Although it is not a main popular tourist attraction, Bella Vista is gradually becoming a favorite tourist attraction after people discover several amazing places and fun things to do while exploring the area. Bella Vista is a city in Benton County, Arkansas, US. According to Thecrazytourist, the city was first established as a summer resort destination in 1917 and is slowly being inhabited by tourists due to its gorgeous attractions. Bella Vista is a recreational city filled with a wide variety for you and your loved ones to enjoy. Some of the popular tourist attractions in Bella Vista include the Bella Vista Lake, Lake Ann, Blowing Springs, Park, and the Tanyard Creek Nature Trail, to mention a few. Read on to learn more about the 20 best things to do in Bella Vista, Arkansas.
20. Rest at the Cedar Lodge Arkansas Resort
According to Tripping, the Cedar Lodge Arkansas resort is a multi-level wood lodge with expertly-crafted and luxurious bedrooms and can accommodate a large family. It is the perfect location to enjoy your family weekend reunions and trips. The resort is also surrounded by amazing sceneries with spectacular views of the lake.
19. Check Out Delicious Cuisines at El Pueblito
The El Pueblito is a well-known restaurant located at 1705 Forest Hills Blvd, Bella Vista. This is the perfect place to enjoy all your favorite Mexican dishes at an affordable price. Their menu features unique dishes such as shrimps, entrees, and margaritas. It is also located in a calm and relaxed environment that allows you to have a unique dining experience.
18. Bella Vista Art Festivals
Due to many tourist attractions, Bella Vista is home to some of the state’s best galleries and artists. For nearly five decades, Bella Vista has been hosting the Discover Art Festival, which has grown over the years to include approximately 300 craftspeople and artists. In addition to the imaginative, creative display, the festival is known for its delicious meals that will undoubtedly overwhelm your taste buds. The Bella Vista art festival is the surest way to have great fun with your family.
17. Hike around Blowing Springs Park
The Blowing Springs Park is the perfect location to enjoy riding, hiking, or simply relaxing in a calm natural setting. The various routes to choose from include; open terrain, paved, natural, or forested. The park also has many trees with canopies, providing enough shade for hot and humid summer walks.
16. Enjoy the Captivating View at the Pinion Creek Falls
Pinion Creek Fall is one of the simplest waterfalls in Northwest Arkansas. It has several waterfalls, with each having different heights. The falls allow you to have a spectacular view of Lake Ann. If you wish to go past the woods, you can cross a footbridge, and you will be able to spot the Bella Vista Public Library and reach the Back Forty.
15. Visit the Lakepoint Restaurant and Event Center
The Lakepoint Restaurant and Event Center is one of the best eatery joints in the region, located at 101 Marina Dr, Bella Vista. Their updated menu features some classic favorite dishes and other new delicious cuisines. The restaurant is surrounded by a natural and calm environment that is perfect for celebrating anniversaries, weddings, and other significant milestones. You will be amazed by the sight of the magnificent sunset, lake, and reception area overlooking spectacular scenery.
14. Enjoy the Walmart Museum
Despite the numerous lawsuits filed against Walmart, it is undeniable that the company has a relatively fantastic history. If you happen to pass by Bella Vista, you could stop for a break and visit the Walmart Museum to witness the intriguing insight into the significant firm rise to becoming the leading retail store worldwide. According to Groupon, tours to the Walmart Museum are available to all people throughout the day, and there is an old-style café to buy some refreshments.
13. Eat and play at the Highlands Golf Course and ClubHouse
The Highlands Golf Course and ClubHouse is among the famous golf courses in Bella Vista and is situated on the town’s far western side. This golf course allows experiencing a unique golfing experience because there are several golf courses with a perfect blend of long and short holes. Moreover, your safety is considered while in the course as they have employed tight security and very accommodating staff. Your experience at the Highlands Golf Course and Clubhouse is further improved by the bar, pro shop, and restaurant in the clubhouse. Since the course is usually crowded most of the time, you should consider booking in advance.
12. Compton Gardens And Conference Center
This is one of Bella Vista’s most sought-after world-class tourist destinations for large group meetings like seminars, conferences, retreats, and workshops. Due to its spectacular natural environment and beautiful scenes, it is the perfect wedding venue if you are looking forward to making the day of your loved one very special. Additionally, the Compton Gardens and Conference center contains a wide variety of gorgeous plants, flowers, and trees. The garden and grounds are professionally managed and open to everyone on weekdays from mid-morning to late in the afternoon.
11. Set up a Picnic at the Metfield Skills Park
The Metfield Skills Park is the perfect location to enjoy a nice picnic with your friends and family. You also get to play your favorite sports, such as pickleball, basketball, and skating. The park also has a designated area where the adults can comfortably sit and watch their kids as they have a great time.
10. Drive through the Pea Ridge National Military Park
During the Civil War era, Arkansas was a highly-contested state, and as a result, it was mainly occupied by Rebel and Union army soldiers. These soldiers planned on controlling the neighboring states, which was very important to the success of both sides. The Pea Ridge Military Park is one of Bella Vista’s most well-preserved battlegrounds near the Missouri Border. The battle between these two sides took place in March 1862 for two days, where the Union troops won the battle despite being outnumbered. This made them acquire the surrounding border state of Missouri. The Pea Ridge National Military Park is the perfect place for military and Civil War history enthusiasts.
