The authors stroll through an art installation during their Bentonville day trip.

Bentonville Day Trip – Pushing The Limits

Road tripping is our passion, but we wondered what the farthest distance a day trip should involve. 2024 seemed like a good year to test this out, so we planned a series of short excursions. Each one would take us a little farther away from our home in Kansas City. Two-hour drives are no issue, but Bentonville, Arkansas would require a little over three hours. Would this have us pushing the limits on a comfortable day trip?

The Scott Family Amazeum is a hands-on science center for kids of all ages.

Jumping Into It

Being early risers has been an advantage for us. If we have our morning coffee, we are ready to venture out. We hit the ground running on our Bentonville day trip. The first stop was the Scott Family Amazeum. This hands-on children’s science center has plenty of variety. Crystal was raring to go from the moment we entered the doors. I happily recorded her adventures, but think I’ll take the wheel for the drive home.    

A visit to Crepes Paulette provided plenty of fuel for our Bentonville day trip.

Filling A Void

After all of that fun, we found ourselves famished. Time for a quick brunch stop at Crepes Paulette. What began as a food truck has blossomed into a brick-and-mortar. The parking lot wasn’t full, so we were surprised to see the place so busy. It turns out that many of the other diners had arrived by bicycle. We placed our order and waited anxiously for our food to arrive. Before heading to our table, we watched as the crepes were assembled behind a glass partition. If you stop here, be sure to check out this interesting process. 

The Momentary is filled with rotating exhibits.

The Momentary

On previous visits, we discovered The Momentary. This FREE art museum is all about rotating exhibits. That means that each Bentonville day trip offers a new experience. This visit had a large assembly of images from the Amazon rainforest. Many panels reflected on the impact humans have made on this natural resource. Like previous exhibits, it made us step back and think globally. 

The Museum of Native American History is one of the FREE attractions found in Bentonville.

Exploring Cultural History

Another FREE museum is M.O.N.A.H. (Museum of Native American History) This place is packed with artifacts and exhibits from the Americas. It’s the kind of place we could spend hours investigating all the details. I’m a huge fan of the wide range of pottery on display. You’ll want to visit the gift shop to see the handmade souvenirs. 

Trash Ice Cream offered us a chance to sample some unique flavor combinations.

Sweet Pick-Me-Up

Our brunch had so much protein that we were still fairly full, but both of us were in the mood for a sweet treat. When our research identified a place called Trash Ice Cream, it piqued our interest. I plotted the path and soon we found ourselves facing a lot of interesting choices. This was the first time I saw an ice cream shop feature Butterfinger, Heath, and Ritz crackers in one dish. I just had to try it out, and found it to be a delicious combination of salty and sweet. 

Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art is another FREE attraction.

Artistic Afternoon

Now that our bellies had been topped off, it was time to get back to exploring. Previous Bentonville day trips have shown us that there are tons of FREE or cheap entertainment options. A huge draw for the city is  Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art. There is so much to see beyond the indoor galleries. A favorite of ours is the art trails that surround the property. It’s fun discovering an amazing installation while strolling along their paved paths. 

The authors pause to reflect on the length of the drive from their hometown to Bentonville, Arkansas.

Pondering The Road Home

Afternoon was turning to evening, so our thoughts turned to the drive home. Our appetites were still suppressed, so it was decided that we could locate something during our drive home. If this had been an overnight visit, we would have likely dined in the downtown. Past visits have included meals at The Preacher’s Son and The Hive. Both of these upscale eateries bring a lot to the table. The drive home helped us decide that this distance was pushing the limit for a day trip. How far do you consider a day trip distance?

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