Family Travel

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45 Things To Do in Kentucky with Kids (Water Fun, Museums & Parks!)

Explore top fun activities for kids in Kentucky: Water parks, museums & outdoor adventures! Perfect for family trips. Plan a memorable visit with our guide.

Tobi Miles
October 2, 2022
45 Things To Do in Kentucky with Kids (Water Fun, Museums & Parks!)

Planning your next trip with the kiddos, but worried about keeping them entertained? No need to worry, Kentucky has something for everyone, regardless of their age. Whether you’re looking for a fun bonding experience, or hoping to teach them a bit about history, Kentucky has it and more.

Home to historic landmarks, museums, waterparks, go-karts, and much more, Kentucky will keep everyone engaged. Go marvel at underwater creatures in an aquarium, ride through scenic vistas on a train, or teach the kids about science. Thrill seekers will find zip-lines, amusement parks, and unique accommodations. There’s plenty for little ones and adults too. Kentucky has it all.

However, covering the expanse of a whole state in a single trip isn’t feasible for most. So here are some of the best things to look out for in a few different parts of the state. This way you can plan for your family and needs.

1. Hidden River Cave & American Cave Museum

Credit: Joseph Gage / Flickr

Map It: 119 E Main St, Horse Cave, KY 42749

Phone: (270) 786-1466


Hours: 9:30am to 5pm

Entrance: Museum: Free, Cave Tour Ages 6 - 14: $12, Ages 15+: $25

Age Group: All Ages

As one of Kentucky’s largest and most scenic caves, this trip has multiple interesting stops on its tour. View subterranean river flows, cross rope bridges, and glimpse technology from the turn of the century. In the museum, everyone is sure to learn something from their incredible exhibits. 

Kids and adults alike will marvel at the sheer magnitude and beauty of the hidden river cave. Guests will get the chance to view two different flowing underground rivers, gigantic caverns, and unique rock formations. 

In the cave, guests will also be treated to a view into the past with the remains of an old hydroelectric generating system. Plus with several different tours to pick from, newbies and seasoned spelunkers can enjoy themselves in equal amounts.

In the museum, everyone is sure to learn something about the fascinating world of caves. This museum is the only one solely dedicated to caves in the United States. Guests will have a chance to learn about archaeology, geology, history, and more. 

2. Kentucky Kingdom & Hurricane Bay

Credit: Jeremy Thompson / Flickr

Map It: 937 Phillips Ln, Louisville, KY 40209

Phone: (502) 813-8200


Hours: Sat - Sun: 11am to 7pm

Entrance: $42.99+

Age Group: 3+

Get your heart pumping and let the fun flow at this amusement and water park combo. Death defying falls, loads of g-force, water slides, and family rides await guests. Whether you’re looking for a leisurely float through the river, or butterflies in your stomach, you’ll find it.

This destination is great for the whole family. With plenty of attractions for all rides, everyone is sure to find what they want. Get spun around high in the air, or let the little ones splash in the shallow pre-k buccaneer beach. Soak up the sun, float the river, or feel the rush as you race down a slide. 

3. Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory

Credit: Alves Family / Flickr

Map It: 800 W Main St, Louisville, KY 40202

Phone: (877) 775-8443


Hours: Mon - Sat: 9am to 5pm, Sun: 10am to 4pm

Entrance: Ages 6 - 12: $11, Ages 13+: $18

Age Group: 5+

The Louisville Slugger Museum is a must for baseball and history enthusiasts. Enjoy a tour of the factory or go for the All-Star experience and get a customized tour focusing on your favorite players. Kids and adults alike will be thrilled by the wealth of history and knowledge.

While the tour of the factory alone is already impressive, the museum is home to some unique “collection curveballs.” Guests will enjoy seeing unique bats from throughout history, learn about their favorite players, and of course take home a piece of history of their own.

4. Bluegrass Railroad Museum

Credit Brent Moore / Flickr

Map It: 175 Beasley Rd, Versailles, KY 40383

Phone: (859) 873-2476


Hours: Sat: 10am to 4pm

Entrance: Ages 2 - 12: $12+, Ages 13+: $14+

Age Group: All Ages

Those looking for a more peaceful but fun experience will find exactly what they’re looking for at this museum. Enjoy several different tour types, each with their own unique flair. There’s even holiday themed rides depending on the season. 

