When you’re looking for a fun and easy road trip, Arkansas is always on our mind. It’s a gorgeous drive through the large trees and hills. The drive is only 5-6 hours straight through but we rarely make any road trip without a few stops. Part of road tripping that is so fun is being able to stop in random towns, discover new favorite restaurants and to explore areas that are unfamiliar. It’s a great way to make memories and learn about new places.
The trip from Dallas to Little Rock is about 300 miles depending on your exact starting and ending point. The drive is relatively easy with no major hurdles. While parts of Texas doesn’t have the most beautiful roads to drive through, once you start venturing up North, the landscape starts to change into lush, large trees that are gorgeous.
Before we head out on any road trip, I like to pack a few essentials of our favorite items. I keep a small cooler and everybody’s favorite drink and lots of snacks. While we do stop at gas stations often and for our meals, it’s nice to have our favorites within reach. It helps save on money and time.
Traveling from Dallas, Texas, to Little Rock, Arkansas, offers the opportunity to explore a variety of cities and attractions along the way. Here’s a guide to some cities you might consider stopping in during your journey:
Things to do in Sulphur Springs, Texas
Located about an hour and a half or approximately 80-90 miles outside of Dallas is Sulphur Springs. It’s the half way mark from Dallas to Texarkana. The community offers a variety of specialty shops and dining opportunities. The community enjoys the Interstate 30 experience with family-owned dining opportunities as well as national chains. The I-30 area offers a movie theater, outlet mall, dining, bowling alley and nine hotels.
Want to find some great deals and steals? Stop by Factory Stores of America Outlet Mall for outlet shopping. We love outlet stores for seasonal clothes or random items that we wouldn’t usually purchase. If you love the great outdoors, Cooper Late State Park is the perfect place to stop. You can fish, picnic, swim, boat, paddle, water-ski, hike, bike, bird watch, study nature, stargaze, ride horses, geocache and camp. This is a great option if you’re traveling with little ones who have lots of energy and need to stretch their legs and go for a little run. Hopkins County Veterans Memorial is a great stop to add a little history into your trip.
The Veterans Memorial Park in Heritage Square attracts visitors from near and far. The architecture compliments the adjacent, historic Hopkins County Courthouse and has a park-like atmosphere. The granite memorial is designed to display up to 10,000 names and includes a computerized kiosk allowing visitors to locate individual names, display information on their service, commendations, and view a picture if one is available. Visitors to the memorial have the opportunity to learn about the heroes that have stood ready and willing to serve in order to allow all of us unparalleled freedoms.
If you’re like me, you’re wanting to know where the good food is at. Sulphur Springs has quite a few of individually opened restaurants that are worth a visit. Check out the full list of Sulphur Springs Dining Options.
Sulphur Springs, Texas, offers a mix of attractions and activities for visitors to enjoy. Here are five fun things to do in Sulphur Springs:
Hopkins County Courthouse Square:
- The downtown area of Sulphur Springs is centered around the picturesque Hopkins County Courthouse Square. You can explore the historic architecture, boutique shops, and restaurants in this charming area. Don’t miss the Celebration Market, an artisan and farmers market held on the square.
Sulphur Springs Celebration District:
- This entertainment district is home to various family-friendly activities, including the Kids Kingdom Playground, an extensive play area for children. The district also hosts live music events, festivals, and the annual “Lights of Celebration” holiday lights display.
Coleman Park and Splash Pad:
- Coleman Park is a lovely city park with walking trails, picnic areas, and a scenic pond. The park is also home to a splash pad, making it a perfect spot for families to cool off on hot days. You can also enjoy a round of disc golf at the park’s disc golf course.
Southwest Dairy Museum:
- Learn about the dairy industry and its history in Texas at the Southwest Dairy Museum. The museum features interactive exhibits, dairy artifacts, and a milking parlor tour where you can see cows being milked. It’s an educational and entertaining experience for all ages.
