Kentucky is known for its equestrian culture and diverse attractions. Spend your weekend getaway touring the distilleries in Frankfort, or visit Civil War battlefields in Elizabethtown. From boating and swimming in the Kentucky River to swinging a historic baseball bat at the Louisville Slugger Museum, the state is home to a ton of exciting activities. Book a stay at a Kentucky vacation rental today. Consider these cities and towns in Kentucky for your next weekend getaway.

1. Frankfort

Capital building in Kentucky
Source: Flickr/Mobilus In Mobili

Head to the capital of Kentucky for your weekend getaway and a scenic view of the Kentucky River. While Frankfort is the state capital, it is also home to attractions such as the Salato Wildlife Center where you can fish or hike on a Saturday afternoon. Spend your evening touring the Buffalo Trace Distillery, or treat the kids to a trip to the Rebecca Ruth Candy Factory. Water adventures also await you with a vacation rental near the river. Rent kayaks or canoes from Canoe Kentucky, or get in a game of golf with a view of the Kentucky River at Juniper Hill Park and Golf Course.

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2. Bowling Green

Vintage statue
Source: Flickr/LuAnn Snawder Photography

Take advantage of the cool spring and fall seasons when making Bowling Green your vacation destination for the weekend. Hike the Civil War Discovery Trail for some exercise and history lessons, or rent some bikes from Breck’s Bicycle Shop to explore the Low Hollow Bike Trail. When the weather turns colder in the winter or warmer in the summer, spend some time indoors at the National Corvette Museum or the Historic Railpark and Train Museum with the kids. Once your tours are complete, fill up on American cuisine at Double Dogs or Rafferty’s Restaurant and Bar.

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3. Elizabethtown

River surrounded by trees
Source: Flickr/Ka!zen

Make your vacation destination Elizabethtown for the weekend, and settle in near where Abraham Lincoln’s daughter was born in 1807. This historic city was the site of an 1862 Civil War battle and features museums such as the Hardin County History Museum and Swope’s Cars of Yesteryear Museum. Nature enthusiasts enjoy hiking the Bourbon Trail or exploring Mammoth Cave, while those wanting fun in the sun can opt for a boat ride on Freeman Lake. Top off a weekend evening with a performance at the Historic State Theater Complex.

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4. Owensboro

Steps leading down to water
Source: Flickr/Kathy Sturr

Although Owensboro is a bustling manufacturing city, it is also an entertainment mecca for the state. Explore the musical wonders of the International Bluegrass Music Museum, or see the stunning masterpieces at the Owensboro Museum of Fine Art. Take a leisurely walk through the Western Kentucky Botanical Garden, or snap a selfie near the Owensboro Bridge. When vacationing in October, sign up for the Haunts of Owensboro tour for a fright, or let loose during any season with a few spirits and beverages at the Eight Ball Restaurant and Bar or HD Shakers Saloon.

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5. Louisville

Horse race at Churchill Downs
Source: Flickr/Jeff Kubina

As one of the largest cities in Kentucky, Louisville is a draw for weekend getaways. Spend your weekend exploring the 120 city parks in the city, or give the kids a thrill at Kentucky Kingdom, an interactive theme park with rides and a waterpark. Take your little slugger to the Louisville Slugger Museum, or treat the history buff to a stop at the Frazier History Museum. You can’t visit Louisville for the weekend without taking part in the equestrian activities at Churchill Downs or the Kentucky Derby Museum.

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6. London

Trees over a rooftop
Source: Flickr/~Ealasaid~

If you are seeking a quirky town that attracts foodies from around the world, London is the obvious choice in Kentucky. Time your getaway to coincide with the World Chicken Festival, created to honor the franchise giant Colonel Sanders. Watch in amazement as chicken is fried on the streets in a 700-pound behemoth, producing more than 7,000 pieces for festival goers. Beyond finger-licking good fried chicken, you can also find entertainment in London when ziplining with Tree Top Adventures or biking through the Levi Jackson Wilderness Road State Park. Treat the history buff in your crew to a stop at the Camp Wildcat Battlefield before retreating to your vacation rental.

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7. Lexington

Horses in a pasture
Source: Flickr/missing8519

Plan your weekend getaway in the horse capital of the world. Located in the Bluegrass region of Kentucky, Lexington is home to the Kentucky Horse Park and the Keeneland race courses. Feed your love of equestrian activities with a tour of the Thoroughbred Heritage Horse Farm. Beyond equestrian-themed attractions, Lexington offers plenty of entertainment options, such as a zipline ride with Boone Creek Outdoors or a theatrical performance at the Rupp Arena. The Aviation Museum of Kentucky and the Mary Todd Lincoln House are also popular with tourists on a weekend getaway.

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8. Paducah

Quaint shopping center along a brick road
Source: Flickr/Paul Sableman

Located on the border between Kentucky and Illinois, Paducah is a hotspot for crafters and quilters. See the handmade wonders at the National Quilt Museum before taking in the history of the city through the 20 downtown blocks designed by William Clark of the Lewis and Clark Expedition. The Paducah Riverwalk is a popular area for a family photo or a morning walk before admiring the view of the river with a glass of wine at the Purple Toad Winery. During your weekend getaway, get in some retail therapy at the Kentucky Oaks Mall, or indulge your quilting obsession when picking up material and quilts at Hancocks.

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