9. Enjoy the Back 40 trail
To all the diehard fans of mountain bikes, you will love your stay at the Bella Vista’s Back 40 trails. Unlike most neighboring towns, Bella Vista is full of rugged terrains that make it the perfect region for mountain biking activities. The Back 40 trails are a significant tourist attraction in the town as it is connected with Arkansas’ Regional Razorback Greenway. Although the trails in Back 40 are very steep and probably not suitable for amateur mountain bikers, they have categorized the trials in order of level of experience and age. Moreover, the Back 40 trails are free for the public and open to all visitors throughout the year.
8. Slaughter Pen Hollow Multi-Use Trail System
Although the Slaughter Pen Hollow Multi-Use Trail System is controlled and governed by the town of Bentonville, its trails still make their way to the city of Bella Vista. The tracks have about 20 miles and make their way through a perfect blend of urban and rural scenery. In some places, the trail follows the course of the gorgeous Arkansas River, allowing for viewing the lovely aesthetic view of the birds of prey, foxes, deer, waterfowl, and even wading birds. Furthermore, the Slaughter Pen Hollow Multi-Use Trail System is easily accessible, free to use, and open to all visitors year-round.
7. Museum Of Native American History
You can also visit the Museum of Native American History to learn more about the region’s Native American history which dates back to thousands of years before the area was inhabited by the Europeans. You will also know how the Native Americans managed to survive in this harsh land. This museum is divided into five distinct sections; each section has its displays, exhibits, and artifacts that showcase how they eked a living by gathering food, protecting themselves from wild animals, and inventing things they used in their daily lives like weapons, baskets, pots, and clothes. According to Trip, the Museum of Native American History is easily accessible to handicapped people.
6. Stop by the Veterans Wall of Honor
The Veterans Wall of Honor is situated on the walking path that makes its way through Bella Vista. It is the ideal place to enjoy some quiet contemplation and pay your respects to the heroic men and women of the armed forces who lost their lives while on duty. The Veterans Wall of Honor contains the names of the area’s fallen soldiers and showcases a fascinating timeline of the many conflicts and wars the United States had been involved in the past years. Moreover, the entrance of the Veterans Wall of Honor leads underneath to a unique archway, and the memorial itself is designed in the form of concentric circles.
5. Mildred B. Cooper Memorial Chapel
The Mildred B. Cooper Chapel is a famous tourist attraction in Bella Vista made of glass, wood, and steel. It is the perfect place to enjoy some alone and quiet time or simply witness the chapel’s unique and spectacular architecture. Once inside the chapel, you will be amazed by the high, arched ceilings and be awed by some of the stunning views of the surrounding grounds. According to Bellavistapoa, the Mildred B. Cooper Memorial Chapel is easily accessible along Memorial Drive in Bella Vista.
4. View The Buckyball
Have you ever heard of the Buckyball and wondered what it is and why it is located in northwest Arkansas? Well, the Buckyball is a large, semi-round sphere that is decorated with multi-colored neon lights. The Buckyball was created by a Hispanic artist and since then has been a unique tourist attraction in Bella Vista. It is free to visit the Buckyball, especially during the night, where you will get to see the fantastic colorful array of neon lights come alive.
3. Visit the War Eagle Cavern
The War Eagle Cavern is the largest privately-owned cave open to tours. This cavern is believed to be a living cave as it continues to change and grow. While at the War Eagle cavern, you will be instructed by a local guide who will educate you on some of the fantastic geologic insight into the natural forces at work that makes the cavern seem alive. Each tour at the cavern lasts for about 45 minutes, but it is offered several times throughout the day. In addition to the very affordable tours, the War Eagle Cavern provides a clear view of the gorgeous Beaver Lake.
2. Enjoy the Tanyard Creek Nature Trail
Are you a fan of outdoor activities? Then you should visit Bella Vista’s Tanyard Creek Nature Trail. The trail was first built by the town’s volunteers as a great community resource and was free to use by everyone in the city. Due to its rural setting, the Tanyard Creek Nature trail allows you to get away from the large town crowds and enjoy the spectacular view of deer and birds of prey. The route is easily accessible as it is situated near the Windsor Lake Dam, and the trail’s entrance is off Highway 340 and a quick drive from downtown Bella Vista. According to Travellens, the morning and afternoon is the best time to visit the Tanyard Creek Nature Trail.
1. Visit the Bella Vista Museum
If it is your first time visiting Bella Vista, you would want to start by getting to know the town’s history and culture. What better way to gain this knowledge than by visiting the Bella Vista museum. The Bella Vista museum is packed with amazing artifacts, exhibits, and artistic displays that are a clear representation of the town’s rich culture and history. You will also learn about the dangerous and inhumane conditions that existed when Bella Vista was less civilized. The Bella Vista museum is the town’s main tourist attraction.