to Hannibal in 1902, spoke from the Grand Staircase, at a reception in his honor, at which 300 of Hannibal society were invited.
12:00 PM: Enjoy a quick bite to eat, because there is a ton more to do!
1:30 PM: You can’t come to Hannibal without hopping on board the Mark Twain Riverboat and taking a ride on the Mississippi River! Experience a one-hour sightseeing cruises, narrated by the riverboat captain. The sightseeing cruise features commentary on river history, legends and sights, and see Jackson’s Island. Keep your eyes out for river animals as well; you may even spot a bald eagle!
But That’s Not All!
We know. There’s tons more you want to do. Well, this is just an example of what your Hannibal trip could look like, so feel free to add as much more as you’d like!