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Your guide to Jasper
All About Jasper
In the heart of the Ozark Mountains, Jasper offers a mix of small town charm and the serenity of being surrounded by nature. As you drive into town via scenic Highway 7, you’ll wind through a gorgeous forest of black walnut, hickory, and cedar trees alongside the Buffalo River, famous for its striated stone bluffs and emerald green waters. Elk calls can be heard in nearby Boxley Valley as you enter Jasper proper, the Elk Capital of Arkansas. Jasper Square is the essence of a small town, complete with classic barbeque joints and famous pie shops.
To the south of the city is the omnipresent Round Top Mountain that overlooks the city. Nearby Horseshoe Canyon boasts equestrian tours, rock climbing, and zip lines for a more adrenaline-filled day in the Ozarks. Scenic Point, as the name might suggest, offers one of the most beautiful views of the Buffalo River Valley, with 40 miles of full panoramic visibility on a clear day.
When is the best time to stay in a vacation rental in Jasper?
Jasper experiences four distinct seasons. The best place to see each season come alive is on Round Top Mountain’s three-mile loop, which becomes vibrantly colored with wildflowers during the spring, grows luscious, fruit-bearing Paw Paw trees in the summer, develops gorgeous amber foliage in the autumn, and transforms into a silent, snow-covered haven in the winter. The city and surrounding county experience more visitors in August and September for the biggest events of the year. The season kicks off with the Buffalo River Elk Festival in late August, where locals celebrate with an elk calling contest, a dutch-oven cook-off, and a five-kilometer race.
What are the top things to do in Jasper?
Scenic Highway 7
Highway 7, the first state-maintained highway in Arkansas, runs north to south along the entire length of the state. Drive its span near Jasper and you’ll be rewarded with breathtaking views of the Ozarks, waterfalls, and the Little Buffalo River. A major destination along the highway is Big Creek Canyon, or the Grand Canyon of Arkansas, where you can see rolling waves of stone go on for miles in every direction.
Bradley House Museum
One block south of Jasper Square is the Bradley House Museum. This Victorian house was once owned by a local doctor and has been preserved by the Newton County Historical Society. The museum has several educational exhibits, with artifacts highlighting the history and lives of people who have called Jasper home.
Koen Experimental Forest
Two miles north of Jasper is the Henry R. Koen Experimental Forest, which was developed in the 1950s for researchers to gain insight into the sustainability of the local environment. It is also home to a wheelchair-accessible hike, over 800 acres of forest, and 34 species of trees and plants.