Hot Springs, Arkansas: Arkansas Alligator Farm, Home of the Merman

RoadsideAmerica.com Team Field Report

Arkansas Alligator Farm and Petting Zoo

Address:
847 Whittington Ave., Hot Springs, AR
Directions:
Arkansas Alligator Farm and Petting Zoo. Northwest edge of town. South side of Whittington Ave. just west of Woodfin St.
Hours:
Daily 9:30-5 (Call to verify)
Phone:
501-623-6172
Admission:
Adults $7.50
RA Rates:
Major Fun
Save to My Sights

The Merman.

Arkansas Alligator Farm, Home of the Merman
The famous half-man, half-fish has ruled from his humid perch in an outbuilding since the Alligator Farm first opened. Roadsideamerica.com Report... [09/09/2012]

Visitor Tips and News About Arkansas Alligator Farm, Home of the Merman

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Alligators.

Arkansas Alligator Farm

The Merman still resides at the Alligator Farm, and in the cooler months of the year, shares his building with hundreds of alligators in concrete pits. There's also giant turtles and a few monkeys and other creatures in cramped conditions, with local talk radio playing on a boom box to keep them company.

Outside are sad mountain lions and wolves in chain link pens. In the petting zoo area are emus, a few goats, deer, rams, and a pair of miniature donkeys. Only the goats are truly "pet-able," however.

Since the alligators were lethargic and indoors during our visit in April, we had to be content with watching a looped DVD of a 2006 feeding in the gift shop (complete with footage of the owner's son getting bitten by a gator - an injury that required some 30 stitches). We were offered the chance to pet an alligator if we only asked the caretaker to bring one out for us, but we declined.

[Eric Bolstridge, 05/01/2010]
Arkansas Alligator Farm - Home of the Merman

My family and I went to the Arkansas Alligator Farm on 06/27/05. It was great checking it out, because my great-grandfather worked there and there's a lot of family history out there. If I did not have that history though, it would have been quite gross and stagnant. It really could use a good scrubbing and an overall update. The Merman (one of the main reasons I went) is now kept in a almost completely bare building with empty pool in the floor. It smells a bit gross in the room, and there is a big, sagging stuffed saw-billed shark hanging from the ceiling. I thought it was fascinating, and it was fun feeding the deer and goats. Just don't expect too much and you won't be overly disappointed. Definitely worth checking out though!

[Luke Whitmire, 07/05/2005]

We haven't been there in about eight years, yet you describe the Merman building exactly as we remember it!

Arkansas Alligator Farm

I have been to the Hot Springs Alligator Farm. My favorite part of the "park" (besides the merman) are the signs above the alligator pits:

"The alligators in this pit are 1-3 years old. these alligators are good for making wallets, belts & other small accessories."

"The alligators in this pit are 2-3 years old they are good for making handbags, purses and small luggage."

Each pit has a sign like that. You couldn't do that at the San Diego Zoo!

[Michelle Horvath, 05/18/1998]

Nearby Offbeat Places

Home Run That Changed BaseballHome Run That Changed Baseball, Hot Springs, AR - < 1 mi.
Tiny TownTiny Town, Hot Springs, AR - < 1 mi.
McClard's: Bill Clinton's Favorite Bar-B-QMcClard's: Bill Clinton's Favorite Bar-B-Q, Hot Springs, AR - 1 mi.
In the region:
World's Only Building Made of Bauxite, Benton, AR - 28 mi.

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