Kentucky is a great state, filled with a wide range of different attractive locations, from fun and unique spots to serene and peaceful natural parks making it one of the best places to go on vacation.
Still not sure what to do while you’re in the state?
Here are 45 things to do and places to visit in Kentucky.
1. Cumberland Falls State Resort Park
Cumberland Falls State Resort Park is located inside one of the most stunning vacation spots in the state of Kentucky: the Daniel Boone National Forest.
Spanning 1,657 acres and boasting a campground with 50 sites, a restaurant looking out to the river, a lodge, and a visitor’s center it’s among the best the state has to offer.
While you’re in the park, you can visit Cumberland Falls, which arches 68 feet into the air, or even Eagle Falls, which falls second place at a still-impressive 44 feet tall.
You can take your time doing all sorts of things, like white water rafting, hiking, fishing, biking, horseback riding, catching a moonbow, and more.
On top of that, there are also a good number of events that occur throughout the year, so if you’re lucky, you’ll be in the park at the right time to enjoy them.
The Overnight Canoe Adventures, the Kentucky Hills Craft Festival, the Native American Weekend, and the Nature Photography Weekend are all great!
Address: 7351 Hwy 90, Corbin, KY 40701, United States
2. Harland Sanders Cafe and Museum
We all know about Kentucky Fried Chicken, the scrumptious fast food that’s become famous all around the world.
But what do you know about Colonel Harland Sanders, the man behind the KFC crave?
Harland Sanders Cafe and Museum was the first restaurant that the Colonel ever opened.
It’s quite different from most other KFC outlets you’ll find today.
It contains a close replica of the kitchen that Sanders worked in back in the 1940s, and it’s full of historical information that will tell you all about the cafe’s rise to fame.
It’s safe to say that visiting the place where the first KFC chicken was served in the 11 herbs and spices of its glory is among the most fun things to do in Kentucky!
Address: 688 Hwy 25, Corbin, KY 40701, United States
3. Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs
Love races? Pop down to Churchill Downs, where you can watch the Kentucky Derby!
It is among the most famous and prestigious events in the state, and it’s extremely exciting to attend.
So if this weekend is the first Sunday in May and you’re in Louisville at the time, this is an event you just can’t miss out on!
You can place bets if you’re into gambling, or you can just enjoy the thoroughbred horses dashing by.
If you go off-season, don’t worry – you can tour the grounds.
There is also a Kentucky Derby Museum on-site that you can visit anytime.
It documents the history of this event since its beginnings in 1875 and holds plenty of fascinating artifacts, including items that once belonged to some of the most famous horse trainers.
It also educates visitors on how horses are bred and trained, and a cemetery outside pays tribute to past champions.
Address: 700 Central Ave, Louisville, KY 40208, United States
Planning a trip to Louisville soon? Be sure to check out our awesome list of things to do in Louisville, KY.
4. Louisville Mega Cavern
The Louisville Mega Cavern is among the most stunning Kentucky attractions in the state.
It is comprised of man-made caverns and tunnels that span 17 miles beneath Louisville.
Originally, the caverns were used as a limestone quarry, but mining stopped in the 1970s and the place sat empty for a while before being turned into a storage facility.
Now, it is among the top spots for tourists to visit, especially traveling families.
Inside, you can learn about how the cavern works and find out about its rich history in a variety of ways.
You can go on a Mega Zips zipline tour, which is the world’s one and only zip line course that is fully underground, or opt for a Mega Tram adventure, or go on an electric bike tour.
During the holiday season, you can also enjoy a 30-minute light show in the cavern!
Address: 1841 Taylor Ave, Louisville, KY 40213, United States
5. Kentucky State Capitol
The Kentucky State Capitol can be found in Frankfort, and many consider it among the top 10 most beautiful capitols in the nation.
With architecture designed by Frank Mills Andrews, it is a grand and opulent structure.
Its most loved luxurious feature is probably its huge marble staircase (and other staircases within).
It truly feels like a rich, lush experience, and it’ll be like you’ve left the state altogether!
If you like, you can take a guided tour around the capitol building and be blown away by the Opera Garnier-inspired designs within.
You can also see the First Lady Doll Collection while you’re there!
Address: 700 Capital Ave, Frankfort, KY 40601, United States
6. Louisville Slugger Museum and Factory
If you’re looking for what to do in Kentucky, why not celebrate the state’s wealth of history in baseball?
The Louisville Slugger Museum and Factory is a location that showcases the long and rich history of Louisville Slugger bats, as well as their role in America’s sports over the decades.
