Branson, Missouri, nestled in the Ozark Mountains, calls itself America's Family Destination, and for good reason: you go for the live musical performances -- everything from Big Band, Broadway, country, swing, rock 'n' roll, pop, bluegrass, jazz, gospel, patriotic, classical, even cowboy poets -- but will also find lakes, golf courses, theme parks and museums. Branson is also home to Dolly Parton's Dixie Stampede, a live arena event featuring stampeding longhorn steers, horses, ostriches and racing pigs.
Looking for theme-park thrills? Silver Dollar City is Branson's version of Walt Disney World. This 1880s-themed adventure park full of roller coasters, year-round festivals, live entertainment and hundreds of demonstrating craftsmen: truly a good bet for families.