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A Day In Little Rock: World Class BBQ and Southern Shopping

Originally Published in MotorHome Magazine

Little Rock, Ark., is like many medium-size cities that dot the southern states. But the mix of Victorian history and modernity takes on a buzz of activity due to the Arkansas State Capitol. The city takes great care to draw visitors and keep them entertained in various ways — and hey, it’s the south, so the food is fantastic too!

A great first stop in Little Rock is a morning walk into Little Rock’s agrarian and trading past. The famous Old Mill in northern part of the city is a hidden gem, especially in spring and fall when flowers start to bloom or the trees burst with color.

Old Mill By Steve Wright Jr.

The old mill captures Little Rock’s past beautifully.

The paths weaving from the mill, over the brook and around the magnificent garden are often the backdrop for wedding photos and senior pictures. Film buffs might also remember this historic recreation of a local mill from the opening of the movie Gone with the Wind. Try coming around a sunrise or sunset for a beautiful bit of solace.

Little Rock is packed with great restaurants, but ask a local what to try and they’ll probably direct you to their local bar-be-cue dive.

Everyone has their favorite bar-be-cue joint, but the Whole Hog Cafe in Little Rock has a shelf of awards to back up it’s zealous fans. The unpretentious setting is the perfect home for the no-frills, roll-up-your-sleeves smorgasbord. The worst part of the Whole Hog Cafe is choosing what masterfully smoked meat to eat.

The Whole Hog Platter: come hungry, leave happy.

The Whole Hog Platter: come hungry, leave happy.

If you can’t go twice, get the Whole Hog Platter. Piles of pulled pork, beef brisket and three succulent ribs merge into a tasty triumvirate of bar-be-cue beauty. Paired with a scoop of coleslaw, a cup of beans and the astounding blend of creamy goodness that is their potato salad, the platter will leave you stuffed but grinning for the rest of the day.

With a little bit — OK a lot — of protein power, it’s high time to explore downtown Little Rock!

The picturesque River Market district has become a major hub of entertainment in town. With concert venues, a farmers market, open-air malls, great shops and restaurants galore, anyone can spend a few good hours in the area. History buffs and art lovers can also visit the William J. Clinton Presidential Center, the Arkansas history museums and several great art galleries. Visitors can catch a trolley to navigate the district. Be sure to check the calendar for upcoming events at the Riverfest Amphitheater!

There are plenty of good RV parks around little rock, but if you’re willing to take a little drive to find Little Rock’s best attractions, Catherine’s Landing is a superb park. Beyond the spacious lots and plenty of hookups, the Hot Springs, Ark., RV park is a destination in it’s own right. The on-site store features general goods as well as wine and beer. The ecologically friendly resort buildings feature regular movies, a family friendly game room and a gym. Visitors can also rent pontoons and kayaks to explore, fish or just relax on the Ouachita River and Lake Hamilton. The park receives top marks from reviewers and is well worth the hour trip to or from Little Rock.

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