Trip Planner: USA / Missouri / Lake of the Ozarks / Camdenton / Ha Ha Tonka State Park
Ha Ha Tonka State Park is a state-owned, public recreation area encompassing over on the Niangua arm of the Lake of the Ozarks, about five miles south of Camdenton, Missouri, in the United States. The state park's most notable feature is the ruins of Ha Ha Tonka, an early 20th-century stone mansion that was modeled after European castles of the 16th century.Take a look at our Camdenton trip planner to schedule your visit to Ha Ha Tonka State Park and learn about what else to see and do during your holiday.
The park also features caves, sinkholes, and bluffs overlooking the lake. It is a prominent example of karst topography, which is geological formation shaped by the dissolution of a layer or layers of soluble bedrock. A 70acre portion of the park was designated as the Ha Ha Tonka Karst Natural Area in 1981.
Construction of the Ha Ha Tonka castle was started by Robert McClure Snyder, Sr. in 1905, a Kansas City businessman who purchased the large property. Alluding to the natural springs on the property, "ha ha tonka" was said to mean "smiling waters."
Following Snyder's death in an auto accident in 1906, the castle was completed by his sons Robert, Jr.; LeRoy, and Kenneth Snyder in the late 1920s before the Stock Market Crash. The building was used as a summer and weekend home by the Snyder family, who lived in Kansas City. In the late 1930s it was used as a hotel, but was destroyed by fire in 1942.
Ha Ha Tonka State Park reviews
This is a great state park in MO. Small but lots to see. We did 3 trails - Natural Bridge, Castle and Del Rim. No cost to enter. There is a variety of other trails, from short to very long, so...
This is a great state park in MO. Small but lots to see. We did 3 trails - Natural Bridge, Castle and Del Rim. No cost to enter. There is a variety of other trails, from short to very long, so... more »
My friend adores hiking in Ha Ha Tonka State Park, so for her birthday celebration two of us took her there over Veterans Day weekend. Despite the chilly weather, we had a GREAT time! Our first...
My friend adores hiking in Ha Ha Tonka State Park, so for her birthday celebration two of us took her there over Veterans Day weekend. Despite the chilly weather, we had a GREAT time! Our first... more »
This park is frequented by many locals because it’s a beautiful getaway. My favorite part was the island trail and the beautiful waters. All trails are pretty well marked and maintained. We were out in nature without getting lost. Well positioned porta-potties around the park, and very well marked road signs. The castle is a nice piece of history, but apparently some of the bikers visiting the area figured they could walk wherever they want (pic attached). Despite all the railings and signs, she jumped the rails and walked around & inside the castle. There were no rangers in site to enforce the rules, and it’s people like this, that forced the park to close the castle off to visitors in the first place. (Admin, contact me for license # if you want it). Other than that, the views & history of the area are spectacular. It’s definitely worth a visit. We stayed at the Lake of the Ozarks State Park while visiting the area, and it has some nice trails too.
This place is amazing. There is a lot to do and see here. Some really interesting terrain and features. Hikes about 9 miles and saw all of it. The castle is pretty cool but my favorite part was the hike around the island and from the island up to the castle that led by the Natural Bridge and the sinkhole. Well-maintained trails and facilities. Many opportunities for the elderly or kids as there is plenty of paved trails and access areas. Check out some of the photos I took while exploring here.
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