Guests will have the option to enjoy a tour that fits their traveling party’s interest. Whether you’re looking for historical civil war uniforms and cannons, Santa holiday rides, or a stop in a pumpkin patch, you’ll find the right one for you. 

5. Mammoth Cave National Park

Credit: Stanislav Vitebskiy / Flickr

Map It: 1 Visitor Center Parkway Mammoth Cave, KY 42259

Phone: 270-758-2180


Hours: Open 24 hours

Entrance: Free

Age Group: All ages

This national park is home to a thriving and diverse ecosystem of plant and animal life to marvel at. It also has the world’s longest known cave system and is filled with thousands of years of human history.

Enjoy being outdoors as you look out at scenic vistas, learn about the area, or engage in a multitude of outdoor activities. Go hiking, biking, canoeing, and much more. Explore the cave system with an audio tour or enjoy the stars above the park. 

6. Newport Aquarium

Credit: Scott / Flickr

Map It: 1 Levee Wy, Newport, KY 41071

Phone: (800) 406-3474


Hours: Mon - Fri: 10am to 5pm, Sat: 9am to 6pm, Sun: 9am to 5pm

Entrance: Ages 2 - 12: $14.99 - $31.99, Ages 13+: $22.99 - $39.99

Age Group: All Ages

The whole family is sure to enjoy themselves as they view thousands of unique and marvelous sea creatures. Walk through a coral tunnel, cross a rope bridge over a pool of sharks, and more.

Kids and adults of all ages are sure to form lasting memories as they pet stingrays and explore a network of underwater acrylic tunnels. Here everyone can safely interact with some of the world's most fascinating underwater creatures, and learn about them too.

7. Beech Bend Amusement Park

Credit: Phil Hart / Flickr

Map It: 798 Beech Bend Park Rd, Bowling Green, KY 42101

Phone: (270) 781-7634


Hours: Sat: 11am to 6pm

Entrance: Under 48in: $34.99, Over 48in: $44.99

Age Group: 3+

Spread over an expanse of almost 400 acres, this massive amusement area has thrills and fun to spare. Stay the night in a lovely campground, ride rollercoasters, make a splash in the park, and watch races. 

Guests to Beech Bend will have a multitude of attractions to pick from in the park. From family friendly rides to heart racing drops, to watery fun, and more. 

Outside the park, guests will get to enjoy regularly scheduled races and unique vehicles on the drag strip. Plus, with a campground on site, guests will have everything they need only minutes from the fun.

8. Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historical Park

Credit: Wilnor / Flickr

Map It: 2995 Lincoln Farm Rd, Hodgenville, KY 42728

Phone: (270) 358-3137


Hours: 9am to 5pm

Entrance: Free:

Age Group: All Ages

Learn about one of America’s most known historical figures at the first Lincoln Memorial. Learn about his life from childhood to his involvement as a prominent figure during the civil war. There’s plenty of history, nature, and activities for kids too.

Visiting this national historical park has several options for activities. Guests will get to visit the memorial and learn about Lincoln in reenactments and lectures. There’s even special programs and activities specific for kids.

Besides history and lectures, the park also has several scenic vistas to enjoy. Enjoy the waters at Sinking Spring and Knob Creek, or watch the local wildlife roam the surrounding forest.

9. Kentucky Horse Park

Credit: Appaloosa / Flickr

Map It: 4089 Iron Works Pkwy, Lexington, KY 40511

Phone: (859) 233-4303


Hours: Wed - Sun: 9am to 5pm

Entrance: Ages 6 - 12: $6, Ages 13+: $12

Age Group: 5+

Any kid in your life that loves animals, and especially horses, are in for a treat at this park. Here guests can engage with horses and their unique relationship with humans in a variety of ways. Watch spectacular shows, go on a horse ride, and learn some history.

Walk through the Smithsonian affiliated International Museum of the Horse. Here kids and adults alike can learn all about the history of horses through exhibits and interactive multimedia experiences. There’s also sections on antique memorabilia, films, art, and more.

Outside of the museum, guests can go on horse rides, stay at the campsite, and watch shows with Hall of Champion steeds. This is an ideal trip for the horse lover in your life.

10. Cumberland Falls

Credit: Mark Moschell / Flickr

Map It: 7351 Highway 90, Corbin, KY 40701

Phone: (606) 528-4121


Entrance: Free

Age Group: All Ages

Breathtaking views, scenic hiking trails, gem mines, and horseback rides are waiting for you and your kids at Cumberland Falls. Active outdoorsy families will find exactly what they’re looking for here. Stay in DuPont Lodge, engage in outdoors fun, and more.

