3 Days in Hot Springs, Arkansas — Itinerary

Hot Springs is known for its healing springs of course, but this historic city also has an eclectic shopping scene and gangster history, set amidst a row of bathhouses.

Check in at Oaklawn Racing Casino Resort.

Evening boat cruise on Lake Hamilton.

Dinner at Taco Mama.

All food at Taco Mama is hand prepared and made daily with the finest and freshest ingredients available.

Day 2

Breakfast at The Pancake Shop.

The history of The Pancake Shop is intertwined with Hot Springs itself. Opening in 1940,
the shop has exclusively served breakfast, and the original menu hangs on the wall. Once the pancake shop was acquired by Tom and Ruth Ardman, it became a family business, run by daughter Keely DeSalvo to this day. Her Savory Pantry artisan food boutique is situated right next door. Located right across the street from the historic Arlington Hotel, the restaurant is a literal taste of Hot Springs history.

Visit the Hot Springs Mountain Tower and tour the Hot Springs National Park.

Water was the reason people first settled in Hot Springs, and mineral water is the reason why people keep coming to Hot Springs today. The National Park surrounds the city, showcasing the natural springs that provide the thermal mineral water for all the spas in downtown Hot Springs.

National Park – 47 mineral hot springs, pumping one million gallons of water a day — was
the reason people first settled in Hot Springs. And mineral water is the reason why people keep coming to Hot Springs today. The National Park surrounds the city, showcasing the natural springs that provide the thermal mineral water for all the bathhouses originally located in downtown Hot Springs. Once you see the origins of the thermal water, you can view where much of the water traditionally ended up: at Bathhouse Row.

Enjoy a walking tour of these architectural wonders at Bathhouse Row.

Including the Buckstaff, Fordyce, Hale, Lamar, Maurice, Ozark, Quapaw and Superior bathhouses.

Lunch at Superior Bathhouse Brewery and Distillery.

After lying vacant for 30 years, the Superior Bathhouse was re-imagined as a brewery, craft beer tasting room, full-service restaurant and event venue. They were the first of many breweries in Hot Springs, and the world’s first to utilize the thermal spring water as a main ingredient. In essence, any guest of Superior Bathhouse Brewery and Distillery will have Hot Springs on tap.

Enjoy a traditional bath at Buckstaff Bathhouse.

The Buckstaff Bath House Co. was built by a group of investors (stockholders) starting in 1911 with the purpose of providing a place where people could go to receive the benefits of the natural mineral waters found only in Hot Springs National Park. Built in the Roman Gothic style of architecture the Buckstaff opened in 1912 and currently it remains the only operational traditional bathhouse of the original 8 on Bath House Row. Outside of the Buckstaff there are only four other facilities that provide similar services in the Hot Springs area. The Buckstaff Bath House still today operates and provides visitors the opportunity to experience the services that have been offered since 1912 with only minor changes to improve the benefits of the waters used along with a safe atmosphere for all that wish to partake of them.

Dinner at Deluca’s Pizzeria,

where fresh dough is made every day by hand, the ingredients are fresh, and the pizza is
traditional New York style. Anthony Valinoti, the owner, named the pizzeria after his grandfather Pat Deluca and took inspiration from his Italian heritage to create the best pizza in Arkansas. Deluca’s was recently named one of the “Top 101 Best Pizzas in America” by The Daily Meal, so be sure to grab a slice and enjoy!

Evening drinks at The Ohio Club.

After dinner, head over to The Ohio Club – The Ohio Club has been a stop off place for many a
celebrity. Al Capone, Bugsy Segel, Bugs Moran, Lucky Luciano, just to name a few of the gangsters and it was also visited by many Major League Ball players since they had springs training in Hot Springs in the early 1900’s. Babe Ruth was the most famous to visit. Because of all the gambling that went on in Hot Springs, many headliner talents were brought to Hot Springs. In 1915 Al Jolson performed at the Ohio Club, Mid 30’s saw Mae West perform and an entire host of Blues and Jazz performers played though the 60’s.

Day 3

Breakfast at the hotel, then enjoy a scenic tour of Garvan Woodland Gardens.

Nestled in the picturesque Ouachita Mountains of Southwest Arkansas, the 210-acre gardens are a wonderful gift from local industrialist and philanthropist Verna Cook Garvan. The mission of Garvan Woodland Gardens is to preserve and enhance the Ouachita environment. This includes developing and sustaining gardens, landscapes, structures of exceptional aesthetics, design, and construction. From the dynamic architectural structures of renowned architect Fay Jones to the majestic lakeside botanical landscapes, Garvan Woodland Gardens offers tranquil sights at every turn.

Lunch at Hotel Hale.

Built as a bathhouse in 1892, this newly restored boutique hotel includes nine suites. The restaurant, Eden, is home to a beautiful skylight that gives guests natural lighting by which to eat during the day and offers some stargazing at night.

Taste the flavors of Hot Springs with stops at several local favorite eateries!

Stop 1: Visit Mountain Valley Spring Water
Stop 2: Enjoy a guided tasting at Crystal Ridge Distillery
Stop 3: Don’t miss McClard’s BAR-B-Q – a staple in Hot Springs since 1928

Hike the Northwoods trail system.

Experience 26 miles of world class mountain biking and hiking trails just five minutes from downtown Hot Springs. The Northwoods system includes Green, Blue and Black single track, multi-track, flow trails, jump lines and the Lucky 13 expert section. The Cedar Glades trailhead includes a bike skills park. Northwoods is home to the annual Gudrun MTB Festival each November. Bikers, hikers and trail runners are all welcome.

Dinner at Steinhaus Keller.

As you wind your way down the into the bedrock of Spencer’s Corner you are transported to Germany. With an old world grotto feel of exposed rock and barreled ceilings, it’s a true German Rathskeller. The lush biergarten located in the atrium of the building features full service dining, heaters/fans, and a pet friendly environment. Chef/Owner David McGuire creates culinary magic with authentic recipes and ingredients from the Bavarian region of Germany. To round off your German experience, the bar features the state’s largest selection of German and European bier. Dust off your stein and Prost it like a true German!

Evening drinks at The Rooftop at The Waters Hotel.
After dinner, head over to The Rooftop at The Waters Hotel – Given its name, The Rooftop sits atop The Waters Hotel and The Avenue Restaurant. Enjoy a wide variety of drinks, appetizers while taking in breathtaking views of Bathhouse Row.

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