One of the most photo-worthy items isn’t inside the factory or the museum, but instead at the entrance: a gigantic replica of the Louisville Slugger used by Babe Ruth, standing 120 feet tall.
Once you’re done marveling at that, you can step inside the factory and learn about how the bats are made, then go to the museum to learn even more!
The Louisville Slugger Museum has plenty of fascinating exhibits.
It holds iconic bats, such as the one used by Joe DiMaggio during his impressive hitting streak of 56 games, the one used by Hank Aaron when he scored his 700th home run, and one used by Babe Ruth to hit 21 home runs in 1927.
You can even hold Andre Dawson or Micky Mantle’s bat!
The museum has its fair share of unique items, too, like a baseball glove made from 17 tons of limestone, batting cages, and a pitching simulator!
Address: 800 W Main St, Louisville, KY 40202, United States
7. Red River Gorge
The Red River Gorge is among the most gorgeous spots to go site seeing in the state of Kentucky.
It can be found in the Daniel Boone National Forest and it has some of the most renowned natural arches of stone in the world.
Its sandstone cliffs and formations of unique rock draw in tourists and rock climbers alike.
Apart from being great to look at, the Red River Gorge is an official national geological area.
You can trap or hunt animals in the area (following guidelines by the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife), go on a hike, row a canoe, or enjoy a picnic!
Don’t forget to stop by the Sky Bridge for a truly breathtaking experience.
Address: Robbie Ridge Rd, Stanton, KY 40380, United States
Can’t go to Churchill Downs for the Kentucky Derby?
Then head to Keeneland, which has another important race track.
It’s not just one of the most fun of the tourist attractions in the state, but it’s also a National Historic Landmark!
Keeneland was originally founded in 1936, and since then, it has been a crucial player in the industry and sector of thoroughbred horse breeding and racing.
In 2015, it was home to the Breeders’ Cup, which saw triple crown winner American Pharoah take home the number one ranking.
The races in Keeneland run in April and in October, so if you’re in the state during this time, drop by to watch champion horses training hard from the moment the sun rises.
Horse auctions also take place during this time, and you can eat some of the offered bread pudding as you watch!
Address: 4201 Versailles Rd, Lexington, KY 40510, United States
9. Ashland: The Henry Clay Estate
The Ashland Henry Clay Estate is a plantation mansion that is yet another National Historic Landmark in Kentucky.
It was home to Henry Clay, a famous Kentucky statesman, and his family up until his passing in 1852.
The property is located in the middle of many other high-class homes, and it’s among the best ways to catch a glimpse into the lives of upper-class citizens in the 19th century.
Entering the mansion costs a small admission fee and takes you on a tour that lasts for an hour, allowing you to view the Federal architecture and the subtle Italianate details.
Visitors hear about Henry Clay’s life and his history, and during the holiday season, you can even go on a Candlelight Tour!
If you don’t want to pay admission, you can also walk around the ground for free.
Glance inside the carriage house, examine the privy, admire the wide-reaching and well-manicured land and hedges, and enjoy the view.
If you’re looking for what to see in Kentucky that’s free, this is a good option!
Address: 120 Sycamore Rd, Lexington, KY 40502, United States
10. Breaks Interstate Park
Breaks Interstate Park is basically referred to as the unofficial Grand Canyon of the south of America.
Covering area over the border between Virginia and Kentucky, it houses the deepest gorge that you can find in the east area of Mississippi.
Daniel Boone was the man behind its original discovery, and it now is a great place that tourists go sightseeing in!
You can choose to stay in one of the lodges, go rafting, or enjoy the novelty of being right on a state line.
It’s a great spot for nature lovers!
Address: 627 Commission Cir, Breaks, VA 24607, United States
11. Mary Todd Lincoln House
The Mary Todd Lincoln House is among the points of interest that you simply must stop by while you’re visiting the best places that Kentucky has to offer.
It is here that Mary Todd Lincoln, who was the wife of 16th President Abraham Lincoln.
Originally built as a tavern and inn, it was purchased by the Todds in 1832.
Now, the home is open to visitors.
Tours run year-round from April to November, both for groups and for private sessions, and you can enter and survey the fascinating home – now a museum – and its fourteen beautiful rooms.
Personal belongings of the Lincoln and Todd families are exhibited, as well as plenty of furniture and decor that comes from that period.
Address: 578 W Main St, Lexington, KY 40507, United States
12. Natural Bridge
The Natural Bridge is among the most beautiful places you can find in Kentucky.
