Due to its proximity to Kansas City, Independence has all of the amenities of a large metropolitan area while still maintaining a great hometown atmosphere. Although it still has a small-town feel, Independence is the fourth-largest city in the Missouri. Independence is also the county seat of Jackson County, although a small portion of the city also falls within Clay County.Like many cities in the Kansas City metro are, Independence is rich in historical significance. Independence was founded on March 29, 1827, and quickly became a vital frontier town. Known as the "Queen City of the Trails," Independence was an important stop on the California, Oregon and Santa Fe Trails. Independence is also the hometown of President Harry S. Truman and where he began his political career. There are several historical landmarks in Independence, including the Harry S. Truman National Historic Site, the Harry S. Truman Presidential Library, and the National Frontier Trails Center. There are also many modern day amenities and attractions including the Adventure Oasis Water Park, the new Independence Event Center, nearby Arrowhead Stadium, and over 21,000 acres of outdoor fun made possible by Jackson County Parks and Recreation. If you still have time on your hands with all of these amazing activities, spend some time shopping at either the brand-name stores at Independence Mall or at the myriad of local shops that line Independence Square.
If you want to visit one of the oldest restaurants in Independence, go stop by Mugs Up. The menu has barely changed in all the years it's been open and they are one of the only places I've found that serves loose meat hamburgers. There is not another place like it. The staff is friendly as it's a true drive-in restaurant. They make their own root beer also, so make sure to try it or even get it as a rootbeer float. Very reasonably priced food. I highly recommend the chili burger.