About Kentucky

Kentucky is known as “The Bluegrass State” because the grass—thanks to its limestone soil—actually does look blue-purple in early spring. It’s a state blessed with an abundance of natural reserves, from lush forest parks to flowing streams and the longest cave system in the world—it's an adventurer's delight.

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About Kentucky

A state in the south east of America with the Appalachian Mountain range on its eastern side and the huge Ohio River in the north, Kentucky is pretty much horse country. Lexington, one of its biggest cities, is known as “The Horse Capital of the World” and home to the 1200 acre long working farm, Kentucky Horse Park. There are also several horse museums.

Kentucky has another global claim to fame with Owensboro being called “The Barbecue Capital of the World”, thanks to its annual International Bar-B-Q Festival every May. We'd definitely suggest going to sample some of the tasty local fare.

Thankfully, there are plenty of parks in which to burn off the BBQ calories. These include The Daniel Boone National Forest (named after the pioneer). Here outdoor enthusiasts can hike, boat, fish and camp to their hearts’ content.

What to do in Kentucky

One thing you can’t miss when in Kentucky is Mammoth Cave. At 340 miles long, it's the world's longest cave system and fascinating to explore, whatever age you happen to be. Guided tours are available but have to be booked in advance because they're so popular.

If you're near Louisville on the first Saturday in May then go to the famous Kentucky Derby. There's a whole museum devoted to this world-famous horse race and a fortnight's carnival to enjoy beforehand.

Try out a traditional Kentucky dish such as the Hot Brown (invented at the Brown Hotel in Louisville). More of a sandwich than a meal, it consists of a slice of toast layered with turkey, bacon and tomatoes then a drop of Mornay sauce.

You can also take a road trip along the bluegrass byways in pursuit of the eight distilleries on the Bourbon Trail. One of the first distilleries was in Knob Creek—where a young Abraham Lincoln just happened to grow up.

Top travel tips for Kentucky

Just in case you're tempted to crack a joke, there really was a colonel who came up with the idea for Kentucky Fried Chicken. His name was Harland Sanders and he sold it at his garage in North Corbin. But all over the state, there are amazing outlets for delicious fried chicken.

If you’re planning to visit the distilleries on the Bourbon Trail, it’s worth knowing that most close at 3pm. So set off early and pick a designated driver before you leave.

Spring and fall are the best times to visit Kentucky, especially if you're planning outdoor pursuits since the summers are hot (over 100F at times) and very humid.

Roads can be bad for driving in January and February when there's often lots of ice. So, make sure to time your trip right.

A large state with plenty to occupy your time, Kentucky is an ideal vacation destination whether you're after the outdoors, cowboy history, the food and drink or the general bonhomie of the residents there. It's proud of its Wild West past and, especially, those stunningly beautiful thoroughbred horses it breeds.

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