Arkansas Travel Guide 2024
Arkansas is known as the Natural State—appropriate considering its 51 state parks and an abundance of outdoor activities. The landscape varies from lowlands to highlands and contains two mountain ranges: the Ozarks and the Ouachitas. Little Rock, the Arkansas state capital, offers good shopping and enlightening sights such as the emotionally stirring Central High Museum and Visitors Center that chronicles a landmark occurrence in the desegregation of the Nation’s public schools. West Arkansas holds many prime events, including the Great Passion Play near the charming village of Eureka Springs. The many music festivals in the area are also enticing. For a change of pace, take a dip in one of the natural spring water baths at Hot Springs. East Arkansas continues to offer natural experiences, with some great fishing spots near Pine Bluff such as the Bayou Metro, the largest state-owned wildlife management area in the country.
Welcome to Arkansas! Unforgettable adventures wait for you here. The state of Arkansas boasts a unique terrain that features mountain ranges, rivers, and lowlands. Plenty of moisture and sunlight make the soil fertile. The mountains and river banks are thickly forested. All this makes the nature of Arkansas ideal for thrilling adventures.
A vacation in Arkansas has as much to do with rejuvenation as relaxation. The waters of Eureka Springs and Hot Springs have long been known for their healthful qualities, and the state offers additional ways to make visitors feel better: fishing on a scenic lake, walking a wooded trail, and contemplating the beauty of a mountain road. Other activities may seem more silly than holistic (petting an alligator, for instance, or watching the World Championship Duck Calling Contest), but all of our research indicates that having fun can be good for you.
Arkansas is also restorative in the sense that it tries to preserve a lot of its past. Sometimes that takes place through historic forts, vintage buildings, and presentations of traditional music and crafts; sometimes through the general sense that life moves at a relaxed pace reminiscent of previous decades. Those who like the high energy and sophisticated entertainment of big cities may want to go elsewhere, but if you want to take it easy and enjoy beautiful, rural scenery, Arkansas is a good place to do that.
“If I could rest anywhere, it would be in Arkansas, where the men are of the real half-horse, half-alligator breed such as grows nowhere else on the face of the universal earth.” Quote attributed to Davey Crockett
Arkansas is a popular family vacation destination for many tourists. There are several reasons for this:
- Arkansas has tons of what to see – numerous museums, churches, and small towns featuring many old buildings in colonial style.
- Arkansas is home to many national parks covered by forest that are located in the eastern lowlands along the Mississippi and the Arkansas Delta.
- Open water bodies beckon canoe enthusiasts who can enjoy water activities almost all year round there.
- The cost of lodging in Arkansas is affordable so travelers can stay for a longer period of time there. However, if you plan on attending one of the music festivals, make sure you book your accommodation in advance. During the music festivals, popular Arkansas destinations may be crowded with fans of country music and rock so the hotels may be full.
- Arkansas is an ideal getaway for outdoor enthusiasts as a lot of running events are held there. Plus fishing on rivers and lakes is just amazing and natural golf courses even surpass those created by professional golf-course designers.
- Also, the state offers a great many free things to do and local baked products are considered some of the best in the USA.
So, the state of Arkansas is definitely worth visiting to learn about its glorious past as well as discover its present-time riches which are a never-ending source of positive emotions.
East Arkansas Visitors Guide
Nicknamed “the Natural State,” Arkansas is a place of dense forests, rolling foothills, and fertile plains, and nowhere is its moniker more appropriate than in East Arkansas. The region, which is formed partly by the Mississippi Delta and partly by the Ozark Mountains, is home to a bevy of state parks, lakes, and scenic drives. Lake Chicot State Park at Lake Village is the state’s largest natural lake—it measures some 20 mi (36 km) in length—while Greers Ferry Lake at Heber Springs is renowned for its record-setting trout fishing and environmental cleanliness. Crowley’s Ridge Parkway, a 200-mi (360-km) scenic byway along the Delta’s highlands, passes through Jonesboro and includes Civil War sites as well as national forests, and in Brinkley, the Louisiana Purchase State Park commemorates the historic 1803 land deal and the starting point of the surveys that followed.
East Arkansas also enjoys a well-preserved folk scene that has been handed down from those early settlers. Mountain View boasts a folk school, an annual folk festival, and free evenings of music and dancing, while West Memphis puts on a Hillbilly Hoedown and a Gumbo Fest. Film and modern entertainment aren’t left out of the mix. Batesville annually hosts an Ozark film festival and Pine Bluff extols the state’s famous sons and daughters—Johnny Cash, Billy Bob Thornton, and John Grisham to name a few—at the Arkansas Entertainers Hall of Fame.
