In my last post, I shared that we recently drove from St. Louis to Hot Springs, Arkansas to spend a day. We had never been to Arkansas before let alone Hot Springs so I didn’t know much about it going in. We loved it so much though that we can’t wait to plan our next trip there! (Make sure to read my post about where we stayed in Hot Springs!)
There’s so much to do in Hot Springs but we had two things on our itinerary we definitely wanted to do – Magic Springs and the Mid America Science Museum. With 3 kids, I knew these places would be a hit.
We started off our day at Magic Springs & Crystal Falls which was less than 10 minutes from our hotel. The kids love amusement parks so we were super excited to check out Magic Springs. I had pulled up the website to show the kids and was happy to see a huge selection of kid’s rides for them too! Not only is Magic Springs & Crystal Falls a theme park but it’s a pretty awesome water park too!
From the Carousel and Looney Ballooney to the Bugga Booga Ferris Wheel and Fearless Flyers, there are so many fun kid’s rides that my three year old twin girls and eight year old son enjoyed. The Looney Ballooney was a favorite ride of the whole entire family, we had so much fun and laughed the whole time as we spun around in the air.
In addition to the kid’s rides, there were some great rides for the whole family too. My husband and son loved the bumper cars and the Ozark Mountain Taxi Company was a huge hit too! You’ll also find the Rum Runner Pirate Ship and Diamond Mine Coaster to be great family rides too!
If you’re looking for some thrill, Magic Springs has that too! My son can be a little intimidated to watch these rides, but he was in awe of the Sky Shark and I tried to convince my husband to do it – with this, you experience the thrill of skydiving, hang-gliding and bungee jumping all rolled into one!
The Gauntlet is another ride that you can’t miss while driving up to Magic Springs – it’s a roller coaster with a 110-foot drop into a whirling dervish of five inverted loops and mind-blowing bends. You’ll feel strong side-to-side, up-and-down, and front-to-back forces traveling 2,200 feet of steel coaster insanity all while suspended under the coaster’s tracks at speeds up to 50 mph.
Oh boy, were there lots of good eats! There are several restaurants and stands to choose from but we wanted someplace to sit inside and enjoy lunch. We decided to eat at Smoke On the Water Swine & Dine which we could smell before we even saw it – it smelled of delicious BBQ!
My husband got the famous Hog Trough – it’s pulled pork, nacho cheese and homemade chips! He said it was SO good! My kids loved eating chicken tenders with fries while I enjoyed some BBQ chicken with deviled egg potato salad – YUM!
We didn’t have a chance to get over to the water park since we had more fun to do in Hot Springs but the kids sure wish we did! The water looked so inviting and there were a variety of activities to choose from for the whole family – from the Wave Pool and Splash Pad to the Crystal Lagoon Pool and Bubble-Up Pool! For people that love thrills, the Boogie Blast and the Rapid Falls Raceway looked so exciting!
Make sure to check out all that Magic Springs & Crystal Falls has to offer!
Mid America Science Museum
After our fun at Magic Springs, we headed back to Hotel Hot Springs for a little rest break. We then spent the afternoon at the Mid America Science Museum! The museum was also less than 10 minutes from our hotel is historic Hot Springs and we enjoyed the drive there. I knew that Hayden was going to love this place but was pleasantly surprised that Olivia and Evie were too!
The museum was full of so many fun but great learning opportunities for kids of all ages. Everything is so hands on and got the kids moving and interested. I especially loved that there was a part outside to explore too.
There were so many great exhibits to explore at Mid America Science Museum and we definitely didn’t get to do them all in the few hours we were there! We can’t wait to come back!
Check out all that Mid America Science Museum has to offer!
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Historic Hot Springs
After a full day at Magic Springs and Mid America Science Museum, the kids were ready for dinner. We decided to explore historic Hot Springs and I’m so glad we did. We could have walked from Hotel Hot Springs but there are several lots to park in and even a parking garage so we took advantage of that.
I am a HUGE history buff so I was instantly intrigued about the history of Hot Springs. In 1832, Congress designated Hot Springs as a federal reserve, essentially establishing the first national park. The naturally thermal spring waters found here were believed to have healing properties bringing many people to Hot Springs. Between 1892 and 1923, eight bathhouses were built on what’s known today as Bathhouse Row. There’s even an operating bathhouse now where you can enjoy a private bath from the natural hot springs!
We had so much fun walking the downtown area and popping into stores, stopping to see the natural hot springs and eating dinner.
We stopped for dinner at the Superior Bathhouse Brewery & Distillery, which is in a former bathhouse. It’s also Hot Springs’ first Craft Beer Tasting Room on-site Brewery. My husband and I loved tasting the beer that is made with the natural springs and the food was so good!
We had such a fabulous time exploring Hot Springs, Arkansas. We were so sad that we only had one day there and my husband and I are already talking about making a trip back. I’ve told so many friends and family here in St. Louis that it’s a great place to go for the weekend. When telling my Grandpa, he told me that him and my Grandma spent their honeymoon there over 50 years ago – so fun!
If you’re looking for more information on Hot Springs, check out the official website. You can also connect on Facebook and Twitter too. Don’t forget to check out my post on where we stayed in Hot Springs!
Have you ever been to Hot Springs, Arkansas?
Disclosure: I received compensation on behalf of Visit Arkansas but all thoughts and opinions are 100% my own.