Are you planning a trip to Benton, Arkansas, and wondering what to do while you’re there? Don’t worry; we’ve got you covered. Benton is a charming town located in Saline County, Arkansas, and offers plenty of things to see and do. Here are the 15 best things to do in Benton, Arkansas.
Interesting facts about Benton, Arkansas:
- Benton was named after Thomas Hart Benton, a U.S. senator from Missouri who was a strong advocate for the annexation of Texas.
- Benton was founded in 1837 and was incorporated in 1838, making it one of the oldest towns in Arkansas.
- Benton was a center for salt production in the 1800s. The town’s name, Saline, comes from the Latin word for salt.
- The Saline County Courthouse, built in 1901, is one of the most prominent buildings in Benton. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
- The Benton Commercial Historic District is also listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The district includes several historic buildings in downtown Benton.
- The Mid-America Science Museum, located near Benton, has the world’s largest conical Tesla coil. The coil produces a 4 million volt lightning bolt.
- Benton is home to the Arkansas Twisters, a professional indoor football team that played in the National Indoor Football League.
- The Hurricane Lake Wildlife Management Area, located near Benton, is home to a variety of wildlife, including deer, turkey, and waterfowl.
- Benton is located in Saline County, which is known for its rich agricultural heritage. The county produces a variety of crops, including rice, soybeans, and cotton.
- Benton is located just a few miles from the Ouachita National Forest, which offers hiking, camping, and other outdoor recreational opportunities.
Visit the Saline County Courthouse
The Saline County Courthouse is a must-see attraction in Benton. The courthouse was built in 1901 and is a beautiful example of the Beaux-Arts style architecture. The courthouse is open to visitors, and you can explore the building’s history and see some of the original features. Inside the courthouse, you’ll find beautiful marble floors, intricate woodwork, and a stunning rotunda. The courthouse also houses the Saline County History and Heritage Society, where you can learn more about the history of Benton and Saline County.
Explore the Riverside Park
The Riverside Park is a beautiful park located on the banks of the Saline River. The park offers stunning views of the river and has a variety of recreational opportunities. You can take a walk or bike ride on the park’s trails, have a picnic at one of the many picnic areas, or play sports on the park’s fields. The park also has a playground and a splash pad, making it a great place to bring the kids.
Go on a shopping spree at the Riverside Center
The Riverside Center is a shopping and entertainment complex located in Benton. The center has a variety of stores, restaurants, and entertainment options, making it a great place to spend an afternoon or evening. Some of the stores at the Riverside Center include Belk, JCPenney, and Old Navy. The center also has a movie theater and several restaurants, including Chili’s and Colton’s Steakhouse.
Visit the Gann Museum of Saline County
The Gann Museum of Saline County is a local history museum located in Benton. The museum has a collection of artifacts and exhibits that showcase the history of the area. The museum is housed in a historic building that was originally a Carnegie Library. Some of the exhibits at the museum include Native American artifacts, Civil War artifacts, and vintage clothing.
Take a hike at the Lake Catherine State Park
The Lake Catherine State Park is a beautiful park located near Benton. The park has hiking trails, fishing opportunities, and beautiful views of the lake. The park’s hiking trails range in difficulty from easy to moderate and offer stunning views of the lake and surrounding forest. The park also has picnic areas and a marina where you can rent boats.
Go fishing at the Hurricane Lake
The Hurricane Lake is a popular spot for fishing enthusiasts in Benton. The lake has a variety of fish species, including bass, crappie, and catfish. You can also rent a boat and spend the day on the lake. The lake is surrounded by beautiful scenery, making it a great place to relax and enjoy nature.
Have a picnic at the Tyndall Park
The Tyndall Park is a beautiful park located in Benton. The park has picnic areas, playgrounds, and sports fields, making it a great place to spend a day with family and friends. The park also has a walking trail that offers stunning views of the surrounding countryside.
Enjoy the summer at the Benton Aquatic Center
The Benton Aquatic Center is a water park located in Benton. The park has water slides, a lazy river, and a wave pool, making it a great place to cool off during the summer months. The park also has a concession stand and picnic areas, making it a great place to spend the day with family and friends.
Go back in time at the Plantation Agriculture Museum
The Plantation Agriculture Museum is a living history museum located near Benton. The museum showcases the life and work of farmers in Arkansas during the early 20th century. The museum has exhibits that demonstrate how cotton was grown, processed, and turned into finished products. The museum also has a working cotton gin and a reconstructed plantation house. The museum offers educational programs for children and adults, making it a great place to learn about Arkansas’s agricultural history.
Attend a show at the Royal Theater
The Royal Theater is a historic theater located in downtown Benton. The theater was built in the 1920s and has been restored to its former glory. The theater has a beautiful Art Deco interior and is a great place to see a show or movie. The theater hosts a variety of events throughout the year, including live music, comedy shows, and classic movie screenings.
Visit the Mid-America Science Museum
The Mid-America Science Museum is a science museum located near Benton. The museum has hands-on exhibits and interactive displays that showcase the wonders of science. Some of the exhibits at the museum include a tornado simulator, a laser harp, and a giant kaleidoscope. The museum also has a planetarium and an outdoor exhibit area.
Play a round of golf at the Longhills Golf Course
The Longhills Golf Course is a beautiful 18-hole golf course located in Benton. The course has scenic views and is perfect for golf enthusiasts of all levels. The course also has a driving range, a pro shop, and a restaurant. The Longhills Golf Course is a great place to spend a day on the greens.
Go on a historical tour of the Benton Downtown
The Benton Downtown is a historic district that showcases the town’s rich history. You can take a walking tour and see some of the beautiful historic buildings and landmarks in the area. Some of the notable buildings in the district include the Saline County Courthouse, the Royal Theater, and the Benton Commercial Historic District. The downtown area also has a variety of shops and restaurants, making it a great place to spend an afternoon.
Visit the Saline River Canoe Trail
The Saline River Canoe Trail is a beautiful waterway located near Benton. You can rent a canoe and paddle down the river, taking in the natural beauty of the area. The river is surrounded by forests and wildlife, making it a great place to relax and enjoy nature. The canoe trail also has several access points, making it easy to customize your route.
Attend the Benton Farmers’ Market
The Benton Farmers’ Market is a great place to buy fresh produce and locally made goods. The market is open from May to October and is a great way to support local farmers and businesses. You can find a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables, as well as handmade crafts and baked goods. The market also has live music and other entertainment throughout the season.
In conclusion, Benton, Arkansas, has plenty of things to see and do for visitors of all ages. From historic landmarks to outdoor activities and shopping, there’s something for everyone in this charming town. Don’t miss out on these 15 best things to do in Benton, Arkansas, on your next trip to the area.
What is Benton, Arkansas, known for?
Benton, Arkansas, is known for its rich history, beautiful parks, and charming downtown area.
Is Benton, Arkansas, a good place to visit?
Yes, Benton, Arkansas, is a great place to visit for its natural beauty, historic landmarks, and family-friendly activities.
What are the best outdoor activities to do in Benton, Arkansas?
The best outdoor activities to do in Benton, Arkansas, include hiking at the Lake Catherine State Park, fishing at the Hurricane Lake, and canoeing at the Saline River Canoe Trail.
What is the best time to visit Benton, Arkansas?
The best time to visit Benton, Arkansas, is during the spring and fall when the weather is mild and comfortable.
What is the Benton Farmers’ Market?
The Benton Farmers’ Market is a local market where farmers and artisans sell fresh produce and locally made goods. It’s a great way to support the local community and enjoy fresh, healthy food.