Louisville, Kentucky, is famous for its annual Kentucky Derby, smooth bourbon, and baseball bats. But once you’ve toured the Louisville Slugger Museum, worked on your hangover, and seen the prices for the Derby, you might be looking for something more.
Things to Do in Louisville
Photo Credit: Wiley Brewer
Strolling in Downtown Louisville
Old Louisville features old Victorian homes and gas-lit streets. You can get maps of the area from the visitor center or take a walking tour. In December, there are open house tours of many of the area’s private homes. The Christ Church Cathedral, founded in 1822 and located in downtown Louisville, provides a good landmark for exploring. You can stroll from one cathedral to another since the equally historical Cathedral of the Assumption is only a few blocks away.
Affordable Hotels Downtown
Downtown Louisville offers lots of history and lots of attractions, with hotels that offer a bit of both. Hotels near the Christ Church Cathedral include the Hyatt Regency Louisville next to the entertainment district. Free tourist trolleys stop nearby, but it’s easy to walk to restaurants and riverfront parks. The central location does sometimes make for a noisy nightlife, though. Close to Main Street and filled with history is the Brown Hotel, which offers a beautiful lobby and top notch service. Make sure to grab a piece of history yourself and check out their famous Hot Brown Sandwich. This classic sandwich, featured on many cooking shows, is a cheesy concoction of turkey and bacon. It was created as the ultimate late night snack.
For those hungry for even more culture, check out the 21c Museum Hotel, across the street from the Kentucky Museum of Art and Craft. Considered one of the world’s top design hotels, the 21c incorporates art throughout the building for a unique hotel stay. The hotel is easy to spot with its huge gold replica of Michelangelo’s David out front.
Solid comfort is available from the Marriott Louisville Downtown. Located near the convention center, it’s perfect for the business traveler, as well as being near historic sites like the Christ Church Cathedral. If you’re looking for literary history, the Seelbach Hotel was featured in the novel The Great Gatsby. Fortunately, the hotel has been renovated since Daisy Buchanan’s day, but prepare yourself for small rooms and even smaller bathrooms.
Louisville Adventures on the Cheap
There are lots of affordable options for things to do in Louisville. Check out a site like Vayable, which offers deals on everything from a night enjoying Louisville’s hottest live music to an afternoon of Southern hospitality making cookies in a baker’s home. To check out Louisville’s many sporting events, try Tiqiq for the latest bargains.
Going Deeper into Louisville
You can’t get much deeper than the Louisville Mega Cavern. Not far from – and also underneath – the Louisville Zoo, this former limestone quarry is now a massive underground structure that offers tram tours and zip-lining. For a more contemplative afternoon, the serene Cave Hill Cemetery offers beautiful landscapes and statuary, including an impressive Civil War section.
Erin Curtin is a writer for the Hipmunk City Love project. She works from her home base of Toronto, Canada. She’s always looking for new destinations to add to her travel wish list, balancing her love of adventurous destinations with an even greater passion for fancy hotel bathrooms.