Visitors to Branson, Missouri will want to embrace the beauty of the Ozarks at the recently reopened Top of the Rock. The facility is home to not only one’s of the nation’s finest golf courses, but a nature-based heritage preserve highlighting the best of the Branson area. In addition, there is an Ozarks natural history museum, a nature trail and a four-story cave with a waterfall, two new restaurants, a cliffside wedding chapel and a Civil War era honeymoon cabin built by Amish Craftsmen.
Bass Pro Shops founder, Big Cedar Lodge and Top of the Rock owner Johnny Morris was the visionary behind the new design and offerings at Top of the Rock. The revamped Top of the Rock pays tribute to the people and animals that inhabited these lands long before us, and gives guests the opportunity to explore the Ozarks in an all-new way. You can see the beauty of Branson and Table Rock Lake, all while learning about the history and heritage of the Ozarks.
The jewel of Top of the Rock is the golf course, of which the entre facility is named after. Johnny Morris, along with golf legends Jack Nicklaus, Tom Watson, and Arnold Palmer, have spent the past seven years creating one the most amazing golf experiences ever developed. Top of the Rock, known as the first ever Par-3 course to be included in a professional championship, features nature and golf at its finest. Perched high above Table Rock Lake, the peaceful waterfalls, wandering creeks, bass filled ponds and pristine lakes of Top of the Rock complete a true celebration of nature, the Ozarks and the game of golf. The experience includes Top of the Rock Golf Course, a Jack Nicklaus Signature Course, and Arnold Palmer-designed Practice Facility, Tom Watson’s 70,000 square-foot putting course called the “Himalayas”, and Arnie’s Barn housing the Top of the Rock Pro Shop complete with historic photos and memorabilia from Palmer’s career achievements.
Attractions at Top of the Rock:
Lost Canyon Cave & Nature Trail: Go on a 2 ½ mile ride in an electric golf cart through the Lost Canyon Cave. Your self-guided Lost Canyon Cave & Nature Trail experience will begin at the Top of the Rock Welcome Center. Once inside the cave, view the magnificent centerpiece – the waterfall. Viewing balconies are available on all four levels, and there is even a cave bar accessible by a mining style elevator. Four seat golf carts are available and you must be 18 years or older to operate a golf cart. Cost: $20 Adults, $10 children 4-12 years.
Ancient Ozarks Natural History Museum: This ground-breaking museum celebrates the rich ancient history of the Ozarks. It contains carbon-dated skeletons of ancient-Missouri creatures, true-to-life dioramas of animals that once roamed the Ozarks and several rooms featuring Native American and Osage Indian artifacts and artwork, Civil War historical items, and interactive displays for guests. One of the standouts of the museum is the skeletal structure of a giant Wooly Mammoth.
Chapel of the Ozarks: This three-story chapel is perched on a cliff overlooking Table Rock Lake, offering panoramic vistas of Branson’s premier lake and rolling mountains. A salute to iconic American country churches, arch windows, a copper roof, and a steeple with bell tower lend to an ethereal quality to every service.
Dining at Top of the Rock:
Osage Restaurant: The cornerstone of the Top of the Rock dining experience is the Osage Restaurant. It features American cuisine in a stunning dining room with sweeping Ozark Mountain Views. Decorate with custom artwork and native artifacts, the entire design is a stunningly elegant atmosphere.
Buffalo Bar: Located on the lower level of Osage Restaurant is Buffalo Bar offering a casual menu including wood-fired pizzas, premium cocktails, and open-air dining. A stone-lined stairwell leads from the Buffalo Bar to the expansive “End of the Trail” All-American Wine Cellar which includes a wine tasting bar, whiskey room and banquet space with glass doors that open to an infinity pool.
Arnie’s Barn: Unique in both design and cuisine, Arnie’s Barn is a 150-year-old wooden barn that was brought from Arnold Palmer’s hometown in Latrobe, Pennsylvania and reconstructed at Top of the Rock by a local Amish family. This magnificent structure houses a Mexican restaurant that features soaring, vaulted ceilings and two lofts and is also home to the Top of the Rock Pro Shop.
Reservations are suggested for dinner. Collared shirts and resort attire is required in all restaurants after 5:00 pm for guests 12 years and older.
Ashley is Reserve Direct’s travel expert, visiting Orlando to find the best travel tips, money-saving deals and insider information. With over 10 years of experience in first-hand-travel adventures, she shares her stories, advice, and current events to help you stay in the know.