Ouachitas Region

Celebrate the Holidays in Hot Springs!

Hot Springs
, which is surrounded by the picturesque Ouachita mountains, has long been and remains a top destination to visit. The city is famous for many attractions including Hot Springs National Park with its famed Bathhouse Row and thermal baths, the 210-acre Garvan Woodland Gardens, a historic baseball trail, a thriving arts community and more! The holidays are a beautiful time of year to experience the city. Hot Springs will have a Christmas lighting display at Exchange Street Parking Plaza on November 24. Downtown will be decorated in lights from then through December 31.  And an annual Christmas Parade is set for December 8!

Ready to explore the city?

- You won’t want to miss Bathhouse Row on Central Avenue. Described as "the grandest collection of bathhouses of their kind in the nation," the eight bathhouses that make up the Row are a National Historic Landmark District with structures dating to the late 1800s.

-Be sure to walk the Grand Promenade. This paved route is behind Bathhouse Row and also connects to other trails for those wanting a longer hike. 

- Keep an eye out for markers of the Historic Baseball Trail. As part of the trail, 26 historical markers have been placed across the city at various significant spots so visitors can see places where American baseball legends trained and played. Legendary names like Babe Ruth, Joe DiMaggio and Jackie Robinson are just a few of the high profile baseball legends that came through Hot Springs to play and train.

-Drive up West Mountain in Hot Springs National Park and enjoy the view from the overlooks, which provide a wonderful overview of downtown Hot Springs. To get to West Mountain from Bathhouse Row, go north on Highway 7 to Whittington Avenue and turn left. Keep going until you see the West Mountain Drive sign.

- Visit the headquarters of Mountain Valley Spring Water, which has twice been named the best-tasting spring water in the world. There is a visitor center on site to learn more about the history of the company. The building is at 150 Central Ave.

- Grab lunch or a brew at Superior Bathhouse Brewery. This craft microbrewery is located on Bathhouse Row. Plans are for the operation to soon make their own brew on site using thermal spring water.

 - Want dessert? Grab a cupcake at Fat Bottomed Girls Cupcakes at 124 Central Ave. This shop was featured on the Food Network show Cupcake Wars.

-Stroll along downtown Central Avenue and visit the shops and many notable art galleries, such as Alison Parsons Gallery, that are in town. 


--Ready for more art? Check out Dryden Pottery at 341 Whittington Avenue. They house the largest showroom of handmade pottery in the state. Materials used for the pottery include Ouachita Mountain clays and Arkansas quartz crystal.   Another option for pottery can be found at Fox Pass Pottery (379 Fox Pass), which showcases handmade pottery by husband and wife duo Jim and Barbara Larkin. The Arkansas Arts Council recently named Jim Larkin an Arkansas Living Treasure.

 -  Check out the beautiful holiday lights of downtown Hot Springs.

---Ready for more lights? Drive to Garvan Woodland Gardens to enjoy the whimsy of their annual Holiday Lights display.  This festive event, which takes place through the end of December, is open nightly from 5-9 p.m. and with over 4 million lights, holds title as one of the state's most elaborate outdoor holiday lights displays.

 - Hungry? Grab dinner and a drink at the Ohio Club at 336 Central Ave.  Established in 1905, this bar was a former hangout for famous gangsters like Al Capone and baseball players like Babe Ruth.

- Tired? You can overnight at the Arlington Hotel at 239 Central Ave. This historic hotel is a landmark of Hot Springs and is the largest hotel in Arkansas. Guests have included a range of famous names, from Presidents to actors, athletes, and gangsters. Theodore Roosevelt, Bill Clinton, Yoko Ono, and Joe DiMaggio are among the hotel’s notable visitors.   The city is also home to many other lodging options.

Day 2: 

-- Drive home (to plan your next Arkansas adventure)

or if you want to keep going:

Take a mini side trip to Mount Ida—the Quartz Crystal Capital of the World!