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Kentucky Is So Much More Than the Derby

The Kentucky Derby is right around the corner, taking place on May 3-4. Now is a perfect time to take a look at the state! Visiting Churchill Downs, where the Derby is held, is a great experience. With tours and a museum, you can learn a great deal about the history of the event. However, while many outside the state might have a hard time thinking beyond the race at this time of year, we want to take in a few more sights.

The Great American Dollhouse Museum

Image: TripAdvisor, NorthStar14642038040

This is a wonderful museum to bring kids to because the toys are from all different eras so you can reminisce and share your childhood with them! The detailed vignettes enchant visitors and their children. The museum contains over 200 dollhouses and miniature buildings, featuring tableaus of daily life. The museum features the U.S.’ history from Native Americans, to settlers to the 1910s. There is also a fantasy area with dragons and faeries. One recent reviewer described it as, “Very affordable. Located off the beaten path. There are so many details you will miss if you don’t take the time to look closely.” If you worry about attending without a child or a dollhouse enthusiast, don’t. Another reviewer wrote, “Being a man I was a little apprehensive of going to a dollhouse museum with my wife, but once I entered the building I just knew I was going to enjoy the visit. And I Did!! The museum exceeded my curiosity in every way. The precision of the displays rank up there with any miniature displays I have seen.For hours, locations and ticket prices, click here.

Newport Aquarium

Image: TripAdvisor, Newport Aquarium Management

Aquariums are always fun, no matter your age. Newport's is the perfect aquarium to visit if you haven't been to one in a while. It was ranked the #1 U.S. Aquarium by Readers’ Choice Travel Awards and the #1 Aquarium in the Midwest by Zagat Survey. Featuring thousands of animals, interactive exhibits, a petting area and the chance to talk to divers during feeding time, this place is sure to thrill you and a group of friends or family! The aquarium turns 20 this year. They are celebrating with new attractions, saying this will be the best year ever to visit. Get more information here.

Cumberland Falls State Resort Park

Image: TripAdvisor, Cumberland Falls State Resort Park

Located in Corbin, the Cumberland Falls feature something unusual: a moonbow. A moonbow is a rainbow seen at night under the light of the full moon. The phenomenon is rare in the Western Hemisphere. Dates when the moonbow will be visible this year can be found here. According to reviewers, you have to book long before your planned trip if you want to see the moonbow as hotels book up quickly. Depending on your angle and the amount of spray, rainbows can be seen during the day. Referred to as the Niagara of the south, Cumberland Falls is believed to be the largest waterfall west of the Mississippi. The park has a lot of lodgings as well as campgrounds. There are horseback rides and rafting tours along with beautiful hikes and fishing. To find the right place for your visit, click here.

Louisville Slugger Museum and Factory

Image: Louisville Slugger Museum and Factory

This is a dream spot for baseball lovers! Not only do you tour where the famous bats are made, but you can also hold bats that were used by Mickey Mantle, Johnny Bench, Derek Jeter and Cal Ripken Jr. You can visit the bat vault to see the bats of Babe Ruth and Ted Williams. The tour itself is on the floor of the working factory where you’ll see bats being carved, finished and branded! There is even more fun and history when you visit the signature wall to see the greats’ autographs and when you step into the batting cage to try out different models. Families with members who weren’t besotted with baseball said it was still a great time and loved the free miniature Louisville Slugger everyone on the tour received. Find out more information here.

We hope you enjoyed this digital trip to Kentucky and that you make a real trip to the sites that thrill you!

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