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What to see in Louisville

Louisville Attractions

While Churchill Downs and the Kentucky Derby are the main entries on the traditional bucketlist, visitors will discover all manner of attractions in this pretty southern city. Louisville has a long history, most prevalent in the old architecture built throughout.

It is home to the third largest National Preservation District, and largest Victorian district, in the United States. Scenic areas worth exploring include St James Court and Belgravia Court, Main and Market Streets, the Cherokee Triangle, and Butchertown.

Downtown has highlights within walking distance, including the art galleries of Market Street, the Speed Art Musem, the Kentucky Center for the Performing Arts, the Louisville Slugger Museum, the Kentucky Science Center, Frazier Historical Arms Museum, Kentucky Museum of Art and Craft, Kentucky Derby Museum, and the Muhammad Ali Center. Many of these are located in a cluster on Main Street.

Besides the iconic horse race, the Kentucky Derby Festival presents air shows, balloon and steamboat races, and marathons. The St James Court Art show is a fun local event too, held in a genteel neighbourhood of stately Victorian homes.

Belle of Louisville

The Belle of Louisville is America's oldest still-serving sternwheeler riverboat, plying the Ohio River from Louisville's waterfront to give visitors memorable sunset cruises, sightseeing excursions…

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Cathedral of the Assumption

The Cathedral of the Assumption is the fourth oldest public building in Louisville as well as the third oldest Catholic Cathedral in the United States in continuous use. Designed in the…

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Churchill Downs

The home of the most famous horse race in America, Churchill Downs is full of tradition and amazing stories. It opened in 1875, and has hosted the Kentucky Derby ever since. The track also hosts the…

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Fort Knox

This US Army fort, located an hour south of Louisville, is world-famous as the home of America's largest stockpile of gold bullion. However, the repository is closed to visitors. A popular attraction…

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The capital city of Kentucky, history-rich Frankfort is situated about 50 miles (80km) east of Louisville, about 50 minutes drive from Louisville International Airport. It boasts a vast array of architectural…

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Kentucky Derby Museum

Even those who aren't horse racing fans can experience the thrill of the sport at the museum and through tours offered at Churchill Downs. Established in 1874, it's one of the world's oldest…

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Kentucky Science Center

The Kentucky Science Center in historic West Main Street, founded in 1871 as a natural history collection, has experienced more than a century of growth to become Kentucky's largest hands-on science…

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Louisville Glassworks

Louisville Glassworks is America's first complete centre dedicated to the art of glass, from architectural glassworks to the finest glass jewellery and ornaments. Located in Louisville on the corner…

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Mammoth Cave

The Mammoth Cave National Park near Edmonson in south-central Kentucky boasts the longest cave in the world, with 405 miles (652km) of cavers and passages having so far been explored. According to…

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Muhammad Ali Center

Fans of legendary boxer Muhammad Ali can see and experience all aspects of the life of the man dubbed 'The Greatest' at this huge multi-media, interactive exhibition centre, which features theatres…

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Thomas Edison House

Thomas Edison, inventor of the incandescent electric light bulb, lived in the house on East Washington Street in 1866 when he was only 19 years old and had yet to receive acclaim for his many inventions.

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Woodford Reserve Distillery

Besides horses, Kentucky is famous for its bourbon history. Numerous distilleries are open to the public. But the oldest still operating is the Woodford Reserve Distillery, nestled between lush horse…

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