The Capital and Kentucky's Largest Urban Areas
Frankfort - Kentucky's Capital City
The State Capitol building in Frankfort was modeled after the United States Capitol in Washington D.C. with its domed rotunda in a neoclassical style of architecture.
The present building, (shown at right), was completed in 1910.
The older capitol building, which was designed by Lexington-native Gideon Shryock has been restored and currently is home to the Kentucky Historical Society.
Frankfort was named the capital in 1792, when Kentucky became a state. The city is also the seat of Franklin County. Many historical buildings and landmarks are found in and around Frankfort. For more information, visit the Frankfort Tourist Commission.
The picturesque Louisville skyline at night.
Photo courtesy of Greater Louisville Convention & Visitors Bureau
The Greater Louisville area is a 25-county, bi-state, (Kentucky and Indiana) region that is easily accessible and within a day's drive of nearly half of the population of the United States. This area is also referred to as "Kentuckiana", a combination of the names of the two states.
George Rogers Clark is credited with founding the city of Louisville. He, along with a group of soldiers and settlers, moved into the area in 1778, and the town charter was approved in 1780.
The town grew quickly into a bustling river city based strategically on the Falls of the Ohio.
The merger between the governments of Louisville and Jefferson County in 2003 created teh 16th most populous city in the U.S.
Today, the city is known for its cultural arts. Home of the official state ballet - the Louisville Ballet; the official state opera - the Kentucky Opera; the official state theatre - the award-winning Actor's Theatre; and the Kentucky Center for the Arts; among many other attractions.
Louisville is also home to the Speed Art Museum, the state's oldest art museum, with exhibits displaying artifacts that date back thousands of years. And of course, Louisville is home to Churchill Downs, the site of the Kentucky Derby.
In March 2006, Louisville was named the number one U.S. city for cultural diversity by the National League of Cities, endorsing the fact that there's much to "Explore" in Louisville.
Several cities and a number of communities make up what is sometimes referred to as the "Greater Cincinnati - Northern Kentucky Area".
Separated from Newport, Kentucky and Cincinnati, Ohio by rivers, (the Licking and Ohio, respectively), Covington is the largest city in Northern Kentucky. With a long rich history as a bustling riverport, the city is known today for the redevelopment of its riverfront and skyline, as well as its strong economy.
There are a wide variety of places to "Explore" in Northern Kentucky.
Copyrighted Photo of the Newport Aquarium. Used with permission.
The Newport Aquarium is a state-of-the-art facility, with thousands of animals from across the globe housed in a million plus gallons of water. The aquarium is located at Newport on the Levee, in Northern Kentucky, just across the river from Cincinnati, Ohio and is open to the public 365 days a year.
The Lexington-Fayette County urban area lies in the heart of Kentucky's Bluegrass Region. Home to the International Museum of the Horse; the Kentucky Horse Park; the American Saddlebred Museum; Calumet Farm - world famous thoroughbred farm and producer of eight Kentucky Derby winners; Keeneland Race Course; the Red Mile Harness Track; and The Thoroughbred Center; Lexington-Fayette County certainly deserves its reputation as "Horse Capital of the World".
The city will host the 2010 World Equestrian Games. The event will be held at the Kentucky Horse Park, and is expected to draw over 1/2 million visitors to the state.
Owensboro is located on the banks of the Ohio River in Daviess County. The city was named for Col. Abraham Owen, a member of the Kentucky legislature and Kentucky's constitutional convention. (Owen County, and its seat Owenton, were also named in his honor.)
Owensboro is called "Kentucky's Festival City" and "Bar-B-Q Capital of the World" The International Bar-B-Q Festival is one of many held annually in the city.
Check out the web site of the Owensboro-Daviess County Tourist Commission for more information on all of the city's festivals. And see more fun sites to explore and places to visit in Owensboro on our "Explore" page.
Bowling Green is home to Western Kentucky University. The city is located 110 miles south of Louisville and 60 miles north of Nashville, Tennessee. (Read the History of Bowling Green as provided by the city's official web site.) Be sure to visit our listings in "Explore" to find fun things to see and do in Bowling Green.