Situated near to the famous (and previously discussed) Red River Gorge, it is located within the Natural Bridge Park, which is free of charge to enter, making it among the coolest free things to do in Kentucky.
The Natural Bridge itself is 65 feet high and 78 feet long.
The imposing sandstone arch is truly an incredible sight and isn’t too difficult to get to.
But it’s not just the bridge itself that you can have fun at; the whole park has plenty to enjoy!
There are hiking trails such as the Original Trail to the bridge and the Sand Gap Trail which stretches 7.5 miles through a logging road.
Want to stay in the park?
You can opt to stay at a seasonal campground or rent a room or cottage at the serene Hemlock Lodge.
You can also skip out on walking altogether and take a paid sky lift over the National Bridge to view it.
Address: 2135 Natural Bridge Rd, Slade, KY 40376, United States
13. Oscar Getz Museum of Whiskey History
The Oscar Getz Museum of Whiskey History is fittingly located in the town that is widely considered the world’s bourbon capital: Bardstown, Kentucky.
The museum is filled with items from the collection of Oscar Getz, an executive in the liquor business from Chicago.
He had originally purchased a distillery and filled it with collectibles, whiskey treasures, and memorabilia.
Eventually, his whiskey-themed collection grew so large that he wanted to make it a private museum – but his wife flat out refused!
So he decided to pay for a seminary to be restored in Bardstown, and the 200-year-old building became the Oscar Getz Museum of Whiskey History.
The Getz family has kept admission open and without charge, making a trip here among the most fun free things to do in the area.
It holds artifacts, documents, photographs, and information surrounding American whiskey and its in-depth history through the country’s many eras.
While here, you’ll be able to view the still of George Washington, the liquor license of Abraham Lincoln, a huge number of priceless whiskey bottles, and some antique collectible bottles for sale.
No samples are provided, but if you’re in Bardstown this weekend, you simply can’t miss a trip here!
Address: 114 N 5th St, Bardstown, KY 40004, United States
14. Fort Knox
Fort Knox spans 109,000 acres and is one of the most renowned army posts in all of America – not just in Kentucky.
It is the location that houses and has housed the Army Human Resources Command, United States Bullion Depository, Accessions Command, and more.
You can’t go inside the fort’s gold depository, unfortunately, and you won’t get a glimpse of the whopping 5,000 tons of gold within.
But you can take a picture there and visit one of the most interesting Kentucky attractions: the General George Patton Museum
Within this museum, you’ll find a weapons collection all carefully designed by none other than Leonardo da Vinci, a display of the Remembrance Walls, education exhibits, and even events for Veteran Appreciation Day.
Address: Fort Knox, KY 40121, United States
15. Cumberland Gap National Park
The Cumberland Gap National Park is one of the best Kentucky destinations for nature-lovers and their families to have fun.
There are hiking trails that stretch over 80 miles, with some as short as half a mile and some as long as 20 miles.
The Cumberland Gap is the subject of one of the most interesting myths of Kentucky: that Daniel Boone crossed over the gap and made a lovely statement: that, in the sun, the grass appeared blue over the border.
Regardless of the truth behind this story, it’s definitely a delightful tale – and now you can walk around that same gap yourself!
Address: 91 Bartlett Park Road, Middlesboro, KY 40965, United States
Learn how to plan a trip the right way to make incredible memories that will stay with you and your loved ones forever!
16. Vent Haven Museum
The Vent Haven Museum is one of the most fascinating and strange places to visit in Kentucky.
It is home to a wide range of ventriloquism artifacts, born from William Shakespeare Berger’s collection.
He was a businessman and an International Brotherhood of Ventriloquists president.
Berger’s collection grew and grew for over six decades, and the museum holds many, including some of the best and most rare!
Enjoy the sight of 700 dolls, all lined up with their big wooden heads.
You may recognize many from the fame of old TV programs!
For extra entertainment, stop by this Kentucky museum in July so you can attend a ventriloquist convention that has more than 400 of these performers flocking in and putting on a unique show!
Address: 33 W Maple Ave, Fort Mitchell, KY 41011, United States
17. Diamond Caverns
The Diamond Caverns are a truly must-see Kentucky location.
First found in 1859, the caverns have been open to the public for tours and exploration for over a century.
Lighting sources line the cave, right under ceilings full of gorgeous stalactites.
You’ll walk along a paved cement floor that leads you through the twisting caves.
If you’re looking for unique and beautiful sites to see, the Diamond Caverns are up there among the greatest in Kentucky.
Tours are available all year round!
