Kansas City is an incredibly underrated city. Most people hear Kansas and immediately write it off. But, there are so many nooks and crannies to this city that can easily be overlooked. I have lived in Kansas City for about 11 years total but I left for 4 years to go to college in Savannah, Georgia. Over the past year I have been re-discovering the city as an adult and it’s a city that catches my attention daily.
I am so excited to share my city with you and I hope you will see the abundance of beauty that lies here in the middle of the country.
Click through to see Jacque’s Kansas City travel guide!
Eat + Drink
- Bar Rosso – A newer stop in Kansas City. Located on the top of Hotel Sorella it offers a great view of Ward Parkway (where some of the best houses are located) with equally great cocktails. During the summer they host Sunday pool parties for locals and their happy hour is half price drinks. Which brings a $12 cocktail down to $6. I’ve yet to try the food here but I hear it’s mediterranean inspired. The decor definitely makes this a good date night spot AND bonus if you are visiting KC and stay in Hotel Sorella.
- KC Wine Co. – Another newbie. This one is a little farther out in Olathe, Kansas but it is well worth the drive. You can get a flight test of wine for $5. If you love wine and hanging out with friends in a casual atmosphere then you will love this place.
- Gram & Dun – By far my favorite brunch spot in Kansas City. Their porch is amazing if the weather feels right. They have a wild boar briskets and gravy entree that will ruin all other B&G’s for you. For ever. Plus, if you want a mimosa or bloody mary they have a cart that they wheel out to make right in front of you. Essentially a boozy ladies version of the housewife and pool boy.
- Julep – Classy whiskey cocktails served in a gorgeous bar. One of the first happy hours I ever covered for 5 O’Clock Fashionistas and still one of my favorites. Their drinks often change with the season so there’s always something new to sip on.
- Q39 – I might get a lot of hate for this one. But, I couldn’t decide between all of my favorite Kansas City BBQ joints. KC is very serious about their barbecue. Q39 is fairly new to the area and it’s definitely a hit. I highly recommend the wings. But, if you want one of the more original options there’s Jack Stack and Gates.
- Minskys – We may not be New York or Chicago but we can still do pizza right. This has been a family favorite since I was little and It hasn’t let me down in 23 years.
- Pierponts – A classier joint in Kansas City. Located in the gorgeous Union Station it makes for a good date night. Or, just a Wednesday after a long day at work. Sometimes you just need to sit somewhere gorgeous and relax, right?
- Manifesto – You have to book in advance to get in here. The cocktails and the secretive attitude make this place one of my favorites. How can you not feel special or fancy going here. Give it a try and if you need to fill that fourth seat I’m available. Always.
- Boulevard Brewing Company – It’s a punishable offense to come to Kansas City and not try a Boulevard Beer. And if you have the time you might as well attend one of their free tours. At the end of the tour you get tokens to try a few of the beers for free. Win-win if you ask me!
- Nelson Atkins Museum – Great for a picnic, photo shoot, or it’s intended purpose of immersing yourself into art for the day. Or do all three if you have time to kill!
- Loose Park – My grandparents lived pretty close to this park growing up. I was once bitten by a goose here, my sister sprained her ankle rollerblading here, and now I go back to walk around, run, or just smell and enjoy the roses in the rose garden. Also a great place for a picnic and one of my favorite place to run outside.
- J.Rieger Distillery – Go for a tour or go out and grab a bottle of their whiskey or vodka. Either way it’s a favorite destination in Kansas City. We are good at drinking but we may be better at creating the alcohol. You can be the judge.
- Liberty Memorial – By far the best view of the downtown area AND you can get a history lesson on top of it. You can walk around the area or pay a few bucks to go up in the WWI tower but you don’t have to go all the way up for the great view.
- Union Station – Liberty Memorial looks directly over Union Station. If you’re looking for a fancy meal you can wander down the hill and go inside to Pierponts or you can go in for an Imax movie, or Science City. Union Station has a lot to offer besides just a gorgeous interior.
- Kauffman Stadium – If you happen to be in Kansas City during baseball season I highly recommend going to a game. The tickets are fairly inexpensive and we have some of the best fans. If you are in town during Football season the Chiefs stadium is in the same parking lot!
- The Fountains – We are known as the city of fountains. Inspired by our sister city Seville, Spain. There are over 200 fountains registered in Kansas City. The JC Nichols Fountain on the Plaza is a favorite but that’s just the beginning. It’d be crazy to see them all, right? Challenge accepted!
- Garment District – Drink and shop at the same time here. I always find some of my fvorite pieces in here. In fact, I went in only intending to grab a photo for this post and ended up dropping $80. Oops?
- Ray Guns – Probably the sassiest store in all of the midwest. They are great with local t-shirt designs as well as t-shirts that are just generally funny. A great place to stop by if you are in the Crossroads (then you can go play video games and drink beer at UpDown!)
- Frankly Basic – You can find me here entirely too often. A mid-high end boutique that is locally owned and well stocked with the latest fashion trends.
- The Better Cheddar – Need to make the best cheese plate? Or just need some cheese to go with your wine while you watch some guilty pleasure TV on a Monday night? Oh, also you need some wine but you don’t want to drive and you are on the Plaza. Maybe this only applies to me but if you want delicious cheese and a bottle of wine this is the place to go. The employees have always been able to help me find the cheese I need. And you can test a little sample before you buy!
- Baldwin – This place is known for their denim and their KC hats. If you need a pair of jeans that will last you a long time and be your new favorite this is your place. A little pricy but worth it in the end.
- Standard Style – Owned by the same people as baldwin. The same general rules apply here: great quality at a price. But, you won’t be disappointed if you purchase something here. Great for those quality long term pieces you can wear for years!
- Halls – Owned by Hallmark but this definitely isn’t your local card store. A high end department store that will leave you inspired ready to dress your best and decorate like you are a millionaire.
- The Plaza – Lit up like a Christmas Tree for Christmas with all the shopping you could want. Baldwin, Standard Style, and The Better Cheddar area all on the Plaza. Along with your name brand stores (Kendra Scott, Kate Spade, Express). And then you can stop and eat or grab a drink if you want. Great for walking around on a nice day.
Kansas City is located in a great area. Everything is centered around it so you may have to drive a bit to get to a great weekend destination. My favorite summer road trip is to the lake of the Ozarks. My parents own a house and it’s a great getaway. Drink your beer in the water and don’t wear anything fancy for days. Our little oasis in the midwest. It’s about 2 ½ – 3 hours from Kansas City!
Jacque is the voice behind 5 O’Clock Fashionistas. A blog dedicated to good cocktails and living a great and fashionable life around Kansas City. Her cat Mojito is always photo-bombing her cocktails and she’s always down for an adventure. Whether she’s traveling or planning her next trip she’s always looking for the best cocktails around town.