Blue Spring Heritage Center, Eureka Springs

4.1
#3 of 7 in Parks in Eureka Springs
The Blue Spring Heritage Center, formerly the Eureka Springs Gardens, is a 33acre tourist attraction containing native plants and hardwood trees in a setting of woodlands, meadows, and hillsides. It is located at Highway 62 West, five miles (8 km) west of Eureka Springs, Arkansas, USA, and open daily to the public during warmer months for a fee.The spring pours 38 million US gallons (140,000 m³) of water daily into the trout-filled lagoon. Blue Spring has been a tourist attraction since 1948, and is now on the National Register of Historic Places for its archaeological significance as a site occupied between the Early Archaic and the Mississippian periods.Historians from several Indian nations, including the Tsalagi (Cherokee), Osage and Quapaw, say their people have been making journeys to, and living intermittently at Blue Spring for tens of thousands of years. Artifacts excavated at the Blue Spring Shelter support this, as they date back to between 8000 B.C. and A.D. 1500.Blue Spring Cliff ShelterThe American Indian people who lived here in ancient times are known as the ‘Bluff Dwellers’. These indigenous people populated not only the Blue Spring area, but much of the Ozark Mountains. They lived beneath giant bluff shelters such as this one. As most human beings of their time, they hunted, gathered, and planted. Tools, clothes and many other necessary items were made from many native plants and animals available to them. They also traded goods with other Indian nations.Indigenous people who lived here between 500 B.C. and A.D. 900 continued to hunt, gather, plant and trade, though planting gardens had become a more prominent activity. With over 62% of the world’s food having been developed by American Indians, it is no surprise that the Indians of the Ozarks domesticated maygrass, lamb’s quarter, knotweek, sumpweek, sunflower, squash, and strains of little barley. The bottomlands and terraces of the White River provided fertile garden spots for the indigenous occupants of the Blue Spring Shelter.
To visit Blue Spring Heritage Center on your holiday in Eureka Springs, and find out what else Eureka Springs has to offer, use our Eureka Springs itinerary planner.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
299 reviews
Google
4.6
TripAdvisor
  • August 10, 2017
    Just a short distance off Route 62 near Eureka Springs, this gem of history (on the Trail of Tears) and botanical beauty is very much worth an hour or so of your time. Great for exploring with childre...  more »
  • August 9, 2017
    They charge $10 an adult to look at water. You can look at springs for free all over the state of Missouri, all over the country even for free. No need to pay $10 to look at water, just look at the ph...  more »
  • August 7, 2017
    I believe it was 8.95 per person to enter the center. Grounds were absolutely beautiful and well kept. Butterflies were everywhere, I mean EVERYWHERE. There are plenty of benches and resting spots thr...  more »
Google
  • June 8, 2017
    Unfortunately, the spring and dam were flooded, but it was still very beautiful. Plus, we got a discount on admission because of the flooding, which I thought was very considerate. The water was so blue! Blue like the ocean. The breeze that day was amazing and it was so quiet and peaceful. Even though the pathway around the area is only about a mile, we spent about 2 hours or so here just looking at the water, the gardens, and other scenery.
  • July 5, 2017
    Very beautiful and serene. It was real peaceful to sit in the medicine wheel garden and feel the breeze on my far.
  • July 4, 2017
    A lot of the plants here we're dead but I did get some nice pictures.
  • July 3, 2017
    Beautiful scenery and nice staff but be warned its all very long uphill after you get down to the springs
  • June 22, 2017
    It was neat due to the history of the place but the flower beds were lacking the tee pee was gone, the stacked rock garden wasn't there either. The place just needs ​some TLC.

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Where to stay in Eureka Springs

Eureka Springs boasts a diverse range of accommodation options for a city of its size. Although you will find large chain hotels here, many visitors come here looking for the town's spas and boutique inns. History and architecture enthusiasts will enjoy booking rooms in Victorian buildings. To take full advantage of the Ozark Mountain region, consider renting a treehouse-style cottage out of town. Many are quite luxurious and boast all the amenities you need to be comfortable.
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