Eureka Springs VS Hot Springs

Eureka Springs VS Hot Springs: Arkansas Summer Destination

Eureka springs, or Hot springs? The two summer destinations have sparked some heated debate over the years. Brimming with mesmerizing views, the two springs have been the go to spot for many in Arkansas.

But which destination is the best one?

Time to find out the winner in Eureka springs vs Hot springs.

While Eureka Springs has a range of cold springs scattered around, Hot springs mostly have hot springs. Unlike the crowded, festive nature of Hot springs, Eureka spring is serene and beautiful. The malls and restaurants in Eureka Springs are centered around its tradition in contrast to hot springs.

Looks like we need to try a little harder to help you pick the right spot . This detailed content will help you to make an informed decision about your potential summer destination.

Eureka Springs vs Hot Springs: Head-to-Head

Fortunately choosing between springs is easier compared to selecting beaches like Long Beach and Santa Monica. Before we begin our detailed approach, let’s see how the both destinations fare head-to-head. This quick comparison table will help you differentiate Eureka Springs from Hot Springs:

FeatureEureka SpringsHot Springs
SpringsCold springsHot springs
Ideal Time to VisitSummerWinter
Things to DoVery fewAbundance of tourist activities
StreetsPedestrian FriendlyCrowded
TerrainHilly TerrainMore flat terrain
Foods and RestaurantsEclectic culinary restaurantsModern chain restaurants and fast food
ShoppingUnique and quirkyModern and sophisticated

I know what you’re thinking.

How can the two destinations be so different despite being in the same region? Arkansas.

Well, maybe a little insight can help you understand their diversity more clearly. 

Eureka Springs VS Hot Springs: In-Depth Analysis

While it may be dauting to choose between the two springs, rest assured as it’s nowhere as tough as selecting between Gulf Shores and Panama City Beach.

It’s time to bring everything we know about the two destinations on the table. With the two spots differentiated, you can choose your preferred summer vacation.

Let’s begin our assessment.


Both Eureka and hot springs are known for their famous springs. Actually, that’s their main tourist attraction.

But hold on! If you think that’s everything you’ll get from the two springs, think again! Not only do they have the finest springs, you’ll also get therapeutic treatments.

Eureka Springs

Eureka springs are renowned for their famous cold springs. 

There are around 66 cold springs in Eureka springs, among which, 13 springs are easily walkable. 

Hot Springs

As the name suggests, the hot springs have an abundance of hot springs scattered all around. Hot springs have around 47 hot springs all around the city.


The townspeople use hot waters for a lot of work throughout the town. Coming out of the ground, the water is usually 147 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Time to Visit

Every tourist destination has that one time of the year when the tourist arrival reaches peak. And that’s exactly when the business flourishes all over the city. 

Due to being different in nature, the two destinations have two different times to visit. While you can visit anytime you want, it’s usually best to visit during the best season.

Eureka Springs

Eureka Springs face their most traffic during the summer. That’s the time people look for a nice, relaxing moment in the cold water. Businesses also flourish during the time as more and more visitors gather in the small city.

But that also means that the place sees a dip in tourist numbers during the winter. Eureka Springs weather directly impacts its tourist visits.

Hot Springs

Just as Eureka Springs faces its peak visit during summer, the opposite goes with hot springs. Tourists rush to the city for a warmer embrace of the springs in the winter. And the town gets really festive during that time of the year.

But that doesn’t mean that the place goes all quiet during the summer. There are people who’re willing to take a hot bath in the springs even in summer. So the city never sees any real dip in tourist numbers.


The two cities carry a rich variety of places to explore and activities to experience. The two cities are so diverse that it’s really difficult to run out of things to do.

Eureka Springs

Quaint and historic, the Eureka springs take pride in showcasing their old heritage and history. You can still find a lot of the older buildings built around the late 1800s.

You’re in for a wonderful time in Eureka Springs if beautiful views are what you prefer. Unfortunately, Eureka Springs don’t have much to offer when it comes to tourist activities. But there are still a few things to do in Eureka Springs.

Eureka spring is smaller than Hot springs but even quieter. The streets are less crowded and pedestrian-friendly. So if you’re looking to take a relaxing walk around, Eureka Springs is your destination. 

