The “Gateway to the West” is a thriving metropolitan area of 2.8 million people that retains the friendly character of the Midwest. The fun and culture of a big city are readily available, but living here is easy and affordable. We encourage you to explore St. Louis.
Written for medical students by medical students, the Dis-Orientation Guide covers the school, the city, and life as a medical student.
Forest Park, located adjacent to the Medical Campus, is a haven for students. Home to St. Louis’ Zoo, Science Center, Art Museum and the Missouri History Museum, the park also offers public tennis courts and golf courses, an outdoor ice rink, a 12-kilometer paved trail, picnic areas, athletic fields and a system of scenic lagoons and waterways.
St. Louis is a sports-minded city that enthusiastically supports Cardinals baseball, Blues hockey and a number of semi-pro teams. And in 2023, St. Louis soccer will be joining the MLS. If you’d like to get your own game on, the city has plenty to offer, from running and rock climbing to sand volleyball and soccer.
Arts and culture
The Missouri Botanical Garden offers beautiful displays year round. The St. Louis Symphony is among the country’s best, and several first-rate theater companies practice their art here. The Fox Theatre presents Broadway shows, dance performances and concerts. Blues, jazz and rock bands are hot attractions in local clubs, and a large outdoor venue draws major concerts.
Outdoor activities can be found within and around the metropolitan area; bike trails line both the Mississippi and Missouri rivers. Outside of the city, the Ozark mountains and river valleys are perfect for backpacking, camping, fishing and canoeing. Spanning almost 300 miles across Missouri, the Katy Trail takes cyclists past towering bluffs, wineries, river valleys and nature centers.
Washington University helps make getting around St. Louis easier: Full-time students are eligible to receive a free Metro pass that provides unlimited access to the entire transit system, including buses and light rail (MetroLink) that serve St. Louis City and County as well as Madison and St. Clair counties in Illinois.
St. Louis’ central location makes also exploring nearby cities easy and inexpensive. Cities including Chicago, Kansas City, Memphis, Nashville, Louisville, Cincinnati and Indianapolis are all within a five-hour drive.
Many St. Louis area attractions are offering virtual experiences in this unique time. Take a look.
- Bark in the Park (May)
- Best of Missouri (October)
- Brewers Heritage Festival (May)
- Earth Day Festival (April)
- The Great Forest Park Balloon Race (September)
- Japanese Festival (October)
- St. Louis African Arts Festival (May)
- St. Louis Arts Fair (September)
- St. Louis International Film Festival (November)
- St. Louis Mardi Gras (February)
- St. Louis Wine Festival (September)
- Scottish Games and Cultural Festival (October)
- Shakespeare Festival (May)
- Strassenfest (August)
- Tulip Festival (April)
- More annual events »
- Central West End: the Medical Campus’s vibrant, urban and eclectic neighborhood
- City Museum: an eclectic mixture of children’s playground, funhouse, surrealistic pavilion and architectural marvel made out of unique found objects
- Forest Park: among the nation’s largest parks, with a multitude of cultural venues and outdoor sporting facilities
- Fox Theatre: offering a variety of live entertainment since 1929
- Missouri Botanical Garden: the nation’s oldest botanical garden in continuous operation and a National Historic Landmark.
- Missouri History Museum
- Muny Theatre: an outdoor musical theatre venue in Forest Park, in operation since 1917
- Saint Louis Zoo
- Saint Louis Science Center
- Saint Louis Art Museum
- St. Louis Symphony: among the nation’s leading symphonies, offering students $10 tickets for select performances.
- More St. Louis attractions »
St. Louis news media
- St. Louis American: Recognized as one of the top African-American newspapers in the country, printed weekly and available online
- St. Louis Post-Dispatch: Founded in 1878 by Joseph Pulitzer, St. Louis’ major daily newspaper
- St. Louis Public Radio: The region’s local National Public Radio affiliate sharing news online and over the air
- Riverfront Times: Weekly print/online newspaper with an urban vibe, heavy on entertainment coverage
- Sauce Magazine: St. Louis’ award-winning metro-area culinary and entertainment magazine and guide
- Vital Voice: LGBT life, style and entertainment news for the St. Louis metro area
- More media in St. Louis »
Our city will surprise you.
In St. Louis you’ll find charming neighborhoods, vibrant cultural and culinary scenes, and plenty of fun for nature-lovers and urbanites alike – all packed into an incredibly affordable city.