European-style castle ruins resting upon the highest bluff in the Lake area is the focal point of one of Missouri's most fascinating state parks.
Built originally by a Kansas City businessman the castle was first utilized as a mansion retreat, and later as a hotel. Gutted by fire in the 1940's, and purchased by the State of Missouri in the 1970's, the castle ruins inspire awe when viewed by land or water or sky.
Located just 5 miles from Camdenton's Town Square, Ha Ha Tonka state park is a geographical wonderland of rock formations, bluffs, caves, sinkholes, hiking trails, springs and lush vegetation that has become a popular attraction for locals and tourists alike.
This park is a favorite place for me to steal away an hour or two in the afternoon when I'm in need of a bit of a retreat. Somedays I enjoy sitting on benches near the castle just to enjoy the quiet - and in the summer months - to do a bit of people watching.
Look for lots of posts in the weeks and months to come about our area parks - such as The Lake of the Ozarks State Park and the near-by Katy Trail. There's so much to see and enjoy, and no doubt there's many parts of them I haven't seen yet. If you have a favorite activity or spot at one of these parks, I would love to hear about them.
(This article was originally posted at Ha Ha Tonka State Park Castle Ruins.)