The best thing to do in Louisville is definitely to explore all of its many attractions. Visitors are amazed with the variety of attractions that Louisville has to offer. It offers everything from fun and games for children, historical sights and monuments, outdoor activities, great cuisines, and much more. And it doesn’t matter whether you are young or old, there is something for everyone in this charming southern city. Here are some of the top places to go in Louisville.
If you are looking for the best things to do in Louisville during the cool fall and winter months, then head to the Kentucky Garden Center and The Kentucky State History Museum for a few hours of educational fun things to do. You can also enjoy lunch in one of the popular outdoor restaurants or grab an ice cream at one of the ice cream shops in town. During the spring and summer months, these two museums will host several festivals, fundraisers, and theatrical events.
1. Louisville Slugger Museum and Factory
The Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory are an interesting museum and industrial museum, located within the “Museum row” of Louisville, Kentucky. This urban landscape of over one hundred and sixty-three million square feet (nearly two hundred and fifty feet per floor) has been purposely designed to bring together a unique mixture of art, history, science and industry. The museum showcases the history of Louisville Slugger baseball caps in baseball and also in American history as a whole.
There are several different sections within the museum including a home of the original factory (the original was built in 1875), a replica of the factory complete with the original woodwork, authentic workshop furniture and interior, and lastly, but not least, a recreation of the factory’s famous big glove room which can easily hold up to three hundred thousand pairs of shoes. Along with the main exhibit hall, the museum also features a restaurant, bar, and lounge featuring special and unique dishes, cocktails, wine and other beverages. On a hot summer day, the big glove room can easily turn into a barbeque. On a winter day, the warmth of the restaurant can be the perfect respite from the biting cold.
A sightseeing experience in Louisville isn’t complete without going to Louisville Slugger Museum and Factory.
This museum is open from Monday to Saturday from 9 a.m. to five p.m. and on Sunday from 11 a.m. to five p.m.
Admission is $16 for mature visitors, $15 for seniors, $9 for kids, and free for children five and younger.
Address: 800 W Main St, Louisville, KY 40202, United States
2. A Look at the Muhammad Ali Center in Louisville
The Muhammad Ali Center is a historical museum and cultural centre in Louisville, Kentucky dedicated to the great Muhammad Ali. Formerly called the World’s Greatest Champ, Ali became the first black athlete to popularise himself with the world through his five national championship matches. Ali was also a cultural icon, being hailed as the “word” of the African Diaspora and as a symbol of racial harmony. It was Ali’s life and work that created the modern concept of “putting on a boxer’s face”. In spite of its roots in Ali’s life, the centre does take pride in being a non-profit museum, established inocatively to raise funds for tragic cause.
The centre’s main floor, which houses the permanent Ali exhibition, is divided into three zones: The Pre-Convention, The Early Days, and the Post-Convention Years. Exhibits in this section include a lifetime of Ali memorabilia, including posters, photographs, posters, book coverings, and even an Ali DVD. Also inside the pre-convention area are a mini-museum and a running track, plus a cafe, gift shop, and lounge. The museum and the early days zone contains several Ali exhibition duplicates, such as a statue of Ali in full boxing stance; a miniature boxing gym complete with a steam sauna and water pump; and even Ali’s boxing shoes.
Address: 144 N 6th St, Louisville, KY 40202, United States
3. Cave Hill Cemetery in Louisville, Kentucky
Cave Hill Cemetery is a 296-acre former Victorian arboretum and cemetery located in Louisville, Kentucky. It has been said that the deceased individuals who have been buried there had been in their favorite places or were related to some of the local figures. It is the largest burial ground by far in Louisville and most burials there.
Address: 701 Baxter Ave, Louisville, KY 40204, United States
4. Kentucky Science Center and Museum
The Kentucky Science Center is Kentucky’s biggest hands-on museum. It has been found to be the most visited science center in the entire country. It was founded in 1974 and has been ranked among the top museums throughout the world. Situated in Louisville, Kentucky, the “Museum row” in downtown Louisville, KY is comprised of more than one hundred buildings housing hundreds of science centers and research laboratories. The museum is open to the public on selected weekends during the summer months, from Thursday through Sunday.
This museum features three hundred permanent exhibits, including botany, chemistry, geography, history, physics, and psychology. There are also a couple of interactive exhibits that allow visitors to try their hand at several hands-on activities, including molecular biology, gravity, and optics. There is a grand opening celebration held on the first floor in January, featuring a musical band, special guest speakers, and more. The second floor hosts the museum’s annual Kentucky Derby Extravaganza, where guests are invited to come dressed up in their best clothes (or else come in costume) for an extravagant gala.
The museum is open from Sunday to Thursday from 9:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and from Friday to Saturday from 9:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m.
Tickets for just exhibits are $17 for visitors 13 and older and $13 for those age two to 12.
Address: 727 W Main St, Louisville, KY 40202, United States
5. The Big Four Bridge
The Big Four Bridge is an eight-span old railroad bridge that crosses the Ohio River from Louisville, Kentucky, to Cincinnati, Indiana. It was constructed in 1895, modernized in 1929, restored in 1968, then taken out of public transportation service in 1969. The span is about 100 feet long; it is two stories and the second floor has a roof. It is considered one of the most attractive and distinctive bridges in the world.
Now, the Louisville Zoo has come up with an interesting idea to celebrate the addition of a big four bridge to this famous riverfront landmark – they are going to construct a new waterfront park ramp from which visitors can cruise the Vermilion River. When completed, the new bridge will serve as a connection point for the zoo’s aquatic experience. The plan includes an observation platform on the second floor and boat docks with spaces for paddle boating and river fishing. This unique and exciting idea was recently featured in an online article in which several prominent scientists and geologists were asked what they would name the structure if it were ever built.
Address: 1101 River Rd, Louisville, KY 40202, United States
6. Belle Of Louisville Riverboats And Your Budget
Belle Of Louisville is a Class A+ fishing boat that has been mooring at the Grand Casino in Louisville since 1974. The name for the deck house where you dine is “Leather House.” Over the years, this fine vessel has seen many owners, but it has never lost its class and elegance. It is well appointed with comfortable seating, a spacious lounge, and a full kitchen.
The next time you are looking for an ideal place to spend your weekend, take a look at the Belle Of Louisville Riverboats.
Address: 401 W River Rd, Louisville, KY 40202, United States
8. Conrad-Caldwell House Museum
The Conrad-Caldwell House Museum is located at the south end of Louisville’s Central Business District. “A striking Gothic structure, designed to be the country’s first central business district, the imposing building has been home to prominent citizens such as W.H. Crocker, Duke of Louisville, and his wife, Nancy; construction workers who built the State Bank of Kentucky headquarters; and actor Mel Gibson. A fascinating glimpse into Louisville’s colorful past and present.”
The Conrad-Caldwell House Museum gives an insight into both the past and present of Louisville’s most famous residents. Enjoy fine foods, fine wines and indulgent experiences from The Kitchen, a spectacular tasting room featuring hand-crafted wood dining and wine tables, hand-carved wood sculptures and hand-painted ceramic tile mosaics, all inspired by the world’s greatest chefs. The Lounge, located on the second floor, offers visitors comfortable, spacious and light-filled rooms, access to a courtyard and specialty shops, a stone fireplace and a state-of-the-art recording studio. The parlor, with its large, well-appointed rooms and cozy fireplaces, is an ideal place to enjoy the best of Southern Kentucky.
It is open for tours at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. on Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays, and Sundays and on Saturdays at 11 a.m., 1 p.m., and 3 p.m.
Address: 1402 St James Ct, Louisville, KY 40208, United States
9. The Beckley Creek Park
The Beckley Creek Park is located right in the heart of Louisville, Kentucky. It is a beautiful park located between the intersections of Claiborne Road and Main Street. If you are looking for an outdoor park, then this park is perfect for you. I have taken many families here year after year because of the wonderful atmosphere and great park amenities.
Address: 1411 Beckley Creek Pkwy, Louisville, KY 40245, United States
10. Waterfront Park in Louisville, KY
Louisville Waterfront Park would be one of the most impressive public parks you’d ever want to visit if you were in Louisville, Kentucky. It is actually a hybrid of a park and waterfront, with numerous attractions and activities centered on the water. The waterfront park features various kinds of attractions like boat tours, boating events, nature programs, gardens, picnic areas, hiking trails and nature trails and lots more. In short, if you enjoy water sports and the outdoors then this is the perfect parka for you.
