Affordable Adventures: Bardstown

This town marked the first of our stops for the summer road trip series. Bardstown has been voted the “most beautiful small town in America” before and has lots of interesting, historic sites for families to enjoy. Kimberly Ball recommended this destination.  Bardstown is just about a 45-minute drive from Louisville and easy to get to from Interstate 65.

Affordable Adventures: Bardstown

BARDSTOWN, Ky. (WHAS11) – This town marked the first of our stops for the summer road trip series. Bardstown has been voted the “most beautiful small town in America” before and has lots of interesting, historic sites for families to enjoy. Kimberly Ball recommended this destination.  Bardstown is just about a 45-minute drive from Louisville and easy to get to from Interstate 65.

Here’s a quick look at our stops: (Click here to see the trip map)

BARDSTOWN, KENTUCKY 

Main Stops:

1.) Museum Row in Bardstown, KY

2.) My Old Kentucky Home in Bardstown, KY

Lunch: Talbott Tavern

Detour: Frank the Giant Rooster in Coxs Creek, Kentucky

Here’s a breakdown of our experiences on the road:

 

We started our day with the detour. Coxs Creek is on the way to Bardstown from Louisville. You can’t miss Frank the Giant Rooster when you’re driving in. He sits outside the Rooster Run convenience store. We made sure to take more than a few photos with the icon and suggest you and your family do the same.

For location, hours, and more information on this detour, click here

From there, we made it to our first main stop, Museum Row. As the name suggests, Museum Row is made up of several different museums that include the Civil War Museum, the Women’s Museum of the Civil War, Museum of MidAmerica, and Historic Bardstown Village. According to the museum’s website, these collections are the “largest and most complete museums devoted to the Western Theater of the American Civil War.”

From the medicine to the music, we learned about more of the unique aspects that come with times of war as well as the critical role Kentucky has played in our nation’s history.

“Kentucky was central to the Civil War. Lincoln was quoted once as saying that I’d like to have God on my side, but I must have Kentucky,” Museum Row curator Robert Llewellyn said.  “The tickets are good for two days. If you’re any sort of historian, between the village and the other four museums, you might need two days to cover it all.”

We also got to tour the Historic Bardstown Village, which is a replica of what life looked like for some of Bardstown’s first settlers. It was neat to essentially go back in time with each cabin and building and learn more about the town’s earlier years.

Cost:

Adults: $10
Children (6-15): $5
Children (5 and younger): FREE
The museum caps the total cost at $35 for families.

For location, hours, and more information on the individual attractions at Museum Row, click here

From Museum Row, we headed to our second main stop of the day, My Old Kentucky Home. It’s a beautiful, historic mansion and park in the heart of Bardstown. We got to tour the home with two wonderful guides, who even treat guests to a rendition of the famous state song. Yes, you’re more than welcome and encouraged to sing along!

Cost:
A trip to my Old Kentucky Home will cost a family of four an average of $44.

For location, hours, and more information on My Old Kentucky Home, click here

From the park, we headed to lunch at Talbott Tavern, recommended by Jessica Fulkerson. The food was absolutely delicious, and the service is fantastic. The menu offers an eclectic mix of comfort food and unique dishes. We got to sample the Shrimp and Grits, Hot Brown, Mussels in a Vanilla Coconut Cream Sauce, and the Kentucky Club.

“To be in one of America’s oldest running restaurants, it’s just the coolest thing to be here,” executive chef Tom MacKinnon said.

Not only do you get to eat in one of the town’s oldest buildings, but you also get the chance to see a piece of history upstairs. Legend has it famous American outlaw, Jesse James, shot one of the walls on the second floor multiple times after a rowdy night downstairs.

“I always tell people they come here for the bourbon. They come back for the history, the ghost history, and the food,” manager Deanna Kelley said.

Cost:
For a family of four to eat, it’ll cost an average of $50.

For location, hours, and more information on Talbott Tavern, click here

These are just a few of the destinations Bardstown has to offer. You can also check out the bourbon distilleries like Jim Beam and visit Bernheim Forest for hiking and excellent views of Kentucky’s nature scene.

For more ideas, click here

TODAY'S TOTAL:

$114

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TRIP MAP

An interactive map showing our whole trip.

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