2018 Keystone Outback
2018 Keystone Outback
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Heading to Arkansas for a long-awaited vacation may not seem all that exciting, but Arkansas is known as the Natural State and has spectacular views and breathtaking state parks. Spend a weekend RV camping at Jacksonport State Park and unplug from the demands of everyday life. Located just outside of Newport, near Jacksonport, this smaller park consists of 164 acres and houses the 1872 Jackson Courthouse historical site.
Book an RV in Jackson County and head over to the state park RV campgrounds for a fun-filled family vacation. Bald Knob is only about a 40-minute drive to the south of the park, where you can stock up on supplies before parking your rig for the weekend. Head southwest of Jacksonport State Park and visit Little Rock, the state capitol.
Don't stay cooped up in your camper rental while you're camping at Jacksonport State Park; get outside and appreciate the natural beauty surrounding you. Take a hike along the Tunstall Riverwalk. This trail follows the White River from the campgrounds to the boat launch ramp and circles around the Tunstall Riverwalk Conservation Area. When visiting during the spring and summer months, the conservation area is filled with colorful wildflowers. Take your camera along to snap some vivid, breathtaking photos to share on social media.
Birdwatchers flock to Jacksonport State Park and enjoy staying at the park’s RV campgrounds. The park office has a bird guide where you can check off the different birds you spot while visiting the park. There are several prime locations to view many of the park’s bird friends, including the Tunstall Riverwalk, where orioles and woodpeckers are most often seen. The campground is also a favorite place for orioles to nest. Guests are encouraged to share their birdwatching experiences with others on social media by snapping photos of the species they see on their Jacksonport State Park camping trip.
Plan your visit in the springtime and spend days watching the butterflies as they flood the Tunstall Riverwalk Conservation Area. It's best to remember the butterfly population within the park does fluctuate as the climate changes. You can pick up a butterfly identification booklet and checklist at the park office and mark off the types of butterflies you see. By filling out the checklist, you're helping the park track the butterfly populations throughout the state. Remember to keep your camera handy to snap photos of the butterflies and moths you see while exploring the park.
The 1872 Jackson Courthouse has been fully restored and is a big draw for visitors to the park. The first Jackson County Courthouse was a small wooden courthouse located in Litchfield and was built in 1832. However, as the county grew, a two-story brick Georgian structure was built in Elizabeth in 1842. The flood of 1844 proved too much for the new courthouse. Eventually, after several more moves, the official county courthouse was constructed in Jacksonport in 1872. The Jackson Courthouse was eventually moved one final time; however, the 1872 Jackson Courthouse has become a historic site and been restored to its original glory. Visitors can wander through the courthouse and learn about the history of the county.
State park RV campgrounds are meant to keep you close with nature, and the campgrounds at Jacksonport State Park do just that, offering great views of White River. The park's 20 RV campsites have 50-amp electric and water hookups. Restrooms are located within walking distance of most campsites. There's a playground for the younger kids on the edge of the campground.
Don't worry if the state park campgrounds are full; head over to Batesville and Brecks RV Park. This is one of the largest RV parks in the area and boasts several sites with concrete or asphalt pads. Full hookups with 30and 50-amp electric, water, and sewer are available. There are clean, modern bathrooms and showers centrally located within the park. A laundry room is open for guests.
Speedway RV Park, also in Batesville, offers full-service hookups, Wi-Fi, and cable RV. The modern bathrooms have hot showers, and laundry facilities are available for guests. A dump station is also on-site. This RV park is just minutes from the Batesville Speedway and only a short drive to Jacksonport State Park.
When you're motorhome camping at Jacksonport State Park, take some time to visit Eureka Springs and the Thorncrown Chapel, a glass-enclosed church with a futuristic vibe. This unique chapel was built in 1980 by E. Fay Jones, who apprenticed under Frank Lloyd Wright. The nave of the chapel stands at 48 feet tall. The walls of the chapel are encased in more than 400 separate windows with over 6,000 square feet of glass. In 2000, the chapel became a National Historic Site and now hosts thousands of tourists from around the world each year.
While in Eureka Springs, drop by the Christ of the Ozarks. This giant monument of Jesus Christ with his arms outstretched was designed and sculpted in 1966 by Emmet Sullivan as part of a theme park. The actual sculpture is seven stories tall and can be seen from miles around. Annual plays recounting the life and death of Jesus Christ are hosted in the amphitheater at the base of the sculpture.
Why not try your hand at searching for diamonds at the Crater of Diamonds State Park in Murfreesboro? Visitors can dig for diamonds and are even allowed to take home the ones they find after park officials catalog the finds. Aside from digging for diamonds, you can go hiking, enjoy a picnic, or even enjoy a weekend state park RV camping.