At Cumberland Falls, guests will have plenty of opportunity for hikes suited for any level, fishing, swimming, horseback riding and more. There’s also gem mining, a lovely riverview restaurant, and a gift shop so you can take a piece of this unforgettable place back home.

11. Dinosaur World

Credit: Carol Vinzant / Flickr

Map It: 711 Mammoth Cave Rd, Cave City, KY 42127

Phone: (270) 773-4345


Hours: 8:30am to 5pm

Entrance: Ages 3 - 12: $12.75+, Ages 13+: $15.75+

Age Group: Under 12

The dino lovers in your life are in for a treat at this fun and interactive park. Kids will love the over 150 life size dinosaurs, skeletal playground, and dino themed activities. This is the perfect blend of education and fun for the little ones in your life.

Dinosaur World has several activities for kids to participate in. They’ll get to walk through the Prehistoric museum and learn a bit about our world through fossils and bones. There’s a fossil dig in a specially stocked area for some archaeological fun, gem excavation, and more.

12. National Corvette Museum

Credit: David Ellis / Flickr

Map It: 350 Corvette Dr, Bowling Green, KY 42101

Phone: (270) 781-7973


Hours: 9am to 5pm

Entrance: Ages 5 -12: $13, Ages 13+: $18

Age Group: 5+

Car lovers rejoice, because this incredible museum has years of history honoring this legendary vehicle. There’s plenty of cool cars to look at, activities for the kids, and even an option to drive a corvette for the adults.

Guests will get to explore the plant and watch these incredible vehicles built. The museum has a multitude of exhibits showcasing the company’s unique history. It’s not just walking and watching though.

There’s a Corvette Simulator where guests of all ages can experience the fun of driving a Corvette on a racetrack. There’s also go-karts, a Corvette store, and an option for the adults to drive an actual Corvette. Plus, with the Stingray Grill inside the museum, you’re in for hours of food and fun. 

13. Kentucky Derby Museum

Credit: flickrized / Flickr

Map It: 704 Central Ave, Louisville, KY 40208

Phone: (502) 637-1111


Hours: Mon - Sat: 8am to 5pm, Sun: 11am to 5pm

Entrance: Varies by activity

Age Group: All Ages

Learn about one of Kentucky’s most renowned events at the Kentucky Derby Museum. Explore a multitude of educational and interactive exhibits across two floors, celebrating this event’s unique history. When you’re done exploring, enjoy some Kentucky themed food.

Guests to the museum, and especially Derby enthusiasts, will be thrilled at the multitude of exhibits and interactivity offered inside. Learn about everything from black heritage in racing, to jockey stories, and beyond. You can even test your “Derby IQ” with an interactive quiz game.

Walk around the store to find some Kentucky Derby themed merchandise to commemorate the trip. When you’re all done exploring, watching videos, playing games, and shopping, head to the Derby Cafe for food and drinks.

14. Diamond Caverns

Credit: James St. John / Flickr

Map It: 1900 Mammoth Cave Pkwy, Park City, KY 42160

Phone: (270) 749-2233


Hours: 9am to 4pm

Entrance: Age 4 -12: $11, Age 13+: $22

Age Group: 5+

Marvel at the natural beauty of this World Heritage Site filled with drapery deposits, colorful calcite, and unique rock formations. Walk through half a mile of beautiful cave any time of the year and enjoy several unique vistas on a guided tour.

Going on a guided tour of these caverns will treat guests to views of dripping stalactites, drapery formations, “cave bacon,” and more. Kids will love the fun educational commentary and interactive elements of the tour. This is a great educational, scenic, and active visit for your trip.

15. Explorium of Lexington

Credit: Boyd Shearer / Flickr

Map It: 440 W Short St, Lexington, KY 40507

Phone: (859) 258-3253


Hours: Tue - Sat: 10am to 5pm, Sun: 1pm to 5pm

Entrance: Ages 2+: $10

Age Group: Under 10 

This interactive and educational destination promises to inspire imagination and curiosity through play. Built for kids to interact with each other and explore their creativity, this is a great place for any kid. Adults will learn to play again, and kids will learn about the world.

The Explorium is filled with unique and fun activities built for kids. Here they can learn about homes around the world, study archaeology, learn about physics and space, and much more. Best of all, these are all taught in fun interactive settings, perfect for burning energy and having fun.

