What is it?:
Petit Jean was Arkansas’s first state park. It has some of the most beautiful scenery in Arkansas. When the falls are flowing in their full capacity and the trees and flowers are in bloom, Petit Jean is breathtaking. It’s also a great spot to go camping and hiking because Petit Jean offers some of the best camp sites in Arkansas and some challenging hikes.
Where is it?:
Petit Jean is about an hour’s drive from Little Rock in Morrilton Arkansas.
Petit Jean offers group campsites, RV hookups, and 126 individual campsites which include 37 pull-through sites offering water and electrical hookups. The average price per day for a campsite is $14.50, $75 for a group. You can rent tents, camping equipment and teepees. Rent-A-Camp costs about $45.
There are more than 20 miles of hiking trails at Petit Jean. The Cedar Falls Trail (2 miles) is the one that takes you to and under the falls. The falls are most breathtaking after a bit of a rain in the fall. In the summer they are normally just a trickle. The longest of the trails is the Boy Scout trail which is 8 miles long. There are several other trails and each one takes you past another part of the park.
Other things to do:
If hiking isn’t your style you can fish, swim, play tennis or volleyball and rent pedal boats, water bikes and flat bottom boats all in the park.
A weekend at the park will make a great quick family getaway.
If camping isn’t your style, the Mather Lodge offers luxury cabin rentals. Each cabin comes with a kitchen, bedroom and bathroom. The cabin offers a great view, a swimming pool and is very close to the fall overlook. Call 501-727-5604.
Who was Petit Jean? Her real name was Adrienne Dumont. She was in love with a French nobleman and wished to accompany him to the New World but he said no. She disguised herself as a cabin boy and got passage aboard his ship. After months of living on the mountain, they were preparing to leave for France but Jean got sick with tuberculosis. Her lover learned of her true identity and she requested that she be buried on the mountain. Her grave still sits there today.