We just returned from another trip to Eureka Springs, Arkansas. We have been there so many times over the years and never tire of this area. It is beautiful and quirky and charming and a favorite road trip for us!

Here are some of the best things to do in Eureka Springs, Arkansas and the surrounding areas.

I know that you will enjoy your trip to Eureka Springs!

You are looking at a road that goes up a hill and then divides with one side curving on up the hill to the left and the other going down to the right. In the middle is a small and pretty flatiron building. It is made of red brick with larger white brick as trim on the edges and around the windows. This photo is part of a post about the best things to do in Eureka Springs, Arkansas. Pin

Great Things to do in Eureka Springs Arkansas

Here are some of our favorite things to do in Eureka Springs. Let us know if we have missed any of YOUR favorite options!

The Eureka Springs Historic District

The Eureka Springs Historic district is obviously a must see. It is one of the the most charming and unique downtown areas in all of Arkansas.

It has a bit of a feel of New Orleans…but with hills. Downtown Eureka Springs runs through a little stretch of valley with steeply climbing mountains on either side and either end.

You could spend hours popping into stores and art galleries, enjoying some of the amazing restaurants, sitting on a bench at the various parks, and climbing up and down the hills and stairs that comprise this lovely old Victorian town.

Eureka Springs even has its very own flatiron building.

It is the best mix of quaint and quirky, bikers and retirees, conservative and liberal. There really is no where else in Arkansas like it and we love it.

This is a photo of a street in Eureka Springs, Arkansas. The buildings are old some have balconies. There are various awnings from the first floor of the buildings over the sidewalk. The street heads down a hill. Pin

Eureka Springs Historical Museum

To learn more about the history of this fascinating town you will want to visit the Eureka Springs Historical Museum. They have exhibits about the springs and the way that the town grew as well as a large collection of art.

We highly recommend a short stop in this fun museum.

Art in Eureka Springs

The town is a mecca for artists and art lovers. It is said that the town is home to over 400 working artists. Many of the art galleries that line the streets carry works from local artists. Some of our favorite art galleries in Eureka Springs are:

  • Iris at the Basin Park – They have beautiful pieces from both local and regional artists as well as music from local musicians. I have pieces I purchased here years ago that are still some of my favorites.
  • Quicksilver Gallery – This is a long time favorite of ours! In fact, we never go to Eureka Springs without stopping here. In addition to various types of art from local artists they also carry some beautiful musical instruments.
  • Zark’s Gallery – This amazing gallery features jewelry, art glass, blown glass, and sculpture. My husband especially enjoys the work of artist Dennis Thompson and we own a stunning piece of his work of a dragon coming out of an egg.
  • Wilson and Wilson Folk Art – This lovely shop is located in the flatiron building. All of this contemporary folk art is created by the mother daughter team of Blakeley and Sylvia Wilson. The space also serves as their studio so you might find one of them in residence working while you shop!

These are just a few of our favorite art galleries in town but you will find many, many more artists and galleries around. In fact, I have read that there are 20 art galleries in the downtown area! Let us know your favorite!

A sign on a street in Eureka Springs Arkansas that says Zarks gallery. They sign is made in a black metal with gold lettering. It is high enough to walk under. The street below curves sharply to the right. Pin

Check out a few of the Springs!

The town began because of the springs so you will definitely want to see a few of them. There are actually over 60 natural cold water springs in the area, but here are a few that are easy to see.

  • Basin Spring: It is located at its namesake park in the heart of downtown Eureka Springs. It is likely the most famous of the springs and was considered by Native Americans to have healing properties.
  • Calif Spring: Califf Spring is just next to the historical museum mentioned above. It is a pretty little public park
  • Crescent Spring: Crescent Spring was once almost as popular for its healing properties as the Basin Spring. It is on Spring Street near the Carnegie Library and is shaded by a pretty Victorian-style gazebo
  • Grotto Spring: Grotto Spring is slightly hidden but very pretty especially in spring and summer when it is surrounded by lush vines and trees and shrubs. The inscription “Esto Perpetua” is carved in stone over the entrance to the cave-like grotto.
  • Harding Spring: Harding Spring is surrounded by a small park with beautiful flowers. It was at this spring that a woman’s sight was said to be restored by the healing properties of the waters.
  • Magnetic Spring: Found on Magnetic Road this spring has a large pavilion and picnic tables with very pretty flowering gardens.
  • Sweet Spring: Some people think that sweet spring is the most charming of them all. It is located on Spring Street across from the post office. You will find lots of greenery and flowers and a small spiral staircase leads down to the spring.
A curved metal sign that you can walk under. The signs rests on two stone pillars under a set of stairs and says Basin Spring. Beyond the sign you can see a fountain, a statue, and a bandshell. This is Basin Spring Park. Pin

Visit the Blue Spring Heritage Center

I separated this spring from the list above because the Blue Spring Heritage Center is just barely outside of town. Not only that but it welcomes visitors to not only the spring, but also a 33 acre botanical garden.

