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Top 36 Best Things to do in Louisville KY

Posted by Nathan Garrett on Friday, December 1st, 2017 at 8:45am.

[Estimated read time: 10 minutes]

Best things to do in Louisville, KY

Below is a great list of things to do in Louisville Kentucky. If you are planning a visit to the area or have just moved here from out of town, there are plenty of attractions and activities for everyone. Click on one of the categories below to jump to the section and discover the many different things to do here in Louisville.

Things to do by Category:

Active Lifestyle Arts & Theatre Entertainment Family & Kids Historical & Museums


Active Lifestyle: Things to do

Beckley Creek Park

A new park system that stretches alongside the Gene Snyder Freeway and Floyds Fork. A collection of four different, unique parks with plenty of amenities. The four parks include Beckley Creek Park, Pope Lick Park, Turkey Run Park and the newest one Broad Run Park.

Big Four Bridge

Originally constructed in 1895, the railroad bridge spans across the Ohio River connecting the Louisville Waterfront to Jeffersonville Indiana. Recently renovated and opened in 2013, the bridge is now open to the public as a pedestrian bridge.

Cherokee Park

One of the most popular parks in Louisville is Cherokee Park. With more than 400 acres, it is one of the original parks designed by Frederick Law Olmstead. A beautiful 'Scenic Loop' will take you throughout the park. The loop is a great route for walking, jogging, and biking.

  • Address: 745 Cochran Hill, Louisville, KY
  • Website: Cherokee Park

EP Tom Sawyer State Park

A large, 550-acre state park that is known for its BMX bike track. In years past, EP Tom Sawyer has hosted the BMX Nationals. Also, a favorite is the Sawyer Dog Park, playgrounds, a designated space for model airplane flying, indoor basketball courts, and more.

Falls of the Ohio State Park

Just across the Ohio River is the popular Falls of the Ohio. Recognized as the largest exposed Devonian fossil bed in the world. The Falls is part of a 1,400 acre National Wildlife Conservation Area. Visit the park to explore history, fossils, and wildlife.

Iroquois Park

Great playground and breathtaking views at the 'Overlook' located at the top of the park. Residents also enjoy visiting the park for the number of different events that are held at the Iroquois Amphitheater.

  • Address: 2120 Rundill Rd, Louisville, KY
  • Website: Iroquois Park

Louisville Nature Center

A 41-acre urban forest with two miles of hiking trails located minutes from Downtown Louisville. Louisville Nature Center manages the Beargrass Creek State Nature Preserve, the only urban nature preserve owned by the Kentucky State Nature Preserve Commission. You will find over 180 different species of plant life, and a wide variety of different species of birds as well as butterflies.

Louisville Waterfront Park

The welcoming face of Louisville when crossing into Kentucky. Visit Louisville Waterfront to enjoy a stroll alongside the riverfront, grab a picnic lunch, or take the kids to the popular playground. The park is home to the famous Thunder Over Louisville.


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Arts and Theatre

Actors Theatre of Louisville

Actors Theatre presents over 500 performances of about 20 productions during its year-round season composed of a diverse array of contemporary and classical fare. Louisville's only Tony Award-winning theatre, the State Theatre of Kentucky and home to the Humana Festival of New American Plays.

Brown Theatre

A testament to the glory days of the Louisville theatre district. Originally opened in 1925, the now W.L Lyons Brown Theatre is one of a kind. Visit one of the many performances that are hosted by the Brown Theatre throughout the year.

  • Address: 315 W Broadway, Louisville, KY
  • Website: Brown Theatre

Kentucky Opera

Most of the mainstage performances are at the Kentucky Centers Whitney Hall. When attending the Kentucky Opera you will also experience the Louisville Orchestra, which plays for most performances. The Louisville Ballet may perform on occasion as well depending on the shows.

Louisville Ballet

Recognized as one of the most highly-regarded regional ballet companies in the country. The Louisville Ballet performs many great shows throughout the year.

Louisville Orchestra

Founded in 1937. The Louisville Orchestra offers a wide variety of concert series from classical programs featuring world-renowned guest artists, lighter classical and pop performances, concerts in different neighborhood locations throughout the city, and also educational programs.

The Kentucky Center for the Performing Arts

One of the finest art scenes in the city to visit and enjoy music, dance, and theatre. The different theaters below are part of the venue and host many different popular shows throughout the year.

The Louisville Palace

A beautiful theatre located in the heart of Louisville's theater district on Fourth Street. The Louisville Palace opened in 1928 and has been home to some of the top shows in the area. Visit their website to see upcoming shows.

21c Museum Hotel

Located in downtown Louisville, 21c Museum Hotel is an award-winning boutique hotel, and also known for the popular Proof On Main restaurant. The Gallery in the hotel is open daily, and there is plenty to see in the 9,000 square feet of exhibition space that focuses on the global nature of contemporary culture and art.


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Fun things to do: Entertainment

Belle of Louisville

Known as the oldest Mississippi River-style steamboat in the World. Head downtown towards Waterfront Park to hop aboard the Belle of Louisville, a National Historic Landmark on water. View the City from a different perspective today.

Churchill Downs

Visit with friends and family and enjoy a day at the races and take in the history of the iconic twin spires. If you are unable to make it to Churchill Downs on race day you can still enjoy the rich history at the Kentucky Derby Museum. Churchill Downs has continuously been the home to the Kentucky Derby since 1875.

