Explore Eureka Springs Vacation Ideas
During your time in this historic Arkansas town, you’ll soon discover that your biggest worry is deciding what to do next! You don’t have to travel far from the bed and breakfast to discover an abundance of things to do. Use this page as inspiration for Eureka Spring vacation ideas. 2015 Holiday Events >
Spend a relaxing day strolling the downtown, browsing antique shops and galleries, sampling the great food at local restaurants and eateries, or you may choose to take in a show or head out for an adventure in the great outdoors. There truly is something for everyone to enjoy in Eureka Springs.
To help you plan your ideal visit to Eureka Springs, we have listed below places and activities either we or our guests have enjoyed. We also have trolley passes!
This is not a complete list of things to do, places to visit or restaurants to enjoy. For a more complete list of area attractions and activities, please visit the Eureka Springs Chamber of Commerce and the Eureka Springs Tourist Bureau websites.
- Blue Spring Heritage Center
Blue Springs is an area favorite for weddings. And, who would have thought that the calm looking spring puts out 38 million gallons of water a day. Besides the spring, stroll through the gardens, feed the trout and enjoy all the sights and smells that Blue Springs has to offer.
- Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge
See lions, tigers and bears (oh my!), plus cougars, panthers, monkeys, and many other animals that Turpentine Creek has rescued. They have some animals in cages you can see as well as a tour out back where the animals have their own area to roam. They post the stories behind each of the animals they have rescued which makes the visit a little more personal.
- War Eagle Mill Inc
A short drive to historical War Eagle Mill, a water-powered grist mill on the War Eagle River, where the daily grind is fresh wholegrain cornmeal, flours, mixes and cereals. There is a gift shop and the Bean Palace Restaurant. If you go to War Eagle Cavern then make sure you also stop here.
- Thorncrown Chapel
Nestled in a woodland setting, Thorncrown Chapel rises forty-eight feet into the Ozark sky. We love to go and just sit as it is such a peaceful place to be with its magnificent wooden structure that contains 425 windows and over 6,000 square feet of glass. Designed by E. Fay Jones, an apprentice of Frank Lloyd Wright, Thorncrown has won numerous architectural awards and has been featured on television programs and in national magazines.
Shows and Plays
- The Great Passion Play
Everyone should see this at least once in their life. It’s an outdoor spectacle with hundreds of actors and animals depicting the last days of Jesus. Very moving. They also have a dinner show with comedy and gospel music just before the play starts.
- Ozark Mountain Hoe-Down
This live stage show has been a Eureka Springs favorite for years.
- Intrigue Theater
Intrigue Theater takes you back to the Victorian age to experience an evening of Mystery & Intrigue performed by an Illusionist & a Medium Featuring Special Guests from the other side!
Home Tours and History
- Eureka Springs Historical Museum
For a small village museum there is a lot of history packed into this building. For those visiting Eureka Springs for its history, this is the place to start.
- Crescent Hotel Ghost Tours
While the tour is long, you do get some excellent history about the Crescent Hotel’s past, both historically and ghostly.
- Quigley’s Castle
This attraction is an area favorite. It’s not a castle or an architecturally significant structure. It’s just one of the most interesting places here in Eureka Springs. If you go we think you’ll also say, “That’s interesting!” Don’t miss the butterfly wall, it’s an incredible collage.
- Eureka Springs Tram Tour
If you are looking for a quick tour of Eureka Springs, consider taking the tram tour. The tram tours are approximately 90 minutes in length and are fully narrated by a local tour guide that knows Eureka Springs inside out and upside down! If you have questions, they will be happy to answer them! The schedule varies with the seasons, so checkout their website for the latest information.
- Eureka Springs Van Tour
Eureka Springs Van Tour offers personalized tours in their air-conditioned van. These tours last about 2.5 hours and take you to a number of places the tram tour doesn’t get to. The groups are generally smaller and Michele, the owner, will probably be dressed up in her Victorian garb to make the tour seem a little more authentic, or maybe just eclectic.
Fishing, hiking, biking and water activities
- Lake Leatherwood
The largest hand-laid, limestone dam in the nation impounds a lake 1 1/4 mile long with about 3 miles of shoreline covering 85 acres. A quiet, serene place where you can enjoy a relaxing picnic lunch or try some of the excellent hiking and biking trails. There is now a handicap hiking trail also.
- Kings River
Canoe and kayak rentals, fishing.
- Beaver Lake
Swimming, canoe and boat rentals, fishing.
- Steve’s Horse Ride Stables
Our guests love this place and always come back saying the horses are great and that Steve is a fantastic host.
- Dinner Bell Ranch & Resort Riding Stables
They have trail riding, but what makes them unique is that they offer a breakfast, lunch and dinner ride.
Caves and Caverns
- Cosmic Cavern
Cosmic Cavern was discovered in 1845, but wasn’t developed until 1927. The cave features a 9 foot soda straw – the longest known in the Ozarks, and two bottomless lakes. One of the lakes was discovered in 1993 in the “Silent Splendor” section which made national news. This was Arkansas’ most delicate discovery.
This is a guided 1 1/2 hour tour and is about a 20 minute drive from the inn.
- War Eagle Cavern On Beaver Lake
Take Cosmic Cavern and turn it on its side and you have War Eagle Cavern. Its rooms are large but not too tall (you can reach up and meet a stray bat up close, that’s if you want to of course.) This was the cavern where the movie Jesse James was filmed. When you’re done, consider visiting War Eagle Mill just a short ways down the road.