16. Muhammad Ali Center

Credit: h2kyaks / Flickr

Map It: 144 N 6th St, Louisville, KY 40202

Phone: (502) 584-9254


Hours: Wed - Sun: 12pm to 5pm

Entrance: Students: $10, Adults: $18

Age Group: 6+

Teach the kids about this influential and historical figure through a multitude of unique exhibits. Watch multimedia presentations, interact with exhibits, and more to learn about this incredible individual. Ali had six core principles, and the museum makes sure to use them.

Confidence, conviction, dedication, giving, respect, and spirituality are incorporated into the exhibits and are sure to leave a lasting impression. Learn about his time as a boxer, Olympic medalist, and beyond. This museum is sure to inspire anyone to do the most for the world we all share.

17. Kentucky Reptile Zoo

Credit: valerie / Flickr

Map It: 200 L&E Railroad Pl, Slade, KY 40376

Phone: (606) 663-9160


Hours: Thu - Mon: 10am to 5pm

Entrance: Ages 4 - 15: $8.50, Ages 16+: $12.50

Age Group: 3+

From venom extractions to party hat wearing lizards, this reptile zoo is filled with charm, science, and learning. Here guests can view incredible critters, learn about respecting them, and play from a safe distance.

Industry professionals, animal lovers, and scientists help lead demonstrations and lectures at the zoo. It’s not just for little ones either, these professionals offer lessons up to a high school level.

Show the kids some fascinating animals, let them learn about the medical research being done with venom, and more. No matter the age, this is a great stop filled with fun and learning.

18. Kentucky Down Under Adventure Zoo

Credit: Don Sniegowsk / Flickr

Map It: 3700 L and North Turnpike Road, I-65, Horse Cave, KY 42749

Phone: (270) 786-2634


Hours: 9am to 5pm

Entrance: Ages 4 - 14: $15.95, Ages 15+: $29.95

Age Group: 3+

Nature lovers are in for a treat at this interactive zoo and nature exhibit. Take the kids gem mining, stroll through a field of kangaroos, pet goats, and so much more. This trip is perfect for the animal and nature lover in your life.

Interactive exhibits, like gem mining and the petting zoo are sure to thrill the kids. There’s also several educational programs focusing on the Mammoth Onyx Cave and animals. Here anyone can learn and get the unique opportunity to pet exotic animals.

19. Barren River Lake

Credit: LouisvilleUSACE / Flickr

Map It: 1149 State Park Road, Lucas, KY 42156

Phone: (270) 646-2151


Hours: Varies by activity

Entrance: Varies by activity

Age Group: 3+

The Barren River Lake has something for everyone from golfing to fishing, to hiking, to delicious food, and beyond. Catch and grill fresh fish, stay in a lovely lodge overlooking the lake, and enjoy nature all around. This is a perfect destination for active families.

The Louie B. Nunn Lodge offers a perfect homebase for all your adventures. Outside guests will be spoiled for choice for outdoor fun. Go biking, boating, fishing, or play a friendly game of basketball with the kids.

There’s playgrounds, shuffleboard, golf, and a restaurant to re-energize yourselves before getting back to the fun. This is a great destination for burning energy and having a blast together as a family.

20. General Butler State Resort Park

Credit: David Ellis / Flickr

Map It: 1608 KY-227, Carrollton, KY 41008

Phone: (502) 732-4384


Hours: Open 24 hours

Entrance: Free

Age Group: All Ages

Whether you’re looking to camp, learn about the area, go mini-golfing with the kids, this resort park has it all and more. Stay in the perfect combination of luxury and nature in the Butler Lodge, go camping, or enjoy a multitude of outdoor activities with the kids.

Biking, boating, and fishing are just a few options. In the lodge, guests can play board games. Head down to the lake for some mini-golf, or take a museum tour. This resort park has so much to offer for everyone in your traveling party, but the kids especially are sure to have fun.

21. Green River Lake State Park

Credit: Green River Lake State Park / TripAdvisor

Map It: 179 Park Office Rd, Campbellsville, KY 42718

Phone: (270) 465-8255


Hours: Open 24 hours

Entrance: Free

Age Group: All Ages

Those looking to reconnect with nature and family will find exactly what they’re looking for at this state park. Enjoy outdoor activities on the beautiful Green River Lake and surrounding trails. This is an active but relaxing destination for everyone, no matter the age.

