Travel the Talimena National Scenic Byway to Queen Wilhelmina State Park. This Arkansas state park graces a windswept setting on 2,681-foot Rich Mountain, the state's second highest mountain. Here, you will enjoy panoramic views here in the Ouachita Mountains, Arkansas's southernmost mountain range. The Ouachitas are one of only two east-west trending mountain ranges in the U.S. Travel the Talimena National Scenic Byway to this cloud-capped getaway. The park's crowning attraction is Queen Wilhelmina Lodge, Arkansas's "Castle in the Clouds."
Queen Wilhelmina State Park Lodge reopened July 1, 2015, following a $9.6-million renovation and expansion. The lodge carries forward the lodging tradition that has been a part of this scenic site on 2,681-foot Rich Mountain since 1898. This lodge is the third hostelry to grace this same spectacular setting on Arkansas's second highest mountain. The original mountain inn opened here in 1898 by the Kansas City, Pittsburg and Gulf Railroad as a resort retreat for passengers on the line. Today's modern lodge is the crowning attraction here at Queen Wilhelmina State Park, one of the 52 state parks administered by Arkansas State Parks.
This Arkansas State Parks lodge on 2,681-foot Rich Mountain near the western edge of Arkansas offers first-class accommodations and a state-of-the-art meeting room. Following a recent $9.6 million renovation and expansion, the lodge features upgrades and enhancements, including larger windows in the guest rooms and public rooms framing the panoramic views from Arkansas's second highest mountain. The 40 guest rooms include Queen, King, King with spa tub and gas fireplace, and King Suite choices.
Pull into the covered north entrance of Queen Wilhelmina State Park to check in to your accommodations. Parking is available on both the north and south sides of the lodge.
The Hearth Room is the warm and inviting great room near the lobby where you can enjoy views from Rich Mountain and meet other lodge guests. Comfortable furnishings arranged in groups and game tables invite you to relax and spend time here. When the surrounding landscape is ablaze with fall foliage, or wintertime has worked its magic here in the Ouachita Mountains, the wood-burning fireplace here in the Hearth Room will add to the warmth of Queen Wilhelmina Lodge.
On three side of the Hearth Room, large windows frame the views from Rich Mountain, Arkansas's second highest mountain.
Queen Wilhelmina State Park Lodge's 40 guest rooms include Queen, King, King with spa tub and gas fireplace, and King Suite choices. Large windows frame the view from Rich Mountain.
Each Queen Room is furnished with two beds.
The upstairs meeting room features furnishings that can be reconfigured and state-of-the-art audiovisual equipment. Large windows frame the views from the mountain. A private balcony is the perfect place to take a break and enjoy the mountain breezes and sweeping south view from Rich Mountain. This meeting room is acccessible by stairs or an elevator, and is only steps away from the 40 guest rooms.
The furnishings in the meeting room can be reconfigured to fit your group's needs. This room includes state-of-the-art audiovisual equipment and a screen. With the flip of a switch by the podium, room darkening shades can lowered over all the windows.
The meeting room's private balcony offers a sweeping view of the surrounding scenery.
The Talimena National Scenic Byway is a favorite for motorcyclists. The 54-mile route stretches along ridgetops of the Ouachita Mountains and Winding Stair Mountains from Mena, Arkansas, to Talihina, Oklahoma. Located on the Byway just 13 miles west of Mena is Queen Wilhelmina State Park and its mountain inn, Queen Wilhelmina Lodge. This is the perfect rest stop or overnight stay for those traveling this national scenic byway. Following a major renovation, the lodge will reopen on July 1, 2015, featuring 40 guest rooms, its popular Queen's Restaurant, and a comfortable welcoming Hearth Room for relaxing and enjoying the views from here on Arkansas's second highest mountain.
The 54-mile Talimena National Scenic Byway stretches from Mena, Arkansas, to Talihina, Oklahoma. Enjoy breathtaking views along its mountainous scenic drive. Scenic overlooks are spaced along the route.
Parked near the park campground, this historic train engine is a representation of this mountaintop setting's railroad past. The first Queen Wilhelmina Inn opened here in 1898. Built by the Kansas City, Pittsburg and Gulf Railroad, the luxurious hostelry of Victorian splendor was dubbed the "Castle in the Sky." The railroad spared no expense in constructing this inn to serve as a resort retreat for passengers on the line which ran through the valley below. Since the railroad was largely financed by Dutch interests, the resort was named in honor of the Netherlands' young Queen Wilhelmina. In only three years, the inn closed.
The history of the park's mountain inn is connected to the railroad that was built in the valley below in the late 1800s.
All aboard! Join the fun and enjoy the train ride around Queen Wilhelmina State Park. The Mountain Glory Station is a short walk from the park lodge and campsites.
Visit the Mountain Glory Station in Queen Wilhelmina State Park and enjoy a ride around the park on the miniature train. Along the route, you'll see sweeping vistas of the Ouachita Mountains and up-close views of the natural beauty of this park on 2,681-foot Rich Mountain, Arkansas's second highest mountain. The views from the train are ever changing as the distinctive beauty of each of four seasons unfold here at this ungettable getaway in Arkansas's southernmost mountain range.
Hike a trail at Queen Wilhelmina State Park and enjoy the sweeping views from Arkansas's second highest mountain.Choose from the one-mile Lover's Leap Trail, two-thirds-of-a-mile Reservoir Trail, the one-half-mile Spring Trail, or the Ouachita National Recreation Trail that stretches 225 miles from Pinnacle Mountain State Park just west of Little Rock, Arkansas, to Talimena State Park in Talihina, Oklahoma.
Join a park interpreter, explore the park, and learn about Rich Mountain's fauna, unique flora, and the park's history. You'll enjoy the guided activities that will connect you to this special place.
Walking around the lodge, hiking a trail, relaxing at your campsite, or riding the miniature train, you will be aware of the wide variety of wildflowers that grow here in the park. The Purple Coneflower can be seen in summer and early fall.
Jewel-Weed, or Spotted Touch Me Not, sometimes occurs in large colonies. Deer use this plant for food.
The Passion Flower, or Maypops, can be purplish or white in color.
An abundance of wildlife live here in Queen Wilhelmina State Park and the surrounding Ouachita National Forest. You'll enjoy the wildlife watching and birding opportunities along the Talimena National Scenic Byway, from the park campsites, and on the trails here in the park.
Sunsets here in the Ouachita Mountains are dramatic, and oh so unforgettable. The same goes for each sunrise. Each day, and each of the four seasons, has its own special beauty here along the Talimena National Scenic Byway and at Queen Wilhelmina State Park.
You are invited to experience Queen Wilhelmina State Park. Stay in its mountain inn, Arkansas's "Castle in the Clouds," or a park campsite. Enjoy the trails and the interpretive programs. Ride the miniature train and play mini-golf. Take in the panoramic views of the Ouachita Mountains. And make special memories at this Arkansas state park on 2,681-foot Rich Mountain.