“Staycation all I ever wanted…staycation no time to get away.”
The idea of a staycation – officially a bona fide Merriam-Webster word since 2009 and allegedly used as early as 1944 by the Cincinnati Enquirer – has been a growing trend in the US since the financial crises of the late 00’s. The idea of a staycation is simple: enjoy a vacation while being able to sleep at home. Staycations can be as easy as hanging out at home and just doing fun things like vegging on the couch, playing video games, and watching TV. They can also be a trip to somewhere within a 3 to 4 hour drive from which you can go and come back in one day. Either way, they are typically cheaper and require less advance planning than a getaway vacation. With summer fast approaching, I thought I’d talk about some great Kentucky-ish (aka some are in Tennessee or Southern Indiana also called SoIn) staycation spots!
Corvette Museum – Now I don’t know a lot about engines or specs on a transmission, but I know pretty and shiny! Oh and you can see a cool exhibit of some cars falling in a sinkhole! You’ll also have a chance to see the only 1983 Corvette in existence which as an ’83 baby I find interesting. As an added bonus, you take the tour at your own pace which allows you to spend as little or as much time in the museum as your attention span allows. Adults – $10 – http://www.corvettemuseum.org
Kentucky’s Stonehenge – So this guy, Chester Fryer, built Stonehenge replicas in his yard. It is really neat to walk through (which you do at your own leisure) both because it is pretty to look at and the work that went into the development is amazing. We went and saw it in 2008! FREE – http://www.kystonehenge.com
Lincoln Birthplace – good if you either like history (me) or climbing a lot of stairs (not me). The natural spring on the property is beautiful as is the replica cabin. Plus, the tree from the property known as the Boundary Oak totally provided the name for a local distillery! Don’t you think Lincoln would have totally approved? FREE – nps.gov/abli/index.htm
Cumberland Falls – home of the epic Moon Bow! Which BTW is not someone mooning you in front of a waterfall! It has been billed as the Niagara of the South and is very pretty. Thankfully, there is a lot to do at the State Park because truth be told you can only stand around looking at a waterfall for so long before it becomes boring. But in the park you can go white water rafting, attempt to take a raft up under the falls, hike, enjoy activities in the lodge, chill in a cabin, etc. All this makes it a great location! Some free activities, some not so much – parks.ky.gov/parks/resortparks/cumberland-falls
21C Museum Art Gallery – This is the uniquest gallery I’ve ever been to! I love the variety of media represented in their installations. A favorite of mine is the installation shaped like a tornado made up of items salvaged from a tornado. It is a quick tour, but well worth it with everything else on Museum Row! Free – 21cmuseumhotels.com/louisville or for those in the Lexington area 21cmuseumhotels.com/lexington.
Discovery Park of America – Just across the Tennessee line is this gem of a museum! There is literally something for everyone here and the building is shaped like a dragon! Plus, for an additional fee you can attempt an escape room. Oh! And for no additional fee you can climb on an old train and pretend to be a conductor or the dude in the caboose! General Admission Adult – $14.95 – discoveryparkofamerica.com
Mammoth Cave – home of a really cool tour where the only light is a lantern you (aka Mr. Kisby when we went) carry on the journey! Plus in the cave are cool features like an abandoned TB hospital, old mining equipment, and supposedly a ghost or two! Prices vary by tour – nps.gov/maca/index.htm
None of these tickle your fancy? Here are some other popular attractions!
- Louisville Slugger Museum – Free mini bat with admission!
- Squire Boone Caverns – Lot of stairs, but you get to see a coffin!
- Indiana Caverns – Is it a walking tour? Is it a boat ride? Is it both?
- Frazier Museum – Lots of old school sharp objects and shiny armor!
- Speed Art Museum – Good art, good times!
- Rauch Planetarium – Space fun for the whole family!
- Newport Aquarium – Fish? Pretty! Sharks? Freaky Fun! Penguins? I LOVE PENGUINS!
- Forest Edge Winery – Good wine, great people!
- Castle Post – It’s a castle in Kentucky…enough said!
- Keeneland – It is beautiful and you can gamble KY style by betting on horses!
- French Lick and West Baden Inns – cool 1920’s architecture, a freaking amazing dome, gambling, and wine with Italian food.
There’s a lot more staycation kind of things to do around Kentucky, but these are some of the tops I recommend! Let me know which ones you like best!
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