The town of Mount Ida, Arkansas is the home of Lake Ouachita and the Ouachita National Forest. It boasts a thriving community for the arts, family-owned businesses and restaurants, and a variety of outdoor activities. Mount Ida is known as the “"Quartz Crystal Capital of the World,” so it should come as no surprise that visitors can find rock shops around and in the town. Lake Ouachita provides abundant opportunities for outdoor recreation, including camping, fishing, sailing, swimming, boating, and more. Visitors can also enjoy live entertainment and delicious dining in the town. CDC information for travelers. Hours/availability may have changed.
1.Wegner Quartz Crystal Mines
© Wegner Quartz Crystal Mines
The Wegner Quartz Crystal Mines is one of the leading places to find quartz in the state of Arkansas. Five different mining experiences are offered at the Wegner Quartz Crystal Mines in Mount Ida. Visitors can search through a open field spanning across forty acres in search for their own crystals at the Crystal Forest Mine. The Tailings Crystal Area offers guests a chance to search some dirt that contains quartz crystals, keeping whatever they find. Visitors can search bags of gravel bearing diamonds indoors or use a screening box and sluice to look for topaz, rubies, and more with the Gemstone Sluice.
82 Wegner Ranch Rd, Mount Ida, AR 71957, Phone: 870-867-2309
2.Real Earth Creations
© Real Earth Creations
The rock shop known as Real Earth Creations is located in the center of the state’s Quartz Crystal Country. The shop specializes in quartz crystal, as well as other minerals found in the area of Mount Ida and other parts of Arkansas. There is also an extensive collection of minerals and rocks from other parts of the country and the world, such as jaspers, agates, fossils, and petrified woods, along with many collectibles. The Rock Shop of Real Earth Creations opened in 2014 and is the result of a lifelong interest with the earth’s natural beauty.
3024 Highway 270 East, Mount Ida, AR 71957, Phone: 870-867-4892
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3.Front Porch Stage
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The Front Porch Stage of Montgomery County, located in the town of Mount Ida, is a non-profit organization that offers free concert on the Montgomery County Courthouse’s lawn. In 2013, the organization was officially incorporated and is now managed by a board of directors consisting of five members. The main mission of the organization is to raise funds to provide Montgomery County schools with musical equipment and instruments. Free concerts on the lawn take place each week from the month of May until the month of October. Genres of music performed include folk rock, country, bluegrass, gospel, and folk.
Courthouse Lawn, On the Square, Mount Ida, AR 71957, Phone: 870-867-2761
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4.Turtle Cove Spa
© Turtle Cove Spa
Turtle Cove Spa provides a natural and unique spa experience in Mount Ida, Arkansas. The spa overlooks the wilderness of the region’s Lake Ouachita. Guests will feel as if all of their cares have slipped away as they make their way across the wooden suspended bridge. The menu of spa treatments at Turtle Cove includes a wide variety of treatments, such as manicures, pedicures, crystal energy work, body treatments, facials, and an array of massages. There is also a salon on site. Spa experiences feature holistic or massage treatments overlooking Lake Ouachita in the wooded pavilion, a Woodlands Workout, and wellness activities.
181 Clubhouse Dr, Mount Ida, AR 71957, Phone: 870-867-1220
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Found in Mount Ida’s Womble Ranger District, Crystal Vista is the first developed area for crystal collecting in the Ouachita National Forest. It is a stunning area atop Gardner Mountain and overlooks the town and Lake Ouachita to the north, as well as scenic mountains to the south. There is an area for parking at the foot of the mountain, along with a trail to the Crystal Vista. Visitors should be prepared for a moderate uphill hike that takes around twenty minutes. The area is a great place for children to have fun looking for white quartz and small crystals.
2237 Owley Road, Mount Ida, AR 71957
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6.Heritage House Museum of Montgomery County
© Heritage House Museum of Montgomery County
The Heritage House Museum of Montgomery County is a nonprofit organization established in the year 1998. The mission of the Heritage House Museum is to preserve Montgomery County’s local history and to provide educational experiences associated with that history. The museum offers educational experiences through traveling exhibits, programs, interpretive exhibits, research, publications, tours, and other various educational activities. The time period represented at the Heritage House Museum ranges from the year 1800 to the year 1975. There is a special focus on the contributions and effects of the region’s timber industry, Lake Ouachita, and quartz crystal.
819 Luzerne St, Mount Ida, AR 71957, Phone: 870-867-4422
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7.Fiddler's Ridge Rock Shop
© Fiddler's Ridge Rock Shop
The Fiddler’s Ridge Rock Shop in Mount Ida, Arkansas is a wholesale and retail rock and gift shop, as well as a place where visitors and locals alike can try digging for crystals in the quartz crystal mine. The shop, found approximately seven miles to the east from Mount Ida, is full of jewelry, minerals, stunning gems, and the quartz crystal that the state is so well known for. Fiddler’s Ridge is open from nine in the morning until five in the evening, Monday through Saturday. A large portion of the jewelry available is made by local artists.
