Weekend for Two: Eureka Springs, Arkansas

Text: RoadRUNNER Staff • Photography: RoadRUNNER Staff, Honda, Balcony Restaurant and Bar

Known as “The Little Switzerland of America,” Eureka Springs, AR, offers the perfect escape for couples looking for a romantic getaway to another time. The town gets its name, and much of its history, from a nearby spring that was reputed to hold special healing powers. When word spread about the water’s mysterious attributes, people came from all over, and Eureka Springs rapidly became a booming resort town. Today, old Victorian houses still line the town’s steep and winding streets while the Ozark Mountains provide a stunning backdrop. But for those on two wheels, the mountains offer more than just a good view, and Eureka Springs becomes the ideal home base for enjoying the area’s fantastic riding.

Northern Loop (approximately 200 miles)

Highway 62 wanders northwest toward the state line. Route 112 finishes the job and crosses into Missouri as it treats the rider to plenty of long sweepers. From there, 248 flirts with the edge of the Roaring River State Park before 13 and 39 plunge straight in. The park straddles the banks of the White River which, over the centuries, has carved a deep valley and created some unique geography. The area provided hideouts for bushwhackers during the Civil War. Routes 37 and 90 meander through small towns and a quiet rural landscape before 94 crosses back into Arkansas and lazily winds its way back toward Eureka Springs.

Southern Loop (approximately 246 miles)

Route 23 is a twisting, turning, climbing, and falling roller coaster that aims due south from Eureka Springs for nearly 80 miles before running into 16 and the Ozark National Forest. Along 16, the feast of curves continues as the tour works its way farther south and eventually exits the forest on 21 before turning north and reentering on 123. A quick side step on routes 295 and 45 heading back to Eureka Springs yields up even more opportunities to push the Gold Wing’s lean angle.