12 Great Places to Watch the Sunset in Arkansas

The view from Red Bluff atop Petit Jean Mountain
The view from Red Bluff atop Petit Jean Mountain

Sunsets are mesmerizing.

They come in such brilliant colors. Sometimes the sky is hot and fiery, full of red and orange layers, as the golden globe melts into the horizon. Other times it may be pink and purple pastels painting clouds covering the sky.

While each sunset is unique in hue and texture, where you see the sun go down adds to the experience as well. Arkansas has mountains, valleys, waterways and even city sites that make the perfect setting to watch the setting sun. Here are 12 great spots to watch an Arkansas sunset.

Sunset Point

Aptly named, Sunset Point at Mount Nebo State Park gives visitors an exquisite view of the Arkansas River Valley and the surrounding mountains. You’ll find plenty to do here in addition to watching the sunset. The 1930s-era Civilian Conservation Corps constructed many of the rustic-style cabins, pavilions, bridges, and 32.6 miles of hiking and mountain biking trails. It also offers world-class mountain biking on its Monument Trail.

Sandy Beach

Stick your toes in the sand while watching the sunset at Sandy Beach in Heber Springs. On the shore of Greers Ferry Lake, the beach has a large swimming area to play in while the sun is still overhead. This is also the place to watch the World Championship Cardboard Boat Races held in July each year. You could even build your own boat and enter the race.

The cross at Mount Sequoyah in FayettevilleMount Sequoyah Cross

Not far from downtown Fayetteville, a lighted cross sits on a stone base in a park-like setting atop Mount Sequoyah. The cross stands at an opening between trees on the mountain’s rim. Here there is an excellent view of the sprawling city below and the nightly setting of the sun. Erected in 1935, the cross has long been popular with locals and visitors alike. It’s a must-do when in the college town of Fayetteville.

White Rock Mountain

White Rock Mountain, located 2,309 feet above sea level, was named after the lichen that covers the bluffs and appears white from a distance. Visitors to White Rock can enjoy breathtaking views of the surrounding area from the lodge, cabins, campground, and bluffs. For a fabulous sunset view, hike the White Rock Rim Trail, an easy 1.8-mile loop that circles the mountain and offers 365-degree views of the Ozark National Forest.

Big Dam Bridge

A sunset across the water never disappoints making the Big Dam Bridge spanning

the Arkansas River between Little Rock and North Little Rock a great place to be when the sun goes down. Open only to pedestrian and bicycle traffic, the bridge is 4,226 feet in length and is the longest pedestrian/bicycle bridge in the world designed and built for that purpose. It connects about 15 miles of scenic riverside trails in both cities.

Norfork Lake

Whether from a boat in the middle of the river, the shoreline, or from the view of a lakeside cabin, the sunset from Norfork Lake is always stunning. Norfork Lake has more than 550 miles of shoreline and covers some 22,000 acres. There are 19 developed U.S. Army Corps of Engineers parks that provide plenty of opportunities for camping and water sports.

The Tower Bar

Located on the sixth floor of the Momentary in Bentonville, the Tower Bar with glass walls is a great place to enjoy a drink while taking in a panoramic view of the city. The evening menu features a rotating seasonal menu of craft cocktails, spirits, wines, and whiskeys. Entry to the Tower Bar is by way of an elevator accessed through the South Entrance of the Tower. Service at the Tower Bar is offered first come, first served for ages 21 and older starting at 5 p.m.

Fishing at sunset at Jacksonport State ParkJacksonport State Park

Standing on the grounds of Jacksonport State Park, it’s easy to imagine watching the sunset from aboard a steamboat in the 1880s when Jacksonport was a thriving river port. In addition to seeing the sunset here, the state park located at the confluence of the White and Black rivers includes campsites, a swimming beach, a pavilion, picnic sites, a playground, and the half-mile Tunstall Riverwalk. Today, exhibits in the park's 1872 courthouse and programs by park interpreters share the story of this historic river port.

City Rock Bluff

It’s hard to beat the view from City Rock Bluff near Calico Rock. The White River and the forested land around it are an epic view at sunset. Use caution! There is no fence or barrier that would prevent you from falling off the bluff. Click here for directions.

Yellow Rock Trail

On this National Recreation Trail located at Devil’s Den State Park near Winslow, you can hike 300 feet in elevation to one of the best views in the park, especially at sunset. Atop the Yellow Rock is an unobstructed view of the Lee Creek valley. Along the rest of the trail are cedar glades, interesting rock formations, and the first structure built in the park.

Petit Jean Mountain

Arkansas’ first state park on Petit Jean Mountain offers two iconic viewpoints for watching the setting sun - Mather Lodge and the CCC Overlook on Red Bluff Drive. Petit Jean State Park mirrors the mountain’s rugged beauty with its rustic-style, native log and stone facilities constructed by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) beginning in 1933. The CCC built trails, roads, bridges, cabins, and the focal point of the park, the historic Mather Lodge, a 24-room lodge overlooking Cedar Creek Canyon with a restaurant, meeting rooms, and a gift shop. There are numerous hiking trails, overlooks and scenic geological features. Two swimming pools, picnic areas, playgrounds, pavilions, a boat launch ramp, a tennis and basketball court, and an amphitheater are also on site.

Flatside PinnacleFlatside Pinnacle Mountain

Located west of Little Rock, Flatside Wilderness consists of 9,507 acres featuring creeks, rugged terrain and a section of the Ouachita National Recreation Trail. On the east side of the wilderness, Flatside Pinnacle provides panoramic views of these rugged Ouachita Mountains with no signs of man-made features.

When You Go

Take a light. You’ll need flashlights and headlamps for the hike out of these wild places. Wear sturdy shoes and dress for the weather.