If you are on the lookout for kid-friendly places in Arkansas, this list of 10 Awesome Places to Take Your Kids in Arkansas This Summer is sure to help. From thrill rides to a historic and still functional submarine, you are sure to find something to please the pickiest kids.
10 Awesome Places to Take Your Kids in Arkansas This Summer
When people think about taking a family vacation, the state of Arkansas might not be the first place that comes to mind. But “the Natural State” is a great place to find all kinds of family fun. There are many kid-friendly places in Arkansas to choose from. Whether your kids love learning science in a museum filled with hands-on activities or prefer screaming their way down a giant water slide, you’re sure to find a great place to take them.
Even Arkansas locals will enjoy visiting many of the places on this list. From a living cave that changes every year to theme parks offering Season Passes at a great price, you’ll find some great ways to alleviate that summer boredom!
Arkansas Museum of Discovery
Arkansas Museum of Discovery – Little Rock, AR (Arkansas Museum of Discovery)
Voted one of the best science museums in the country by Mensa, the Arkansas Museum of Discovery has more than 90 hands-on exhibits that are so fun to interact with, kids (and adults) won’t even mind that they are learning! Whether you live in Arkansas or are planning a visit, be sure to check out their website to see their upcoming events and exhibits. And if you live in the Little Rock area, they have a great Summer Camp program for kids ages 6 through 13!
Mid-America Science Museum
Mid-America Science Museum – Hot Springs National Park, AR (Mid America Science Museum)
Another great location for science-loving kids is the Mid-America Science Museum. Not only is it one of the best kid-friendly places in Arkansas, it is affiliated with the Smithsonian, so you know it’s great! Kids will enjoy more than 100 exhibits designed to spark curiosity about the world around them. There is so much to see and enjoy at this wonderful museum, including the Oaklawn Foundation Digital Dome planetarium, you may need more than one trip to experience everything it has to offer!
Central Arkansas Nature Center
Central Arkansas Nature Center – Little Rock, AR (Central Arkansas Nature Center)
Visitors to Arkansas cannot help but notice the beauty of this Ozark state. A trip to the Central Arkansas Nature Center is a great way to learn all about the natural land. Visit the old trapper’s cabin before heading out to enjoy the beauty of the many walking trails so the kids can burn off some of that vacation energy. Before your trip, make sure to check out their website and download some of the free coloring books you can find in the Kid’s Corner.
Wild River Country
Wild River Country – North Little Rock, AR (Wild River Country)
Arkansas summers can be pretty hot and humid at times. If you and your kids are looking for a great way to beat the heat, Wild River Country is one of the coolest kid-friendly places in Arkansas. From thrilling roller coaster style attractions that will get your blood pumping, to the fun wave pool and family raft ride, you’ll find thirteen wonderful ways to cool off from the summer sun. And if you happen to live in Arkansas, the Wild River Country Season Pass is worth its weight in gold!
The Galaxy Connection Museum & Gift Shop
The Galaxy Connection Museum & Gift Shop – Hot Springs, AR (The Galaxy Connection Museum & Gift Shop)
If you or your kids love Star Wars, no trip to “the Natural State” will be complete without a visit to The Galaxy Connection Museum & Gift Shop! This privately owned museum features an incredible collection of Star Wars and Superhero toys, life-size figures, and more. Your kids can even dress up as some of their favorite characters. This fun and friendly museum might end up being your favorite part of your whole Arkansas vacation!
Garvan Woodland Gardens
Garvan Woodland Gardens – Hot Springs National Park, AR (Garvan Woodland Gardens)
The beautiful Garvan Woodland Gardens is a great place to take kids who love nature. This botanical garden is part of the University of Arkansas and is surrounded by the beautiful Ouachita Mountains. These beautiful botanical gardens will astound you with the spectacular beauty of Arkansas while teaching you all about the diverse ecosystem of this southern state. Whether you are visiting the Ozarks for vacation or wanting to learn more about your home state, the Garvan Woodland Gardens are a must-see!
Blanchard Springs Caverns
Blanchard Springs Caverns – Northern Arkansas (Blanchard Springs Caverns)
Located in Northern Arkansas, two-and-a-half hours out of Little Rock, the Blanchard Springs Caverns is an amazing way to escape the humid summer heat. Even the most digitally-inclined kids will find themselves in awe of these incredible caverns and their enchanting beauty. This “living” cave is in a constant state of change, so if you happen to live in the area, it is worth visiting whenever you can. And on a hot summer day, the 58-degree temperatures in these stunning caverns feels downright heavenly!
Hot Springs Mountain Tower
Hot Springs Mountain Tower – Hot Springs, AR (Hot Springs Mountain Tower)
One of the more unexpected kid-friendly places in Arkansas is the Hot Springs Mountain Tower. If you and your kids love a great view, you owe it to yourselves to pay a visit. Located on the top of Hot Springs Mountain, the tower offers you a breath-taking panoramic view of around 140 miles of Hot Springs National Park and the Ouachita Mountains. This stunning view is a great way to drink in the natural splendor of Arkansas – a pleasurable sight whether you are a first-time visitor or a life-long resident!
Arkansas Inland Maritime Museum
Arkansas Inland Maritime Museum – North Little Rock, AR (Arkansas Inland Maritime Museum)
Located on the shores of the beautiful Arkansas River, the Arkansas Inland Maritime Museum is a must-see for history buffs. Or for any kid who loves the military, boats, and submarines. Take a step back in history when you visit the tugboat Hoda from the Pearl Harbor attack of 1941. When you climb down the 14-foot ladder into the submarine USS Razorback (SS-394), you’ll enter the world at the end of World War II. Can you believe that you can actually explore an authentically maintained submarine that is still 90% functional?
Magic Springs Theme and Water Park
Magic Springs Theme and Water Park – Hot Springs, AR (Magic Springs Theme and Water Park)
If you are looking for a theme park adventure, the Magic Springs Theme and Water Park have it all. From scary thrill rides to easy and fun family rides and rides designed just for kids, there is something for every level. If you’ve ever wanted to skydive or bungee jump, the Sky Shark is just your ticket. Or cool off from the summer heat while riding on a big raft with your family on the Kodiak Canyon Adventure River. With so much fun between two big parks, you might want to just stay and play for several days. And if you are local, a Season Pass is your ticket for fun all summer long!