Address: 1900 Mammoth Cave Pkwy, Park City, KY 42160, United States
18. Newport Aquarium
Newport Aquarium is one of the most fun and exciting tourist attractions that you’ll see in Kentucky.
It holds more than 14 galleries and over 70 different exhibits, many of which are interactive.
The Newport Aquarium offers a fantastic way to learn more about marine and aquatic life.
Five tunnels lead the way through the aquarium, each one leading to different “habitats” that will make you feel like you’ve left Kentucky and are in a coastal island somewhere!
There is the Surrounded by Sharks area where you can be closer to these intimidating fish.
The Gator Alley that is full of alligators.
The Amazon Tunnel that shows off the Arapaima.
The Dangerous but Deadly attraction that will make you gasp, the Kroger Penguin Palooza, the jellyfish gallery, the stingray touch-tank, and more!
Address: 1 Levee Way, Newport, KY 41071, United States
19. Wooldridge Monuments
The Wooldridge Monuments are an eerie, creepy set of statues that are among the top scary spots in Kentucky.
They consist of 18 different monuments, all commissioned by a man named Colonel Henry G. Wooldridge to commemorate those he lost throughout his life.
This includes his family, two dogs, a horse, and other loved ones.
13 of these monuments depict people, while 5 depict animals.
All the monuments gaze in the same direction, looking over Mayfield, which is a quiet little cemetery.
It’s odd to think of a cemetery as one of the places to visit on a vacation, but The Strange Procession Which Never Moves is more than worth the trip!
Address: Lockridge Street, Intersection with North Sixth Street, Mayfield, KY 42066, United States
20. Mammoth Cave National Park
The Mammoth Cave National Park can be found in the Caveland Corridor of Kentucky, which is also known as the Land of 10,000 Sinks.
The karstic vibes of the location make it an amazing place to visit, and Mammoth Cave itself is actually among the oldest cave systems across the globe.
The park has plenty of options and activities for you to explore.
You can survey any of the 400 miles of Mammoth Cave passages, seek out the 200-foot-tall Mammoth Dome, visit the intimidating Frozen Niagra, view the Crystal Lake, and examine the huge limestone pillars of the Ruins of Karnak.
Mammoth Cave National Park is one of the cool places that’s educational, fun, and stunning all at once.
You can go horseback riding, canoeing, cycling, kayaking, hiking, and more!
And don’t forget the Mammoth Cave Adventures, which features a safe but exciting experience on a Tarzan Swing, a pair of zipline courses, and a tower drop.
Address: 1 Mammoth Cave Parkway, Mammoth Cave National Park, KY 42259, United States
21. Big Four Bridge
The Big Four Bridge was once a truss bridge for a rail system.
Now, it’s a bicycle bridge and a pedestrian walkway that leads from Kentucky to Indiana, letting you visit multiple vacation spots at once.
It spans 2,525 feet and arches over the gorgeous Ohio River, and it’s one of the best ways to get from one state to another in a relaxed manner.
If you like, you can exit the bridge to visit the Louisville Waterfront Park.
This park has 85 acres of land and is perfect for picnics, jogging, walking, and cycling.
You can even visit the amphitheater, let your kids play at a designated play area, explore tree groves and a riverside esplanade, or even visit at the right time to see events, fairs, or concerts.
Of course, you can also just enjoy the walk through the bridge.
Go at night to see a beautiful light show; its beauty and grace are sure to blow your mind.
It’s a great way to end a nice long day of walking, and the whole family can enjoy it!
Address: 1101 River Rd, Louisville, KY 40202, United States
22. Kentucky Artisan Center
The Kentucky Artisan Center holds a wide range of artisan works, but not in an ordinary museum-style showcase.
Instead, it’s a mix of a shopping center, exhibition area, and gallery, all in one that covers 25,000 square feet.
Almost 700 different local artisans sell their creations here, ranging from steel and metal works, note cards, glass crafts, jewelry, pottery, furniture, woodcraft, specialty foods, paper, and fiber crafts, pastels, photographs, paintings, and more.
The center is generally meant to function as a rest stop and an information center all in one.
It’s one of the things to do in KY that is easy to stop by, even in the middle of your journey to another location this weekend!
Address: 200 Artisan Way, Berea, KY 40403, United States
23. Muhammad Ali Center
Fans of boxing will love the Muhammad Ali Center, which showcases the life and time of the man, the myth, the legend, the Louisville Lip, The Greatest, and all the other names we’ve used to refer to one of the most incredible sportsmen of all time.
