Tag Archive: tours

Continuing my tour of entertainment and attractions in Hot Springs, I stepped aboard the Belle of Hot Springs Riverboat. I had heard many good comments about the Belle and decided that it definitely sounded like it was “blog-worthy.”

The Belle of Hot Springs Riverboat is a 225 passenger riverboat that takes you across the beautiful waters of Lake Hamilton. The Belle has been making its trek across Lake Hamilton for more than 25 years and is still going strong. It has 3 separate decks, 2 of which are enclosed and climate controlled allowing for a pleasant journey. The Belle also has multiple excursions you can choose from, including a sightseeing cruise, luncheon cruise, sunset dinner and dance cruise (the most popular), and even an ice cream social cruise during the summer months.

I chose to take the sightseeing cruise, which sails daily at 1 pm (also at 3 pm June-mid August). The Captain took us on a 15 mile journey of the lake which lasted a little over an hour. One of the many things I’ve learned this summer is that, if you want to have a good tour, you must have a good personality overseeing and narrating your tour with interesting and helpful information. And luckily, the Belle had just that. The Captain narrating our cruise gave me enough information concerning the history and life of Lake Hamilton and Hot Springs, that I now feel confident to write a book on the city. The Captain also made sure to point out many famous mansions and getaways known to belong to different celebrities, spicing up the tour with some humour along the way.

The Belle’s second deck offered a variety of foods, snacks, and drinks available for purchase at its snack bar, which makes the trip that much more enjoyable. I can’t speak personally for the quality of food served on the dinner cruises (because I was on the sightseeing cruise), however I did get a chance to peek at the menu and it had a very good selection of foods ranging from prime rib to shrimp and crab. But, the food must be good because the Belle even caters to different events going on in the city.

Overall, I had a very enjoyable time aboard the Belle of Hot Springs Riverboat and learned a lot about the lake itself. I am most definitely going to come back again and try one of the other cruises that they offer. The Belle is fun for you whether you’re by yourself or with friends, I would also highly recommend it if you’re looking for a good date activity. So, if you’re looking for a more relaxing and scenic attraction in the Spa City, climb aboard the Belle of Hot Springs, sit back, and take it easy on this fun-filled tour of Lake Hamilton!

Location: 5200 Central Hwy. 7 South, 71913

Contact: www.belleriverboat.com, (501) 525-4438


Duck Tours

So, I finally gave in and did it…I rode a Duck. It seems like every time I get on the road I have at least 2 Duck sightings, and they are almost invariably packed full of people! So, I decided it was about time to get on a Duck, and see what they were all about…

For those of you who don’t know, riding a Duck in Hot Springs, although it may sound like it, doesn’t pertain to anything bizarre going on with animals and is  not gonna get you arrested for animal cruelty. The Duck Tours in Hot Springs are one of the most popular and best ways to have some fun while learning a little bit about the city. A Duck, originally called a DUKW by the Army, is an old WWII amphibious vehicle developed by the U.S to deliver cargo and troops from sea, directly to shore. The DUKWs were crucial in several battles during WWII and were also used in the Korean War. Today, the Ducks as the National Park Duck Tours calls them, are used in Hot Springs to give people a unique way to tour the city!

Upon stepping onto the Duck, I was prepared for an hour and a half of swimming in my own sweat, but it actually wasn’t near as bad as I thought. The Duck’s big and tall frame coupled with its wide open sides allows for passengers to get the most out of the cool breezes that blow across the lake, creating a fairly comfortable climate.

The tour guide, or captain as they are called, boarded the Duck and we were finally off. Our Captain, who was hilarious, reminded me of a cross between Bill Engvall in looks, and Larry the Cable Guy in his sense of humour. Mixed in with the humour however were many interesting facts about the city and its history. Whether I was lost in the beautiful scenery or laughing at jokes the Captain was making, I was entertained for the entirety of the trip.

The tour really took on a unique twist when the Captain turned the Duck towards the lake and, just like they were made to do…drove right in! Yes, the Duck Tour takes you across Hot Springs by land and water. While I think it’s top speed on the water is probably 2.5 mph, it was still exciting to be on the water in a vehicle with wheels!

Riding a Duck is a very unique experience and is something I would recommend to anyone visiting Hot Springs. I really enjoyed this experience and look forward to more in the future!

Location: 418 Central Avenue (Across from the historic Bath House Row)

Contact: (501) 321-2911, www.rideaduck.com