Hot Springs National Park
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It’s a national park...in the middle of a city. Hot Springs National Park in Arkansas began as a place of healing and relaxation where people flocked to the warm thermal waters of “The American Spa,” and eventually a city was built up around the hot springs. Today, the park surrounds the north end of the city of Hot Springs - and people still visit to relax in the soothing thermal baths and learn about the wild history of the area.
The weather in the Hot Springs area can vary, depending on the season. Summer temperatures can climb above 100 ° F and the days are often hot and humid. During the winter, temps can fall below 20 ° F and the wind chill can make it feel even colder. Be sure to check the forecast before your visit, especially if you’re planning on doing some hiking in the area, so you can be prepared.
The town of Hot Springs offers a lot to do besides soaking in the baths and hiking around the park. Visit a mountain tower to get a panoramic view of the area, learn about the gangsters of the Roaring Twenties who used to frequent the town, or pet an alligator if you dare.
Inside the grounds, indulge in what might be the most pampering available at a national park - lounge in a warm bath and experience the onsite spa. You can also hike the trails and get a better look at the trees and mountains surrounding the area. There are scheduled events as well, which you can find here. Learn more about the bathhouses, become a tree sleuth, or chat with a ranger while you’re at the hot springs.
- Spring 65-80 F
- Summer 88-95 F
- Fall 75-85 F
- Winter 50-55 F
- Coming soon
- Coming soon
Hot Springs National Park Hiking Trails
There are plenty of places to hike around the park. Check out the mountains nearby, walk by running streams, or find the wacky looking tufa deposits in the area.
Hot Springs and North Mountain Trails
West Mountain Trails
Things to do Outside Hot Springs National Park
RV Rentals Near Hot Springs National Park
Nearby RV Rentals
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RV Resorts & Campsites in Hot Springs National Park
There’s only one campground in the park, but there are plenty nearby at state rec areas and private campgrounds. The Hot Springs National Park campground is first-come, first-served, but if you’re headed to other campgrounds, make sure to reserve your spot.
Campgrounds Near Hot Springs National Park
Find the Best Dumpstations Near Hot Springs National Park
Dumpstations Near Hot Springs National Park
How to get to Hot Springs National Park
There are plenty of options to get to Hot Springs National Park. You can fly, drive your car or RV, or even take a bus into town. There is an airport in Hot Springs that has commercial flights, and a larger airport in Little Rock, about an hour’s drive from the park.
If you’re headed to Hot Springs from Little Rock, take Interstate 30W to US 70W toward Hot Springs. Make a right on Spring Street, and a right on Central Ave. The visitor center is located at 369 Central Ave. It’s important to note that while the visitor center is on Central Ave., parking is limited and only on one side of the street. There is a free city parking garage on Exchange St. you can use as well.
You can also travel to Hot Springs National Park by renting an RV. Traveling by RV allows you to stop when you wish and be comfortable the entire time. If you don’t own an RV, you can rent one in your hometown to drive to the park, or you can fly in and rent an RV closer to your destination.
There is one campground in park grounds and several more nearby. You’ll probably want to make reservations in advance to ensure you have a spot.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, pets are allowed at Hot Springs National Park. Dogs are allowed on all Hot Springs National Park trails and there are several pet waste stations around the park. Pets are not allowed in federal buildings including the visitor center.
Top things to do at Hot Springs National Park include touring the Fordyce Bathhouse, walking along Bathhouse Row and the Grand Promenade, and bathing in the water of the famous springs.
There is one designated campground at Hot Springs National Park - Gulpha Gorge Campground. It accommodates both tents and RVs.
Hot Springs National Park is 37.57 square miles, or 5,550 acres. That includes 26 miles of hiking trails in the park, along with Bathhouse Row, scenic drives, and more.
The best time of year to visit Hot Springs National Park is in late summer, early fall, or spring. Weather in the south tends to be warm into fall and beginning in spring, so visitors can take a dip without being too cold. However, those seasons allow visitors to avoid the crowds of summer for a more pleasant experience.