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Gateway Arch

100 Washington Ave., St. Louis, MO
Phone: 1-877-982-1410

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The Jefferson National Expansion Memorial Gateway Arch opened in 1965. It's actually pretty hard to miss this attraction, you can see it from quite a distance. On a sunny day the stainless steel covered arch shines in the sky.

The Arch was designed by the world famous architect Eero Saarinen who won a the privilege of designing it in a national competion in 1947. While the Arch opened in 1965 thr tram ride to the top and the observation deck didn't open to the public until 1967.

At 630 feet it's the tallest monument in the USA. It's also 630 feet wide at the base. The arch legs are 54 feet wide at the base, but at the obsevation area at the top the arch is only 17 feet wide.

The ride to the top can be a little claustraphobic if you don't like small enclosed spaces, but if you can get past that the view from the top is outstanding! Because of the V shape you can almost look straight down from the observation deck windows.There are 18 windows on each side of the observation deck, but they are tiny, only 7x27 inches, so taking turns look out may be necessary .

The whole area around the Arch was under construction when we were there in 2015, so this photo was taken from the Overlook in the Malcomb Martin Memorial Park on the Illinois side of the Mississippi River. This may be the best place to view the Arch during the construction, which is cheduled to last until spring 2017. This park is also home to a fountain that shoots as much as 630 feet in the air three times a day except in winter.

Photo(s): 2015