Here’s an abbreviated agenda for your crew to maximize your time and still have a blast (Spoiler alert: you’re going to book a week next time!)



Head to a local favorite, Fisherman’s Wharf, for a casual, fun meal overlooking Lake Hamilton. If you’ve got a boat, come by water, dock, then dine.

After-dinner fun
Grab a spot by a fire pit back at your accommodations to roast s’mores for dessert.


Snag a table at The Pancake Shop for a stack of the city’s best flapjacks and popular breakfast classics.

Morning activities
Walk historic Bathhouse Row to explore the landmarks, and wander behind the promenade to see the thermal spring that gave Hot Springs its name. We recommend a ranger-led tour or guided walk (tours begin daily 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. at Fordyce Bathhouse). Afterward, ride to the top of Hot Springs Mountain Tower for epic views and family pictures.

Head to Taco Mama or Cafe 1217 (two popular lunch spots that sit side-by-side). If you’re in the mood for sandwiches and salads, Cafe 1217 is the right choice. If you’re craving chips, queso and creative tacos, Taco Mama is a must.

Head back to your accommodations to let the kids swim, nap or just freshen up before dinner.

Afternoon snack
Share Bavarian soft pretzels at Superior Bathhouse Brewery. Craving something sweeter? Ice cream shops are plentiful downtown: Frosty Treat, Chill and Go, Mamoo’s Creamery, Pour Some Sugar on Me Sweet Shoppe, Kilwins.

Afternoon activities
Nearby, the quirky Arkansas Alligator Farm & Petting Zoo offers an unforgettable experience. There’s a reason it’s been a tourist attraction since 1902.

No family visit to Hot Springs is complete without a pie at celebrity-endorsed DeLuca’s Pizza. Derek Jeter, Dave Portnoy, Chris Hemsworth, Harry Connick Jr. and Aaron Rogers have not only been spotted here but also sing the brick-oven pizza’s praises.

After-dinner fun
Putt your way through the world of 18th-century buccaneers as you wind through mountain caves, over footbridges and beneath cascading waterfalls at Pirate’s Cove Adventure Golf mini golf.


Parents can perk up with a latte at JavaPrimo Coffee House, Cafe & More. The menu offers mouth-watering morning favorites like waffles, eggs benedict, classic breakfast platters, quiche, tacos and more.

Set aside a couple hours (or more) to let your children roam while they explore the renowned Mid-America Science Museum, which boasts more than 100 hands-on exhibits, including the Science Skywalk & Light Bridge—elevated 40 feet above the forest floor. The gift shop will supply them with a perfect souvenir.

On your way out of town, stop for lunch at Bleu Monkey Grill, a lively but comfortable restaurant with a large, eclectic menu and family-friendly atmosphere. Be sure to share the Monkey Nachos or fan-fave Mac & Cheese Balls.

Pack up and say goodbye to your accommodations knowing you can rebook and come back for more Hot Springs fun anytime—after all, there’s so much more to do!

More Kid-approved Activities

Should time allow, or sub into the schedule

  • Garvan Woodland Gardens
  • Magic Springs Theme & Water Park (mid-April-October)
  • Crater of Diamonds State Park (dig for real diamonds!)
  • The Gangster Museum of America
  • Mountain Harbor Riding Stable
  • Rent a boat; a day on the lake
Lodging that Kids Love
  • Mountain Harbor Resort & Spa
  • Treehouse rental
  • Lake house rental
  • Hot Springs KOA Kampgrounds, a cabin at Hot Springs National Park
  • Willow Beach Resort
  • A covered wagon or tipi at Fox Pass Cabins