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Discover the Road Less Traveled
Completed in 1999, the Interstate 530 State Scenic Byway is a relatively new gem for central Arkansas visitors to discover. Travelers will find vibrant wildflowers and rolling woodlands lining the route – and communities like Pine Bluff and McGeehee provide plenty of reasons to stop along the way.
Start from Little Rock, which, together with neighboring North Little Rock, is the Natural State's urban hub. Served by Clinton National Airport, the city offers countless first-rate shopping, dining and entertainment opportunities and is the Arkansas state capital.
Feel presidential when you visit the William J. Clinton Presidential Center & Park. A monument to one of the Land of Opportunity's most beloved native sons, the facility features almost 80,000 Clinton administration artifacts, with everything from photographs and emails to replicas of the Oval Office.
The Clinton Presidential Center is one of many attractions within the River Market District, where Little Rock Locals put their best foot forward. There you'll find not only focal points like Arkansas Arts Center, the Arkansas Museum of Discovery, and the Old State House Museum, but also the Little Rock Farmers' Market – a chance to truly take a taste of central Arkansas through the harvests of local fruit and vegetable growers.
Still hungry? Head to Ottenheimer Market Hall to find a collection of locally owned and operated eateries promising an eclectic array of cuisines representing countries and cultures from all over the world.
Pinnacle Mountain State Park is located at the northwest edge of town, flanked by both the Maumelle River and the Little Maumelle River. Boat docks are set on both sides, making the park a popular launch pad for boating, canoeing and fishing adventures.
Of course if your idea of fun outdoors looks more like a day on the links, Little Rock's got you covered. War Memorial Golf Course offers both executive-style play and the full, 18-hole challenge for players with a little more time on their hands. Hindman Golf Course is also centrally located and is especially beautiful. The tree-lined fairways have earned it status as a certified Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary.
Head southeast on I-530 for just 45 minutes to reach Pine Bluff. The county seat of Jefferson County, the community is home to the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff and many other one-of-a-kind attractions.
History buffs will get a kick out of a visit to the Arkansas Railroad Museum. Boasting a variety of historic locomotives and railroad equipment, including the famous SSW #18 and Engine 819, the museum hosts the Annual Railroadiana Show and Sale every June.
Get a sense of the pride Arkansawyers have for a few more of their native sons at the Arkansas Entertainers Hall of Fame. Part of the Pine Bluff Convention Center – which also includes an An 8,500-seat multi-purpose arena and a 1,900-seat theatre – it's a shrine to celebrities like Johnny Cash, John Grisham, Billy Bob Thornton, and more.
Get more than just a lay of the land with a visit to the Delta Rivers Nature Center. Situated between Lake Pine Bluff and Lake Langhofer on the Black Dog Bayou in Pine Bluff Regional Park, Delta Rivers showcases Arkansas' dynamic ecosystems while housing an array of fish and other aquatic life in the 20,000-gallon Oxbow and Delta Rivers Aquariums.
Also part of the park is the Harbor Oaks Golf Course, where scratch golfers and novices alike shoot for 72 or better on an 18-hole course almost all year round.
Just an hour further to the southeast, McGehee is the confluence of many of the most scenic drives, rides, and outdoor excursions in the state – and with its range of unique and historic attractions, it's a destination in its own right.
Railfans and historians alike will go loco for the McGehee Train Depot, a restored 1910 Missouri-Pacific depot listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It houses the WWII Japanese American Internment Museum and a visitor center, where visitors can find more tips on things to see and do around town.
Wiley A. McGehee Memorial Park is a great place for weary road travelers to get out and stretch. Named for the areas earliest modern settler, the park features a pond packed with ducks – who would assuredly be happy to lighten your load of bread crumbs – as well as tennis courts and plenty of shady picnic spots.
McGehee isn't far from Seven Devils Lake. Despite the ominous name, it's a true nature lover's paradise – thousands of acres of swampy bottom land with wildlife viewing opportunities like none other and countless spots to drop a line for trout and more.