Unlike the ones listed above this is a paid attraction with a large spring from which 38 million gallons of water pour every day into a clear blue pool!

This area was once a sacred space for the Native Americans that inhabited Arkansas and beyond. The large bluff shelter on the property shows evidence of use for thousands of years.

It is a beautiful place that we highly recommend checking out when you are in Eureka Springs.

A photo from the Blue Spring Heritage Center. There is spring water flowing into a large pond that is a vibrant blue color. The trees and shrubbery surrounding the pond are green indicating that the photo was taken in the summer. The perspective is from a low point looking across the water. Pin

You might also be interested in:

The springs in the town of Eureka Springs are cold water springs. However, there is another well known Arkansas city that is known for its hot water springs. We have a complete guide to the town of Hot Springs, Arkansas!

One Way to Get Around in Eureka Springs: Trolley Transit

There are some steep hills in Eureka Springs! If you would rather take public transportation than walk the hills of the historic area you can check out the Eureka Springs Trolley Transit.

There are a couple of routes which should get you almost anywhere that you want to go in town.

Tours of Eureka Springs, Arkansas

Eureka Springs is a fun town to just wander on your own, but if you are wanting to take a guided walking tour here are a couple that we would recommend:

  • Guided Downtown Eureka Springs Walking Tour: On this tour you will learn interesting bits of information about the area’s history, the locals who shaped the city, and its most important landmarks.
  • Eureka Springs City Tour by Golf Cart: Eureka Springs is hilly, y’all. If you are wanting to explore without doing too much walking then a golf cart tour might be just what you are looking for. You will dig deep on this tour into what makes Eureka Springs such a unique place.

Relax for a minute at Thorncrown Chapel

Thorncrown Chapel may be one of my favorite places in the world. There are actually three glass chapels in Arkansas either designed by or inspired by the famous Arkansas architect E. Faye Jones who was a protege of Frank Lloyd Wright.

Although they are all similar, it is my opinion that Thorncrown is the prettiest of the three. There is something about it that exudes peace.

It is a short stop but in our opinion a must see when you visit Eureka Springs.


Explore the Crescent Hotel

The Crescent Hotel is considered to be the most haunted hotel in the USA. Yes, you can stay there! It sits on a mountain high above Eureka Springs with beautiful grounds and views. Even if you aren’t staying at the hotel this is a place you should explore.

See the opulent lobby, sit on the back porch and enjoy the breeze, stroll the gorgeous grounds, and go up to the 4th floor to enjoy the beautiful views.


You might even want to…

Take a Ghost Tour at the Crescent Hotel

The hotel offers ghost tours which will tell you all about the history of the hotel as well as all about the paranormal activity that goes on there!

These tours are really well done with excellent guides…and you might even see a ghost or two.

Be sure and make your reservation in advance as the tours do fill up quickly especially during the summer season.

Attend The Great Passion Play

Eureka Springs has been hosting the Great Passion Play during the spring and summer months since the late 1960’s. The play is performed on a 550-foot-wide, multilevel stage in an outdoor amphitheater which has 4,100 individual seats with comfortable backrests.

The performance is colorful, faithfully re-enacting some of the significant events leading to and including Christ’s crucifixion, resurrection, and ascension into Heaven.

It is said that the Great Passion Play is the number one attended outdoor drama in America. 

Hundreds of actors and actresses, live animals, and state-of-the-art sound and lighting create an unforgettable experience for you under the stars.

Visit the Christ of the Ozarks Sculpture

Even if you aren’t in Eureka Springs during the season to see the Great Passion Play you might be interested in see the Christ of the Ozarks Sculpture. It stands 67 feet high and was completed in 1966.

It is located on Magnetic Mountain.

TIP: From the fourth floor of the Crescent Hotel if you stand by the telescopes and look towards your left you can see the statue in the distance.

