Lexington is popularly known as the world’s horse capital. It Is a well-known location for horse racing enthusiasts. It is the second-largest city in Kentucky and is home to some of the top equine travel destinations worldwide.
However, other activities are available than just those with an equestrian theme. It provides the historical, artistic, and natural settings for an engaging vacation with many options.
Historical buffs and nature enthusiasts will have a good time in Lexington.
In this article, you will get to know about the following places to visit in Lexington,
- Kentucky Horse Park
- Raven Run Nature Sanctuary
- Rupp Arena
- Mary Todd Lincoln House
- The Arboretum
- Aviation Museum of Kentucky
- McConnell Springs
- Kentucky Bourbon Trail
Let’s explore each of these places in detail.
1. Kentucky Horse Park
Home to the Smithsonian International Museum of the Horse, this park holds beautiful culture and history simultaneously.
You can witness the cross-country competition, carriage driving, polo, steeplechase, specialized breed shows, and the four-star equestrian event, the only one in North America. There is also an exciting option of riding horseback and going around the trail for 35 minutes.
There are statues of beautifully curved horses and numerous breeds of real horses, each with distinctive specialties.
This park is one of a kind and covers over 1200 acres of land. Isaac Burns Murphy, the iconic American jockey, is buried here in this horse park.
It also holds 30 individual equine organizations and businesses that constitute the National horse center.
For almost 3-5 hours, you will get indulged in this scenic horse farm, and I’m sure you will as well love the rides.
2. Raven Run Nature Sanctuary
Raven Run Nature Sanctuary is a magnificent spot with hiking trails with a view of monarch butterflies in their habitat. It covers an area of 734 acres and borders the Kentucky river. The hiking trail will take you through lush woodlands, meadows, and historic remains.
Here, there are seven trails, the Red trail, the Green trail, the Orange trail, the Blue trail, the White trail, the Yellow trail, and the Freedom Trail. These trails are divided in such ways as to give you the nuance of each of the views.
After all the hiking and exploring nature, there are a few more popular things that you might want to look into.
The places include Evans Mill, a historic grist mill used by the area farmers in the 1830s for grounding corn. Then there’s the Moore Grave that is the grave of Archibald Moore. He was buried here in the year 1871.
Next up is the Kentucky River Overlook. The scene will surely soothe your eyes as you can witness the 70 ft look out of the Kentucky river.
Prather Homestead is another attraction, once owned by the Prather family. It includes a cemetery, a smokehouse, and a home, all dating back to the 1800s.
3. Rupp Arena
Rupp Arena is a special place as it is the abode of the “Kentucky Wildcats,” the state basketball team. This place is situated in downtown Lexington, Kentucky.
Many don’t know that Wildcat’s women’s basketball team hoists power and rivalry program opponent games at this place.
This area was also set to hold the Elvis Presley live concert on August 1977, but unfortunately couldn’t. In the year 2006, the WWE backlash was hosted in this arena.
To date, many games are held in the Rupp Arena, and as the capacity of this place is 24000, you can leisurely enjoy any show hosted at the time of your visit.
Another benefit of this arena is a great atmosphere, food, ambiance, and service.
So, plan a visit to this place and enjoy all that this place has to offer.
4. Mary Todd Lincoln House
Mary Todd Lincoln House is a very enchanting historical place, showcasing the childhood home of Abraham Lincoln’s beloved.
It is a 14-room house, and each room provides you with distinctive displays, just like when Mary Todd Lincoln used to live and visit here.
Kentucky Mansions Preservation Foundation operates and maintains the house museum.
This place is open Monday to Saturday, from 10 AM to 3 PM, so you can take a guided tour of this house which offers such great history, any day you visit.
Keeneland is a competent racing course for horses and is open for tourists to enjoy races and look into the past.
Founded in 1936, the race course in Keeneland is renowned internationally. They are also maintaining the thoroughbred racing tradition.
The race course, interestingly, is split into two; Keeneland race course and Keeneland sales.
This area has 46 barns and envelops 1600 stalls. They are open all around the year to train the horses.
It is a great place to visit with your family and friends, and most importantly, you will be able to enjoy the ambiance of this place when it is alive during race meets.
So, get the essence of the race at least once. It’s during the Spring or fall months.
6. The Arboretum
The Arboretum is a must-see area with various preserved fauna and an ideal place to enjoy the outdoors. It is the state botanical garden of Kentucky and covers an area of 0.40 sq. kilometers.
This place holds over 1200 native species of flora and has a Herb Garden, a home fruit and nut garden, and a vegetable, rose, and fragrance garden.
The other parts that will attract your attention are – Perennial collection, All America selection trails garden, woody plant collection, etc.
You can plan a trip to this place on Arbor Day. It marks the start of the season, with much happening all day. Every year you will get to see different themes on this day.
It’s a beautiful place, and the season to explore the Arboretum is from the 1st of April to the 31st of October.
Go and savor the outdoors and the garden, walk along the trails, and take tons of pictures.
7. Aviation Museum of Kentucky
The Aviation Museum of Kentucky is an exciting place for plane admirers, as it displays commercial, civilian, and military aircraft.
This museum is located at the Blue Grass Airport and covers an area of 1900 sq. meters. Artifacts, science, history, and enjoyment are equally balanced in this museum.
Starting from the wright brothers’ first flight to the Moonbeam biplane, USAF T-38, Kiowa helicopter, US navy “Blue Angel” A4 Skyhawk, and so many famous displays are there to be seen, enjoyed, and learned.
The museums also hold lectures, summer camps, and flight simulator experiences so that all of us can know, learn and relish all about the aircraft and much more.
8. McConnell Springs
Lush greenery and the wildness of nature can be observed and adored at the same time. This natural park covers an area of 26 acres and is a preserved historic site, a recreational park, and an educational site.
McConnell has two natural springs.
The first one is The Blue Hole which got its name due to the color of the water being displayed. The second one is The Boils, which gets its name from its appearance. The rainwater gushes up from under the ground, making it look like the spring water is boiling. Quite interesting, right?
There’s a lot more to spot. So, visit this place if you are in Lexington and feel all of it.
9. Kentucky Bourbon Trail
Lexington and the state of Kentucky are renowned for their Bourbon, which makes it worthy of a visit.
The Kentucky Bourbon Trail craft tour is way iconic and a popular holiday spot. You will see great itineraries with some riveting points on the bourbon trail.
The tour of the trail goes along with “Passport.” You will also come across some distilleries, namely Corsair, Willett distillery, etc.
These are some of the famous places to visit in Lexington.
So if you are in the city, drop by these places for some exploration.
Whether you are interested in watching an enigmatic horse race or have set out to explore the natural charms of Lexington, the beautiful destination won’t disappoint you in any way.
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