Now, I may be slightly biased since Arkansas is my home state (woo pig), but in all seriousness The Natural State is fully of some pretty incredible hidden gems. Today, I want to enlighten you on the place I call home. From dreamy waterfalls to (can they even be called) mountains, here are seven natural wonders of Arkansas!
1. Mount Ida / Ouachita National Forest
Seated in the middle of the Ouachita National Forest, this quaint little town houses some of the best sight seeing in the state. Endless forests, peaceful lakes, and rollings mountains make Mount Ida a top attraction in The Natural State. You won’t want to miss it!
2. Small Town USA
Want to slow down a bit? Look no further than Arkansas’s small towns and farming communities. We’ve got plenty of hay fields and dirt roads to sooth your soul. All I can say is don’t knock it till you try it, you’d be surprised how beautiful a cow pasture in fall can be.
3. Ozark National Forest
The south may not be known for its winters, but they sure can be pretty when they hit. With dense humidity nearly year round, winters in Arkansas include overcasts skies, foggy mornings, and, when it gets cold enough, frosty trees. The Ozark National Forest is home to many great natural attractions, summer through winter, and is a must for any photographer or nature addict! We might not get ten feet of snow, but there’s just something special about a southern winter.
4. Buffalo National River
Also located in the Ozark National Forest is the Buffalo National River. Kayaking and canoeing are noteworthy summer actives, while the cooler months include wooded getaways in rustic log cabins and gorgeous hiking trails. Horseback riding and river camping are also popular hits with locals and visitors alike! The options are plentiful on the good old Buffalo National River. A real gem in The Natural State.
5. Petit Jean State Park
Settled between several great hiking options in central Arkansas, Petit Jean State Park offers all the amenities one could want. Groomed hiking trails and scenic overlooks are just a few of this parks perks. The waterfall pictured above can be accessed through a fairly easy, well known hiking trail. A truly wonderful Summer stop!
Mount Nebo and Mount Magazine are also within one to two hours of Petit Jean and could make for a stunning fall road trip between the three!
6. Mount Nebo
Located just a few hours from Petit Jean, Nebo is a local favorite for Arkansas Tech College Students like myself. Only thirty minutes from campus, it makes for a perfect short term getaway. The winding descent quickly opens up into a picturesque small town, with cabins for rent, hiking trails, and even a spot for a quaint mountain wedding! If you’re ever in the Russellville area, make sure to give this spot a stop! You won’t regret it.
Okay, so there’s really no specific place to put for this, but I felt it needed to be included anyways. Arkansas’s sunrises (and sunsets) are a force to be reckoned with. Maybe it’s all this southern humidity, but our colorful skies are something special. Take an early morning drive to witness the beauty for yourself, it won’t disappoint!
This is just a taste of what Arkansas has to offer. Come enjoy our southern hospitality and natural beauty for yourself. It’s good for the soul, really.