Address: 401 River Rd, Louisville, KY 40202, United States
11. Louisville Zoo
The Louisville Zoo is home to one of the Southeast’s most beloved natural habitats, the zoo’s rich array of wildlife. Opened in 1969, today the Louisville Zoo features over 1,100 exotic animals on over 130 acres of arable space presenting specific biogeographic zones: Mountain, Woods, Wetland, Island, and Aquatica. Among the world’s most widely-visited zoos, the Louisville Zoo is a favorite among locals and visitors alike for its array of educational and entertaining exhibits. In addition to housing numerous animals, the zoo boasts an impressive collection of displays and attractions that allow families and individuals alike to immerse themselves in the wonder of nature. Today, people from all over the world travel to Louisville and take in the many attractions of the zoo has to offer.
Address: 1100 Trevilian Way, Louisville, KY 40213, United States
12.KFC Yum! Center – The Center of Racing and Popcorn
The KFC Yum! Center is an indoor multi-use sports arena located in Louisville, Kentucky. It’s named after the KFC fast food restaurant chain and Yum! Brands, both of which are parent companies of the KFC chain. People who love watching basketball, football, baseball, or any other sport can gather at the center to root for their favorite teams and get some delicious chicken wings. In addition, they can dine at any of the 20 different restaurants inside the center.
Address: 1 Arena Plaza, Louisville, KY 40202, United States
13. Whitehall House & Gardens – Exploring Historic Downtown Louisville
Whitehall House & Gardens have long been one of the most beautiful things to visit when you come to Louisville. As it was originally built, around eighteen 55, it quickly became a vital part of the old town of Louisville, Kentucky. Over the years, through various ownerships and other styles, it has remained a quintessential element of this great town.
A perfect place to begin with when considering Whitehall House & Gardens, is its location along Main Street, which is considered as the heart of downtown. This location along Main Street is very important as it draws in people from all walks of life, from families to business professionals to retirees. It is a very appealing place to spend a day, and the perfect setting for a great dinner or coffee date. The beautiful garden located on the corner of Main Street is a fantastic place to walk around and take in all the sights and sounds of this historic district.
The mansion can be toured from Monday to Friday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Admission is $5 for all guests ages six and up.
Address: 3110 Lexington Rd, Louisville, KY 40206, United States
14. The Frazier History Museum in Louisville, KY
The Frazier History Museum is located in the City of Louisville, Kentucky. Established in 2004 as a historic museum dedicated to nineteenth-century weaponry and armor, the Frazier now specializes in national, state, and local history and collections. The museum houses one of the largest privately owned collections of civil war and toy soldiers in the country, The Stewart Collection. In addition to the soldiers and armor, the museum also houses the only model of The Lost Battle of Gettysburg that was operational during the Civil War.
While visiting the history museum, the visitor can also enjoy many other attractions in downtown Louisville, Kentucky such as the Louisville Zoo and Gardens. The zoo is the top zoo in Kentucky and is home to some of the most popular animals. Other attractions include the Kentucky State Penitentiary and the historic courthouse located on the banks of the Kentucky River. As visitors to look around the grounds they may wonder how the war could have happened here, but as one look back reminds them the civil war was fought in Louisville, Kentucky. A trip to downtown Louisville with a group of friends can be an interesting and enjoyable outing. With many fun activities, the visitors can find themselves enjoying themselves thoroughly.
Address: 829 W Main St, Louisville, KY 40202, United States
15. The Speed Art Museum
The Speed Art Museum in Louisville, Kentucky is a great place to go if you are looking for a fun and informative museum with plenty of educational and entertainment value. The museum was founded in 1948 and has gone through a lot of changes since then. With over one hundred paintings collected from private and public collections all over the United States and even Europe, the Speed Art Museum displays a real slice of Americana.
The Speed Art Museum is open Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Friday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Sunday from 12 p.m. to five p.m.
Adults pay $18 for admission, and seniors and children, ages four to 17, pay $12.
16. Old Louisville, Kentucky
Old Louisville is an ever expanding residential and commercial neighborhood located in southwestern Louisville, Kentucky. The Old Louisville neighborhood is composed of over 100 buildings spread across five neighborhoods and includes some of the most historic neighborhoods in Louisville. This rapidly growing community is centered around the intersection of Walnut Hills Road and Main Street and is comprised of some of the finest homes and historic architecture in Louisville. You will find beautiful row homes and condominiums with historic landlines and brick or timber frames that date from many different periods throughout the city’s history.
