There is a special Arkansas State Park located between the Ozarks and the Ouachita Mountain ranges. The French discovered it beauty back in the 1700's and it became Arkansas' first state park.  If you have never stayed in the lodge at this park before, then put it on your Arkansas bucket list.

Mather Lodge is Beautiful!

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Mather Lodge is located in Petit Jean State Park. Even if you don't care to hike you can see fantastic scenic views from the lodge and the grounds surrounding the lodge.

Beautiful Views From The Dining Room

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Petit Jean State Park is located in west-central  Arkansas. Civilian Conservation Corps began building the trails, roadways, cabins and the Mather Lodge back in 1933.  Mather Lodge has 24 rooms.

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The Wood Work in the Mather Lodge is Amazing

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Arkansas State Parks
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The lodge is located on a bluff overlooking the Arkansas River and Cedar Creek Canyon.

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You Can Stay at One of The 33 Great Cabins Too

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Arkansas State Parks
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About ten years ago my husband and I stayed a few days at one of the cabins close to the Mather Lodge. the cabins are located along the bluff overlooking the canyon. It was a wonderful experience!

 

So Much to See on Easy Hikes at Petit Jean State Park

 

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Other Things to See at Petit Jean State Park

If you do want to venture out you will see even more majestic views.  The hiking trails are easy and you can see all the attractions easily.  Like the 95-foot Cedar FallsBear Cave, the Seven Hollows Trai and the Natural Bridge. We could hear the waterfall from our cabin.

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Here is the CCC Overlook And It's Amazing

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Who Was Petit Jean?

The park got its name from a french woman in the 1700's who followed a man she loved to the "New World". She came over on a ship disguised as a cabin boy named Jean and because she was so small they called her or at the time him as Petit Jean. When she arrived in Arkansas she became sick and died. She was laid to rest on top of the mountain that now has her name.

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Such a Beautiful Lodge

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Check out some of the videos below to see more of the beauty of this park and of Mather Lodge.  You can find out more at ArkansasStateParks.com

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RANKED: Here are the most popular national parks

To determine the most popular national parks in the United States, Stacker compiled data from the National Park Service on the number of recreational visits each site had in 2020. Keep reading to discover the 50 most popular national parks in the United States, in reverse order from #50 to #1. And be sure to check with individuals parks before you visit to find out about ongoing, pandemic-related safety precautions at www.nps.gov/coronavirus.

LOOK: Stunning vintage photos capture the beauty of America's national parks

Today these parks are located throughout the country in 25 states and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The land encompassing them was either purchased or donated, though much of it had been inhabited by native people for thousands of years before the founding of the United States. These areas are protected and revered as educational resources about the natural world, and as spaces for exploration.

Keep scrolling for 50 vintage photos that show the beauty of America's national parks.