Drive past horse farms with green meadows on the way into Lexington in north central Kentucky and you'll know why the city is called "The Horse Capital of the World". There's plenty to enjoy if you're a horse-lover or merely interested in the process of raising thoroughbreds. Located on a gently rolling plateau of bluegrass fed by small creeks, Lexington is a college town with lots to do and plenty of outdoor fun.
Drive or bike the roads around town to see future racehorses on mammoth farms complete with huge barns and mansions. To visit a farm or two, take a local tour company such as Blue Grass Tours; all farms are not open to the public. Kentucky Horse Park, a few miles south of downtown, offers the opportunity to see over 40 breeds of horses on this working horse farm and educational center. The park offers horse-drawn tours, horseback riding and pony rides plus the International Museum of the Horse.
Take a tour of Keeneland Race Course, near town, to see where thoroughbreds run in spring and fall. Stop by Red Mile Harness Track to see Lexington's oldest racetrack dating to 1875. Over 900 horses call The Thoroughbred Center home; visitors can watch morning workouts and get a closer look at this industry.
Lexington's antebellum and post Civil War history is displayed at four 19th century historic homes: Ashland, the Henry Clay Estate; Waveland State Historic Site; Mary Todd Lincoln House and Hunt-Morgan House. Travel further back in history at McConnell Springs, the campsite of the first settlers in the area; a natural area and trails are available.
There are several sites to see at the University of Kentucky including the UK Art Museum, Basketball Museum and Arboretum, the official state botanical garden. Another arboretum known for its beauty, Lexington Cemetery, is located in the heart of town. The Lexington Legends, a Class A affiliate of the Houston Astros, play 70 home games each year.
Outdoor recreation in Lexington includes seven golf courses. Raven Run Nature Sanctuary has over 10 miles of trails to explore. Nightlife in Lexington runs the gamut from the performing arts to spots that feature jazz, blues and comedy acts.
Dining options are many in Lexington. Gratz Park Inn is one of the city's finest restaurants. For more casual dining, try the Atomic Cafe with its Caribbean menu.
Lexington, in north central Kentucky, is located at the intersections of I-64 and I-75 and is about 90 miles south of Cincinnati, OH. Take I-71 south to I-75 south.