Guests will have the option to bike, hike, or horseback through 28 miles of trails, fish and swim in the lake, and more. There are campgrounds, a mini golf course, volleyball courts, and basketball courts. The whole family is sure to have fun and bond together out in nature.

22. SomerSplash Waterpark

Credit: SomerSplash Waterpark / TripAdvisor

Map It: 1030 KY-2227, Somerset, KY 42503

Phone: (606) 679-7946


Hours: Sat: 11am to 7pm, Sun: 1pm to 7pm

Entrance: 48in+: $17.95, Under 48in: $15.95

Age Group: 3+

Kids of all ages will have a blast racing down slides, splashing in themed pools, and soaking up the sun. Float down the lazy river, get rocked around in the wave pool, and more. There’s something for every age group.

Guests will have the option to enjoy several different attractions based on height. Body slides, tube slides, a lazy river, and kiddie play area are just some of the fun options waiting. There’s also concession stands, perfect for snacking when taking a break from the fun.

23. Kentucky Railway Museum

Credit: Jean / Flickr

Map It: 136 S Main St, New Haven, KY 40051

Phone: (800) 272-0152


Hours: Tue - Sat: 9am to 4:30pm

Sun: 12pm to 4:30pm

Entrance: Varies by activity

Age Group: All Ages

The whole family is in for a treat at this historical museum. Choose from several different tour options from relaxing meals on the train, to reenacted train robberies, and beyond. This is a fun, informative, and unique experience that can be tailored to your family.

The museum also offers special event tours for seasonal festivities or parties. This includes a few Christmas themed rides, spring rides, autumn rides, and more. This is a great trip for any kid, but especially the train enthusiast in your life.

24. Salato Wildlife Center

Credit: Pen Waggener / Flickr

Map It: 1 Sportsman's Ln, Frankfort, KY 40601

Phone: (502) 564-7863


Hours: Tue - Sat: 9am to 4pm

Entrance: Youth: $3, Adults: $5

Age Group: 5+

This is a great option for those looking to teach the kids a little about hunting, fishing, and the importance of conservation. Experts in the field will teach kids how to fish and hunt safely, how to view wildlife safely from a distance, and more.

Kids and adults alike will have the opportunity to fish and engage with wildlife in interactive and educational ways here. There are activities and sticker sheets to commemorate the trip too.

25. Louisville Zoo

Credit: David Ellis / Flickr

Map It: 1100 Trevilian Way, Louisville, KY 40213

Phone: (502) 459-2181


Hours: 10am to 5pm

Entrance: Ages 3 - 11: $10.75 - $20.50, Ages 12+: $15.75 - $25.50

Age Group: All Ages

A long proven activity for kids is visiting the zoo. Here kids can learn about the fascinating world of animals, engage in fun activities, and see their favorite animals. Walk around a large area with themed exhibits all meant to inform and entertain, no matter the age.

The zoo is split into several areas with animals and plants from a specific region of the world. See elephants in the Africa area, wallabies in Australia, and so on. Visiting during certain parts of the year will also see the zoo dressed up thematically for the holidays.

26. Belle of Louisville

Credit: William Alden / Flickr

Map It: 401 W River Rd, Louisville, KY 40202

Phone: 502) 574-2992


Hours: Tue - Fri: 10am to 4pm, Sat: 10am to 7pm, Sun 10am - 12pm

Entrance: Varies by tour

Age Group: All ages  

Embark on an unforgettable trip across Louisville’s waterfront on historic steamboats tours. Enjoy sightseeing, food, or go on special kid focused cruises. This is a peaceful, informative, and engaging experience for kids of all ages.

Smaller kids will enjoy the gentle rock of the water as well as the kid focused cruises. Here they can engage in hands-on activities and learn a little history as well. Enjoy a delicious meal, or plan a trip during one of their special events, like the fourth of July fireworks cruise.   

27. Natural Bridge State Resort Park

Credit: Kentucky Photo File / Flickr

Map It: 2135 Natural Bridge Rd, Slade, KY 40376

Phone: (606) 663-2214


Hours: Open 24 hours

Entrance: Free

Age Group: All Ages

Marvel at the massive natural bridge and enjoy exploring the stunning Red River Gorge area. Visit the historic nature center or enjoy a multitude of outdoor activities. Those looking for a bird's eye view can also ride the sky lift up to the incredible natural bridge.