Lake Sulphur Springs:
- If you enjoy outdoor activities, head to Lake Sulphur Springs for fishing, boating, and picnicking. The lake is a popular spot for anglers and nature enthusiasts. You can also find a disc golf course and walking trails in the area.
Sulphur Springs may be a small town, but it offers a blend of history, outdoor recreation, and family-friendly attractions that make it an enjoyable destination for a day trip or a weekend getaway. Whether you’re exploring the downtown square, splashing around at the splash pad, or learning about the dairy industry, there are fun experiences to be had in Sulphur Springs, Texas.
Things to do in Texarkana
About 2.5 to 3 hours or 180 miles outside of Dallas is Texarkana. Texarkana is the half way point to Little Rock! If you didn’t make a stop in Sulpur Springs, this is a great place to stop and explore. Texarkana is named after three states: Texas, Arkansas and Louisiana. The two separate municipalities, Texarkana, Arkansas, and Texarkana, Texas, sometime function as one city. The State Line Post Office and Federal Building at 500 State Line Avenue is the only U.S. post office situated in two states. It is said to be the most photographed courthouse in the country after the Supreme Court Building in Washington D.C. Come straddle the state line and snap a pic while you’re in two states once! Hello, photo opp!
Want to add more history to your trip? Stop by the P.J. Ahern Home for a tour of one of the oldest homes in Texarkana. P.J. Ahern, one of the most influential people to live in Texarkana, built the home in 1906 and his descendants still own it today. During the tour you will see the original early twentieth-century fixtures, including the woodwork throughout the house, the gas and electric combination chandeliers, and the Italian tile fireplaces. Fill your bellies with one of these delicious restaurants in Texarkana before you make your next stop to Little Rock.
Details about Texarkana:
- Located approximately halfway between Dallas and Little Rock, Texarkana is known as the “Twin City” because it straddles the Texas-Arkansas state line.
- Must-See: Visit the Post Office and Federal Building, where you can stand in two states simultaneously.
- Attraction: Take a stroll in the lovely Spring Lake Park or explore the Perot Theatre.
Texarkana, located on the border of Texas and Arkansas, is a unique city known for being divided by the state line and offering visitors a range of attractions and activities. Here are five fun things to do in Texarkana:
Stand in Two States at Once:
- One of the most unique aspects of Texarkana is that you can literally stand in two states at once. Visit the Post Office and Federal Building, which straddles the Texas-Arkansas state line. There’s a marker outside the building where you can pose for photos with one foot in Texas and the other in Arkansas.
Discovery Place Interactive Museum:
- If you’re traveling with family or have an interest in science and history, the Discovery Place Interactive Museum is a great stop. It features hands-on exhibits, including a science center, history exhibits, and a children’s play area. It’s both fun and educational.
- The Perot Theatre, named after philanthropist Ross Perot, is a historic and beautifully restored theater in downtown Texarkana. Check their schedule for concerts, plays, and other performances. Even if there’s nothing scheduled, the theater’s architecture and interior are worth admiring.
Lakes and Outdoor Recreation:
- Texarkana is surrounded by several lakes, making it a hub for outdoor enthusiasts. Wright Patman Lake and Millwood Lake are popular spots for fishing, boating, and hiking. You can also find parks and nature trails for picnicking and wildlife viewing.
Annual Festivals and Events:
- Texarkana hosts a variety of annual festivals and events throughout the year. These events often feature live music, food vendors, and community celebrations. Be sure to check the local event calendar to see if there’s a festival or event happening during your visit.
Texarkana’s unique location and blend of Texas and Arkansas culture make it an intriguing place to explore. Whether you’re enjoying the novelty of straddling state lines or delving into the city’s cultural and recreational offerings, there are plenty of fun things to do in Texarkana.
Things to do in Arkadelphia, Arkansas
Approximately 4 hours or 250 miles outside of Dallas is Arkadelphia, Arkansas. The town was named “Arkadelphia,” a combination of Ark- from the state’s name Arkansas and adelphia from the Greek meaning “brother/place”.