- Onyx Cave Park
Onyx Cave is the closest cave to Eureka Springs. It has a thirty minute radio headphone self-guided tour. While not as big as either Cosmic or War Eagle caverns, it offers a quick glimpse of what caves are all about.
Bavarian German Czech restaurant
Hours: Open 7 days from 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. (Closed during the winter)
Very good German-Czech food. Everything from sauerkraut soup to Sauerbraten, this place will certainly fill you up. Don’t forget to try their German Chocolate cake. Nice thick layers of coconut filling and then topped with a hard chocolate ganache.
Hours: Open Thurs. – Sun.
Italian restaurant serving up delicious recipes made with love by Chef Katherine Zeller. Tom and I think the pizzas are fantastic and enjoy trying something new each time we visit. A must if you’re craving Italian!
Pepe Tacos at Casa Colina (formerly Casa Colina Grill & Cantina) (Mexican cuisine)
Hours: Monday through Thursday 4:30-9:00 p.m. Friday 4:30-9:00 p.m. Saturday 11 AM – 9:00 p.m. Sunday 11 AM to 8:00 p.m. (Winter hours vary)
They have great outdoor decks. The food is very good and we have a number of favorites we keep going back for. They are not a Tex-Mex restaurant, more of a Santa Fe/Mexican cuisine.
DeVito’s Italian Restaurant (for their trout dishes)
Hours: Open Thursday to Tuesday 11:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. for lunch and 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. for dinner (5:00-10:00 p.m. for May through July).
If you like trout, this is the place to go. Their trout dishes are fabulous. The DeVito family owns a trout farm only an hour from Eureka Springs so their trout is always fresh. Lots of choice Italian dishes can be found and they also have a lunch menu.
Ermilio’s Italian Home Cooking (Italian)
Hours: 7 days a week, 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. (Closed some nights during the winter)
One of the most recommended restaurants in Eureka Springs and one of our favorites also. It’s only three blocks from us, and we like the great tasting home-style Italian food. All their pastas are excellent, and they also cook a thick juicy pork chop dish. It’s a casual restaurant, and they do not take reservations.
Fresh (Farm to table)
Hours: Thursday-Monday 11-9 Sunday Brunch 10-2, open till 7 Closed Tuesday and Wednesday
The Mission of FRESH is focused on using seasonal ingredients to create menus that use both local and organic food whenever possible. FRESH is one of our “go to” places for their consistent food quality. It’s a casual restaurant with everything from pasta to beef to fish dishes. They also bake a variety of desserts daily. FRESH does not take reservations.
Gaskins Cabin Steakhouse
Hours: Open Wednesday through Sunday 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
One of our favorites. In an old log cabin, and the place for steaks. Prime rib, Beef Burgundy and of course steaks. If you don’t like steaks, no worry, the other half of their menu has a variety of items which will please your palate. If you’re here during the week, they also have some great specials. We always save room for their delicious chocolate bread pudding.
Hours: Open nightly from 5:00 to 9:00 p.m.
An upscale restaurant in a grand old hotel. The chef has created some exceptional dishes. We’ve tried several dishes from beef to seafood and have been pleased each time.
Le Stick Nouveau
Hours: Thurs. – Sat. (Winter Hours) 5 pm to close
A fabulous new restaurant in Eureka Spring, located below the New Orleans Hotel downtown. Le Stick’s chef is constantly creating new dishes that are sure to please. We love their filet and cod dishes, but honestly we’ve never had any dishes we didn’t like. Check them out the next time you are in town!
Hours: Open for lunch and dinner.
A favorite of the locals in town. We have come to really enjoy Local Flavor and we always get rave reviews from our guests about this restaurant. Their menu has something for everyone.
Mud Street Cafe
Hours: Closed Wednesdays. Open from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. (they now also serve dinner on Friday and Saturday evenings)
This restaurant is downstairs off of Main Street with a good variety of sandwiches and other lunch items. They have Trivial Pursuit cards on every table, so indulge yourself while waiting for lunch. If you’re looking for dessert, they have a whole case full of them.
Small in size, but big on flavor! Nibbles Eatery is a great place to enjoy lunch or coffee in the afternoon. We’ve had their quiche and several types of sandwiches. None have let us down. Located downtown at the top of Spring St.
Hours: Monday through Saturday: 11:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.; Sunday 11:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.
If you are looking for a great burger and rib joint, then try the Rockin’ Pig. We know barbeque is a personal taste, so when we say it’s the best barbeque around, you probably need to know our style is Texas style. The ribs are wet and smoky and fall off the bone. The burgers are top shelf. Also, try the Loaded Sweet Potato Fries, with white cheddar cheese, fresh BBQ pulled pork and drizzled with chipotle cream.
Hours: Open Wednesday through Sunday 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
We like Rogues Manor for their great food and also because it has a little more upscale and romantic feel. And if they ask you if you want rice or garlic mashed potatoes with your entrée, pick the potatoes! They are delicious!
Simply Scrumptious Tea Room
Hours: Open Tuesday to Saturday 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
This restaurant is open only for lunch but their soups, sandwiches and desserts are excellent.
Hours: Open Monday to Saturday from 11:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.
A little bit of everything is served here. This is another place you’ll find the locals. Good burgers and some excellent specials. You can satisfy everyone’s food liking at Sparkys.
Hours: Open Monday to Saturday from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. and 4:30 to 9:00 p.m.
Excellent Thai food and a huge menu to choose from. They also opened up a patio seating area for those who want to enjoy the outdoors while indulging in their spicy food.