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The Ouachita Region of Arkansas, The Natural State

Art Galleries

Just minutes from the gates of Hot Springs Village is Downtown Hot Springs. Hot Springs is known as the “City of the Arts” for its historic bath houses, elegant hotels and art galleries. From the Museum of Contemporary Art to the many individual artists’ galleries, there is something for everyone. Monthly Gallery walks are a great way to see art from many different artists. There are many other attractions such as the Gangster Museum, Wine Museum, Wax Museum, and Mid America Science Museum. You can live securely within the gates of Hot Springs Village and enjoy the cultural benefits of downtown Hot Springs!

Garvan Gardens

Garvan Woodland Gardens is the botanical garden of the University of Arkansas. You will find it nestled in the picturesque Ouachita Mountains. At Garvan Woodland Gardens you will find a canopy of pines reaching skyward providing protection for delicate flora and fauna, 4 ½ miles of wooded shoreline, and rocky inclines that remind us of the surrounding mountains. Garvan Woodland Gardens is the perfect place for learning, research, cultural enrichment, and serenity. And their Holiday lights tour is a must see!

Lake Ouachita

Surrounded by the Ouachita National Forest, Lake Ouachita is known for its scenic natural beauty and the clarity of its waters. It is the largest man-made lake in Arkansas. It was also named one of the cleanest lakes in America! Lake Ouachita boasts 40,000-acres of water and 975 Miles of shoreline! It is a water sports mecca for swimming, skiing, scuba diving, boating, and fishing. Lake Ouachita is known for some of the best fishing in the state including bream, crappie, catfish, stripers, and largemouth bass. Plus Lake Ouachita offers great camping and eagle watching tour. All of this fun and adventure is located just a short drive from Hot Springs Village! Find out more about Lake Ouachita!

Magic Springs

Magic Springs offers more than 80 attractions including The Arkansas Twister wooden roller coaster, The X-Coaster and thrill rides such as Plummet Summit and The Gauntlet! Magic Springs is the only theme park located in a national park and was named as one of the three most family friendly parks in the nation by Better Homes and Gardens magazine. They also boast an amazing concert series! But you get two parks for the price of one because there is also a water park called Crystal Falls which includes Crystal Lagoon, three body-only slides, four tube slides, play pool, High Sierra Slide Tower, Crystal Falls Wave Pool, Kodiak Canyon Lazy River, and Bear Cub Bend for smaller children. Just added in 2013 is Splash Island with 10 water slides and a bucket that dumps 1,000 gallons of water every 10 minutes! over 200 ways to get wet and keep cool!

Oaklawn Race Track

The Thoroughbreds of Oaklawn Park offer some of the most heart-stopping excitement you’ll find in Arkansas. See live horse racing at one of the nation’s finest tracks from late-January to mid-April. And it’s all located in the middle of historic and beautiful Hot Springs National Park. Oaklawn also offers a complete simulcast season of coast-to-coast tracks, so you’ll find plenty to do no matter what time of year you’re here. Horse races aren’t for you? Well that’s okay because Oaklawn offers gaming as well! They boast a huge array of games of skill including cardless poker, blackjack, roulette, slot machines and the state’s first electronic poker room, featuring Texas Hold ‘Em.

Area Trails

In addition to the Hot Springs Village nature trails, both the Ouachita National Forest and Hot Springs National Park offer an abundance of paths perfect for hiking and mountain biking. In fact, Hot Springs has one of the two IMBA epic trails found in Arkansas – the Womble Epic (the International Mountain Bicycling Association uses the Epic® designation to identify the best mountain biking trails in the region).

Mine for Crystals!

Dress in old clothes and grab a 3-prong garden tool, screwdriver and bucket to dig for Arkansas Quartz crystals: