Come to Pine Bluff to get a real feel for a classic Arkansas city!
Pine Bluff is very flat with huge expanses of farmland, and the longest bayou in the world!
Indigenous people have always used the areas around the Arkansas River for transportation and fishing, as did colonizers. The town was incorporated in 1839 with about 50 residents living there. It was a small port for shipping and travel, primarily for steamships.
Now Pine Bluff is the tenth-biggest city in the state with a population of about 50,000 in 2010. Visit and see for yourself!
Where exactly is Pine Bluff, AR? How far is it from major cities?
Pine Bluff is slightly southeast of dead-central Arkansas and is the county seat of Jefferson County. It’s near the Arkansas Timberlands and Arkansas Delta.
It takes about 45 minutes to drive from Pine Bluff to Little Rock via I-530 N.
It takes about three and a half hours to drive from Pine Bluff to Fayetteville via I-40 W.
Things to do in Pine Bluff, AR
1. Saracen Casino Resort
Saracen Resort is the place to go if you’re looking for a thrill. It’s the state’s very first stand-alone casino. With almost 2,500 slot machines , almost 40 table games, and a poker room, its 80,000 square feet of gaming area gets put to good use!
Clearly, you’ll have to come more than once if you want to get the full experience.
If you need a break from all the fun there are plenty of restaurants to explore, with everything from buffets to sports bars to upscale steakhouses.
Plan your visit around their monthly giveaways and special events to get the most out of your time there!
1 Saracen Resort Dr, Pine Bluff, AT 71601
2. Arkansas Railroad Museum
(photo by Valis55)
Let’s get the run-down on this iconic museum!
Once you enter, keep your eyes open for the memorabilia- it’s everywhere! You’ll be able to find 17 tracks inside this once-upon-a-time machine shop. But more than just coaches and locomotives call this museum home; auxiliary equipment is part of the show too!
Their vintage fire truck is sure to impress. Setting itself apart from other museums, visitors are encouraged to climb up onboard to explore a deeper experience.
The showstopper, though, is Historic Engine 819. People far and wide come to see this centerpiece!
1700 Port Rd, Pine Bluff, AR 71601
3. Pine Bluff Regional Park
Pine Bluff Regional Park is pet-friendly, kid-friendly, and accessible! It has a plethora of amenities including:
Boat launching ramps providing access to the Arkansas River and Lake Langhofer
An area for picnics
A pond for fishing
An archery range
An RV park that has water an electrical
A golf course with 18 holes
There’s nothing you’d look for in a park that isn’t here!
6300 W 4th Ave, Pine Bluff, AR 71602
4. Harbor Oaks Golf Club
The Harbor Oaks Golf Club has inspiring views and challenging plays no matter what your skill level is!
You’ll find over 7,000 yards from the longest tees with a par of 72. Its slope rating is 125 on Bermuda grass. It opened in 1995 and was designed by Leon Howard.
The greens and fairways are always well-groomed, so while the course is difficult, there is also a friendliness to it. Feel free to talk to staff to get the inside scoop on how to play your best round!
Metal spikes aren’t allowed. Carts and clubs are available to rent and there is practice/instruction at the driving range.
1 Harbor Oaks Dr, Pine Bluff, AR 71601
5. Pine Bluff Aquatic Center
The Pine Bluff Aquatic Center is one of the main attractions of Southeast Arkansas.
Its offerings include:
And most importantly…activities to build strong and healthy communities.
No matter if you’re looking for team building, an exercise routine, or just somewhere to relish in a day of recreation, this center has our back.
Monday-Friday Adult Swim: 6am-10am
Open swim: 10am-7pm
Saturday open swim: 9am-5pm
400 E 11th Ave, Pine Bluff, AR 71601
6. Byrd Lake Natural Area
Byrd Lake Natural Area is an outstanding half-mile out and back trail that is typically considered easy. It takes about 15 minutes to complete.
This trail is perfect for walking, trail running, or going to explore the natural scenery. The best part is how secluded it is- you’re unlikely to run into that many other people while out and about.
Reach the end for a rewarding body of water where you can see turtles and ducks. Keep your ears and eyes peeled for tortoises, woodpeckers, and more while walking!
It’s open all year long and is gorgeous no matter what time of year it is. Feel free to bring your dog as long as you keep him on a leash!
7. Arts & Science Center for Southeast Arkansas
The Arts & Science Center was founded in 1968 and in 2001 and 2016 was accredited by the AAM (American Alliance of Museums).
ASC has programs in the sciences, performing arts, and visual arts via local partnerships, classes, performances, and exhibits.
Admission to the gallery, school field trips, and hands-on programming are all free of cost.
They offer guided tours for groups to create a more thorough understanding of their exhibits. There are also arts and science activities that go along with the tours.
Check out their exhibit Deeply Rooted: A Glimpse Into Southern Lifestyle to see the Southern lifestyle from multiple viewpoints. The pieces work together to create a full picture of southern culture and traditions known for its community, nature, and slow lifestyle.
701 S Main St, Pine Bluff, AR 71601
8. Thunder Lanes Bowling Center
Thunder Lanes is a safe, smoke free bowling center with a whopping 22,000 square feet!
Check it out not only for their bowling, but for their arcade games and food such as wings, pizza, sandwiches, combos, and more!
Their arcade is a mix of modern and classic games that will keep you busy for hours. Frustrations may arise, but fun will too! There’s nothing better than playing PacMan while waiting for your turn to bowl.
There are specials every single day of the week, so do your research before showing up!
1600 E Harding Ave, Pine Bluff, AR 71601
9. Historic Single Arch McDonald’s sign
(photo: Bruce W. Stracener)
This historic sign is one of two single-arch McDonald’s signs left. It was built in 1962 and stayed in its first location until 2007. That year, the store moved, but the sign came with.
In 2006 it was added to the U.S. National Register of Historic Places.
Before McDonald’s was erected on South Main St, it was a mostly residential neighborhood. However, in the mid-1900’s more commercial stores started to pop up.
The single arch shows a transition between the “Speedee” sign and the famous double golden arches. It was used for only a year and was pretty rare even then. The first double arches came to fruition a mere three months after the Pine Bluff McDonald’s opened.
2819 S Olive St, Pine Bluff, AR
10. Martha Mitchell House
Martha Beall Mitchell was the owner of a historic house in Pine Bluff. Bob Abbot, 86, bought the house in 1975 but couldn’t figure out what to do with it.
However, when Mitchell passed just a year after, reporters worldwide traveled to Pine Bluff, which gave him some inspiration.
As they all wanted to explore the house, he started to realize it had more history than he had been giving it credit for.
Martha Elizabeth Beall (later known as Mitchell) grew up in the town and graduated from the high school in the late 1930’s. Eventually, she ended up in Washington D.C.
Her second husband was John Mitchell, who later became U.S. Attorney General beneath Richard Nixon.
She became famous for spilling political gossip to news reporters, until in 1972, she blew the Watergate whistle.
While the scandal ruined both her marriage and Nixon’s presidency, she was one of the most talked about and famous people in the country- maybe even more so than the president.
902 W 4th Ave, Pine Bluff, AR 71601
11. 530 Flea Market
530 Flea Market is the perfect place to buy what you’re looking for.
Everything from vintage furniture to antique baseball cards to oddities can be found at this market! It’s the perfect place to get a souvenir to show for your time spent in Pine Bluff.
It may take you more than one day to see the whole thing though- there are a lot of vendors! But it’s worth it to make this part of your itinerary. Even if you don’t buy anything, it’s fun to window shop and people watch.
You’ll meet every kind of person at this market- from hippies to patriots. Flea markets truly bring everyone together with one shared love: finding cool stuff.
8008 Sheridan Rd, White Hall, AR 71602