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Arkansas River Valley, Arkansas

Arkansas - Arkansas River Valley Region

Old World charm, unsurpassed scenic beauty, modern sophistication - it's all here in the Arkansas River Valley.

You'll find pretty little towns such as Ozark and Russellville on the Arkansas River, and you'll find European flavor in the Altus area, the heart of Arkansas Wine Country. Three family-owned wineries dating back to the 1800s and one new one in the area offer tours, tastings and insight into the art of viticulture. You'll find another winery at nearby Paris.

Throughout the valley, the Arkansas River provides exceptional recreation. Lake Dardanelle in the Russellville-Dardanelle area is one of the most popular lakes in the state.

The unsurpassed beauty is best viewed from one of "The Tri-Peaks" that dominate the valley - Nebo, Petit Jean and Magazine. Atop the first two, you'll find state parks that proudly proclaim their Civilian Conservation Corps heritage with 60-year-old-plus housekeeping cabins at both parks and a lodge at Petit Jean. Also at Petit Jean is spectacular Cedar Falls, the park's trademark. Another lofty state park is under development for Magazine, where some of the state's most unspoiled landscape can be found. Currently, you can sightsee and hike, with new facilities opening this fall. These include 18 campsites with water, electric and sewer hookups; a bathhouse; a pavilion and a visitor center with exhibits.

Modern sophistication blends nicely with Old West history at Fort Smith. The state's second largest city is also one of its most historic. At the Fort Smith National Historic Site, you can discover what life was like on the lawless frontier.

And across the river, the refinement of the Victorian era is preserved in all its glory in venerable Van Buren, a mecca for arts, crafts and antiques.

Explore Arkansas River Valley

Cove Lake

In the Ozark National Forest, 160-acre scenic Cove Lake features swimming, hiking, camping, and fishing. There are 28 family-unit campsites, 24 family-unit picnicking sites, restrooms with hot showers, drinking water and boat launching ramp. Boating and jet skis are allowed on Cove Lake. A "no wake"

Paris, AR Recreation

Darby House Museum

The boyhood home of General William O. Darby, leader of Darby's Rangers in World War II; contains personal military memorabilia of the general; also has tributes to Darby and artifacts from Cisterna, Italy, Fort Smith'

Fort Smith, AR Museums

Museum of Prehistory & History

Regional museum with aspects of local history; exhibits on the people (including Native Americans) and events of the Arkansas Ozarks and the Arkansas River Valley; slide show and tour presentations available with reservations.

Russellville, AR Museums

National Scenic 7 Byway

One of the most scenic drives in the country, Scenic 7

Russellville, AR Scenic Byways

Museum of Automobiles

Rotating displays of over fifty cars from 1904-1967

Morrilton, AR Museums

Ozark Highlands Scenic Byway

The Ozark Highlands Scenic Byway includes 35 miles of Ark. 21 from the Ozark National Forest southern boundary north of Clarksville in Johnson County to the northern boundary near the Upper Buffalo Wilderness and Buffalo National River in Newton County. Ark. 16

Clarksville, AR Scenic Byways

Ozark Bridge

Spanning the Arkansas River as Scenic Hwy. 23, this structure is listed as one of the 16 most beautiful long spans in the U.S. by the American Institute of Steel Construction. A lighting project showcases the structure at night.

Ozark, AR Historic Bridges

American Bonsai Nursery

Directions: From I-40 take Exit 7 to I-540 South, then Exit 3 at Van Buren to Ark. 59. Go left for one long block, turn left into the Industrial Park, then go three miles to 5141 Industrial Park Rd Browse "finished"

Van Buren, AR Gardens

Lake Dardanelle State Park

Two park locations on 34,000-acre lake: Russellville (main park) and Dardanelle. Bass fishing, boat ramps, hiking trails, lake tours, pavilion, state-of-the-art visitor center with interactive exhibits, campground, marina, miniature golf

Russellville, AR State Parks

Fort Smith Trolley Museum

Directions: Go south on South 4th from Garrison Avenue. The museum is 4 blocks south of the avenue. You will see a steam locomotive. We are next to the National Cemetery and close to the Fort Smith Museum of History and The Fort Smith Historic site.

Fort Smith, AR Museums

Blue Mountain Wildlife Demonstration Area

Directions: Take Hwy. 23 south out of Booneville, then Hwy. 217 east seven miles to the headquarters building A world-class bird dog field trial area that attracts visitors from throughout the United States and several foreign countries;

Booneville, AR Wildlife Areas

John Paul McConnell Exhibit

Memorabilia of John Paul McConnell, U.S. Air Force Chief of Staff from 1965 to 1969, is on display.

Booneville, AR Exhibits

Explore Arkansas River Valley