Mena Arkansas is a small city that rests near the base of Rich Mountain. Rising
to an elevation of 2,681 feet above sea level, Rich Mountain is one of the tallest
points in the state, and it is part of the scenic Ouachita Mountain Range. One
of the best ways to take in the natural beauty of this area is to enjoy a scenic
drive on the Talimena
National Scenic Byway, which courses through the Ouachita Mountains in both
Arkansas and Oklahoma. You can also
take in the surrounding natural beauty while engaging in any number of other
fun pursuits, and there are more than enough attractions in Mena to keep you
A few state parks can
easily be integrated into Mena vacations, and if you're up for a truly unique
state park experience, you might consider heading to the Crater
of Diamonds State Park in Murfreesboro.
It's about an hour's drive down to Murfreesboro, and the trip will be especially
worth it if you manage to unearth a diamond while visiting the state park there.
As for the state parks that are closer to Mena, they include the Queen Wilhelmina
State Park and the Cossatot River State Park. The Queen Wilhelmina State Park
sits atop Rich Mountain, and it boasts a lodge that is popular with visitors.
You might pass on the other Mena
hotels to stay at this mountaintop lodge, which offers easy access to some
terrific hiking trails and some
lovely scenic overlooks. Campsites are available in the park if you prefer camping
to staying in the lodge.
Should you choose to include a visit to the Cossatot River State Park on Mena vacations, you can expect to find some of the best white water rafting conditions in the state. The Cossatot River is hailed as one of the top white water float streams in the state, and parts of the river are known to challenge the most experienced rafters and kayakers with their Class IV and V rapids. For those who might not know, Class IV and V rapids are about as powerful as they get. Hiking and camping are among the other things that you can do at the Cossatot River State Park, and there is also a wildlife viewing area here that might peak your interest. The Queen Wilhelmina State Park and the Cossatot River State Park are definitely top attractions in Mena, but there are also some attractions in town that you'll want to consider.
On Mena's Main Street, you can always duck into the Mena Art Gallery if you're looking for a cultural experience to enjoy. This gallery features works by local artists. For history buffs, the Mena/KCS Depot with its museum is not to be missed. In addition to a museum, the former train depot now houses the city's Chamber of Commerce. The museum focuses on local history, giving visitors more insight into the story of Mena and its people. After visiting the Mena/KCS Depot, you might wander over to the restored Esso Gas Station, which dates back to 1928. In addition to being a relic itself, this gas station boasts rare cars and motorcycles, which are on display for visitors to admire. If the attractions in Mena are anything, they are varied, so you can build a full travel itinerary with relative ease.
In addition to enjoying the outdoors and taking in the curious in-town attractions on Mena vacations, you can also try to catch one of the city's special events or festivals. Various art and theater-related events take place in Mena Arkansas throughout the year, and the local open-air bluegrass music festivals are a treat for music fans. The Lum and Abner Festival is arguably the top Mena Arkansas event, and it features live entertainment, arts and crafts fairs, and some delicious food. If you like BBQ cook-offs, this festival is worth planning your Mena vacations around. There's so much to enjoy in and around Mena, so multiple visits might be required. The Mena hotels and motels offer some good lodging options, and you can also consider renting one of the cabins in Mena Arkansas.