Manila is a small city in Arkansas that’s close to both Tennessee and Missouri. It’s most known for being the hometown of Herman Davis, a renowned sniper in World War I. The city now honors Davis with the Herman Davis State Park, where leashed dogs are allowed to view the monument and walk the paths.
You’ll need to take a drive into Blytheville or Paragould – both about a half-hour drive from Manila – for vet care for your pooch, but the city has a few things for an outdoorsy family to enjoy, like the Manila Water Park, which has some fun slides and a pool for the kiddos. Lake Mallard is a spot where you can take Sparky, offering fishing, boating, and camping spots that make for a furtastic outdoor adventure with your pup.
Manila is also within an hour’s drive of several wildlife refuges, conservation areas, and state parks, like the Ben Cash Memorial Conservation Area in Missouri with fishing, birdwatching, and hunting activities. You can also check out the city of Memphis, which is also about an hour from Manila, for tons of dog-friendly restaurants, hotels, and some off-leash parks, like Memphis Dog Park.
Manila offers both fun and relaxation with its convenient location that gives you access to both outdoor recreation and city life!
If there’s one thing Manila is known for, it’s the massive Big Lake National Wildlife Refuge that sits on its east end and borders Missouri. The refuge is only a few miles from the Arkansas International Airport and several dog-friendly hotels in Blytheville. The area is one of the oldest of its kind in the United States and is currently home to more than 200 bird species. If you and your dog are avid hunters, you’ll love that this park allows dogs for certain wildlife hunting activities during their open seasons. Your leashed pup is also welcome in most areas of the refuge to hike the trails and sniff out some other animals.
This area of Jonesboro is located on its southern end, about 40 miles from Manila. Only miles north from here, you’ll find several dog-friendly hotels and restaurants with outdoor seating areas for you and your pooch to dine together. Here, you can explore the Craighead Forest Park with your four-legged friend. The park has several activities and attractions pawfect for families, like sporting fields and picnic pavilions, but your pup is sure to love the Dog Dock, a small, off-leash, dog-friendly beach in the park. Dogs can test their skills at the jumping dock or splash around with friends for a quick cool-down.
Downtown Memphis Tennessee is about a 67-mile drive from Manila, but if you’re heading to the Birthplace of Rock ‘N Roll for the day, you won’t want to miss bringing your dog to the heart of it all. Nestled along the Mississippi River, the Downtown area has some spectacular views for you to see, especially at night, and you might even be able to catch some at one of the many dog-friendly restaurants, like The Majestic Grille. Take Spot to Chickasaw Bluff Number Four, a cliff that looks over the Wolf River Harbor, or become a part of Memphis tradition by taking him to the Peabody Duck March at the Peabody Hotel!
About 46 miles from Manila is the Lake Frierson State Park located in Jonesboro. Another area for outdoorsy dogs and their owners to find new adventures, this park surrounds the beautiful Lake Frierson, which is known for its incredible fishing catches and piers. Your leashed dog is welcome to join you as you have a picnic, fish for the day, take your boat on the water, or walk the trails. The state park also has an easy trail on which dogs are allowed called Dogwood Lane, which is especially pupular in the spring for its pretty blooms on trees and plants.
If you’re up for a drive and have a day or two to explore, then the Chickasaw National Wildlife Refuge in Ripley, TN, may be the perfect pawportunity for you to get some one-on-one time with your adventurous pooch. Only miles outside of the park are some dog-friendly hotels and restaurants if you want to stay the night. With more than 26,000 acres to explore, this refuge is known for its hiking trails and licensed hunting activities. Dogs are welcome to walk on their leash on designated trails and are also allowed to join owners for small game and bird hunting.