However, make sure to note down that Eureka Springs is mostly full of hilly terrain and stations. If you’ve a pregnant woman tagging along, it might not be the greatest of experiences.

Hot Springs

Perhaps the most visited between the two, Hot springs have wider and crowded streets. But don’t get fooled by its spacious roads. It’s mostly going to be crowded by tourists all the time.

The city is full of modern amenities and boasts a number of tourist attractions. Unlike Eureka Springs, Hot Springs have less hilly terrains. Most of Hot Springs is considered part of the national park.

Unlike Eureka Springs attractions, tourists visiting Eureka Springs almost never run out of activities to do. The place is always brimming with bustling energy.

Food & Restaurant

When picking a destination to visit, food comes on the top of people’s list of considerations. 

Nobody wants to taint their glamorous vacation with a bad food experience. That’s why it’s important to pick your destination with the local food and restaurants in mind.

Eureka Springs

Food lovers in search of eclectic culinary experiences will love to visit Eureka Springs. They can choose from a range of over 100s of restaurants in Eureka Springs.

Most eateries in Eureka Springs are chef-owned and operated by them. Meaning that you’ll get a homely treatment in their restaurants. Tourists are bound to enjoy the exquisite services from the local restaurants.

Tourists get the best Eureka Springs bed and breakfast services from those outlets.

Hot Springs

Fan of fast foods? Looking for cozy restaurants? 

Hot springs have it all!

You can be overwhelmed with the number of modern restaurants available in hot springs. If fast food is not your cup of coffee, there are fine-dine places you can visit! 

Aided by the magnificent view, the food is always going to make your day extra special.

Here are some of the best restaurants to visit in Eureka Springs and Hot Springs:

Eureka SpringsHot Springs
Local Flavor CafeThe Purple Cow Restaurant
Ermilio’s Italian Home CookingVia Roma Italian Restaurant
The Rockin’ PigSteinhaus Keller
The Horseshoe GrillRocky’s Corner
Anglers RestaurantCajun Boilers

You should definitely go and visit these restaurants during your stay.


The two springs have some amazing hotels to spend the night. And they come with great amenities and cozy staying facilities.

Eureka Spring

Unique and original, the Eureka Springs have some unique caves and treehouses to say. 

The famous “America’s Most Haunted Hotel” is situated on the top of the hill, overlooking the city. All the amenities of modern hotel services are available in Eureka Springs hotels.


You might have to pay an early departure fee for leaving abruptly and canceling the reservation.

Hot Springs

Hotels in Hot Springs Arkansas pridefully showcase their modern facilities and amenities. You might also stumble upon one or two old hotels once in a while. 

For those demanding a 5-star treatment, Hot Springs should be the go-to city.

Our Pick

It wasn’t easy to come up with an instant decision. But we do have our favorite location figured out.

To us, Eureka Springs seemed to be the best place to visit. It has the most scenic views and a lovely place to take a lazy stroll. Plus, if you want to have the purest Arkansas experience, it’s the best destination. 

But if you’re looking to take a winter vacation, you should pick Hot Springs. The hot spring bath is the best thing you can have in the cold winter of Hot springs. 

There’s no notable restrictions in Eureka Springs and Hot Springs. Using satellite phones is illegal in most places. But no such restrictions are known about in those two springs.


How Far Apart Is Eureka Springs from Hot Springs?

You’ll have to drive about 245 miles from Eureka Springs to reach Hot Springs. This is roughly about 394 kilometers away. 

Is Eureka Springs Located in a Dry County?

Not Really. Of the 75 counties present in Eureka Springs, 34 of them are dry. However, it’s allowed to sell alcohol in Eureka Springs on sundays. 

Does it Snow in Eureka Springs?

It snows in Eureka Springs. However,  compared to other cities and states in US, it snows less in Eureka Springs. Eureka Springs gets a precipitation of 99 days per year. 

Our Final Thoughts

We’ve stated our thoughts on Eureka Springs VS Hot Springs. 

Both the destinations boast some beautiful views and proudly showcase their separate themes. The final decision rests upon you to weigh the pros and cons and pick your vacation.

Happy vacation!

About The Author

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top