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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

Ozark Area Depot Museum

Details the history of Ozark.

Ozark, AR Museums

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

Logan County Museum

Small museum of local history is housed in the old jail where the state's last hanging took place;

Paris, AR Museums

West Garrison Avenue Historic District

One of the oldest districts in the city. GROUPS: Tour giudes available by request.

Fort Smith, AR Historic Districts


Byrd's Adventure Center of the Ozarks

Canoeing and kayaking on the Mulberry River, hiking on the Ozark Highlands Trail, mountain biking, rock climbing for all levels of experience, motorcycle trails and races, horse trails, four-wheel drive obstacle course and competitions

Ozark, AR Visitors Centers

Fort Smith Art Center

Housed in the Vaughn-Schaap House, a Victorian Second Empire structure, the center presents changing exhibits and permanent collections.

Fort Smith, AR Arts


Miss Laura's Visitor Center

Directions: Downtown Fort Smith, just seven miles east of the Interstate 40 exit in Roland, OK; adjacent to the River Parks Amphitheater and Pavilion buildings; three blocks from the Fort Smith National Historic Site. A restored turn-of-the-century brothel that is now the city's visitor center;

Fort Smith, AR Visitors Centers

Arkansas & Missouri Railroad

Three train trips are available on this historic train: round trip from Springdale to historic Van Buren; round trip from historic Van Buren to Winslow; excursion from Fort Smith to Winslow on Sundays, April through September. You'

Van Buren, AR Railroad History

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

Explore Arkansas River Valley