Bowling Green, Paducah & Owensboro

Planes and trains, cars and guitars, caves and waves, rails and trails, thrills and chills, charm and farms, there is so much to see and do in Bowling Green. As the 3rd largest city in Kentucky and the dining and shopping mecca for a dozen surrounding counties, Bowling Green is brimming with restaurant and splurging options. The first of only two cities in Kentucky to be named a Dozen Distinctive Destination by the National Trust for Historic Preservation, it boasts numerous historic districts and restored landmarks.

Creativity is the common thread that connects people from around the globe to Paducah, a designated UNESCO Creative City. Anchored by the National Quilt Museum and a thriving fiber arts community, Paducah is a haven for creative thinkers and doers who find inspiration here. At the heart of America’s inland waterways, the river contributes to the constant flow of Paducah’s engaging energy and fascinating history. From the colorful revitalization of the Lower Town Arts District to the vibrant streets of 19th century architecture in Historic Downtown, Paducah invites visitors to immerse themselves in rich American heritage and distinctively creative culture.

Bowling Green

National Corvette Museum: Not only is the Corvette America’s favorite sports car, but it’s also the longest-running model car in the nation’s history! And no other automotive museum in the world is dedicated to a single model car. So it’s no wonder that enthusiasts and visitors alike are entranced by the 115,000 square foot National Corvette Museum. This top rated Kentucky attraction features over 70 Corvettes, most of which are on loan by private donors, that are showcased in periodic settings and include mint classics, prototypes, rare finds and racing champs. Families will enjoy the KidZone with hands-on activities for children, and the exhibit hall features rotating exhibits not always focused on the Corvette. You can also pay an additional fee to ride around the property in one of the museum-owned Corvettes or by having a full Corvette Experience at the adjacent Motorsports Park!

 

Lost River Cave: Tucked away in the city of Bowling Green lies a natural wonder, a river that gets lost as it flows underground surrounded by over 60 acres of wooded trails. Kentucky’s only Underground Boat Tour and the enchanting Butterfly Habitat await you at Lost River Cave! Daylight disappears from view as you board the boat on the river that Ripley’s Believe It or Not claims is the shortest and deepest in the world. A comfortable 57 degrees year round, the boat tour offers a visit into the timeless world of a Kentucky natural wonder. The guided walking tour along the river’s edge brings alive stories of Native Americans, Early European settlers, Civil War troops and the notorious Jesse James.

Riverview at Hobson Grove: Enjoy spectacular views from the cupola while seeing how the Victorian upper class lived at Bowling Green’s historic house museum, Riverview at Hobson Grove. Built by Atwood and Juliet VanMeter Hobson on a hill overlooking the Barren River, this historic landmark has been restored to its original splendor and is listed on the National Register. An official site on the Civil War Discovery Trail, the house was used for storage of Confederate munitions when the Rebel forces held Bowling Green. 

Mammoth Cave National Park: As the world’s longest-known cave system with over 400 known miles of passageways, this natural wonder and World Heritage Site is just 30 minutes from Bowling Green. A variety of underground tours offer a glimpse at 350 million-year-old rocks and fascinating animals adapted to life in the dark. As the second-oldest tourist attraction in America, you will hear remarkable stories of human history including how African Americans played a vital role in developing both cave tours and the visitor experience.

Historic Railpark & Train Museum: Long before interstates, people visiting Bowling Green arrived at the L&N Passenger Depot constructed from Warren County limestone. This 1925 structure has been restored and revived to house a two-story self-guided museum where visitors can learn the history of the tracks by asking questions of a “real Railroader” through interactive galleries. Exhibits highlight the African American experience during segregation, the Civil War and the Railroad, the Business of the Railroad, and each showcases items used in the individual railcars.

Paducah

The National Quilt Museum is the portal to the contemporary quilt experience – through exhibits and workshops by renowned quilters who are implementing creative ideas and approaches to fibre art. It is the gateway to the discovery of quilts, quilt-making and the quilt artist. Visitors marvel at the artistry of the Museum’s collection of contemporary quilts and ever changing touring and thematic exhibitions that celebrate traditional and non-traditional quilt-making methods. The Museum Collection features more than 500 pieces of fibre art by internationally renowned quilt artists.

The Lower Town Arts District, Paducah’s oldest neighbourhood, is famous for the award-winning Artist Relocation Program that prompted its colorful revitalization which continues today with the Paducah School of Art & Design campus. The Arts District is populated with working artists, students and artists-in-residence who add to the City’s vibrant artistic landscape. The work of Paducah’s resident artists can be viewed and purchased at various art galleries and collectives throughout the city including the Art Guild of Paducah, Yeiser Art Center, Bricolage Art Collective and Ochre.

Owensboro

Owensboro is home to several unique attractions, such as The Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame & Museum, the only international museum dedicated to preserving and showcasing the history, collections, and artefacts of bluegrass music – an exciting, original American art form with its genesis in Kentucky. And RiverPark Centre, a bustling Regional Performing Arts and Civic centre that hosts more than 1,000 events each year, including professional Broadway tour performances.

Home to the Museum of Fine Art, the Owensboro Museum of Science and History, and the Western Kentucky Botanical Garden and Smothers Park, where the Lazy Dayz Playground has been named the top playground in the world by Landscape Architect’s Network. Owensboro is also a city of world-famous festivals with the International BBQ Festival the second week in May and the ROMP Bluegrass Music Festival in June.

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