Have you ever been to Northwest Arkansas or NWA as it’s known to some? If not, you are missing out! It’s the prettiest region in Arkansas, offering so many activities mostly in the great outdoors. It’s a great place to vacation to with children or even on a romantic getaway. I lived in the area for about a year, so here are a local’s recommendations on what to see, do and eat while visiting:
- Fayetteville, AR: This is where they ‘call the hogs’ as they say. This is probably the most residential area in the region and it’s also where the popular University of Arkansas college is located so it is mostly known as a small college town. You can come here to watch a college football game or hit up Dixon Street with the students and locals. Dixon Street is Fayetteville’s downtown area lined with lots of restaurants, shops, and bars. Some of my favorite spots here are Rendezvous Hookah Lounge, and Fayettechill. There is also a sweet trail that you can walk, run, or bike on that goes right through Dixon Street and other parts of town called Frisco Trail Corridor. I used to go running here all the time along with other students and locals. Fayetteville is a great place to visit to get a little bit of city life vibes but still feel like you’re in the Ozarks.
2. Eureka Springs, AR: If you’ve read my Eureka Springs post already, then you know how in love I am with ES! If you’re in NWA you CANNOT miss stopping here for at least a day. It will take your breath away with beauty, history, and alllll the good vibes, y’all. They’ve got ghost tours, old Victorian buildings in their downtown area, cave tours, and anything else your little gypsy soul desires.
3. Wild Wilderness Drive-Through Safari: Who would have thought NWA would have one of these?! Well, they do and it’s a lot of fun! You drive through acres and acres of land and get to see all kinds of animals. Near the entrance they also have contained animals you can walk around to see as well if you’d rather not do any driving.
4. Float the Buffalo National River: If you want to see colossal and aesthetically pleasing bluffs high above while you float down a river, then make a stop here! There are a few spots where you can launch and rent canoes at but we snagged ours from Buffalo Outdoor Center in Ponca, AR. The river has to be just right with water levels so make sure to check them before you decide to go (they’re on BOC’s website). Bring water and snacks to hydrate yourself while you’re out there as it gets hot and most importantly-have fun!
5. Devil’s Den State Park: An awesome state park nestled into the mountains. They’ve got hiking trails, overlooks, waterfalls, and even bears!
6. Crystal Bridges Museum: This is a gorgeously designed art museum in Bentonville, AR- the home of Wal-Mart! If you’re into art at all then you should definitely head out here.
7. Mt. Nebo State Park: Another awesome state park in NWA and my personal favorite in this area. Their trails are oh so beautiful with lots of different scenery.
8. Mt. Magazine State Park: Go here to see views for days! This park is most known for their amazing overlooks. You can also find the highest point in Arkansas on a trail here.
9. Bobby Hopper Tunnel: There is a really cool tunnel that you will most likely drive through at some point when going from spot to spot in NWA. It goes right through the mountains. Don’t forget to honk!
Eat in NWA
–Rolling Pin Cafe Fayetteville, AR
-Jose’s Bar and Grill Springdale, AR
–Geraldi’s Fayetteville, AR
–La Hacienda Fayetteville, AR
–Hugo’s Fayetteville, AR
–Hammontree’s Grilled Cheese Fayetteville, AR
–Balcony Bar & Restaurant Eureka Springs, AR
Now, go and have yourself a blast making memories in NWA!!!