This is a large statue of Jesus Christ. The photo is take from below the statue. The entire state is white and modern looking. It is against a blue sky with trees around it. The arms of the statue are completely outstretched. There is not a cross as part of the statue but the outstretched arms give the impression of being on the cross. The expression of the face on the statue is quite serious but serene. The statue is called Christ of the Ozarks and is located in Eureka Springs, Arkansas. Pin

St. Elizabeth Catholic Church

This interesting church is located near the Crescent Hotel. It has been in Ripley’s Believe it or Not. Its claim to fame is that it is the only church that is entered through its bell tower.

I would say that this is a bit of a stretch. You don’t actually enter the church through the bell tower but you DO enter the church grounds through the bell tower. Just goes to show how hilly Eureka Springs can be.

It is still a pretty and interesting church and quick stop especially if you are already near the Crescent Hotel.

This is a view from a church called St. Elizabeth Catholic Church. The church was in Ripley's Believe it or not because it is the only church that must be entered through its bell tower. The photo is taken from below on the grounds of the church. You see the bell tower on the middle right side. On the upper left side you can see the Crescent Hotel on a hill above the church. There is a statue right in front of you and a tall stone wall on the left that leads all the way to the bell tower across the photo.Pin

Eureka Springs and North Arkansas Railway

If you have a train lover in your group then you might be interested in taking a ride on the Eureka Springs and North Arkansas Railway.

They offer narrated excursions rides as well as lunch and dinner train rides.

Learn About the Animals at Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge

Located only about 8 miles from Eureka Springs, Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge is a non-profit organization that rescues animals from private owners, roadside zoos, and situations of abuse and neglect.

They have various tours for guests and you can hear the story of each of the rescued animals.

Quirky Quigley’s Castle

Quigley’s Castle is actually not a castle but rather a very unique house. It is called the “Ozark’s Strangest Dwelling.”

Mrs. Quigley wanted a home that made her feel as if she were living outside in the world. Stones and crystals that she collected are on the exterior of the home and there are many windows. On the interior four feet of earth was left bare between the edges of the living space and the walls and planted with flowering and tropical plants.

It is a fascinating place to visit.

Get Outside at Lake Leatherwood

Lake Leatherwood is one of my favorite places in Arkansas! It is a 1,610 acre city park which includes an 85-acre spring-fed lake which was created by a hand-cut native limestone dam back in the 1940’s. The park is on the National Register of Historic Places.

There are lots of recreational activities in the park including hiking, mountain biking, fishing, kayaking, and more.

Go Underground at Onyx Cave Park

You will see the advertisement for Onyx Cave Park painted on the side of a building as you enter Eureka Springs. Onyx Cave Park is located about 6 miles outside of town and has been famous since 1891.

It is one of the few toured caves in the United States that is self-guided. You can explore the cave and its formations all at your own pace. They also have an audio guide that will tell you more about the history of the cave and its special features.

There are many more caves in the Ozark Mountains of Arkansas that you might want to visit.


Stroll Past Pivot Rock and Natural Bridge

Pivot Rock Park is a privately owned property that has been a tourist attraction for decades.

You will have to pay to experience this short, but beautiful nature trail featuring some unusual geological formations including the fascinating pivot rock and a small natural bridge.

Fly through the air at Ozark Mountain Ziplines

If you are looking for a little adrenaline then you should go to Ozark Mountain Ziplines! They are located just 10 minutes from downtown Eureka Springs and there are 10 ziplines on their 66 acres.

They are also the best rated zip line tour in Arkansas!

Drive Across the Little Golden Gate Bridge

Yes, there is a miniature Golden Gate Bridge in Arkansas and it is located northwest of the town of Eureka Springs. It is actually called Beaver Bridge and is quite small but also quite beautiful.

I wouldn’t make a special trip out unless you have a strong interest in suspension bridges. However, it is beautiful so if you are going to be nearby it is worth a look.

Get on the Water at Beaver Lake

Arkansas is known for its beautiful lakes and Beaver Lake is one of the prettiest!

This is a gorgeous body of water located near Eureka Springs. It 70 miles long and has 487 miles of natural shoreline. It is not only clean and peaceful and beautiful, but also offers a wealth of recreational opportunities such as skiing and tubing, kayaking, fishing, and so much more.

I hope that you have found this list helpful. Let us know if you discover anything that you think we should add as one of the best things to do in Eureka Springs, Arkansas.

I’m sure that you will love your visit to this interesting little town.

Thanks for stopping by!

Thanks For Sharing!

Similar Posts