4 Easy Arkansas Road Trips You Must Take
One-way travel: 3 hours, 18 minutes, 214 miles*
Nestled near the Missouri state line, Bentonville provides small-town charm and big-city attractions, as well as a few historic landmarks you won’t find anywhere else. From the down-home charm of the Walmart Museum to the cosmopolitan air of the renowned Crystal Bridges Museum, there’s something for all tastes. Families will want to check out the new Amazeum, an interactive learning museum featuring 50,000 square feet of discovery through hands-on activities.
Fitness buffs can get the blood pumping anytime along 40 miles of bike trails. The trails afford easy access to the city’s downtown activity center that includes two excellent microbreweries, Bentonville Brewing Company and Bike Rack Brewing, both of which are part of the Fayetteville Ale Trail.
One-way travel: 40 minutes, 30 miles*
For a unique community festival like no other, check out Conway and the one and only Toad Suck Daze. The largest free festival in the state, Toad Suck features national entertainment, arts and crafts, a carnival, petting zoo, 5K/10K, golf tournament and world championship Toad Races.
Miss the festival? There’s still plenty to do in Conway. Great eats include Tacos 4 Life, Taziki’s and Eat My Catfish. Stop by one of Conway’s cute coffee shops like Zeteo for an afternoon pick-me-up.
Other Conway musts include the Arkansas Shakespeare Theater, the Lantern Theatre, and movies under the stars on the downtown square during April-October. The city is also known for its historic downtown. The shopping and dining and attractions alone are worth the short trip up I-40.
Garvan Woodland Gardens
One-way travel: 1 hour, 57 miles*
Garvan Woodland Gardens is Arkansas’ premier botanical garden, drawing thousands of visitors annually. A collection of several specialized gardens including a four-acre Asian rock and stream garden, Verna C. Garvan Pavilion designed by E. Fay Jones and Maurice Jennings, to name a few.
Plus, the park features the Children’s Adventure Garden, a 1.5-acre interactive garden with more than 3,200 tons of Arkansas-quarried boulders that invite exploration of the natural environment.
Plus, during the holiday season, the gardens transform into an elaborate lighted display that is one of the area’s most coveted traditions. Visit GarvanGardens.org for a complete list of scheduled events.
Hot Springs Village
One-way travel: 1 hour, 21 minutes, 64 miles*
Just an hour from the heart of Little Rock lies Hot Springs Village, a naturally planned community surrounded by national forest boasting some of the most breathtaking vistas in central Arkansas. The Village offers a wide range of recreation and entertainment opportunities. Whether it’s music under the stars at Waypoint, a Chefs’ Table farm-to-table dinner at Grove Park or kayaking on Lake Balboa, there’s something for everyone.
Golf reigns supreme in Hot Springs Village, with nine golf courses. For dinner, try Elan’s, located at Granada Golf Course.
There’s also 13 clay tennis courts, 11 lakes, two full-service marinas and more than 30 miles of nature trails. For a full list of community events: ExploretheVillage.com.
And for more about Garvan Gardens, Hot Springs Village and other attractions in the Spa City, check out the Hot Springs Guest Guide.