Kentucky is home to some of the most beautiful scenery in the United States. From the majestic mountains of the Appalachians to the rolling hills of the Bluegrass region, the state has a wide variety of landscapes to explore. Exploring these areas will allow you to see some of the most breathtaking scenery in the country and learn about Kentucky's unique history and culture. Here are ten of the best scenic drives in Kentucky.
10. Boone Creek Scenic Byway (46 Miles) - Lexington
This 9-mile-long byway takes you through some of the most beautiful countryside in Kentucky. The drive begins in Winchester and takes you through the picturesque Boone Creek Valley, where you will see rolling hills, fields of wildflowers, and historic buildings. The byway ends in Athens, where you can explore the historic downtown area. The wind will make a song in the trees, and you're in for a peaceful and memorable drive as you go along.
9. Kentucky Route 77 (22.89 km) - Somerset
This is one of the most underrated scenic drives in Kentucky. The route is just a short distance from Lake Cumberland, making it the perfect place to enjoy beautiful views. The route is also very scenic, with plenty of twists and turns to keep you entertained. The route is also great for those who enjoy a challenge, as it can be quite difficult to navigate at times.
8. Old Frankfort Pike (17.7miles)- Lexington
Just 10 miles from downtown Lexington, the Old Frankfort Pike is a scenic byway that takes you back in time. This beautiful drive features stone walls, horse farms, and historic homes. You'll also find plenty of places to stop and enjoy the scenery, including the Kentucky Horse Park and the Castle and Key Distillery.
7. Bluegrass Parkway (Lincoln's Birthplace to Lexington) ( 134.7 km) - Hodgenville
The Bluegrass Parkway is one of the most popular scenic drives in Kentucky. The 134.7 km route takes you past some of the most beautiful scenery in the state, including Lincoln's Birthplace State Park, Buffalo Trace Distillery, and the Kentucky Horse Park. If you take this drive to have some alone time, you will most likely get it as it is hard to find other explorers there. According to the AllTrails website, the place is open all year round, so that you can visit the place anytime you want.
6. Williamsburg to Levi: Jackson Wilderness Scenic Drive (47.2 km) - Williamsburg
This scenic drive will take you through the Jackson Wilderness, a protected area home to various plant and animal life. The drive is just over 47 kilometres long and will take you through some of the most beautiful scenery in Kentucky. Along the way, you will have the chance to see a variety of wildlife, including deer, elk, and wild turkeys. You will also pass by several natural landmarks, such as the Natural Arch, a natural rock formation created by years of erosion.
5. Lower Ohio River Scenic Drive (13.7 km) - Burlington
The Lower Ohio River Scenic Drive takes you along the Ohio River from Burlington to Covington. The drive offers stunning views of the river and the surrounding countryside. You will pass by several historic sites, including the Big Bone Lick State Park, home to the largest deposit of fossils from the Pleistocene era. If you are lucky, you will also spot some local wildlife, including bald eagles and ospreys. Therefore, make sure that you carry your camera to document your journey and keep all the memories.
4. Monticello to Williamsburg: Along KY 92 ( 84.5 km) - Daniel Boone National Forest
This scenic drive will take you through some of the most beautiful parts of Daniel Boone National Forest. The route begins in the town of Monticello and winds its way through the forest to the historic town of Williamsburg. Along the way, you will have the opportunity to see a wide variety of plant and animal life and some of the most stunning views in Kentucky. According to the AllTrails website, March to September is the best time to go on a scenic drive.
3. Tunnel Ridge Road (6.1 km) - Daniel Boone National Forest
We have Tunnel Ridge Road in Daniel Boone National Forest at number three. This scenic drive winds its way through the forest for just over six kilometres, providing stunning views of the surrounding mountains and valleys. The road is closed in winter due to snow, but it is a beautiful drive that is well worth taking during the rest of the year. You are also allowed to come with your dog if you want to get out of the car and walk but make sure it is on a leash.
2. Black Mountain Kentucky Highpoint (7.4KM) - Lynch
Black Mountain is the highest point in Kentucky and offers some of the most incredible views in the state. The drive to the top of the mountain is just over seven kilometres and takes you through some of the most beautiful scenery in the state. Once you reach the top, you will see miles in all directions. According to the AllTrails website, the trail is open all year round, and they also allow dogs as long as they are on a leash. This is a great place to go for a hike or to enjoy the views.
1. Mammoth Cave National Park Scenic Drive (17.5km) - Mammoth Cave National Park
The park is home to the world's longest cave system, and the scenic drive through the park offers stunning views of the Kentucky countryside. The drive takes you past the historic entrance to the cave and through some of the most beautiful forests in the state. You will also have the opportunity to see some of the wildlife that inhabits the park, such as deer, wild turkeys, and bald eagles.
These are just a few of the many scenic drives that Kentucky offers. Whether you are looking for a short drive or a longer one, you will find something that suits your needs. So, get out there and explore all that Kentucky has to offer. And don't forget to take your camera so that you can document your journey and keep all the memories.
Written by Liz Flynn
Read more posts by Liz Flynn