While the natural bridge is the main attraction of the park, there are still plenty of other activities to enjoy together with the kiddos. Fishing, pedal boating, and even mini-golf are all within the park for you to enjoy, just to name a few.

28. Chaney’s Dairy Barn

Credit: giftedstudieswku / Flickr

Map It: 9191 Nashville Rd, Bowling Green, KY 42101

Phone: (270) 843-5567


Hours: Mon - Sat: 11am to 9pm, Sun: 12pm to 8pm

Entrance: Varies by meal

Age Group: All ages

From farm to storefront, this ice cream shop offers some of the best ice cream you could ask for. Made from the milk of their Jersey cows, Chaney’s ice cream is delicious and locally sourced. Pick from a variety of flavors, or stop in for moovie night.

The dairy barn also serves plenty of other delicious food too from burgers to salads, and more. The barn also regularly hosts moovie nights featuring popular kid’s movies, making it the perfect place for food, a treat, and fun.

29. Creation Museum

Credit: Maureen / Flickr

Map It: 2800 Bullittsburg Church Rd, Petersburg, KY 41080

Phone: (888) 582-4253


Hours: Mon - Sat: 9am to 6pm, Sun: 1pm to 7pm

Entrance: Ages 11 - 17: $24.95, Ages 18+: $44.95

Age Group: 5+

The creation museum is a fun interactive space for kids to engage with science and history. Interact with animals, walk through the botanical garden, look at dinosaur skeletons, and more.

The framing device of the museum is of course the bible, but regardless of your beliefs, there is still plenty of fun for kids to have. Plus with over 75,000 square-feet to explore, you’re sure to burn some energy just walking around looking at the exhibits. 

30. Land Between the Lake National Recreation Area

Credit: GT.PHOTOS / Flickr

Map It: 238 Visitor Center Dr, Golden Pond, KY 42211

Phone: (800) 525-7077


Hours: Open 24 hours

Entrance: Varies by activity

Age Group: All ages

Enjoy the vast 170,000 acres of forests and open lands filled with wildlife, nature, and outdoor activities all for free. Escape into nature with the family, learn from professional naturalists, swim, boat, hike, and so much more.

The park is massive and filled with something for everyone that loves being outdoors.Stunning vistas, biking routes, and a multitude of learning opportunities are waiting for the whole family.

31. Tie Breaker Family Aquatic Center

Credit: Tie Breaker Family Aquatic Center / TripAdvisor

Map It: 9503 Eagle Way, Hopkinsville, KY 42240

Phone: (270) 890-0730


Hours: Mon - Fri: 11am to 7pm, Sat: 10am to 7pm, Sun: 12pm to 7pm

Entrance: Under 48in: $7, Over 48in: $9

Age Group: 3+

Cool off and make a splash at this fun, family friendly aquatic center. Pick from a variety of classic water based attractions, such as slides and a lazy river. Fly down hurricane alley or the riptide express, enjoy a pool-side snack, and more.

The park is perfect for kids 3 and up. Here younger kids can enjoy themselves in the splash zone with interactive water elements, while older kids can go on slides. There’s also a lazy river and lounge chairs galore, perfect for relaxing.

32. The Highlands Museum and Discovery Center

Credit: Lisa England / Flickr

Map It: 1620 Winchester Ave, Ashland, KY 41101

Phone: (606) 329-8888


Hours: Wed - Sat: 10am to 4pm

Entrance: Ages 3 - 18: $5, Adults: $6.50

Age Group: All ages

Kids will come away from this museum and discovery center excited about history and with all new knowledge. There’s something for everyone here from the special play space for toddlers, to the highly informative exhibits. 

Guests will step into a 19th century classroom, learn about Kentucky’s past, and get to enjoy interactive elements too. There’s history, cave science, astronomy, and loads more. This is a space of learning and exploration perfect for getting your little ones’ brains excited about learning. 

33. Crank and Boom Craft Ice Cream

Credit: Crank & Boom Ice Cream Lounge / TripAdvisor

Map It: 1210 Manchester St, Lexington, KY 40504

Phone: (859) 288-2176


Hours: Sun - Thur: 11am to 10pm, Fri - Sat: 11am to 11pm

Entrance: Varies by treat

Age Group: All Ages

Everyone is sure to enjoy stopping at this shop for some premium ice cream. Choose from a multitude of classic and signature flavors from Kentucky Blackberry & Buttermilk to strawberry, and more. 