An orientation film is first shown to visitors who arrive to give a general overview of the legendary boxer, and then you’re led in to enjoy the exhibits.
You’ll be able to view interactive displays that teach you about Ali’s life, religion, philanthropy, and career, artifacts from his world, educational exhibits that discuss his symbolic power during the fight for Civil Rights.
If you want some extra fun, you can head back to an exhibit that showcases a close replica of Ali’s own practice room, which offers you a chance to learn some cool boxing moves and even try to punch a speed bag.
Exhibits in the Kentucky museum’s three galleries change regularly, and you have the chance to watch videos of Ali, shadowbox with him, and more!
Address: 144 N 6th St, Louisville, KY 40202, United States
24. Creation Museum
The Creation Museum is one of the best of the Kentucky attractions you can find.
It measures 75,000 square feet and calls Petersburg, Kentucky its home.
It first opened up in 2006, and since then, it has served as a presentation of the history of the universe as told by the book of Genesis in the Bible – as literally as possible!
It focuses on the first six days of the world as said in the book through 160 unique exhibits.
Even if you’re not a Christian, you can still enjoy the historical significance and fascinating features of the Creation Museum.
Walk through the God’s Word exhibit and see the life-size dinosaurs, have a picnic in the botanical Garden of Eden, visit the Tower of Babel, interact with the petting zoo, explore the “construction site” of Noah’s Ark, or watch a theater presentation, among other things (like a zip line and planetarium)!
Address: 2800 Bullittsburg Church Rd, Petersburg, KY 41080, United States
25. Land Between the Lakes National Recreation Area
The Land Between the Lakes National Recreation Area is among the most beautiful places that you can find in Kentucky.
It is situated between Barkley Lake and Kentucky Lake and was made a national recreation area by President John Kennedy in 1963.
There’s plenty that you can see here, ranging from simple hiking trails to a breathtaking elk and bison prairie, including the biggest herd of bison that is publicly owned on this side of the Mississippi River.
The land itself is also an inland peninsula that is the second biggest in the country at 360 square miles.
While you’re here, you can enjoy water sports like swimming, fishing, boating, skiing, and more.
You can also take your chance at spotting wildlife, such as bobcats, deer, eagles, and osprey.
There are a good number of historic areas to see, too.
On top of that, you should also take a trip to Homeplace, which is also in the Land Between the Lakes National Recreation Area.
It is a recreated farm from the 1850s, and all staff in the area are dressed in costumes from the time and showcase period-typical crop-growing techniques.
Address: 238 Visitor Center Dr, Golden Pond, KY 42211, United States
26. Perryville Battlefield
For those who love war history, the Perryville Battlefield is among the most cool things to do in the state of Kentucky.
After all, the Battle of Perryville – often also called the Battle of Chaplin Hills – is certainly among the most bloody and deadly battles in the Civil War.
More than that, Perryville Battlefield is a National Register of Historic Places site and a National Historic Landmark.
Many of the original buildings on the field still remain, even though they’re mostly nearly two centuries old.
The Perryville Battlefield also offers one of the most fun activities you’ll find of this nature: a recreation of the infamous battle.
The re-enactment occurs at a certain time every year, so check in advance if you want to catch it!
Address: 1825 Battlefield Rd, Perryville, KY 40468, United States
27. Kentucky Kingdom
The Kentucky Kingdom is a fun theme park full of awesome and exciting stuff to do.
It first opened its doors to the public in 1987, and since then, it has been further developed to add even more rides and roller coasters.
Ed Hart, who bought the park before, bought it again later in order to refurbish it and reopen it in 2014.
Now, it boasts five roller coasters, and plenty of new entertainment options have been added, including a 5D cinema, a river ride, a ferris wheel, a playground, water rides, and more!
Some of these rides are truly extreme, but there’s something for all ages and preferences.
Don’t forget to visit Hurricane Bay, too, which is another theme park right next door and specializes in water rides!
Address: 937 Phillips Ln, Louisville, KY 40209, United States
28. Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historic Site
The 16th American president was born in Kentucky, and the Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historic Site celebrates that as one of the best and most symbolic tourist attractions you’ll find in the state.
But the site isn’t just one specific area: it’s a collection of awesome things to see.
You can tour the John Russell Pope-designed First Lincoln Memorial of pink granite and marble, which has 56 steps that lead up to the peak.
These represent every year of Lincoln’s life.
The birth cabin of Lincoln is symbolically represented in one of the aforementioned locations.
There is also the Sinking Spring, which is where the president first drank water from after he was born.