3752 US-270, Mount Ida, AR 71957, Phone: 870-867-2127
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8.Ouachita Kayak Tours
© Ouachita Kayak Tours
Ouachita Kayak Tours provides guided kayaking tour along the waters of Lake Ouachita. The lake is famous for its clear waters, natural shoreline, and scenic beauty. Both half day and full day kayak tours are offered by the company, with tours designed for groups, couples, and individuals. No prior experience with kayaking is needed to participate in one of the guided tours with Ouachita Kayak Tours. Instructional and safety training is given at the start of every kayaking excursion as needed. Visitors wanting to do a kayak tour with the company should note that advanced reservations need to be made.
9.Harbor Lodge Restaurant
© Harbor Lodge Restaurant
The Harbor Lodge Restaurant is located in the heart of the Mountain Harbor Resort. The restaurant boasts a delicious and varied menu, offering a wide variety of dishes, as well as incredible views. Visitors should keep in mind when dining in the town of Mount Ida that the county is a dry one, meaning no alcohol is sold in the county. The menu features several different appetizers, salads, soups, juicy burgers, a variety of entrees, and sweet desserts. The Harbor Lodge Restaurant offers a breakfast buffet on the weekends, as well as hand-cut steaks and homemade onion rings.
994 Mountain Harbor Rd, Mount Ida, AR 71957, Phone: 870-867-2191
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9 Best Things to Do in Mount Ida, Arkansas
More Ideas: Mountain Harbor Resort and Spa
The Mountain Harbor Resort and Space, in Mount Ida, Arkansas, has been recognized as the best resort in the state four years in a row. The resort has offered guests family owned cabin experiences on Lake Ouachita since 1955. It is located close to Hot Springs and provides a variety of rental opportunities so that hotel guests can enjoy both the resort and spa as well as the great outdoors.
The rooms at Mountain Harbor are divided into three different areas.
The first area that guests can stay at is The Lodge. The Lodge features single guest rooms, studios (one room units that have a kitchenette), poolside cabana rooms, and full cottages. All of the rooms, studios, and cottages are within walking distance from the on-site heated pool, restaurant, laundromat, playground, and courtyard.
About a mile and a half away from the main part of Mountain Harbor are the Harbor North Cottages. Offering one, two, or three-bedroom cottages that are beautifully furnished with a combination of modern and antique items, hotel guests will also be able to enjoy their own hot tub without having to leave the premise. The cottages offer spectacular views of Lake Ouachita.
A third option for staying at Mountain Harbor is the Harbor East Condominiums. Located a mile and a half to the east of the main resort area, hotel guests can stay in a two, three, or even four-bedroom condo that each feature a fully equipped kitchen, washer, and dryer, and walk out decks with a view of either Lake Ouachita or the forest.
No matter which of the three resort areas hotel guests stay at, each come furnished with a microwave, multi-cup coffee maker, and mini fridge. They also each come with a selection of hot chocolate, popcorn, coffee filters, coffee, and paper towels. The resort also provides an ironing board and iron, hair dryer, towels, and toiletries.
Each room that has a full equipped kitchen also comes with pots and pans, eating utensils and plates, cooking utensils, a blender, mixer, dishwashing detergent, garbage bags, and a charcoal grill.
The resort features a full-service restaurant. However, due to the county being “dry”, no alcohol will be served. Harbor Lodge Restaurant has a selection of appetizers like onion rings, delicious entrees like burgers and steaks, soup and salad, and a breakfast buffet. For hotel guests who are visiting the spa and want to stay healthy, certain items are designated as “spa cuisine” options. Harbor Lodge will also deliver their food via room service to any cottage or cabin on the premises.
Mountain Harbor Spa Options
Voted as the top spa destination in the state of Arkansas, the majority of hotel guests travel specifically to Mountain Harbor for this facility. Turtle Cove Spa sits right on Lake Ouachita and offers massage, facials, crystal energy work, body treatments, holistic therapies, manicures and pedicures, and a full-service luxury salon.
Mountain Harbor Resort and Spa Outdoor Adventures
Due to its location on Lake Ouachita, the resort offers a variety of outdoor adventures for hotel guests to choose from. Guests can swim, boat, water and jet ski, SUP, canoe, kayak, tube and even scuba dive (training and certification is provided as well). There are also fishing options at the resort, from spearfishing to regular bait fishing of bass, walleye, crappie, catfish, and more.
There are also more than 200 private islands as part of the resort. Hotel guests can choose one and bring their own picnic lunches and spend the day hiking and exploring. Hiking is also available at the nearby Ouachita National Forest, where hotel guests can also mountain bike.
Star gazing and eagle watching tours are also available seasonally. Eagle tours are offered in the winter and hotel guests are taken by barge and led by a park ranger.
Houseboats can also be rented by contacting the front desk. These boats come with water slides, galleys, and some of them have their own hot tubs.
Mountain Harbor Resort and Spa Marina
For hotel guests who want to rent their own premium boats, the marina at Mountain Harbor is a great option. Choose from yachts, ski boats, ski barges, party barges, tritons, and more. Tax and fuel are not included. Life jackets will be provided with each rental, and additional life jacket can be rented for a small fee. Boats can be rented for both half and full days with a credit card and valid driver’s license.
995 Mountain Harbor Road, Mount Ida, AR, 71957, Phone: 870-867-2191 or 800-832-2276
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