Crank and boom started off small, but have since expanded into national acclaim for their delicious ice cream. Plus, with several ongoing charitable practices going on, your family can enjoy a tasty treat knowing that it’s also for a good cause.

34. Living Arts & Science Center

Credit: flintjarvis / TripAdvisor

Map It: 362 N Martin Luther King Blvd, Lexington, KY 40508

Phone: (859) 252-5222


Hours: Mon - Fri: 9am to 5pm

Entrance: Free

Age Group: 3+

Kids of all ages will find their curiosity and minds buzzing while visiting this fun interactive space. Guests can learn about the night sky in the planetarium, walk through multiple galleries, and more. This is an educational and fun way to keep the kids entertained.

Animal experts will teach kids about fascinating critters. The discovery room is perfect for exploring science in an interactive space. Outside, a playful and interconnected system of rain and butterfly gardens are open to explore and learn from too.

In the gardens, there’s an opportunity to learn about rainwater collection, bird feeds, native Kentucky flowers, and vegetable gardens. A gift shop onsite will also ensure that the kids have a keepsake to remember their trip.

35. Boone Creek Outdoors

Credit: Edgar P. Zhagüi Merchán / Flickr

Map It: 8291 Old Richmond Rd, Lexington, KY 40515

Phone: (855) 494-7539


Hours: 9am to 6pm

Entrance: Varies by tour

Age Group: 4+

Boone Creek Outdoors promises exhilarating fun for kids 4 and up. Guests can be guided on hikes, challenge themselves on ropes courses, or fly through a canopy of trees on a zipline. There are activities for every age level, so everyone is sure to have a blast.

Guests will get to choose from a variety of ropes and zipline courses to fit their skill and age level. Younger kids can enjoy 16 unique challenges on the Daniel Boone’s Challenge course, while older ones can take the zipline canopy tour. It’s not just for kids though, this is a blast no matter your age.

36. Earthjoy Treehouse Rental Adventures

Credit: Earthjoy Treehouse Rental Adventures / Twitter

Map It: 3400 Bridgeville Rd, Brooksville, KY 41004

Phone: (859) 380-1945


Hours: 9am to 8pm

Entrance: Varies by rental

Age Group: All ages

Those looking not only for fun activities, but fun accommodations will love staying in one of these treehouses. Pick from several unique stays, suspended high in the trees, all with their own charm and amenities.

These treehouses aren’t your run of the mill treehouse either. Here you can enjoy many of the comforts of home and more. The Hickory has a slide, the Aliyah has a unique bridge, and the Kentucky Climber  was built by Master Treehouse builder, Pete Nelson. 

This is just scratching the surface too. Every stay in one of these treehouses is unforgettable. Kids are sure to be thrilled at the idea of staying in one of these cozy and fun treehouses. 

37. Smothers Park

Credit: Don Barrett / Flickr

Map It: 199 W Veterans Blvd, Owensboro, KY 42303

Phone: (270) 687-8333


Hours: 7am to 10pm

Entrance: Free

Age group: Under 10

Named the “Top Playground in the World,” Smothers Park is a treat for kids under 10. Tunnels, bridges, slides, towers, and water features will have them all thrilled for hours of active fun. Plus with plenty of stunning vistas and free wifi, adults will have plenty as well.

The park is located right on the water, so expect great views while your little ones play. The park also has historical landmarks, like the Shelton Memorial. There’s also a concession stand and picnic area to enjoy a meal after the kids are done playing.

38. Bernheim Arboretum & Research Forest

Credit: EX22218 / Flickr

Map It: 2075 Clermont Rd, Clermont, KY 40110

Phone: (502) 955-8512


Hours: 7am to 8pm

Entrance: $10 per car

Age Group: All Ages

Enjoy the outdoors and the multitude of unique vistas and activities offered in the beautiful forest. Guests can go hiking, fishing, participate in educational nature programs, view public art, and much more.

One must-sees on the trip are the forest giants, three giant sculptures made of wood by a Danish artist. The sensory garden, education center, and cafe are a few others. There’s so much to see and interact with. Everyone on your trip is sure to find something they love.

