Siloam Springs, a picturesque city nestled in the foothills of the Ozark Mountains, offers visitors a unique blend of natural beauty, vibrant culture, and outdoor recreation. Siloam Springs has something for everyone with its rich history, charming downtown, and numerous parks and trails. This guide highlights the top ten must-visit places and the best things to do in Siloam Springs, AR, for an unforgettable experience.
Explore the Historic Downtown
Start your adventure in Siloam Springs by exploring the historic downtown area. Stroll down the brick-paved streets lined with century-old buildings that house boutiques, antique shops, and local businesses. Many of these buildings are listed on the National Register of Historic Places, including the ornate Siloam Springs Museum, which showcases the city’s history through a variety of exhibits and artifacts.
Relax at City Park
Escape the hustle and bustle of daily life with a visit to City Park, a beautiful green space in the heart of Siloam Springs. The park features lush gardens, walking paths, and picnic areas, making it ideal for a leisurely stroll or family outing. Take advantage of the stunning waterfall and the serene creek that flows through the park, perfect for dipping your toes in on a hot summer day.
Get Your Adrenaline Pumping at Siloam Springs Kayak Park
For those looking for an adrenaline rush, head to Siloam Springs Kayak Park. This unique park features an artificial whitewater park with Class II rapids and adjustable wave shapers. Bring your kayak or rent one on-site and navigate the thrilling rapids or practice your freestyle moves. The park also has a riverside trail and a playground, making it a great destination for the whole family.
Discover Art and Culture at the JBU Windgate Visual Art Gallery
Art enthusiasts will enjoy a visit to the JBU Windgate Visual Art Gallery, located on the campus of John Brown University. This contemporary gallery features rotating exhibitions of regional, national, and international artists. With a focus on promoting visual art education and appreciation, the gallery offers free admission and hosts various workshops and events throughout the year.
Take a Hike at Sager Creek Mountain Bike Trail
Sager Creek Mountain Bike Trail is a hidden gem, offering miles of well-maintained hiking and mountain biking trails. The trail system winds through dense forests, open meadows, and along Sager Creek, providing outdoor enthusiasts with a diverse and challenging experience. Whether you’re a seasoned mountain biker or looking for a peaceful hike in nature, Sager Creek Mountain Bike Trail is a must-visit spot.
Sample Local Brews at Ivory Bill Brewing Company
After a day of exploring, unwind at Ivory Bill Brewing Company, a locally-owned and operated craft brewery. Sample their signature brews, such as the Ivory Bill Pale Ale or the Swoopstout, while enjoying the laid-back atmosphere of their taproom. The brewery also hosts live music and special events, making it a popular gathering spot for locals and visitors.
Delight Your Taste Buds at 28 Springs
Dine in style at 28 Springs, a farm-to-table restaurant that serves up delicious, locally-sourced cuisine. With a seasonal menu, 28 Springs offers a unique dining experience showcasing the best of what Siloam Springs provides. Enjoy dishes like the pan-seared rainbow trout or the smoked pork loin while savoring the elegant ambiance of this downtown eatery.
Catch a Performance at the Sager Creek Arts Center
Look no further than the Sager Creek Arts Center for a night of entertainment. This state-of-the-art venue hosts a variety of performances throughout the year, ranging from theater productions and concerts to dance recitals and comedy shows. With its intimate setting and excellent acoustics, the Sager Creek Arts Center provides a memorable experience for both performers and audiences.
Indulge in Retail Therapy at the Siloam Springs 6th Street Market District
Shopaholics will love the 6th Street Market District, where you can find a treasure trove of locally-owned shops and boutiques. This vibrant shopping district offers a unique retail experience, with shops selling everything from handcrafted jewelry and home decor to vintage clothing and artisanal food products. Be sure to check out the Siloam Springs Farmers Market, which takes place every Saturday from April to October, featuring local produce, baked goods, and handmade crafts.
Connect with Nature at the Wild Wilderness Drive-Through Safari
Last but not least, visit the Wild Wilderness Drive-Through Safari for an up-close encounter with exotic animals. This 400-acre park allows you to observe and interact with animals like zebras, kangaroos, and camels from the comfort of your vehicle. The park also offers a walk-through area where you can feed and pet friendly creatures, making it a fun and educational experience for all ages.
Kid Things to Do in Siloam Springs, AR
Siloam Springs, AR, offers various kid-friendly activities catering to different interests and ages. From outdoor adventures to educational experiences, there are plenty of options to keep children entertained and engaged while visiting this charming city.
- City Park: Take the kids for a fun day outdoors at City Park, which features playgrounds, picnic areas, and walking paths. The park is also home to the famous healing spring, where children can learn about the city’s history and natural resources.
- Twin Springs Park: This park, located along Sager Creek, offers a beautiful setting for families to relax, play, and explore. With a playground, walking paths, and scenic views, Twin Springs Park is great for kids to burn off energy and enjoy the outdoors.