Then, you can take a trip to Knob Creek, which is where Lincoln and his family moved later on.
Address: 2995 Lincoln Farm Rd, Hodgenville, KY 42748, United States
29. My Old Kentucky Home State Park
The My Old Kentucky Home State Park is among the places to see in the state that has plenty of things to do.
It houses a campground with 39 spots, the Kenny Rapier Golf Course with 18 holes, a conference space, a wedding space, and The Stephen Foster Story, a touching outdoor musical with 50 years under its belt.
Of course, the top famous spot in the state park is Federal Hill, which has the titular My Old Kentucky Home.
It was once the home of John Rowan, the US Senator, and is now open for tourist visits.
It is a very crucial political site in America, and its architecture is a sight for sore eyes.
The home has a garden house, a stable, windowsills, and mantels that are meticulously carved by hand, a brick exterior, and more.
In addition, the staff there dress in period outfits and spout interesting facts as they bring you around on tours.
Address: 501 E Stephen Foster Ave, Bardstown, KY 40004, United States
30. Shaker Village
Shaker Village is located on Pleasant Hill in Kentucky, and it began as a Shaker community that was founded in 1805 and stayed active until 1910.
It now has 2,800 acres of stunning farmland for you to enjoy, as well as a whopping 34 buildings that are original from the 19th century, all built with Shaker-unique methods.
Farmers, historians, and more continue to maintain the village, and there are countless different fun activities, tours, and events that you can take part in.
You can learn about the techniques implemented by the community of Shakers way back when, so you’ll be taught how gardening and farming worked in those days.
You can also go sightseeing around some of the 30-mile land trails, stay in The Inn, explore the Shaker buildings complete with period furniture, genuine hardwood floors, and more.
Plus, check out the wildlife preserve to check out a bird blind, programs guided by naturalists, and more.
Address: 3501 Lexington Rd, Harrodsburg, KY 40330, United States
Check out some of these incredible travel hacks to make your trip fun and memorable!
31. Castle Post
Castle Post is one of the points of interest in Kentucky that will truly take you back in time.
It looks like an establishment straight out of old, medieval times, and not much like a castle, but it’s a stunning site that now serves as a Bed and Breakfast.
Castle Post was originally called Martin Castle, named after the man who constructed it after visiting Europe and being inspired.
But the man and his wife divorced during construction, causing the castle to be stuck unfinished.
It wasn’t until Thomas R. Post purchased it that it began to grow again.
A fire then happened, causing the site to have to be rebuilt.
But the fire spurred Post to make the site the best it could be.
He added a garden, a library, a ballroom, and more.
Castle Post as it is known today was finally opened in 2008, but many still remember the countless rumors that surrounded it in its time abandoned.
Address: 230 Pisgah Pike, Versailles, KY 40383, United States
32. Dinosaur World
Dinosaur World is one of the fun things to do in Kentucky that you shouldn’t miss, especially if you have kids!
This Dinosaur World is just one of three in a franchise, all made by Christer Svensson, a Swedish businessman who turned a Florida alligator farm into the Dinosaur World in that state.
Located near to Cave City, the Kentucky branch of Dinosaur World is marked by a huge tyrannosaurus rex figure that sits on the I-65 highway.
While you’re here, you can walk through the park and see over 100 different life-sized dinosaur statues, which wind through a gorgeous green forest, filled with raptor claws and dinosaur “egg”s.
Kids can drop by the playground, or maybe to go to the fossil dig instead.
And of course, the whole family can enjoy eating in a picnic area nearby.
Don’t forget to stop by the gift shop to buy books, fossils, toys, eggs, and more.
Address: 711 Mammoth Cave Rd, Cave City, KY 42127, United States
33. National Quilt Museum
Visiting the National Quilt Museum is a little unusual on the list of fun and enjoyable Kentucky activities, but there’s a reason it attracts more than 100,000 visitors!
Within the museum, three galleries showcase unique exhibits that rotate throughout the year to provide something new with each visit.
This Kentucky museum focuses on providing advocating for quilting as an art form and educating visitors on its ins and outs.
Kids can even enjoy student programs that are totally free!
Exhibits in this museum look amazing, and you’d probably think that they were pictures, stained glass artwork, or oil paintings at first glance.
Bright, enticing colors make the quilts pop and catch your eye immediately.
If you’re really a die-hard fan of quilting, you can even pay for a guided tour this weekend!
