By Plane -- Flights arrive at Lambert-St. Louis International Airport (tel. 314/426-8000; www.lambert-stlouis.com), about 20 minutes northwest of downtown. The MetroLink light rail (tel. 314/231-2345) connects the airport with downtown for $3.50. Taxis cost about $36 to downtown.
By Train -- Amtrak (tel. 800/USA-RAIL [872-7245]; www.amtrak.com) provides daily service from Chicago and Kansas City (trip time for both: 5 1/2 hr.) to its station at 551 S. 16th St., 2 blocks southeast of Union Station (tel. 314/331-3304).
By Car -- The major routes into St. Louis are I-70 from the east (Indianapolis) and west (Kansas City), I-55 from the north (Chicago) and south (Memphis), I-64 from the southeast (Louisville), and I-44 from the southwest (Springfield).
St. Louis Visitor Information Centers are located at America's Center, 7th Street and Washington Avenue (open Mon-Fri 8:30am-5pm, Sat 9am-5pm, Sun 11am-4pm; MetroLink: Convention Center); at Kiener Plaza, 6th and Chestnut streets behind the Old Courthouse (open Mon-Fri 9am-4pm; closed Jan-Feb; MetroLink: 8th St. and Pine); and Forest Park (open daily 10am-5pm; MetroLink: Forest Park-DeBaliviere). There's also a Visitor Information Center at the airport's main terminal (open Mon-Fri 10am-6pm, Sat-Sun 1-5pm) and its east terminal (open Mon-Fri 10am-3pm, Sat-Sun 1-5pm). The Fun Phone (tel. 314/421-2100) is a recording of special events. For more information, call tel. 800/916-0092 or check www.explorestlouis.com.
MetroLink (tel. 314/231-2345; www.metrostlouis.org) travels from the airport (with a branch at Shrewsbury) through St. Louis into Illinois, with stops at Delmar Loop, Forest Park-DeBaliviere, Central West End, Union Station, Busch Stadium, downtown (at 8th and Pine and Convention Center), Laclede's Landing, and other neighborhoods. A one-way ticket costs $1.75 for the entire zone (except for the airport, which costs $3.50); a day pass costs $4.50 (discounts given for seniors and children). Travel is free weekdays from 11:30am to 1:30pm in the downtown area between Union Station and Laclede's Landing. In Forest Park, where many of St. Louis's top sights are located, the Forest Park Shuttle travels from the Forest Park-DeBaliviere MetroLink Station through the park from Memorial Day weekend to Labor Day and is included in the $4.50 MetroLink day pass.
If you're driving a car, be aware that parking is costly. Most hotels and upper-end restaurants offer valet parking. Hotels almost always charge a fee for this service and restaurants sometimes charge as well, though occasionally only a tip is expected.
A major hospital is Saint Louis University Hospital, 3635 Vista Ave., at Grand Avenue (tel. 314/577-8000). Walgreens is open 24 hours at 4140 S. Broadway (tel. 314/832-4995). Sales tax is 7.6% and the hotel tax is 7.25%.