Top Things To Do In Arkansas

By Dhruvalakshmi Paithankar on Mar 05, 2020
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Arkansas is that US State whose wilderness areas have gained popularity but other gems it has to offer are still hidden away from many. You may already have heard about the beauty of Hot Springs National Park, but it has equally beautiful Mammoth Spring State Park, as well as Blanchard Springs Caverns. Apart from natural attractions, places like Magic Springs are also a must for entertainment. So, if you are updating your bucket list of things to do in Arkansas, this article is for you! Read on and learn all about different things to do in Arkansas.

1. Pamper yourself at Hot Springs National Park 

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Hot Springs National Park is one of the oldest national parks in the USA as it was established in the early 1830s. Apart from rich flora and fauna, the highlight of this park has always been the hot springs that are part of the Ouachita Mountain range and are believed to have medicinal properties. So, when you are looking for top things to do in Arkansas, head off to Hot Springs National Park to pamper yourself and be in the heart of nature.

2. Explore Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art

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Founded by Alice Walton, who is an American heir to the fortune of Walmart Inc, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art has gained popularity instantly after opening in 2011. The expansive collection of the museum covers five centuries of American artworks, starting from the colonial era and coming to modern-day art. As this interesting place is located in 120-acres of Ozark woods, you can also explore miles of trails while here. If you are interested in free things to do in Arkansas, then the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art does not have any entry fee.

3. Go underground at Blanchard Springs Caverns

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Exploring the depths of Blanchard Springs Caverns is one of the best things to do in Arkansas for nature enthusiasts. You can take a guided tour of this three-level cave that will take you as low as 360 feet underground. It came into limelight in the 1950s after the systematic explorations started and transformed the cave into one of the top tourist attractions in Arkansas over the next 2 decades. It is termed as the ‘living cave’ as geological formations have continued to grow. Its 1.2 miles of Discovery Trail is the most popular amongst visitors.

4. Have fun at Magic Springs

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Looking for things to do in Arkansas with kids? Head off to Magic Springs that promises an entire day of fun and entertainment for all age groups. Combining amusement park and water park together, Magic Springs offers you everything from roller coasters, thrill rides, family rides, and separate kids' rides. The wooden roller coaster, known as Arkansas Twister, is perfect for adrenaline-seekers. If you want to visit the water park on the premises, then keep in mind that Crystal Falls is open only from May through mid-August as well as on weekends to September-end.

5. Enjoy nature at Garvan Woodland Gardens

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Garvan Woodland Gardens is a popular botanical garden in Hot Springs. Located on the shore of Lake Hamilton and spread over 200 acres, this garden boasts of a thick wood cover. From a canopy of pines to an interesting rock garden, you will find different things on the premises of Garvan Woodland Gardens. Established with the aim of preserving, protecting, and enhancing the natural features of the Ouachita Mountains, this botanical garden has become a perfect place for researchers as well as nature lovers.

6. Go local at the Eureka Springs Downtown

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As you stroll the streets of Eureka Springs Downtown, you will find yourself soaking in the bustling local vibes. Visit this area during the day and you will find a plethora of quirky stores catering to shopaholics. Be here after the sunset and you will find the best of the nightlife of Arkansas centered around pubs and bars here. Buildings that carry Victorian architectural style and restaurants that are proud of world-class cuisine create a neighborhood that you can explore for hours.

7. Place your bet at Oaklawn Racing Casino Resort

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Oaklawn Racing Casino Resort became famous for it has several different experiences under one roof. Even though traditional slots are not allowed in Arkansas, the casino here will keep you entertained with over 1,500 machines and 30+ action-packed tables. The racing track attracts many during the racing season with its different graded skates. Dining at Oaklawn Racing Casino Resort is also an experience in itself as there are around 10 bars and restaurants on the premises for you to choose from.

8. Take a tour of Little Rock Central High School National Historic Site

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Little Rock Central High School National Historic Site may be one of the lesser-known places for travelers, but it is an important point of interest in Arkansas. In fact, for the significant role it played during the Civil Rights Movement, it has become one of the top things to do in Arkansas near Memphis. This site has witnessed how Nine African-American teenagers fought their way in September 1957 and attended school despite all the opposition they faced. Do not forget to book your guided tour in advance when you are planning a visit to the Little Rock Central High School.

9. Witness the beauty of Thorncrown Chapel

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Thorncrown Chapel is easily one of the most beautiful churches in Arkansas. This lovely place of worship has been made mostly out of wood, has 425 windows, and has used 6,000 square feet of glass to create its natural ornamentation lighting effect. So, in 2000, even though it was less than 50 years old, it was listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It has also become a popular wedding spot amongst locals. So, be it for romantic things to do in Arkansas or for offering your prayers, you can visit Thorncrown Chapel.

10. Find diamonds at Crater of Diamonds State Park

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Crater of Diamonds State Park is a unique place where visitors can actually search for real diamonds. Its 37 acres of field is the only diamond-bearing site in the world that is open to the public. You can also search for different semi-precious gems here. The park authorities claim that at least 2 diamonds are found daily by the visitors of Crater of Diamonds State Park. The best part about this park? Search for as much time as you want for any mineral or rock you may find is all yours to keep.

Apart from the things to do in Arkansas listed above, you also must experience the beauty of Buffalo National River and take a tour of Arkansas Air Museum.

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