The town has a prime locale near the Ouachita River and Caddo River, which are popular destinations for canoeing, kayaking and fishing. Attractions nearby include DeGray Lake and DeGray Lake Resort State Park, Arkansas’s only resort state park, and the Iron Mountain Trail System, mountain bike trails located on the south shore of DeGray Lake just outside of Arkadelphia.
If you have a few hours to spare and are not on a big hurry to your final destination, DeGray Lake is an amazing place to relax and have some fun. As evidenced by its popularity for fishing, camping, swimming, water-skiing and other water sports, the 13,400-acre DeGray Lake is a prime vacation and weekend getaway in west-central Arkansas. Situated among ridges of the Ouachita Mountains and formed by a dam across the Caddo River, the lake has more than 700 campsites, ranging from full hook-ups to primitive, and some 15 boat-launching ramps on its shores.
Located at 705 Main Street, the Arkadelphia Mural is not to be missed. “The Journey from a Dream to the Promise,” 24- ft. by 65-ft. mural painted by Dave Loewenstien; it depicts a man’s path through his future of becoming a successful educator. The work shows a boy on the left holding a sapling, then a man on the right with a graduation cap handing the sapling off to a child.
If you skipped the last two destinations for good eats, check out one of Arkadelphia’s restaurants for the home stretch.
Arkadelphia, Arkansas, may be a smaller town, but it offers some fun and interesting attractions and activities for visitors to enjoy. Here are five fun things about Arkadelphia:
DeGray Lake Resort State Park:
- This beautiful state park is a haven for outdoor enthusiasts. You can enjoy activities like hiking, camping, fishing, and boating on the 13,800-acre DeGray Lake. The park also has a golf course, swimming areas, and picnic spots, making it a great place for a day of adventure and relaxation.
Ouachita Baptist University Campus:
- The campus of Ouachita Baptist University is known for its picturesque beauty. Strolling through the campus, you can admire the lovely architecture, serene courtyards, and well-maintained gardens. It’s a peaceful and charming place to visit.
Arkadelphia Aquatic Park:
- If you’re visiting Arkadelphia during the warmer months, the Arkadelphia Aquatic Park is a fun place to cool off. It features water slides, a lazy river, a splash pad, and a pool, making it a perfect spot for family fun and relaxation.
Henderson State University:
- Another local institution, Henderson State University, offers a vibrant campus atmosphere. It hosts various cultural events, lectures, and performances that are often open to the public. Check their schedule to see if there’s an interesting event happening during your visit.
Caddo Valley Speedway:
- If you’re a fan of motorsports, the Caddo Valley Speedway might be a fun place to check out. It hosts dirt track racing events, including stock car racing, which can provide an exciting and entertaining evening for racing enthusiasts.
While Arkadelphia may not have the bustling city life of larger metropolises, it offers a mix of outdoor recreation, cultural experiences, and small-town charm that can make your visit enjoyable and memorable. Whether you’re exploring the natural beauty of the state park, taking a leisurely walk on a college campus, or cooling off at the water park, you can find fun things to do in this Arkansas town.
Things to do in Little Rock, Arkansas
Congrats on making the 320 miles trip to Little Rock, Arkansas from Dallas, Texas. Situated on the Arkansas River banks, downtown Little Rock is anchored by a beautifully restored and renovated Robinson Center Performance Hall and the William Jefferson Clinton Presidential Center and Park. In between, you’ll find layers of history and heritage mixed with culture and contemporary style. Listed below are some of our favorite things to do while in Little Rock, Arkansas.
Experience the longest pedestrian and bicycle bridge in North America, built specifically for that use. This impressive structure was named the Big Dam Bridge because of its massive 4,226 foot span built atop Murray Lock and Dam.