17.Kentucky Center For the Performing and Arts
The Kentucky Center for the Performing Arts located in Louisville is an intercollegiate performing arts organization in Kentucky dedicated to presenting and promoting artistic pursuits through dramatic presentations and theatrical presentations. It is one of the three venues owned by Kentucky Performing Arts Company. It offers outstanding programs of diverse range of the performing arts, including drama, ballet, opera, music, and visual art forms such as paintings, photography, video, dance, puppetry, sound, and dance. It was founded in 1982 and has continually been a popular visitor attraction in Kentucky’s large metropolitan cities. Other related venues include the Kentucky Shakespeare Festival and the Bluegrass Festival.
Address: 501 W Main St, Louisville, KY 40202, United States
18. E.P. Tom Sawyer State Park in Kentucky
The park that has been called the most beautiful in America is E.P. Tom Sawyer State Park. This park features three interconnected lakes that produce over two million trout every year and is one of the most popular trout streams in the country. The lake alone can be an exhilarating thirty minute fly fishery; however, the entire park is filled with endless opportunities to get out and enjoy nature. This park features a vast array of hiking trails, boat launches and picnic areas as well as beautiful scenery perfect for bird watching and nature photography.
Address: 3000 Freys Hill Rd, Louisville, KY 40241, United States
19. A Walk Around the Louisville Slugger Field in Louisville, KY
Louisville Slugger Field is an outdoor baseball park in Louisville, Kentucky. The original baseball-themed stadium opened in 2000 with an average seating capacity of thirteen,131. Today it is home to the major league baseball team, the Louisville Bats. The stadium features an “official” Famous Statue of Liberty, which sits atop a steel structure that is encased in glass. The statue is sculpted by Louis Sullivan, an American artist, and is one of only ten original statues allowed by the United States government to be placed on top of the ballpark.
20. An Exhilarating Experience at the Kentucky Derby Museum
The Kentucky Derby Museum is a great American Thoroughbred horse-riding museum located on the famous grounds of Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky. Dedicated to preserving the rich history of this famous derby, it opened its doors for the public in the early spring of 1985. Since its humble beginning, the museum has collected, restored and interpreted the rich tradition of this event. The permanent collection includes one of the three competing horses, the Derby wager, a complete set of equipment including corkscrew, stirrups and hat, a complete program listing the horses in this year’s race, and more.
The Kentucky Derby Museum and Thoroughbred Heritage Center is a two-year program sponsored by the Kentucky Derby Commission and designed to promote interest in horses and the Kentucky Derby. It allows visitors to explore the various aspects of this historic event as well as participate in hands-on activities and meet others who enjoy this sport as much as they do history. Visitors may tour the paddock, meet the horses and handlers, and even try their hand at handicapping the races. Attractions include a recreated stretch limo for the Derby Weekend Tour, an authentic starting gate with images of past major winners, and other interactive exhibits. There are also historical accounts about the foundation of Churchill Downs, and an exhibit chronicling the early years of Thoroughbred racing in Kentucky. Other attractions include a shopping village and cafe, a gift shop, and an indoor running track.
The Kentucky Derby Museum should be seen if you love horseracing and are in or close Lousiville, Kentucky.
It is open from 9 a.m. to five p.m. from Monday to Saturday and on Sunday from 11 a.m. to five p.m.
Adults are charged $16 for admission, seniors are charged $14, children are charged $10, and children younger than five get in for free.
Address: 704 Central Ave, Louisville, KY 40208, United States
21. Louisville Mega Cavern
The Louisville Mega Cavern is an old limestone mine in Louisville, Kentucky which has been turned into a complex theme park. The Mega Cavern was built by W.T. Crocker and Company in 1855. This mining operation contributed to the rich history and culture of Louisville. Today, the Mega Cavern hosts thousands of visitors who enjoy the fun attractions, and the opportunity to mine for rare and precious stones, gems, fossils, and artifacts. An Innovative Theme Park for Your Family Fun Vacation
The Louisville Mega Cavern was designed as an indoor amusement park that contains more than two thousand revolving attractions. Each attraction includes multiple displays and shows that showcase the best of the best when it comes to quality and entertainment. The main showroom floor area of the Louisville Mega Cavern can stretch for three hundred feet and is divided into five different themed areas namely the Horseshoe Pit, the Canyon of Heroes, the Battle Arena, and the Jungle Adventure Park. There are also smaller areas within the main area where various attractions can be found and enjoyed. For example, there are the Aquarium, the Gem Bank, and the Lost City Legend. All of these attractions are themed to provide guests with the chance to observe animals and their habitat in the natural setting that the Louisville Mega Cavern is constructed in.
Address: 1841 Taylor Ave, Louisville, KY 40213, United States