Address: 215 Jefferson St, Paducah, KY 42001, United States
34. Grave of Colonel Harland Sanders
We’ve already talked about Colonel Harland Sanders, the genius behind Kentucky Fried Chicken.
In Cave Hill Cemetery, the Grave of Colonel Harland Sanders rests, decorated by a bust of the man himself, which was sculpted by Sanders’ own daughter, Margaret.
Sure, it’s not the most common of tourist attractions, but it’s among the best to go if you want to pay your respects to this culinary legend.
He was buried in his famous string bow tie and white suit, appearing iconic throughout his life and to his passing.
Address: 701 Baxter Ave, Louisville, KY 40204, United States
35. Floodwall Murals
The city of Paducah is one of the Kentucky destinations that many want to visit, and while you’re there, you might as well check out one of the best things that this Kentucky location has to offer: the Floodwall Murals.
The mural is rendered on a floodwall that was erected after a flood in 1937 devastated the area.
Since then, almost 50 murals have been added to the huge concrete structure, all designed by Robert Dafford and finished in the 1990s and 2000s.
Each painting shows the country’s post-colonial history, indicating the past of the beautiful city, and they all look fresh as ever thanks to annual touch-ups.
Address: S Water & Broadway, Paducah, KY 42001, United States
36. Apple Valley Hillbilly Garden and Toyland
The Apple Valley Hillbilly Garden and Toyland in Kentucky is a garden of folk art full of a mystical and whimsical energy.
Full of intriguing and unique pieces, items, constructions, and treasures, visiting here is one of the top things to do if you love vintage toys.
The location was set up in the 1920s, when Grandpa Oral Wallace purchased the land, which was a six-acre orchard for apples, and lived in a home onsite while selling apple cider.
He slowly turned it into a much-loved Kentucky business, expanding to include a barbershop, a gas station, an auto camp, a convenience store, a diner, and even a small zoo.
Now, Keith Holt, the grandson of Wallace, transformed the area into an art oasis.
The “woods” in the area are full of folk art, all made from older items.
The Lawn Mower Ranch, the Thronehenge, and the Potty Mouth Tree are all popular pieces.
Don’t forget to visit the museum of toys, where you’ll be able to see 3,500 different toys that are sure to bring back feelings of nostalgia.
Address: 9351 US-68, Calvert City, KY 42029, United States
37. Great American Dollhouse Museum
The Great American Dollhouse Museum in Kentucky is a must-see location that’s a little abnormal but full of charm and mystery.
It houses more than 200 unique dollhouses, as well as tiny little dolls within them.
There are also room boxes and little miniature buildings.
Mostly, this Kentucky museum focuses on depicting the social history of the American world in a miniature form.
There are three different major areas within the exhibition hall.
One showcases the growth of the US from Native Americans to modern eras, including the Old West and Colonial ones in between.
Another has a 1910-replicated town that has businesses, mansions, a Shaker village, factories, and shops.
The third depicts a fantasy forest land with elves, dragons, trolls, witches, and faeries, as well as a cave you can walk into!
Address: 344 Swope Dr, Danville, KY 40422, United States
38. Kentucky Horse Park
Trying to figure out what to do that could be fun for the whole family?
You can even go on pony rides or horse rides, attend shows, or go on a trolley tour.
All the animal residents of the farm live in a variety of attractively themed barn houses.
The Breeds Barn houses rare breeds, the Kids Barn is packed with little critters, the Hall of Champions holds racehorses, the Mounted Police Barn has plenty to offer, and the Big Barn has draft horses that are the most incredible of the bunch!
There are also four museums on the property: the Al-Marah Arabian Horse Galleries, the Wheeler Museum, the International Museum of the Horse, and the American Saddlebred Museum.
And if you want to, you can actually stay on the campgrounds, which have lots of modern facilities, like stores, sports courts, a pool, and bathhouses.
Address: 4089 Iron Works Pkwy, Lexington, KY 40511, United States
39. Louisville Zoo
The Louisville Zoo is a fun spot in Kentucky that is perfect for the whole family.
It is home to exhibits that have won awards as well as a Backyard Action Hero program that will teach kids all about nature and animals.
While you’re here, you can visit the famed Glacier Run that has grizzly bears and polar bears, the Gorilla Forest that has a rotational exhibit that will bring you into the habitat that gorillas thrive in.
There are also plenty of events throughout the year that you may just be lucky enough to catch!
Halloween, Christmas, and more are all great times to visit.
Just check the zoo’s event calendar in advance!
Address: 1100 Trevilian Way, Louisville, KY 40213, United States
40. USS Sachem Ruins
Looking for unusual vacation ideas to enjoy in Kentucky?