West Arkansas Visitors Guide
The mockingbird was designated Arkansas’ official state bird in 1929, but there is no mocking of the scenic wonders, the colorful history, or the pleasures that await visitors to West Arkansas. Spas promoting natural mineral springs can be found at Hot Springs and Eureka Springs. Trout and bass fishing on the White River is considered world-class. Museums displaying gun collections, aircraft, trolleys or whitetail deer are spread throughout the region. Individuals can search for real diamonds and other precious stones at the Crater of Diamonds State Park. In West Arkansas, visitors can take a scenic railroad trip, attend the horse races, experience folk festivals or live theatre, play golf or fish, and still find more to do.
While the region is growing and changing, Northwest Arkansas is still rooted in its scenic surroundings. Nestled in the Ozark Mountains, Eureka Springs is rich with rustic charm. Majestic bluffs, shimmering lakes and rivers, and rolling hills provide the perfect backdrop for outdoor activities, including fishing, floating, hiking, biking, boating, camping, and much more. History buffs can appreciate two Civil War sites in the area. A golfer’s paradise, Northwest Arkansas offers 34 challenging courses etched into Ozark Mountain landscapes.
Little Rock Visitors Guide
Beginning as an outpost in 1814, Little Rock became the capital of Arkansas in 1836. The history of the state is captured at such attractions as the Old State House, which houses Civil War flags and exhibits of political developments, and the Central High Museum and Visitors Center, which documents a powerful story of the fight to stop racial segregation in public schools. For lighter activities, visitors may shop, dine, or be entertained at the River Market in the downtown core. Appealing attractions for families include the Museum of Discovery and the Children’s Museum. In close proximity to Little Rock in North Little Rock, home to one of the largest city parks in the nation, Burns Park. The William Clinton Presidential Library is a popular attraction and houses printed and audiovisual material related to the 42nd President of the United States. For families, Gator Park in Little Rock features mini-golf, go-karts, and more.
Eureka Springs, AR Visitors Guide
Visit Eureka Springs to discover why this town has earned a reputation as one of the best-preserved and most unique communities in the United States. An authentic, 19th-century Victorian resort located in the Ozark Mountains, Eureka Springs offers many impressive natural features, such as the Covenant Gardens where flowers bloom (spring) and weddings are held. Visitors, including newlyweds, have a variety of accommodations and services to choose from when in this bustling town. Stay at one of the many lodges and resorts for a romantic getaway or do some sightseeing in a horse-drawn carriage. Visitors can also attend a religious play, have dinner on the Eureka Springs & North Arkansas Railway, browse through a variety of shops, and relax at one of the many serenity spas available.
Hot Springs, AR Visitors Guide
Hot Springs is known for its naturally flowing ground spring water that maintains a constant temperature of 147 Â° F (64 Â°C). Bath House Row features public bath facilities that include the Buckstaff Bath House, which uses the springs to create relaxing and therapeutic mineral baths. From an elevation of 1,256 feet (382 m) above sea level, the Hot Springs Mountain Tower provides views of the Arkansas countryside. Various guided sightseeing opportunities are available through companies such as the Hot Springs Carriage Company, the Brady Mountain Riding Stables, and the Belle of Hot Springs Riverboat. Visitors can enjoy family-oriented activities at the Arkansas Alligator Farm and Petting Zoo, the National Park Aquarium, as well as the Magic Springs Theme Park and Crystal Falls Water Park.
Arkansas State Parks
Arkansas state parks are located atop the Natural State’s highest mountains, on the shores of lakes large and small, and in other varied natural settings. Some preserve Native American archeological sites and Civil War battlegrounds, while others are museums and memorials preserving additional facets of the state’s heritage.
The recreational, geographical, and historical diversity of the 51 parks is reflected in the many special events and programs hosted by an award-winning corps of park interpreters.
Events include festivals; wildflower and birding weekends; star watch parties; lake tours to observe bald eagles and other wildlife; pioneer and Civil War reenactments and other living history presentations; gatherings featuring folk, bluegrass, and gospel music; guided nature hikes; fishing derbies; summer day camps; recreational games for children; and campfire programs.
Ozark Wilderness Works’ experienced instructors begin by teaching the rudiments of rock climbing: basic knots, belay, and rappel techniques, climbing communication, safety procedures, and moving on the rock. creasing degrees of difficulty, as the day of instruction, progresses. With the challenge comes a lot of fun, as well as a satisfying sense of achievement.
You will enjoy canoeing in the early spring down the awe-inspiring Buffalo National River, with high bluffs, tall trees, and a variety of wildlife resulting in a peaceful, isolated feeling. Rock climbing is popular in the fall and winter when you can witness the fall foliage, scale large cliffs, and peer at breathtaking terrain that seems endless.