This obviously won’t cover everything in Kentucky, as we are far more interesting than the things that can be covered simply from A to Z. The great hunting grounds are rich in history. Our famous/infamous people, our eye opening events, our breathtaking scenery, and the fact that we have more waterway miles than anywhere in the U.S., is just a start. The alphabet contains a mere 26 letters, which is just a drop in the bucket for the Bluegrass State.
This subject was a bit of a challenge, as many letters symbolize much more than one attraction. After much consideration, here is a sampling of Kentucky from A to Z:
Kentucky shares the Appalachians but they are a strong part of our history and heritage. The people of the Appalachians are strong and have incredible survival skills. There are parts of these mountains where people still live without modern conveniences that many people would have a hard time living without. It is also the birth place of much of the folk art that is celebrated today.
This historic city has been deemed one of the most irresistible cities to visit in the U.S. via Fodor’s in 2014. Bardstown is full of history and has some amazing preserved architecture. The small town flavor with plenty of entertainment and amenities makes this a must stop if you haven’t been here before. Not to mention, it is the home of several of Kentucky’s prized distilleries.
This beautiful park in Kentucky at 7351 KY-90 in Corbin deserves the C spot, as it is home to the renowned moonbow. Conditions are often just right to sweep the sky with color near the Falls for all to see. The overall beauty of the area is worth a visit even if it isn’t an active moonbow eve.
You should have known the greatest two minutes in sports would get mentioned. The Kentucky Derby brings more tourism traffic to Kentucky in one day than any other event does the entire year. The Derby is something everyone should experience at least once in their lifetime. I did my Derby time back when Central was still a block party… if any of you remember that. It has been a few years.
This pleasant town in Kentucky was featured in a movie of the same title in 2005. It featured Orlando Bloom, Susan Sarandon, Alec Baldwin and Kirsten Dunst.
More than 1/3 of the Bluegrass State is forested, which is quite a feat for a developed part of the U.S. We have managed to maintain and preserve one of the most beautiful aspects of our state. No matter what part of Kentucky you happen to be in, there should be a beautiful park, forest or preserve somewhere nearby.
Our state flower is the Goldenrod, which is not only pretty, but can be brewed into a kidney, urinary tract and bladder cleansing tea. The lovely little golden flowers also add a nice touch to floral arrangements.
The Brown Hotel made this a famous dish back in the early 1900s and it caught on like crazy. Now the Hot Brown is served in restaurants all over the state, and sometimes outside it. This delicious open faced sandwich has turkey, bacon, tomato and a creamy cheese sauce on toast tips. It is mouthwatering when done correctly.
This town is one of Kentucky’s largest cities via land mass, as it encompasses more than 23 square miles. Independence was also on the 2007 Forbes list of fastest growing small towns with a ranking of 99. The population increased by 65% from 2000 to 2010, according to the Census.
This renowned actor hails from Owensboro and Kentucky is beyond proud to call him one of our own. We all know him as an amazing actor who has portrayed Hunter Thompson, Tonto, Jack Sparrow, Willy Wonka and more. It is hard to pick a favorite movie with Depp, but Pirates of the Caribbean would likely be my pick, along with Fear and Loathing.
Not everyone drinks Kentucky Bourbon, but everyone knows of its existence. Our special recipes passed down for generations are renowned around the world. So much so, the Japanese have came in and bought out several of our famed distilleries, like Jim Beam and Four Roses. There is a Kentucky Bourbon Trail with tours of different facilities and sampling.
This is the largest city in Kentucky, which was named after King Louis XVI of France. It borders the Ohio River, is home to the Louisville Cardinals, Bats, Churchill Downs/Kentucky Derby, Thunder Over Louisville, Louisville Slugger Museum and Factory, the largest preserved Victorian District in the world. This is a diverse city that is literally a melting pot of cultures, which makes for an exciting array of ethnic eateries. There is no shortage of things to do in Louisville.
This is the official drink of the Kentucky Derby and around 127,000 of them were drank during the 2015 race day. That number may shock you, but what is more shocking is the fact that number represents Louisville’s consumption of Mint Juleps. We have no idea how much the rest of the state… and the U.S., is actually consuming. Mammoth Cave is also an excellent use of M, as it is one of the Seven Wonders of the World.
This is the largest aquarium in Kentucky and it features five amazing underwater tunnels. They allow visitors the enchanting experience of being surrounded by the water and sea life. From sharks to horseshoe crabs, the beautiful variety of sea beings housed here are worth the visit.
The Ohio borders Kentucky on its northern side and helped to create many of our booming port towns, like Louisville and Newport. The Ohio was once a busy hub for traders all along its banks. River travel was easiest when development was just starting. The Ohio River helped shape Kentucky into what it is today.
Presidents (Abraham Lincoln and Jefferson Davies)
Both these U.S. Presidents were born in Kentucky. Jefferson Davies was the only U.S. President of the Confederate States of America, circa 1861 to 1865.
Quarterhorses, Thoroughbreds and Saddlebreds
Kentucky is the horse capital, and we have the highest quality and breeding standards in the U.S.… according to Kentucky breeders. We do have some of the most amazing horses you’ll ever see though, including quite a few Derby winners.
Red River Gorge
Going to the Gorge can be one of the most memorable experiences of your life. Located in the heart of Daniel Boone National Forest, the Gorge is rich with wildlife and nature’s majestic beauty. There are cabin rentals, primitive camping, boating, rafting and an unlimited amount of forest adventures available.
You will find some of the best southern cooking diners in the states in Kentucky. Biscuits and gravy, eggs, homemade BBQ, real mashed potatoes and fresh iced tea are not uncommon here. If you see a little hole in the wall diner when you are driving through the Bluegrass State… Take a chance and stop. You will likely not be disappointed if your craving something with a southern touch.
Our original state tree was the Coffee Tree, and great care was taken to get the original here and protect it. Sometime during the 1970s, our government chose to change it to the Tulip Tree.
Kentucky is home to the University of Kentucky Wildcats, University of Louisville Cardinals, Eastern University, Western University, Morehead, Berea, and several more fantastic educational facilities.
Close to Lexington, Versailles is home to the renowned B&B, Castlepost, Woodford Reserve Distillery, Wildside Winery, Bluegrass Scenic Railroad and Museum and multiple horse farms. It is a quiet, friendly community close to Lexington that offers plenty of excitement for visitors.
Wilson, Mary S
This teacher in Louisville during 1887 hosted the very first observance of Mother’s Day. It wasn’t deemed a national holiday till 1916.
You, the people of Kentucky.
The people of Kentucky help make this state what it is. Our residents are a combination of kind-hearted, hard working and all around good people. We are all a part of what draws people to Kentucky.
There are several places that offer zip lining in Kentucky like Bernheim Forest and the Louisville Megacavern. You can zip across the forest or a seemingly bottomless cavern in the Megacavern. It is a unique experience to float above and see some of Kentucky’s beauty at an entirely new angle.
A to Z, this is the tip of the iceberg with Kentucky. We have so much more to offer both residents and visitors. You don’t have to list A to Z, but what are some of your favorite things about Kentucky?