Head to the USS Sachem Ruins – known also as the Ghost Ship.
In the past, it had names like the Circle Line V, the USS Phenakite, the Celt, and the Sightseer.
But today it’s a mere shell of its former self.
The ship was abandoned in 1987, near the Lawrenceburg Ferry Road.
In its glory days, it was a navy ship that won awards and served the public in World Wars I and II.
It even appeared in a music video for Madonna, was present during the Statue of Liberty torch lighting by Ronald Reagan, and helped bring Thomas Edison around as he worked on experiments.
The vessel was finally retired at the end of the 20th century, and it is now anchored on the Ohio River by Robert Miller, who purchased and refurbished it in 1986.
It will never sail again, but it’s an incredible spot for kayakers, and for tourists!
Countless people are attracted to its mystery and eerieness.
Address: 2478 Lawrenceburg Ferry Rd, Petersburg, KY 41080, United States
41. National Corvette Museum
The Corvette has a rich history as America’s favorite sports car, and this museum showcases more than 80 specially designed Corvettes from a wide range of different periods in America.
This includes prototypes that are entirely one of a kind, and there are even mint classics to enjoy.
Next door, an NCM Motorsports Park hosts plenty of activities; you can drive a lap of the race, attend a racing event, and more!
Don’t forget the sinkhole, which suddenly struck in 2014 and practically ate up 8 Corvettes, now safe but available to view while you’re there!
Address: 350 Corvette Dr, Bowling Green, KY 42101, United States
42. Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area
The Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area spans 125,000 acres and is among the best and most scenic places to vacation in Kentucky.
It’s perfect for camping, hiking, rafting, rock climbing, horseback riding, kayaking, picnicking, sports activities, and more.
While you’re here, bask in the stunning scenery and enjoy looking over deep ravines, beautiful sandstone bluffs, miles of natural bridges, and river gorge views.
It’s some of the best hoodoos that you’ll see in all of Kentucky!
Address: 4564 Leatherwood Rd, Oneida, TN 37841, United States
43. Grave of Daniel Boone
We’ve mentioned Daniel Boone countless times over the course of this list, and for good reason.
He’s one of the most iconic figures of Kentucky history and is featured in countless different historical places throughout the state.
So why not pay your respects while you’re looking for the best, most interesting places to go?
The Grave of Daniel Boone rests in Frankfort Cemetery.
He is buried next to Rebecca, his wife.
He originally wasn’t buried here, but in Missouri, which is where he spent his last two decades alive.
He and his wife were moved to Frankfort in 1845, and now they rest there together.
Even just the view from his grave is amazing.
Address: 215 E Main St, Frankfort, KY 40601, United States
44. Joe Ley Antiques
Then you’ll love Joe Ley Antiques, one of the fun and unusual Kentucky attractions that boasts countless unique toys, trunks, signs, and more.
For over 50 years, this store has been a staple of Louisville, Kentucky, and it moved to its current schoolhouse after its original location collapsed in the 1980s.
This three-story, two-acre building is the biggest antique shop that is individually owned in all of America.
It holds 1950’s products, glass and dining ware, product labels, musical instruments, artwork, furniture, memorabilia, and more.
It also has chunky jewelry, dolls, and more – and it’s also award-winning and has been featured in tons of publications!
Address: 615 E Market St #1116, Louisville, KY 40202, United States
45. Waverly Hills Sanatorium
The Waverly Hills Sanatorium is a facility that was once dedicated to healing tuberculosis, which was incurable at the time.
As the outbreak of the disease got worse, the sanatorium had to be expanded, leading to a big building in 1912 being added to the open-air pavilions that could hold 40 patients, leading to 450 new beds.
A children’s pavilion also had its doors open for young patients and for the kids of patients.
A tunnel connecting the hill base to the facility was built, too.
Years later, in 1962, the hospital was bought by the state and converted into a nursing home.
It went through many different changes before eventually being abandoned.
Now, it’s advertised as a haunted building to attract tourists.
Horror houses are held seasonally, and there are ghosts tours year-round!
Address: 4400 Paralee Dr, Louisville, KY 40272, United States
Start Planning Your Trip To Kentucky
There are plenty of fun and exciting things to see and do in Kentucky, one of the most beautiful states in the United States.
Whatever your preferred form of entertainment or area of interest, you’re sure to find some enchanting, intriguing, calming, and rich places to see.
Hopefully, this list of the best things to do in Kentucky will help you to find your perfect destination!