39. NCM Motorsports Park

Credit: giftedstudieswku / Flickr

Map It: 505 Kimberlee A Fast Dr, Bowling Green, KY 42103

Phone: (844) 977-7333


Hours: By appointment

Entrance: Varies by event

Age Group: 7+ 

Guests to the NCM Motorsports Park are in for loads of fun, history, and incredible vehicles. Those with young motorsports enthusiasts will get to try out go-karting, see loads of powerful machines, and maybe watch a race.

Parents and kids will love seeing and learning all about the racing vehicles, and driving go-karts to get in on the fun. Parents will also have an option to drive a Corvette or bring their own car to try out on the track. 

40. Round1 Bowling & Amusement

Credit: Rick Obst / Flickr

Map It: 4801 Outer Loop Building B, Louisville, KY 40219

Phone: (502) 371-7878


Hours: 10am to 2am

Entrance: Varies by game

Age Group: 5+ 

Located within Jefferson Mall, this amusement area is one of many that show why Round 1 is a leader in this market. Bowling, karaoke, a massive arcade, crane games, and more are waiting for the whole family.

Win stuffed animals for the little ones, play a racing game, or rent a karaoke room to sing some family songs together. Win tickets and use them to get prizes the kids will love. Go bowling, play pool, and more.

This fun and vibrant entertainment center is packed with something for everyone. Plus, its location within the mall means there’s even more to do.

41. Joseph-Beth Booksellers

Credit: Erica Minton / Flickr

Map It: 161 Lexington Green Cir # B, Lexington, KY 40503

Phone: (859) 273-2911


Hours: Mon - Sat: 10am to 9pm, Sun: 10am to 6pm

Entrance: Free

Age Group: All ages

One of a few Joseph-Beth book stores can be found in Kentucky. Browse a wide selection of books and knick-knacks for every age.

Inspire your little ones to read with an extensive kids, middle grade, and young adult section. Joseph-Beth prides themselves on creating a carefully curated collection, meaning there’s something for everyone to love.   

42. Rebecca Ruth Candy Tours & Museum

Credit: Onasill - Bill Badzo / Flickr

Map It: 116 E 2nd St, Frankfort, KY 40601

Phone: (502) 223-7475


Hours: 10am to 6pm

Entrance: Ages 0 - 17: $4, Ages 18+: $6

Age Group: All ages

Kids are sure to enjoy a wide selection of treats, candy, and chocolate on your trip through Kentucky. Guests can tour the factory and enjoy world class treats.

Tours of the factory will teach guests about Rebecca Ruth’s 100 year old history of candy making. In the store, they’ll find a wide selection of classic and signature treats for everyone to enjoy.

43. Aviation Museum of Kentucky

Credit: Ken Mist / Flickr

Map It: 4029 Airport Rd, Lexington, KY 40510

Phone: (859) 231-1219


Hours: Tue - Sat: 10am to 5pm, Sun: 1pm to 5pm

Entrance: Ages 6 - 16: $6, Ages 17+: $10

Age Group: 3+   

Travel through a long history of incredible flying machines with the whole family. Learn about the innovations of different eras and watch the kids marvel at the vehicles on display.

Everything from the Wright Brothers to world war II planes, and so much more can be found in the museum. Here guests can learn about history while staring right at the incredible machines themselves.

44. Homemade Ice Cream & Pie Kitchen

Credit: THEMACGIRL / Flickr

Map It: 2525 Bardstown Rd, Louisville, KY 40205

Phone: (502) 459-8184


Hours: Mon - Thu: 10am to 9pm Fri - Sat: 10am to 10pm, Sun: 12pm to 9pm

Entrance: Varies by treat

Age Group: All ages  

Kids and parents alike are sure to love stopping in at this kitchen filled with homemade delicacies. Ice cream, pie, cake pops, and so much more are ready to be enjoyed.

Established in 1982, this shop has perfected their recipes over decades. Enjoy a wealth of menu options from pies, to ice cream, to cookies, and so much more.

45. Kentucky Science Center

Credit: Louisville Images / Flickr

Map It: 727 W Main St, Louisville, KY 40202

Phone: (502) 561-6100


Hours: 9:30am to 5pm

Entrance: 5+, Varies by activities

Age Group: 12 and under

Spark your kids imagination and mind through fun, educational, and interactive exhibits and movies. Watch them learn about different fields of science from professionals and hands on.

The center has everything from astrology to geography, to biology, and much more for kids to learn about. This is truly a wealth

Tobi Miles
Article updated:
March 28, 2024
A nomadic wordsmith savoring the world's flavors and penning stories that turn every journey into an epic.
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