Things To Know Before You Come
Hot Springs National Park is in an urban area, surrounding the north end of the city of Hot Springs. There are no park-owned parking areas, but the city has a large parking deck one block west of Bathhouse Row and there are parking spaces along the downtown streets and several private parking lots.
For information on the park's firearms policy, please read more about it here.
The city of Hot Springs also goes by the name Hot Springs National Park and many businesses not related to the federal national park use the words "national park" in their business name. The official National Park Service arrowhead will be displayed at the federal Hot Springs National Park facilities.
The hot springs only emerge in the downtown Bathhouse Row area. To use them you must go to a bathhouse. Here's more information. If you want to collect spring water to take home, you can bring bottles or jugs to do so. To find out more about drinking the water, read this.
You can find out more about bathhouses and the traditional therapeutic bath by watching "Taking the Baths" in the visitor center at the Fordyce Bathhouse. Look at the exhibits to find out how the town grew up around the hot springs.
As in all communities and parks, crimes against property and visitors may occur and you must use good judgment to protect your property and yourself. Hot Springs National Park encourages you to lock your vehicle and ensure property is locked in the trunk of your vehicle or hidden from view; hold or carry personal possessions securely; avoid dark and isolated areas; and, walk, run, and hike in pairs or groups. In the event of criminal activity, you should go to the nearest telephone and call 911 to report the incident or call our Law Enforcement Dispatch at 501-620-6739.
Firewood Alert: Destructive Insects May Be Hitching a Ride!
The Arkansas State Plant Board has implemented an emergency quarantine to slow the spread of Emerald Ash Borer. Twenty-five counties in Arkansas are included in the ash quarantine, including Garland County--the one containing Hot Springs National Park. Quarantined items include firewood of all hardwood species, and the following ash items: nursery stock; green lumber with bark attached; other living material; dead, cut, or fallen wood, including logs, pulpwood, stumps, roots, branches, mulch, and composted/uncomposted chips (1 inch or greater). Firewood is the only quarantined item that relates to all hardwood; all other quarantined items are relative to ash, only.
Arkansas Agriculture Department/Arkansas State Plant Board officials confirmed that the Emerald Ash Borer, an invasive beetle that attacks and kills ash trees, has been found in Hot Spring, Clark, and Nevada counties. The possession of firewood, whether hardwood or softwood, originating from a location for which a federal or state firewood quarantine is in effect is prohibited in Hot Springs National Park. This closure prohibits the movement of firewood into the park from counties adjacent to the park for which a federal or state quarantine is in place, even if the quarantine allows for movement within the county. Failure to comply may result in a citation or seizure of firewood.
Did You Know?
Hot Springs Reservation, the first designation of Hot Springs National Park, was set aside by Congress in 1832. This makes Hot Springs National Park the oldest unit in the national park system, 40 years older than Yellowstone National Park.