THE DIAMOND LAKES AREA & THINGS TO DO NEAR OUR CABINS
We offer numerous activities on site at Lone Cedar Cabins for your family to enjoy, AND we live in a great area with much to offer including Hot Springs National Park, DeGray Lake, and more! One of your best resources is here. If you want our opinion, here’s a short (well, maybe not so short!) and sweet summary of our favorite things.
Breweries and Winery
- Superior Bathhouse Brewery brews the world’s only thermal water beer. This is a very cool place on Bathhouse Row in downtown Hot Springs. Good food too! 501-624-2337.
- The Winery of Hot Springs. Who doesn’t love a free wine tasting? 501-623-9463.
Canoe Rental and Caddo River Float Trips
- Caddo River Canoe Rental will be your closest in Glenwood, AR. They provide canoe, kayak and tube floats. 888-300-8452 or 870-356-5336.
- Arrowhead Canoe Rentals is in Caddo Gap, AR. They also provide canoe, kayak and tube floats. 870-356-2944.
Twin Creek Crystal Mine is our favorite. They are a small outfit and a bit hard to find! Located in Mount Ida, AR. They do not sift their dirt, which means they do not pull out the best to sell. Whatever you can load is yours. Go prepared to get dirty, bring your own tools and buckets. Knee pads help tremendously. 870-490-0672.
Crater of Diamond State Park is in Murfreesboro, AR. It is the only diamond-producing site that is open to the public. You keep what you find! Again, be prepared with water, tools, etc. Your best diamond hunting is after a rain and only 45 minutes away.
Although there are several flea markets in Hot Springs, these are the two we hit the most:
- Higdon Ferry Road Flea Market 501-520-4181.
- Central Ave Market Place 501-623-4484.
Garvin Woodland Gardens
Garvin Woodland Gardens is a must. We’ve been many times and will go many times again. It is a 210-acre botanical garden owned by the University of Arkansas. There is an admission fee but well worth it. The holiday light display is astonishing. If you think this is all for adults, think again ~ they have a new Children’s Adventure Garden. It is made for exploration. We have been to Garvin Woodland Gardens in all seasons and see something different every time. 800-366-4664 or 501-262-9300.
- Lake Ouachita State Park and Lake Catherine State Park.
- Hot Springs National Park has 26 miles of hiking.
Arkansas Riding Stables operates out of two state parks here. The closest is at DeGray Lake State Park. This is a fun and pretty ride, and we loved it. 501-865-2820. They also offer riding in Lake Catherine State Park. 501-262-0777.
Oaklawn Jockey Club in Hot Springs is the longest continuous live thoroughbred horse racing in the states. We loved seeing the beautiful horses. It’s also fun to go and see all of the ladies in their hats. The season is January through April.
Hot Springs National Park/National Historic Landmark District/Downtown
The historic district was set aside in 1832 to protect the Park’s primary resource – the hot springs. History abounds here. Whether it be from the bathhouses, to the hiking trails (26 miles), to the restaurants or shopping, to the breweries, to the thermal water, to the Promenade, to the Mountain Tower, to the Alligator Farm, to the free Fordyce Bathhouse Museum, to the massages, to the Mountain Valley Spring Company, etc. etc. etc. We love it!
Kids to do list
- Magic Springs Theme and Water Park
- Mid America Science Museum
- Alligator Farm
- Duck Rides
- Pirate’s Cove Adventure Golf
- DeGray Lake State Park – closest (8 miles) and the least crowded.
- Lake Ouachita State Park – good hiking trails.
- Lake Catherine State Park – love the trail to the waterfall.
- Lake Hamilton is closest to Hot Springs and is the busiest.
The Hot Springs Motorcycle Rally is held every September. The parade downtown will make your heart rumble! A number of exciting activities are always scheduled.
- The Big Chill is our favorite! Cozy hangout for cocktails, American grub and live bands playing blues, rock and country.
- The Ohio Club is downtown. Since 1905, Arkansas’s oldest bar. Great hamburgers! Live music too.
- Bubba Brews Pub and Grill. A new place on Lake Hamilton. It’s pretty impressive. They cater to all ages and have a floor for families with kids as well as an over 21 floor.
Ouachita National Forest
Although we are in the foothills, Ouachita National Forest officially starts a little west of here and goes into Oklahoma. It is one of the few mountain ranges that run east and west. Talimena National Scenic Byway (54 miles long) running from Mena, AR, to Talihina, OK. It is a breathtaking drive and a noted motorcycle route. 501-580-6402.
I don’t think there is a “bad” massage to be had in Hot Springs! But Buckstaff Bathhouse, built in 1912, is the only spa on Bathhouse Row in Hot Springs National Park still in operation. Prices start at only $34 and the Traditional Bathing Package is $71. If you love history and tradition this is your place. 501-623-2308. But because they don’t take reservations, we also like either the Chrysalis Day Spa, 501-520-5400, or Destinations Day Spa 501-525-4300.
Of course, Hot Springs has all the chain restaurants, but don’t miss out on these family-owned favorites: