Stress-free kid friendly adventures in Eureka Springs, Arkansas will entertain even the pickiest crowd. You may consider it counterintuitive to plan, organize, and carry out activities for the kids, however in Eureka Springs, Arkansas this task is easier than you think!

Imagine a vacation where you don’t stand in long lines for hours to purchase park tickets, only to stand in another long line to get on a 2 minute ride.

Wild Cats Up Close

Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge (TCWR) is a highly respected big cat sanctuary. Their mission is to provide a lifetime refuge for abused and neglected “Big Cats.” They have concentrated their efforts on abused tigers, lions, leopards, and cougars. Located on a 459 acre refuge in the Ozark Mountains, the refuge houses exotics and a few native animals needing a home and care.

There are several educational tours for kids and adults to take advantage of. Additionally there are day camps available for kids to enroll in during the summer. Kids will enjoy three days of fun, educational crafts, programs, activities, and refuge tours. Plan ahead and contact Turpentine Creek for hours, activities, and rates.

a little white tiger or baby liger
Ziplines through the Ozarks

Explore the beautiful Ozark Mountains by zipping along line after line in the sky. Eureka Springs is now home to two fantastic zip lines, and there is just about something for everyone to soar on.

The staff at Ozark Mountain Ziplines are ready, willing, and able to give your family an amazing daytime of adventures through the treetops. This zipline sports lines up to 120-1800 feet and soars 20-200 feet above the ground. This fun outdoor adventure is sure to take your Eureka Springs vacation over the top! 

The other premium ziplining experience in Eureka Springs is Eureka Springs Zipline. On this zip, you will find a sumptuous tree-based course that includes over one mile of cables. You will venture through the trees, winding around hills and valleys. The first thrill is the 1600-square-foot deck, where you will launch your adventure. The cables are anywhere from 400 to 2000 feet long and a lofty 250 feet high. If ziplining is not in your blood, there are observation areas where guests can watch zipliners.

Child hooked up to zipline equipment with thumps up and helmet on
Experience a Ride On a True Historic Train

A historic train ride on the Eureka Springs & North Arkansas Railway is the perfect stress-free, kid-friendly activity as you return to a slower era. This historic train is the Eureka Springs and North Arkansas Railway, a 1940s-era diesel locomotive established during the age of locomotive transportation. Treat your family to a ride on this beautifully preserved train and railway with three excursion options: the Excursion, Lunch Train, and Dinner Train or Dining Car. You will experience fine dining while riding the historic rails and enjoying the roaring 20s aboard the Eurekan Dining Car. You can take home a few railroad gifts when you shop at the Gift Shop located in the Baggage Room. Refer to the website for the train’s hours of operation and services, which typically run from April through October.

Historic train green an and red in letter eureka springs train
Historic Downtown Eureka Springs

Slap on the walking shoes, hop on a trolley, and make downtown your destination for a day. In fact, you can conveniently catch a trolley from the Trolley stop at your Tall Pines Inn lodging entrance, Stop 104. This Trolley will take you directly downtown, or you can catch Trolleys to other destinations. Unique interest shops are scattered around downtown and offer games and toys for the kids and jewelry, clothing, and pottery for moms. Take five for an ice cream break or just about any refreshments you can imagine, even some of the finest fudge around or light-as-air funnel cake. Of course, a trip downtown wouldn’t be complete without a trip down the rainbow – rainbow stairs, that is!

staircase going up in colors of the rainbow with a man and woman standing at the top and a railing going up the middle
Caving for Kids

Caves are an excellent stress free kid friendly adventure for the family during the summer heat, providing a nice break into the cool cave environment.Onyx Cave is a basic, however excellent, underground experience and may be a good choice if you wish to avoid driving far and have young children. Onyx Cave can be considered a starter cave more than other caves in the area. This cave is less likely to overwhelm those afraid of tight, dark spaces.

Next on the caving consideration list is either War Eagle Cavern or Cosmic Cavern. Both caves are about a 30-minute drive from Eureka Springs but are worth the trip! War Eagle has other fun kid friendly activities to dive into and easily fits into your cave trip.

If you’re looking for a day trip and a spectacular family experience, consider checking out one of the HCTVs top-rated US Caves and Caverns Blanchard Springs Caverns. The caverns, situated two and a half hours east of Eureka Springs, below Arkansas’ Ozark National Park, are well worth the drive. Blanchard Springs Caverns has tours for amateurs and professional cavers alike. The cave constantly changes, calling it the “living cave.” There are different tours, each with different lengths and on various cave levels. You can also book a Wild Cave Tour. If you are a cave fanatic, this cave is worth the trip.

Water spills over moss covered rocks in North Sylamore Creek at Blanchard Springs Caverns in North Arkansas.

Wait – that’s not all there is to do and see with kiddos in Eureka Springs, Arkansas! Check with your lodging, who are area experts, on events and local attractions, or contact the Eureka Springs Chamber of Commerce.