The Arkansas State Capitol building was built over a century ago as a replica of the US Capitol and has been used in many movies as a stand in. The Arkansas State Capitol building features Arkansas granite and six bronze doors and three chandeliers crafted by Tiffany’s of New York. The dome has a 24-karat gold plated cupola.
Spend the afternoon at one of Arkansas’ prettiest spots, Pinnacle Mountain State Park. Rising more than 1,000 feet above the Arkansas River Valley, the cone-shaped peak of Pinnacle Mountain is a central Arkansas landmark. Once up top (a fairly easy hike up the western slope at a slow pace), the scenery can’t be beat. Besides the more than 40 miles of hiking trails, there are also the Arkansas Arboretum, a playground and plenty of picnic tables.
The Little Rock Zoo has long been one of Arkansas’ great treasures. Experience the majesty of elephants and rhinos. Marvel at the strength and beauty of lions, tigers and jaguars in our Big Cat Habitat. Monkey around at Spider Monkey or Lemur Islands. Or slither around to the Reptile House to go face-to-fang with a deadly reptile. Don’t forget to visit the Children’s Farm where you can get up-close to the animals.
The Clinton Presidential Center is the home of the Little Rock offices of the Clinton Foundation, the Clinton Presidential Library and Museum, and the Clinton School of Public Service, the first institution in the nation to offer a Master of Public Service (MPS) degree. The Center is a world-class educational and cultural venue offering a variety of educational programs, special events, exhibitions, and lectures, presenting a unique perspective of the work – past, present, and future – of the 42nd President of the United States, William Jefferson Clinton.
I highly suggest checking out the official Little Rock website and use it as a great resource while you are there. It’s a great place to find restaurants, free things to do, and activities that you might have overlooked.
Little Rock, the capital city of Arkansas, offers a variety of fun and interesting activities and attractions for visitors to enjoy. Here are five fun things to do in Little Rock:
Little Rock Central High School National Historic Site:
- Explore the history of the Civil Rights Movement at this historic site. You can take a guided tour of the school, which played a significant role in the desegregation of public schools in the United States. The visitor center offers informative exhibits and films.
River Market District:
- The River Market District is a vibrant area along the Arkansas River with a mix of restaurants, shops, and entertainment venues. It’s a great place to stroll, enjoy live music, dine on local cuisine, and shop for arts and crafts at the Ottenheimer Market Hall.
William J. Clinton Presidential Library and Museum:
- Visit the presidential library and museum of the 42nd President of the United States, Bill Clinton. Explore exhibits, artifacts, and a replica of the Oval Office. The library also offers beautiful views of the Arkansas River and the city skyline.
Pinnacle Mountain State Park:
- Outdoor enthusiasts will enjoy hiking and exploring Pinnacle Mountain State Park. The park offers various trails suitable for different skill levels, including the challenging climb to the summit of Pinnacle Mountain, which rewards hikers with panoramic views of the surrounding area.
Little Rock Zoo:
- The Little Rock Zoo is a fun destination for families and animal lovers. It features a wide range of animals from around the world, including lions, giraffes, and penguins. The zoo also offers educational programs and interactive exhibits.
These are just a few of the fun things you can do in Little Rock, Arkansas. Whether you’re interested in history, outdoor activities, or cultural experiences, Little Rock has something to offer every traveler.
In conclusion, a road trip from Dallas to Little Rock is a journey filled with diverse experiences and hidden gems waiting to be discovered. From the vibrant cultural scene of Dallas to the historic landmarks of Little Rock, this adventure offers a taste of both Texas and Arkansas charm.
Whether you choose to explore the natural beauty of state parks, delve into the history of the Civil Rights Movement, or simply enjoy the scenic drive in between, this road trip promises memories that will last a lifetime. So, pack your bags, hit the road, and embark on this captivating expedition that connects two distinct yet equally captivating cities.
Dallas to Little Rock – a road trip with a touch of southern hospitality and a lot of unforgettable moments. Safe travels!