According to an article published in Travel & Leisure Magazine written by Jim Becker, senior travelers visit this historic community of 2,000 -hidden away in the Arkansas Ozarks- for many reasons: “great ‘Main Street’ town”, a designated “Distinctive Destination” in America by the National Trust For Historic Preservation, and the fact that it is truly a “resort village”. However, “active” seniors flock to enjoy this Extraordinary Escape as it pairs together interesting and enriching activities perfect for just two.
“Active seniors come to Eureka Springs in late summer not to sit in a rocker on one of our verandas and watch the clouds drift by,” explained Jack Moyer, general manager of two local historic hotels. “Rather they come here to race past the clouds while flying along on one of Arkansas’ largest zip lines with no waiting in line behind dozens and dozens of children. These are today’s seniors.”
Eureka Springs, in rebranding itself as the “Extraordinary Escape”, also made a real commitment to the outdoors. Blessed with its location between two rivers and three lakes and within an hour to the Buffalo River Region, visitors enjoy boating, canoeing, kayaking and the newest trend of stand-up paddle boarding on its adjacent lakes -Beaver, Table Rock and Leatherwood- and fishing, floating and scenic hikes are often found at the area rivers -White, Kings and Buffalo. Eureka Springs also boasts an urban trail system through many of its parks and past its 63 springs locations. Some trails reveal a hidden staircase or earthen path that leads up to “the crown at the top of the town”, the famous Crescent Hotel. These simple strolls can turn a shopping sojourn into a challenging hiking experience just by turning a corner. Mountain bikers are discovering that many of these hiking trails second as a challenging mountain bike route. The authority site for a full listing of outdoor activities is www.EurekaSpringsOnline.com/outdoors.
Of course fall travel brings motorcyclists to the Ozarks. Riders never stop grinning once they have accepted the challenge of some of our local and area rides like the number one biker ride in the country, ‘The Pig Trail’ which is Arkansas Highway 23.” Great rides are profiled on EurekaSpringsMotorcycleRides.com and ArkansasArtTrail.com and include easy day trips to such sites as Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Pea Ridge National Military Park and the Buffalo River Region. Several Eureka hotels offer overnight covered and locked motorcycle parking with lodging.
Though active seniors may enjoy Eureka Springs’ thrills and excitement by day, it’s the relaxation and entertainment by night that make this destination stand alone as Arkansas’ premier resort destination. Offering more than 2,000 affordable guest rooms ready to embrace visitors as the sun begins to sink but not before enjoying live entertainment, diving into a great meal, or giving in to the well-trained hands of a massage therapist at one Eureka’s numerous spas.
Live entertainment found on the 21 & Fun entertainment listing or the professional shows including Intrigue Theater, The Great Passion Play, or a Crescent Hotel ghost tour offer outstanding and truly unique evening performances. More than 100 area restaurants, including two dozen of the state’s finest, are located in Eureka Springs. Restaurant listings with local favorites may be found at EurekaSpringsRestaurant.com and area attractions are at ReserveEureka.com. Local spa massage professionals work hard to transform tired bodies into a relaxed state. Unique garden settings coupled with well-known national brands like Aveda and Bare Minerals offer patrons an exceptional and pleasant renewal experience.
Whether one refers to Eureka Springs as “The Little Switzerland of America” or “The Stair-Step Town” as Becker did or by the appellation adopted by the city, “The Extraordinary Escape”, it seems active seniors call it “the place to be” for a late summer vacation.