Hot Springs, Arkansas Tourism Information

Fifty miles southwest of Little Rock, the spa town of Hot Springs nestles in the heavily forested Zig Zag Mountains on the eastern flank of the Ouachitas. Its thermal waters have attracted visitors since Native Americans used the area as a neutral zone to settle disputes.

Downtown Hot Springs is crammed into a looping wooded valley, barely wide enough to accommodate Central Avenue. Eight magnificent buildings here, behind a lush display of magnolia trees, elms and hedgerows, make up Bathhouse Row. Between 1915 and 1962, the grandest of them all was the Fordyce Bathhouse; today, visitors can still enjoy an old-fashioned, healing hot spring bath at Buckstaff Bathhouse.

Hot Springs City Info

  • Population (year 2000): 35,750
  • Elevation: 632 feet
  • County: Garland
  • Land area: 32.9 square miles
  • Zip code: 71901
  • TV Stations:  4
  • AM Radio Stations:  3
  • FM Radio Stations:  6

Hot Springs Weather and Climate:

  • Average daily temperature — January:  40.2?F, July:  82.2?F
  • Average annual rainfall — 57.6'
  • Average annual snowfall — 5.7'
  • Driest Month:  August
  • Wettest Month:  May

Distances to other Metropolitan Areas from Hot Springs:

  • Atlanta, GA — 575 miles
  • Charleston, SC — 895 miles
  • Charlotte, NC — 822 miles
  • Chicago, IL — 703 miles
  • Dallas, TX — 287 miles
  • Little Rock, AR — 50 miles
  • Memphis, TN — 189 miles
  • Miami, FL — 1,239 miles
  • New Orleans, LA — 493 miles
  • Raleigh, NC — 943 miles
  • St. Louis, MO — 456 miles
  • Washington, DC — 1,065 miles

Hot Springs Safety Phone # and Major Hospitals:

  • Ambulance: 911; Police: 911; Fire: 911
  • Advance Care Hospital (300 Werner Street, Third Floor, 501-609-4300)
  • Hot Springs Surgical Hospital (1636 Higdon Ferry Road, 501-520-2000)
  • Leo N Levi National Hospital (300 Prospect Ave, 501-624-1281)
  • National Park Medical Center Inc (1910 Malvern Avenue, 501-321-1000)
  • St Joseph's Mercy Health Center Inc (300 Werner Street, 501622-1000)

Hot Springs Top Tourism Draws and Seasons:

  • Romancing the Stone
  • Pirate's Cove
  • Magic Springs & Crystal Falls
  • Hot Springs Visitor Center (Including info. About former President Bill Clinton)
  • Grand Promenade
  • Mountain Tower
  • Mid-America Science Museum
  • Josephine Tussaud Wax Museum
  • Garvan Woodland Gardens
  • Arkansas Alligator Farm and Petting Zoo
  • Tiny Town
  • National Park Duck Tours
  • National Park Aquarium
  • Hot Springs Mule Trolley
  • Central Country Music Theater
  • The Bath House Show
  • Mountain Valley Spring Water headquarters tour
  • Belle of Hot Springs riverboat
  • The Pocket Theatre

Hot Springs Major Shopping Areas:

  • Central Avenue in Downtown Hot Springs
  • Hot Springs Factory Outlet Stores, Highway 7 South
  • Canyon Upstairs Mall, 201 Central Ave  71901
  • Temperance Hill Square, 4332 Central Ave., 71913
  • Hot Springs Mall, 4501 Central Ave., 71913

Hot Springs Major Dining Areas:

  • Downtown Hot Springs

Hot Springs Famous Landmarks & Historic Places:

  • Lake Ouachita
  • Ouachita National Forest
  • Hot Springs National Park/Bathhouse Row
  • Fordyce Bathhouse / Park Visitor Center
  • Buckstaff Bathhouse
  • Lake Sylvia
  • Hot Springs Mountain
  • Lake Catherine

Hot Springs Famous Natives and Residents:

  • Alan Ladd, Actor (Birthplace)
  • President Bill Clinton (Resident 1953 — 1964)
  • Billy Bob Thornton, Actor (Birthplace)

Notable Moments in Hot Springs History:

  • 1514 -- Hernando De Soto and his men marched through the area, staying for several weeks to enjoy the special waters.
  • 1832 -- The thermal springs were the attraction for Jean Prudhomme, the first settlers,r as well as others including Ludovicus Belding, who was renting rooms to visitors who were also attracted to the 'healing waters' by 1832.
  • 1832 — Hot Springs named the first National Reservation to preserve the springs.
  • 1875 -- Early settlers fashioned a crude resort out of the wilderness, and after the railroads arrived it became a European-style spa.
  • 1921 — Hot Springs National Park is named.
  • 1920's-1930s --  The mayor reputedly ran a gambling syndicate worth $30 million per annum, and punters included Al Capone and Bugsy Malone.
  • 1989 — Visitor Center for Hot Springs National Park opens.
  • 1992 — There was a surge of interest in the town, as President Clinton lived in Hot Springs from 1953 — 1964.

Interesting facts about Hot Springs:

  • Two of Hot Springs' nicknames include Vapor City and Nation's Health Resort.
  • Hot Springs National Park is the only national park to fall within city limits.
  • To taste the spring water, which lacks the strong sulphuric taste often associated with thermal springs, fill up a container at the drinking fountain at Central and Reserve.
  • Since the 1830s the area now known as Hot Springs National Park has bathed notables as diverse as Franklin D. Roosevelt, Babe Ruth, and Al Capone. The park is entirely surrounded by the city of Hot Springs, the boyhood home of President Bill Clinton.
  • 47 hot springs flow from the southwestern slope of Hot Springs Mountain, at an average temperature of 143 F.

Hot Springs Population and Demographics:

  • Est. population: 36,356 (+1.4% change)
  • Males: 16,778 (46.9%), Females: 18,972 (53.1%)
  • Races in Hot Springs:
    • White Non-Hispanic (76.5%)
    • Black (16.9%)
    • Hispanic (3.8%)
    • Two or more races (1.9%)
    • American Indian (1.5%)
    • Other race (1.0%)
  • Ancestries: United States (11.7%), Irish (11.1%), English (10.8%), German (10.4%), French (2.5%), Scotch-Irish (2.2%).
  • Median resident age: 42.4 years
  • Median household income: $26,040 (year 2000)
  • Median house value: $71,700 (year 2000)

Hot Springs Colleges and Universities:

  • Garland County Community College (Full-Time Enrollment: 1,329; Location: 101 College Dr; Public)
  • Quapaw Technical Institute (Ft Enrollment: 215; Location: 200 Mid America Boulevard........; Public)
  • Hot Springs Beauty College (Ft Enrollment: 57; Location: 634 Malvern Ave; Private, For-Profit)
  • Broadway School Of Real Estate (Location: 1009 W Grand Ave; Private, For-Profit)

Hot Springs Economy & Business:

  • Mountain Valley Spring Water headquarters are located in Hot Springs.
  • The thermal springs are just one of the many natural resources that have aided in the development of Hot Springs. Initial attempts to attract manufacturers were successful. Most manufacturers were small and produced products related to the natural resources of the area - wood, novaculite (whetstones) and alumina (aluminum). Some of the manufacturing plants located to Hot Springs for the simple fact of the quality of life.
  • Today, the local economy is primarily made up of four economic generators - tourism, retirement, manufacturing, and medical services. Abundant timber, clean water and mineral resources have provided the basis for many thriving industries including the continued attraction of tourists.
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