• water flowing over rocks into basin

    Hot Springs

    National Park Arkansas

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  • RFP for Maurice and Libbey Bathhouses

    Requests for Proposals for the Maurice and Libbey Bathhouses are being accepted from 7/7/14 to 1/30/15. Click on the "Management" link in the left column for more information.

  • Elevator closure

    Hot Springs National Park regrets to announce that the elevator in the Fordyce Visitor Center is closed for maintenance. The upper and lower levels are accessible only by stairways. The elevator will be placed back into service in about 4 to 6 weeks.

Nature & Science

 
aerial view of Hot Springs Mountain with the Mountain Tower on the lower left, West Mountain and Music Mountain above the tower and the valley with downtown buildings showing on the right. Photo has a blue hue.

This aerial photo shows how the park and city intertwine.

The hot springs are the primary natural resource of the park, but they have not been preserved in their unaltered state as natural surface phenomena. They have instead been managed to conserve the production of uncontaminated hot water for public use.

The mountains within the park are also managed within this conservation philosophy in order to preserve the hydrological system that feeds the springs. The park and its surrounding mountains exhibit a south-central United States pine-oak-hickory forest ecosystem. The park's vegetation, thermal waters, cold water springs, bathhouses and associated cultural features, foot trails, prehistoric and historic novaculite quarries, and general physiography combine to form an almost 5400 acre area of resource preservation and interpretation that is under the exclusive legislative jurisdiction of the federal government. Another 672.69 acres are within the park boundary but are not federally owned.

The city of Hot Springs, Arkansas, with an approximate population of 33,000, lies immediately outside the park and exerts a significant influence on it.

Did You Know?

black and white photo of bronze eagle on top of limestone

In 1892 U.S. Army Lt. Robert R. Stevens hired the noted Boston firm of Frederick Law Olmsted to create landscaping plans for Hot Springs Reservation, now Hot Springs National Park. Stevens rejected the firm’s plans in 1893, but some features were adopted and still survive today.