Family Winter Activities in Farmington, MO

Winter is often a time to celebrate and spend time together as a family which can provide many opportunities to create lasting memories. In Farmington, Missouri, there are many things to do during the winter to keep both adults and kids entertained. Whether you want to find refuge from the cold or prefer to brave the outdoors, there are many family-friendly options available. Read on to learn our list of top family winter activities in Farmington, Missouri.

The Mine at Bonne Terre

The Bonne Terre Mine is a cherished gem near Farmington that allows the young and young-at-heart to become deep-Earth explorers. Known as the world's largest freshwater dive resort, the Billion Gallon Lake Resort boasts a full-year schedule with guaranteed year-round diving conditions. You can get the entire family some exercise and treat them to an unforgettable experience of exploration as they suit up and scuba dive. Just be sure everyone is a certified diver before scheduling your dive.

If underwater swimming and exploring seems a bit much, tours of the mines are given year-round as well. The whole family will enjoy seeing the world's largest subterranean lake. Underground boat and walking tours feature a guided exploration of the Billion Gallon Lake with clear waters and the chance to see the largest parts of the mine. There is mammoth architecture, submerged ore carts, and ancient abandoned overhead wooden cat walks that once held up miners as they worked. Suspended 50-100 feet above the lake, the views from the cat walks are breathtaking.

Boat and walking tours are $28 per adult and $21 for kids 11 years and under. The Bonne Terre Mine sits waiting for explorers of all ages at 185 Park Ave. They do not require reservations for groups of six or less. The tour takes about an hour and covers one-third of a mile. Be sure to have some comfortable shoes on, as participants have to climb a staircase with 65 steps to get in and out. Winter hours are in place from November to May and run from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on Fridays and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays, with tours every hour. For tour information, or to schedule a group larger than six members, call 314-209-7200. For mine information, call 573-358-2148.

The Space Museum and the Grissom Center

Continue learning, even during winter break, by taking the family down to the Space Museum and the Grissom Center. The Space Museum showcases a comprehensive collection of over 600 world-class artifacts. The museum offers on- and off-site educational programs specifically designed to inspire questioning, instill a love for learning, and encourage exploration. The museum has a vast collection of items on display and provides a program to allow patrons to borrow artifacts. Take future astronauts to the museum and space center to see space suits, space rocks, and the exhibits featuring mankind's accomplishments in space.

The Space Museum at 116 E. School St. in Bonne Terre, is open only by appointment Monday through Thursday. The museum is open on Friday and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m and 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday. General admission is $10 for adults, $7 for students, and free for children 5 and under. For information call 573-358-1200 or email

Critter Lane Petting Zoo

The Critter Lane Petting Zoo is the place to be for any animal lover or future zoologist. Reopening in March of 2022, the petting zoo features an interactive and hands-on approach to learning about animals that is memorable and leaves a lasting impression on young learners.

During the winter months, the Sloth Encounter gives guests the opportunity to hang out and get to know Mabel, the baby two-toed sloth. The zoo encourages participants to bring their cameras and take advantage of the photo opportunities with Mabel as you learn interesting facts about the lives and habitats of sloths. You must book the Sloth Encounter in advance. The price is $30 per person. A refund is given with a 24-hour cancellation notice, and they limit each encounter to six individuals at a time. Encounters last for 25 minutes and guests must be at least 6 years old, and children must have a guardian present.

The Critter Lane Petting Zoo is located at 9100 Critter Lane in Valles Mines, Missouri. Call 573-358-8995 to book your Sloth Encounter or to learn about hosting your next birthday party at the zoo.

Hickory Canyon

For some much-needed winter exercise in the fresh air, take the kids out on a hiking trail. Hiking is a great Farmington winter activity that showcases the beauty of the area and nature at its best. Head over to Hickory Canyon, which is gorgeous year-round and only about 10 miles from Farmington. If it is cold enough, you'll be lucky to see the spectacular waterfall frozen over. Take lots of photos and use this opportunity to take a one-of-a-kind family holiday photo sure to spark conversation and surface happy memories for years to come.

The location has two hiking trails to choose from. The Allen Brohn Trail is a 1-mile loop that is easy for the inexperienced and little hikers. However, it can get slick so be careful and be sure to wear shoes with good traction. The second trail, on the south-side of Sprott Road, is only a half-mile long and showcases the waterfall.

You can get to Hickory Canyon by heading east on Highway 32 to Highway C, then heading north about 3 miles and turning left on Sprott Road. For information, call 573-290-5730.

So there you have it. CarSmart of Farmington has just shared with you our list of the top family winter activities to keep you and your loved ones entertained in Farmington, Missouri. Whether you're looking to enjoy the cold weather, or stay warm and indoors, there's something sure to please. What do you think of our list? Did we miss your favorite activity to keep the kids busy during the winter in Farmington? If we did, let us know! Leave a message and we'll be happy to check out your suggestions.


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