On my recent trip to Branson, Missouri, I was already familiar with the exciting smorgasbord of fabulous live music shows.
With State Park Marina on Table Rock Lake, excellent dining options and plenty of activities for the entire family, however, there is a lot more to Branson than the music. Getting there is now much easier for national and international visitors to be able to experience it all, thanks to the addition of Branson Airport. Built in 2009, the airport connects to most major international hubs. There is a Famous Dave’s restaurant to enjoy some award-winning barbecue to enjoy as you wait for your plane and a Bass Pro Shops General Store to pick up some one-of-a-kind souvenirs. Its rustic décor reflects the beautiful surroundings of the Ozarks.
Fun on the Water
After touring the airport and sampling some of Famous Dave’s delicious barbecue, we headed to the State Park Marina in Table Rock Lake State Park. There are loads of things to do, including water-skiing, parasailing, diving, fishing or just renting a boat and tooling around. Table Rock is a warm lake, so it’s perfect for swimming and bass fishing. There is a really nice café there as well as the Boathouse Store, which is hands down the best marina store I have visited. I bought a pretty scarf and a sweatshirt for those chilly evenings on the water.
Famous Dave’s Barbecue at the Branson Airport in Missouri
Family Attractions in Downtown
After a wonderful time at the State Park Marina, we were ready for some competitive fun. Where better to do that than at the Track Family Fun Parks? There are eight go-kart tracks, miniature golf, bumper cars, arcades, laser tag and batting cages. We picked the fastest and highest track to race on, and though I would like to lie and say I won, I came in last of about eight people.
The rest of the afternoon was spent exploring the downtown area, which has unique shops like Dick’s Five and Dime General Store. The place is full of nostalgic sweets and toys, the kind of stuff I ate and played with as a kid back in the 1970s and ’80s. No matter what unusual item you may be looking for, there’s a strong chance you will find it here.
For dinner, we walked to Branson Landing, a waterfront area on Lake Taneycomo with wonderful shopping, restaurants and an amazing fountain show that consists of water and fire. We opted to eat at Cantina Laredo, an upscale Mexican restaurant that had been highly recommended and I can see why as the food was excellent. We popped into Waxy O’Shea’s Irish Pub on the way back to the hotel for one of the local craft brews. It is a fun and lively place!
All in all, my time in Branson was a lot of fun and highly entertaining. I would return in a heartbeat!