Many people confuse Kansas with Missouri and Kansas because not only do they have the same name, but they also have an invisible border.
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Kansas, Missouri Not to be confused with Kansas, the 23rd largest city in the United States, known for its jazz and barbecue. So if you like that stuff, this is a great place for you to visit.
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It’s okay if jazz or barbecue isn’t your thing, because there are plenty of family-friendly things to do in Kansas.
We were on a red-eye flight from Los Angeles (LAX airport) to Missouri-Kansas (MCI airport) and a Chicago flight that landed around 9:30 this morning to search. We love flying red eyes!
Aiden was so tired I put him on my back and was called the baby, or “Baba” in African. You can watch the video below.
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After arriving in Kansas, we took the bus to the rental area and rented a car from the company. The travel time from the airport to Kansas itself is about 25 minutes without traffic.
Kansas City Streetcar – The Kansas City Streetcar runs through downtown Kansas City. The best part about it – it’s completely free. We love riding up and down.
Uber / Lyft – This car service operates in Kansas City and makes driving without a car easy.
Scooter – If your kids are older and you want to get around town quickly, I recommend the BIRD. It’s easy to find them. You just need to download the app and scan your ID to use it.
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Tip: If you are planning to visit Kansas, Missouri, a rental car is probably the best way to travel, as it takes about 30 minutes without traffic.
We stayed at the Sheraton Crown Center in central Kansas. It’s in a perfect location, within walking distance to the Liberty Memorial and Union Station.
You don’t have to leave the hotel if you don’t have to, as the Sheraton Crown Center is also connected to the Crown Center, where there are many restaurants and events.
There are many things for kids to do in Kansas. We have a long list and try to fit into our schedule as much as possible.
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The Legoland Discovery Center in Kansas is an indoor theme park unlike any other Legoland in the world.
There are about three rounds, and the rest of the activity revolves around creating logos, racing cars, and more. If you’ve been to any of the Legoland rides at home, you know what to expect.
No matter what’s inside, if your child loves LEGO, he’s sure to have a blast here. We rode with LEGOs and even watched a LEGO VR race – an extra $3 per person but fun and worth it.
Tip: they stop accepting people a full two hours before closing. We got there at 4:05pm and the doors were locked even though the website said they close at 6:00pm. Keep this in mind when planning your trip.
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If you’re heading to the Legoland Discovery Center, be sure to combine this trip with a Sea Life tour. They are all in the same building, but the entrance is on the other side of the room.
We enjoyed watching the fish and Aiden even got a chance to touch a starfish. We love visiting aquariums and learning about the various fish species, so this was a really fun activity.
Pro tip: If you’re planning to visit Legoland and Sea Life, you can save money by buying tickets.
The Kansas City Library is known for its large bookshelves, some of the largest in the world. We just have to go see it and check it out.
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When we got there we were told about chess on the roof and went there. Chess is more fun when you have huge pieces. Aiden has recently shown an interest in chess and checkers, so this is an interesting activity for him.
Aiden wanted to borrow some children’s books, but we couldn’t, so we checked out the library and left. He has a library card at home and likes to borrow books to read. This is part of our home lessons.
Located in Kansas’ 18th and Vine counties, the American Jazz Museum showcases the history of jazz. We learn about jazz legends like Duke Ellington, Louis Armstrong, Charlie Parker and more.
Aiden’s favorite part of the museum is the opportunity to make his own jazz. This station lets you create the sound you want and teaches kids about the various instruments used to create jazz.
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Aiden and I also complete the scavenger hunt and show you what to look for around the museum. Be sure to ask for it at the front desk. This kept Aiden entertained throughout our visit there, and he was so excited to check things off his list.
The Kansas City Zoo is huge and the exhibits are all within walking distance of each other, so if you plan to visit, be sure to allow plenty of time.
It is famous for the Tiger Walk exhibit and the Kenya Walk. We were there while feeding the tigers and it was amazing to see them eating meat.
They have a train that runs through the park, and Aiden loves to ride it. They also have an African sky safari with giraffes, zebras, rhinos and more. Both train and air travel can be purchased as one-way or return tickets.
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There aren’t many museums in the U.S. that can show what a baseball looks like when it’s taken apart. The Negro League Baseball Museum does a great job of displaying the schedule and sharing key facts that help people understand what happened in the 1800’s.
A lot of people don’t know that, years ago, during the disbandment, black people were not allowed in the minor leagues and major leagues, so they had to form their own teams. The first Negro League baseball game was played in New York City in November 1859.
It was important to me to explain to Aiden why the Negro League baseball team was needed and how important it was. If your kids don’t know this, be sure to add this to your kid’s Kansas to-do list.
If you want to visit a farmers market, grab a bite or just get around, the Kansas City River Market is the place to be.
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Many restaurants, especially ethnic cuisine restaurants, paddle markets, souvenir shops, flower shops and even the Arabian Steamboat Museum are located here.
A short walk from City Market is Betty Rae Ice Cream, one of the best ice creams I’ve ever had.
The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art is known for its architecture and extensive collection of Asian art.
We found all kinds of art in this museum, from African art to paintings to Buddha statues. It’s very popular here.
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Aiden’s favorite art is the bottom. He said to me, “Mom, these kids have the same hair as me.” He was delighted to see the artwork, which just goes to show how important it is to show.
After admiring all the artwork at the Nelson Atkins Museum, we headed to art class. Here are nine artist-designed mini gold lessons for interpreting artwork in museums.
We wanted to be able to identify the artwork we see inside as a small form of the outside during work. Aiden loves mini golf and wishes we were there all day.
Union Station in Kansas is a large historic train station with restaurants, permanent and temporary exhibits, and a science center. There are so many things to do in this place.
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The first thing we visited at Union Station was the Stonehenge exhibit. Stonehenge is actually a World Heritage Site.
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