- Siloam Springs Public Library: Stimulate your child’s imagination with a visit to the Siloam Springs Public Library, which offers a wide selection of books, educational resources, and activities for children of all ages.
- Siloam Springs Aquatic Center: Cool off during the summer months at the Siloam Springs Aquatic Center. This facility features a zero-depth entry pool, water slides, and a splash pad area, providing a fun and safe environment for children to enjoy water activities.
- Wild Wilderness Drive-Through Safari: Give your kids an up-close encounter with exotic animals at the Wild Wilderness Drive-Through Safari. Visit this 400-acre park, where you can comfortably watch and interact with animals such as zebras, kangaroos, and camels from your vehicle. Additionally, the park features a walk-through area where children can feed friendly creatures.
- Art Classes and Workshops: Encourage your child’s creativity by enrolling them in art classes or workshops offered by local venues such as the Sager Creek Arts Center and the JBU Windgate Visual Art Gallery. These classes often cater to various age groups and skill levels, providing a fun and engaging way for children to express themselves through art.
- Family Hikes and Nature Walks: Explore the beautiful Ozark Mountain scenery by taking a family hike or nature walk along one of the many trails in the Siloam Springs area. The Sager Creek Mountain Bike Trail and City Lake Park offer family-friendly hiking options with varying difficulty levels.
- Local Events and Festivals: Attend one of the many family-oriented events and festivals hosted in Siloam Springs throughout the year. The Dogwood Festival, Homegrown Festival, and the Siloam Springs Farmers Market are just a few examples of events that offer kid-friendly activities, entertainment, and learning opportunities.
- By incorporating a mix of outdoor adventures, educational experiences, and creative outlets, Siloam Springs, AR, provides an array of kid-friendly activities to keep children entertained and engaged during their visit.
What Is Siloam Springs Known for?
Siloam Springs, a charming city in the Ozark Mountains region of northwest Arkansas, boasts a rich history and a wealth of natural beauty. The city is well-known for several key aspects, including its historic downtown, natural springs, outdoor recreational opportunities, vibrant arts and culture scene, and its strong sense of community.
- Historic Downtown
One of the most iconic features of Siloam Springs is its picturesque historic downtown. The area is characterized by beautiful, century-old buildings that have been meticulously preserved and house an array of local businesses, boutiques, and restaurants. Many of these structures are listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and the downtown area has been recognized as one of the most beautiful Main Streets in America. Walking through the brick-paved streets of downtown Siloam Springs feels like taking a step back in time as the charming architecture and ambiance transport you to a different era.
- Natural Springs
The city’s name, Siloam Springs, derives from the numerous natural springs in the area. The springs have been a major draw for visitors and residents since the city’s founding in the 1800s. The most famous of these springs is the healing spring located in City Park. The healing spring was believed to have therapeutic properties, which attracted many people seeking relief from various ailments. Today, the springs continue to be a significant part of the city’s identity and allure.
- Outdoor Recreation
Siloam Springs is known for its abundant outdoor recreational opportunities. The breathtaking Ozark Mountains surround the city, providing a stunning backdrop for various activities, such as hiking, mountain biking, fishing, and kayaking. Siloam Springs Kayak Park, Sager Creek Mountain Bike Trail, and the numerous city parks offer a wide range of outdoor experiences for visitors and residents to enjoy.
- Vibrant Arts and Culture Scene
The city of Siloam Springs is also well-known for its thriving arts and culture scene. The local community strongly emphasizes supporting and promoting the arts, with venues like the JBU Windgate Visual Art Gallery and Sager Creek Arts Center hosting exhibitions, performances, and workshops throughout the year. The city also holds numerous annual events and festivals celebrating art, music, and culture, such as the Dogwood Festival and the Homegrown Festival.
- Strong Sense of Community
Siloam Springs is recognized for its strong sense of community and friendly atmosphere. The city is home to John Brown University, a private Christian university that contributes to the city’s tight-knit community spirit. The residents of Siloam Springs take pride in supporting local businesses, attending community events, and fostering a welcoming environment for visitors and newcomers.
What Are Some Interesting Facts About Siloam Springs?
Siloam Springs is a city steeped in history, natural beauty, and a strong sense of community. Here are some fascinating facts about this charming Ozark Mountain town that might pique your interest.
- Named after a biblical pool
The city’s name, Siloam Springs, is derived from a biblical reference. In the Bible, the Pool of Siloam was a freshwater reservoir in Jerusalem where Jesus healed a blind man. The healing properties of Siloam Springs’ natural springs were believed to have therapeutic effects, drawing comparisons to the biblical Pool of Siloam.
- Part of the Trail of Tears
Siloam Springs is significant in American history as it lies along the path of the Trail of Tears. In the 1830s, thousands of Native Americans from the Cherokee, Muscogee, Seminole, Chickasaw, and Choctaw tribes were forcibly relocated from their ancestral lands in the southeastern United States to present-day Oklahoma. As they traveled west, they passed through the area that would later become Siloam Springs.
