Nestled in the Ozark Mountains of Northwest Arkansas is a small town called Eureka Springs. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, Eureka Springs is a popular tourist destination. The town features many must see Eureka Springs attractions ranging from a wildlife refuge to a 48 foot tall chapel in the woods. With many of the attractions free to the public, why not take a couple of days and visit what Eureka Springs has to offer.
Bring your camera and make your way to the largest statue of Christ in North America, the Christ of the Ozarks Statue. This seven story statue represents a symbol of love and hope to the world as it overlooks Eureka Springs from Magnetic Mountain. While touring the grounds, be sure to get your tickets to The Great Passion Play. Rated “America’s #1 attended outdoor drama” a cast of actors, animals and birds retell the greatest story ever told. The Holy Land Tour, Bible Museum and Sacred Arts Museum are also on site to tour.
Another excursion perfect for day outings is a visit to Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge. Turpentine Creek is located down Highway 23 just seven miles from downtown Eureka Springs. The Refuge, which covers 459 acres, provides homes for abandoned, abused and neglected big cats including Tigers, Lions, Cougars and Leopards. There are self-guided areas open seven days a week or guided tours that run every hour. Admission ranges from $10 to $20 with children 3 and under admitted free.
For a thrill ride through the Ozark Mountains, visit Ozark Mountain Ziplines. With courses running upwards of 200+ feet in the air, ziplining provides a fun filled activity for all ages, even as young as three years old! Ozark Mountain Ziplines is open from 9:00am to 5:00pm every day but Wednesdays and tours run rain or shine. Prices are $89.00 plus tax per person. Group rates apply for groups of ten or more. A day at Ozark Mountain Ziplines includes ten ziplines, 1 suspended sky bridge, suspended tree platforms and 2 short hikes.
Hidden in the Ozark Mountains is the majestic 48 foot tall Thorncrown Chapel. With over 6,000 square feet of glass and 425 windows, this landmark is not to be missed. The Thorncrown Chapel has been named fourth on the list of top buildings in the twentieth century. Guests are welcome to walk the wooded trail to visit the chapel daily from 9:00am to 5:00pm. The chapel is free to visit and guests are treated to a short presentation of the chapel’s history and a song by one of the Thorncrown musicians.
Arkansas’ most attended family show is the Pine Mountain Theater. This attraction began back in 1975 and continues to sell out shows to vacationing families each season. Shows run from March through mid-December and feature comedy, blues, bluegrass, country, gospel and rock and roll music. Tickets are $24.00 for adults and children 12 and under are free. Another show not to be missed is the Ozark Mountain Hoedown featuring The Carl Acuff Jr Show. This particular show has been touring the United States for 22 years. Featuring music ranging from Rock and Roll to Motown and also comedy, impersonations and audience participation, this show will definitely spark your interest from the very beginning. Shows run 7 nights a week at 7:30pm.
Another top rated attraction is the must see show at Intrigue Theater. Playing at the Historic Gavioli, the show features a medium, Juliane Fay and an illusionist, Sean-Paul taking guests back in time to experience a series of inexplicable mysteries. Shows are every Thursday and Sunday nights beginning at 8:00pm.
If you like things that go bump in the night, check out America’s Most Haunted Hotel for nightly ghost tours. The Crescent Hotel in Eureka Springs is said to have ghosts that continue to inhabit the hotel ranging from a man who has been seen in the lobby wearing a tall top hat to a young girl who visits the hotel’s public bathroom. Tour guides tell of their own personal experiences with these ghosts and also give a tour of the basement of the hotel that used to be the morgue when it was the Baker Hospital of Eureka Springs. Tours of the hotel run nightly at 8:00pm.
When planning your visit, check out the comfort and hospitality of a stay at a local bed and breakfast. Arsenic and Old Lace Bed and Breakfast is a Queen Anne Victorian style mansion set in the hills of Eureka Springs and within walking distance of the Historic District. This B&B offers five guest suites, is pet friendly and provides a complimentary, gourmet breakfast each morning. Reservations can be made online or by calling 866-350-5454.
Photo courtesy of dolma