This former railroad town in northeastern Arkansas has artisan workshops, flea markets, specialist museums and the thundering Spring River.
Hardy is a welcoming destination that combines small-town charm with outdoor relaxation and adventurous pursuits. Surrounded by the lakes, rivers and undulating hills of Arkansas, the town is known for its magnificent natural setting. Since being founded in the late 19th century as a railroad town, Hardy has developed into place loved by artisans, musicians, vacationing families and watersports enthusiasts.
Old Hardy Town is Hardy’s historic downtown district, home to 41 historic landmarks and hardly changed from its railroad origins. Stroll down Main Street, lined with low-rise buildings with wooden storefronts. Look inside artisan workshops and browse the galleries of local artists. Shop for jewelry, pottery, quilts and other handcrafted items at antique stores and flea markets.
Make your way to the Veterans Military Museum to see displays of military artifacts from many of the U.S. Armed Forces’ conflicts. See vehicles ranging from horse-drawn carriages to 1950s Chevys alongside historic gas station pumps at the Vintage Motorcar Museum. Admire over 100 timekeeping instruments at the Time and Place Clock Museum, open during the summer months only.
Cutting through the town is the Spring River, a favorite location for outdoor fun. Kayak in its long pools and down whitewater rapids while gazing at the hardwood forests that line its banks. Fish for bass, rainbow trout and walleye in the river. Stop at the riverside Loberg Park for its children’s playground and camping and picnicking facilities.
A 10-minute drive to the west you’ll find Cherokee Village, a planned recreational community. Play golf on its two 18-hole courses, explore accessible nature trails or boat and swim at one of seven lakes.
After a busy day of activities, enjoy a meal at the cafés, pubs and restaurants dotted along Main Street. Catch live performances by blues artists, jazz musicians and Ozark bluegrass bands. Head to Dr. Thompson Park on a summer Saturday for an afternoon of free music.
Hardy is approximately a 3-hour drive from both Little Rock, Arkansas, and Memphis, Tennessee, where you’ll find major airports. Rental cars are available at both airports. Hotels and self-catering apartments in and around Hardy and Cherokee Village offer comfortable places to stay overnight.