As local communities continue to update Covid-19 regulations, local destinations for outdoor recreation may be closed. Please visit official websites for the latest information.

9 Best Outdoor Fall Activities in Kentucky

By Penny Fox

9 Best Outdoor Fall Activities in Kentucky

Festivals, food, and fun is what you’ll find in Kentucky any time of year, but there’s something special about autumn. With the changes of fall comes great opportunities to sample fresh produce like apples and pumpkins, take a tour, celebrate at a festival, or spend the night under the stars. Here are some of the best fall activities in Kentucky.  

The Parklands of Floyds Fork, Louisville, KY

You’ll see Mother Nature at her best at the Parklands of Floyds Fork just outside Louisville. Hiking, biking, walking, or whatever your favorite fall outdoor activity happens to be, you’ll be able to enjoy it at this oasis. There are great opportunities for taking pictures at this not-to-miss nature area that connects several local parks.

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Hillman Ferry Campground, Grand Rivers, KY

What better way to experience the changing of the leaves than sleeping under them and the stars? A spot local’s favor, the Hillman Ferry Campground has people flocking to the grounds until November. You’ll find yourself in a trance waking up looking at the beautiful golden, orange, and red leaves swaying above you. At night you can cozy up near the campfire and practice your chef skills making campfire cuisine. Nearby enjoy mountain bike trails, hiking trails, and other natural sites to explore.

Old Friends at Dream Chase Farm, Georgetown, KY

It’s no secret that the folks in Kentucky have a serious love of horses. Old Friends is basically a retirement home for racehorses, and you’ll get to meet some of the best thoroughbreds around. Even if you don’t enjoy horseracing, you’ll fall in love with these special horses and the people who care for them. Perfect activity for a sunny October day!

Boone Creek Outdoors, Lexington, KY

If you’ve never seen the countryside at tree level, you’re in for a special treat at Boone Creek Outdoors, a high-speed, adrenaline-producing outdoor adventure. Walk and zip across the changing treetops as you float across the limestone gorge and see the beauty beneath you. It’s where history and nature come together. 

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Floodwall Murals, Paducah, KY

Another great outside fall activity in the southwestern part of the state is the Floodwall Murals of Paducah. These incredible landmarks aren’t just colors painted on walls, but a beautiful display of history and talent. Take a self-guided tour that explains the history of Kentucky on each panel. With all of the history and art that the landmark city of Paducah has to offer, the murals are ideal to experience in the fall in the midst of all of the red and orange leaves.

Salato Wildlife Education Center, Frankfort, KY

Wildlife Education Center in Frankfort. This is a great family activity that gets you up close and personal with some of the most interesting creatures on the planet. Snakes, bears, turtles, bison, elk, deer, and bobcats are just a few of the wild things that you’ll get to see at this wildlife center, where you can spend an hour or spend the day. 

Devine’s Corn Maze and Pumpkin Patch, Harrodsburg, KY

You’ve got to pick a pumpkin or two from this great location known for family fun. Before or after your pumpkin picking, take a hayride, eat a treat, or take a family photo with hay bales in the background. For those who want a little more action, there’s paintball in the corn stalks, a zip line that takes you 600 feet in the air, and the seasonal Field of Horror. 

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Bluegrass Railroad Museum, Versailles, KY

There’s nothing more fun than a train ride through the country. You’ll delight in the colors of fall as your roll through the valleys of central Kentucky on one of the specialty trains. You might take a Civil War train and learn about the role of the railroad during that time, or you might take a Pumpkin Patch ride all the way to a stop at a local farm where you can pick your own pumpkin. 

The Arboretum, State Botanical Garden of Kentucky, Lexington, KY

There is always something drawing people in at the Arboretum. This 100-acre landscape covered in lush flora and fauna is located on the University of Kentucky campus in Lexington.  With an annual rate of around 200,000 visitors, this place is favored by many, and it’s no reason why! Once you experience walking the trails of the beautifully designed gardens, admiring the artistic sculptures and greenery, you’ll see why! There are walks, classes, festivals, and events frequently going on so check their website out to see what you can participate in next!

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As local communities continue to update Covid-19 regulations, local destinations for outdoor recreation may be closed. Please visit official websites for the latest information.