- Home to a rare Ozark trillium
The city is home to a rare plant species called the Ozark trillium (Trillium ozarkanum), which can only be found in a small region of the Ozark Mountains in northwest Arkansas and eastern Oklahoma. This delicate, three-petaled flower is an important part of the area’s unique biodiversity and symbolizes the city’s commitment to preserving its natural heritage.
- Recognized for its beauty
Siloam Springs has been recognized for its beauty on multiple occasions. In 2011, the city was selected as one of the “Prettiest Painted Places in America” by the Paint Quality Institute. Additionally, Siloam Springs was named one of America’s Best Main Streets by Parade Magazine in 2012. These accolades highlight the city’s well-preserved historic downtown and commitment to maintaining its charming aesthetic.
- A haven for public art
Siloam Springs boasts an impressive collection of public art, including murals and sculptures that can be found throughout the city. One of the most iconic pieces is the “Sager Creek Siloam,” a large mural painted on the side of a building in downtown Siloam Springs. This colorful work of art pays tribute to the city’s history, natural beauty, and community spirit.
- Twin city in Germany
Siloam Springs shares a special bond with its sister city, Potsdam, Germany. The partnership began in 1990, fostering cultural exchanges, educational opportunities, and mutual understanding between the two cities. This relationship continues to flourish, with regular visits and collaborative events celebrating the unique aspects of each town.
What Is It Like to Live in Siloam Springs, Arkansas?
Siloam Springs, Arkansas, offers residents a unique blend of small-town charm, natural beauty, and a strong sense of community. Nestled in the picturesque Ozark Mountains, the city provides a serene and welcoming environment that appeals to people of all ages and backgrounds.
One of the defining aspects of life in Siloam Springs is the tight-knit community. Residents take pride in supporting local businesses, attending community events, and fostering a friendly atmosphere welcoming newcomers. The city is home to John Brown University, a private Christian university that further contributes to the close-knit community spirit and offers a variety of educational and cultural opportunities.
The historic downtown area is a focal point for community life in Siloam Springs. With its beautifully preserved century-old buildings, brick-paved streets, and vibrant shopping and dining scene, downtown Siloam Springs is a lively and inviting place to spend time. Regular events, such as the Dogwood Festival, Homegrown Festival, and the weekly farmers market, bring the community together and provide residents with ample opportunities for socializing and entertainment.
Nature lovers will appreciate the abundance of outdoor recreational opportunities available in Siloam Springs. The city is surrounded by the beautiful Ozark Mountains, creating a stunning backdrop for outdoor activities such as hiking, mountain biking, fishing, and kayaking. The numerous city parks, Siloam Springs Kayak Park, and Sager Creek Mountain Bike Trail offer a wide range of outdoor experiences for residents to enjoy and stay active.
Siloam Springs boasts a lively arts and culture scene, catering to a diverse range of tastes. With a variety of venues such as the JBU Windgate Visual Art Gallery and Sager Creek Arts Center, there are plenty of opportunities for residents to engage with and appreciate the arts through exhibitions, performances, and workshops held throughout the year.
Siloam Springs has a relatively low cost of living compared to many other cities, making it an affordable place to call home. The town offers a range of housing options, from charming historic homes to modern developments, catering to different preferences and budgets.
In terms of education, Siloam Springs provides quality public schools for families with children. The Siloam Springs School District is well-regarded for its dedicated teachers and commitment to student success. Additionally, John Brown University offers higher education opportunities within the city.
How Many Springs Are in Siloam Springs?
Siloam Springs, as the name suggests, is known for its natural springs that have played a significant role in the city’s history and development. While there is no definitive count of the exact number of springs in Siloam Springs, several notable ones have helped shape the city’s identity and continue to be prominent features within the community.
One of the most famous springs is the healing spring in the city’s heart at City Park. This spring was believed to have therapeutic properties and attracted people seeking relief from various ailments. As word of the healing spring spread, it drew visitors from far and wide, leading to the town’s establishment around it in the late 19th century.
In addition to the healing spring, several other springs can be found throughout Siloam Springs, many of which are located along Sager Creek, a waterway that flows through the city. These springs contribute to the overall natural beauty of the area and serve as important resources for the local ecosystem.
The springs of Siloam Springs have been cherished and protected by the community, with efforts being made to preserve their natural beauty and maintain their accessibility for residents and visitors to enjoy. The city’s springs continue to be vital to Siloam Springs’ history, identity, and appeal, showcasing the importance of nature and conservation within the community.
Siloam Springs, AR, is a charming city that offers a unique blend of outdoor adventures, cultural experiences, and gastronomical delights. With its picturesque scenery, historic downtown, and array of activities, Siloam Springs is a must-visit destination for travelers seeking a memorable and diverse experience. From exploring the city’s history to breathtaking natural landscapes, there’s no shortage of things to do and places to visit in Siloam Springs. So pack your bags and get ready to embark on an unforgettable adventure in this charming Ozark Mountain town.
Discover the best things to do in Siloam Springs, AR, as we delve into the city’s most enjoyable activities for adults and kids. Learn more details here.