Flame Run Glass Studio

A one-of-a-kind studio located on Museum Row in Downtown Louisville. Flame Run Glass Studios has a gallery as well as the option to experience first hand the art of glassblowing. With many different templates to choose from, it is a remarkable process to experience.

Fourth Street Live!

A great entertainment destination that acts as a hub to a dozen different restaurants, bars, and even nightlife hotspots. There is a variety of many different venues, all under one roof. Fourth Street Live! is 350,000-square-foot complex that has something for everybody.

Evan Williams Bourbon Experience

Take a trip down to "Whiskey Row" in Downtown Louisville and visit the Evan Williams Bourbon Experience. With guided tours, an artisanal distillery, and some bourbon tasting. Learn the rich history of bourbon first hand in Kentucky.

Jim Beam Urban Stillhouse

Explore the rich history and heritage of the Jim Beam family and discover some of the best Bourbon in the world. Located in 4th Street Live! Jim Beam Urban Stillhouse will uncover an education experience for Bourbon lovers.


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Things to do with Kids: Family Fun

Kentucky Kingdom

Just recently reopened in 2014, Kentucky Kingdom is located just south of Downtown Louisville. A 63-acre park with a collection of rides from the amusement park to the popular Hurricane Bay water park. Visit today and experience some of the thrilling rides like Lighting Run and Storm Chaser.

Kentucky Science Center

Also located in Downtown Louisville on Museum Row is the Kentucky Science Center. Enter the four-story building and spark your curiosity and learn more about the world of science.

Louisville Slugger Museum

It has been called one of the greatest sports museums in the world. Take an actual tour through the factory and museum to see first hand how the bats are made and also hear a brief history of the Louisville Slugger. Also, be sure to take a picture out front next to the worlds tallest bat.

Louisville Extreme Skatepark

One of the nations best extreme parks. Also known as the David Armstrong Extreme Park, was initially completed in 2002. Located downtown near the Waterfront Park, the park offers opportunities for kids all ages and skill levels to come and skateboard, ride bikes, or even in-line skating.

Louisville Water Tower

Visit the Louisville WaterWorks Museum and learn more about the history of the oldest ornamental water tower in the world. See what makes Louisville “The Best Tasting Tap Water in the Country” by the American Water Works Association.

Louisville Zoo

On an amazing 134 acres, the Louisville Zoo is an outstanding attraction to visit with friends and family when visiting Louisville. The Louisville Zoo is home to more than 1,500 animals, attractions such as the Papa Johns Splash Park, Conservation Carousel, and a Zoo Train. Don’t forget to visit the “Worlds Largest Halloween Party” in the fall.

  • Address: 1100 Trevilian Way, Louisville, KY
  • Website: Louisville Zoo

Mega Cavern

Known as one of the top attractions in Louisville. The Mega Cavern features an underground zip line, bike park, a tram tour, and also lights under Louisville during the holiday season. Mega Cavern is a man-made Cavern that is rich in history, geology, mining, and entertainment.

  • Address: 1841 Taylor Ave, Louisville, KY
  • Website: Mega Cavern


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Historical Places & Museums

Cave Hill Cemetery

Almost 300 acres, Cave Hill Cemetery is a Victorian-era cemetery and listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Visit one of the many tours ranging from walking tours, wagon tours, and even a twilight wagon tour and learn more about influential people of Cave Hill Cemetery.

Conrad-Caldwell House

Located off of St James Ct in Old Louisville and on the National Register of Historic Places. The Conrad-Caldwell House, also known as "Conrad's Castle". An exquisite home built in 1895, full of detail. This home is recognized by the stone and masonry work on the outside of the home and the amazing woodwork on the inside of the home.

Frazier History Museum

Located in the West Main District of Downtown Louisville on Museum Row. An engaging museum to educate visitors on the rich history of all things neat around Kentucky. Experience live storytelling to really embrace some of our state's history. Frazier History Museum was also just introduced as an initial stop on the Kentucky Bourbon Trail.

Old Louisville

Home to the third largest historic preservation district in the United States and the largest of such featuring solely Victorian homes. Old Louisville was originally known as the first suburb in the Louisville area and quickly grew to be one of the most popular neighborhoods in Louisville just after the turn of the century.

Speed Art Museum

Originally known as the J.B. Speed Memorial Museum, the Speed Art Museum is Kentucky’s oldest and largest art museum. Visit the Speed to experience modern architecture, expanded programming, interactive exhibits and inviting outdoor spaces.

Waverly Hills Sanatorium

Named as one of the top haunted places in the country. Waverly Hills opened in 1910 to house patients that were affected by tuberculosis. Visit Waverly Hills Sanatorium to experience one of the tours and learn about the rich history.

Yew Dell Botanical Gardens

Listed on the National Register of Historic Places and a Preservation Partner Project of the Garden Conservancy. Yew Dell Botanical Gardens is located in Oldham County, east of Downtown Louisville.


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With so many different things to do in Kentucky, it's hard to just pick one! Do you have a favorite attraction in Louisville? Share it with us! We will be happy to grow the list of activities.

 36 of the BEST Places to Visit in Louisville, Kentucky

Nathan Garrett is a local real estate agent in Louisville KY. Creator of the website. He specializes in Real Estate in Louisville and Oldham County. Questions about buying a home? Send him an email:


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