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“Beautiful, fun!”
Review of Lake Ouachita

Lake Ouachita
Ranked #5 of 75 things to do in Hot Springs
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: The largest lake in Arkansas covers 48,300 acres.
Houston, Texas
Level Contributor
38 reviews
19 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
“Beautiful, fun!”
Reviewed July 9, 2013

We've gone to Lake Ouachita State Park several times over the last few times while visiting family in the area. This year was the first time we actually went to the marina and rented a boat. We rented a couple of pedal boats and took them out on the lake. It was a blast. An hour rental was just $6 per boat (they provide life vests as well) and they were in good condition. Lots of fun.

Visited July 2013
4 Thank deathraygoat
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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375 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
Fort Smith, Arkansas
Level Contributor
14 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
“Tompkins Bend Campground”
Reviewed July 8, 2013 via mobile

We stayed 4 nights at Tompkins Bend campground by Shangra La. Site A1 had water and electric 50 and 30 amp hookups. The site had a BBQ grill and picnic table and fire pit. Easy access to the water for the boat. One night we had a small deer come up near our site, we also ha a raccoon visit out trash can.(we forgot to take out the trash before we went to bed). The site is farthest from the bathroom but still a short walk. At $20 a night a good deal for a trailer. Might be high for just tents. Camp office is open 12-8

Visited July 2013
2 Thank mbart25
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Collierville, Tennessee
Level Contributor
27 reviews
13 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
“Beautiful place !!!!”
Reviewed July 7, 2013

We rented the kayak from the lake ouachita marine and headed out !!!! It was awesome.. There are other boats besides kayaks. The fishing boat , pantoons boats. You can bring your own boats, kayaks,jet skis and have a wonderful time in the river. There are small resting places on the side of the river and you can have a relaxing time or take a quick stop before heading out. It is a hot spot coz it was packed with ppl picknicking, boats and the beach. There are two small beach kind and it was cool. With the weather perfect we had a great time in the water too. Definitely a must visit place..

Visited July 2013
1 Thank Gowri1186
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mansfield, Texas
Level Contributor
42 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“Lake Ouachita State Park”
Reviewed June 27, 2013

We recently visited Lake Ouachita State Park. This was our second time to visit the park. We had a wonderful campsite (pictures attached). Our view was great, and we had plenty of space. The space was due to being in an end campsite. Had we been sandwiched between two campsites, it would have been crowded. The restrooms were conveniently located and clean. The park store was well supplied, as was the marina. We went in early June. Lake levels were high, so fishing was not great. Also, the usually crystal-clear water was somewhat murky; I'm guessing, also due to the high water levels. We rented a small boat and a kayak. All-day rates were very reasonable. Next visit, we plan on renting a pontoon boat. Our campsite was well shaded and pretty level. We had quite a bit of rain one night, and we didn't experience too much puddling. I highly recommend visiting the dam. There is a spillway that, when they are releasing the water, is absolutely amazing. The power of the raging water was awe-inspiring, and the drastic drop in temperature was quite a releif from the high temperatures and high humidity. The only drawback we faced in our visit was -- Arkansas does not sell beer on Sundays -- at all -- anywhere.

Visited June 2013
3 Thank jaynerwilson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
226 reviews
128 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 213 helpful votes
“Numerous visits, new experiences every time!”
Reviewed June 19, 2013

We've been visiting this area annually for about the last 7 years. We’ve stayed at Lake Ouachita State Park (excellent cabins! new, clean), Lake Catherine State Park (would not stay there again – duplex was run-down and we got bed bugs), private lake house rentals in the Diamond Head Community, and even island camped. Our family has a wonderful time every time we go. There is so much to do in the area! We’ve visited state parks, checked out the state park nature programming, hiked, geocached, shopped, strolled bathhouse row, toured the Fordyce Museum (when it was open – currently closed for renovation), rented a pontoon boat on Lake Ouachita, fished, towed a tube, canoed, visited the Mid America Science Museum, been to the Alligator petting zoo (don’t recommend), attended magic shows (Maxwell Blade and Scott Davis), gone to the movie theater in Hot Springs on a rainy day (pricey and cash-only), had numerous visits to Magic Springs amusement & water park, been to Garvin Gardens several times (beautiful! Don’t miss the Anthony Chapel!), zip-lined, and so much more! There is a wide variety of things to do, that grow with your children and changing interests, and keep your visit different each time you go. In our most recent visit, we launched our canoe from Buckville (camping available there) and paddled to an island in Lake Ouachita and camped. What an amazing family adventure! The only caution is to be aware of the weather. On our most recent (and some prior visits) the weather has been pretty violent. A tornado came through the same area we were camping and boating most recently but we scheduled our excursion based on the weather and avoided the water spout that moved across the lake. Last year the weather knocked out the power at our State Park cabin for the duration of our stay. So be prudent about checking the weather and being aware of the local alerts as you should be doing with all your outdoor excursions! The lake is clean, very large, and a bit warmer later in the summer season. The nearby area is abundant with attractions and outdoor adventures. This is a great place to visit! We keep returning every year!

Visited May 2013
6 Thank tnanna
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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