For Memorial Day weekend, I decided to hit the road for a Northwest Arkansas tour.
First stop was the new lodge at Mt. Magazine. It was WAY more than I would have ever expected. Everything was so new, clean and beautiful! The lobby has a huge stone fireplace from floor to ceiling, a gift shop and a restaurant themed “dining above the clouds.” It has a great swimming pool complete with BIG waterslide and two hot tubs.
My absolute favorite about this place was all the wooden rocking chairs set up on the HUGE patio that overlooked the edge of the mountain. You can rock and look over the valley below. I could have stayed in one of those chairs for at least four days. It was absolute heaven.
Our room had a balcony that also overlooked the valley. We were so high up; we were above the fog and practically in the clouds. At night, the sky was so dark it made the stars seem like they were popping out of the pitch-black backdrop. The beds were so comfortable, like pillow tops. I actually slept for 12 straight hours. Our first morning at about 7 a.m., I stepped outside into total quietness, except for a beautiful black and bright blue bird that swooped to the balcony below me.
We hiked up the Signal Hill Trail to the highest point in Arkansas. It has an official marker from the U.S. Department of Interior. There were butterflies everywhere and we were warned to watch for bears! It was awesome!
From Mt. Magazine, we continued our road trip to Altus, Arkansas’ wine country. We visited Chateau Aux Arc (my favorite because they give you chocolate chips to eat while tasting) and Wiederkehr.
From there, we traveled to Fayetteville and checked in at the Inn at the Mill. That’s a unique hotel built from what used to be an actual mill. Very cool and different. We ate an amazing meal at its restaurant, James at the Mill. Each dish was uniquely shaped and stacked like an architectural marvel. The restaurant was constructed around an old tree, which stands in the middle. We loved the food so much that we packed the leftovers on ice and took them with us in a cooler. We ate them for a picnic lunch the next day.
I’ve never seen this part of the state, so we had fun driving around Fayetteville, Rogers (amazing shopping, although nothing was open on a Sunday), and visited the original Wal-Mart in Bentonville. There was a ton of retail construction going on in Rogers. I’m anxious to go back this fall to see a new shopping center we saw going up. It looked very classy!
We also spent an afternoon in Eureka Springs. It was very crowded for the holiday weekend, but the view from the Crescent Hotel was breathtaking. They were setting up for a wedding on the front lawn.
This trip was a great way to spend a long weekend. The driving was easy, never felt like too much. I can’t wait to go back to the lodge at Mt. Magazine!