If you know anything about me, you know that I love Kentucky. Even more than that, however, you might also know that I love Central and Southern Kentucky. It’s God’s Country – and in my eyes, it’s hard to beat.
While the landscapes are easy on the eye, there’s so much to do and so much to learn in this area of the Commonwealth, as well. It’s rich in history! With that in mind, I present to you a perfect day trip that is chock-full of adventure, activities, food, and culture: From Abe to the Cave!
Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historic Park
2995 Lincoln Farm Rd., Hodgenville, KY 42748
The Abe in the trail? Well, no other than our sixteenth President Abraham Lincoln! The first president born west of the Appalachian Mountains, he was born in a log cabin on Sinking Springs Farm. According to the National Park Service, “the story of Lincoln’s journey from log cabin to the White House that began here has long been a powerful symbol of the unlimited possibilities of American life. For almost a century, tourists and historians have come here to seek out the origins of the man and his virtues—honesty, unpretentiousness, tolerance, hard work, a capacity to forgive, and a clear-sighted vision of right and wrong.”
The approaching centennial of Lincoln’s birth brought interest in memorializing the president; in doing so, Robert Collier, publisher of Colliers Weekly, bought Sinking Springs Farm in 1905. He, along with his associates, formed the Abraham Lincoln Farm Association to build the memorial. To quote, “Over 120,000 individuals from across the country, including thousands of schoolchildren, contributed a total of about $350,000 for the memorial.” The cornerstone was dedicated in 1909 by President Theodore Roosevelt, while President Taft dedicated the space for the nation two years later.
The small cabin reminds us of Lincoln’s beginnings, which were quite humble, and the granite + marble memorial building that houses the cabin is a luxurious, stunning reminder of Lincoln’s rich legacy in the United States.
I am certain that y’all would love visiting the Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historic Park, as it is a fantastic piece of national history!
Mammoth Cave National Park
After a morning spent in Larue County learning about President Lincoln, head on down to the second half of the Abe to Cave Trail by visiting Mammoth Cave National Park! Mammoth Cave is the longest cave system known in the world – and it’s right in our backyards in Central Kentucky. How fabulous is that?
Did you know that Mammoth Cave National Park was deemed a national park in 1941, a World Heritage Site in 1981, and an International Biosphere Reserve in 1990? That’s why it attracts visitors from nearby and afar, internationally and domestically!
The park spans into Edmonson, Hart, and Barren Counties. Mammoth Cave is famous for having over 400 miles of surveyed passageways, along with stunning limestone strata, capped by sandstone.
There are multiple tours and adventures that one can take at Mammoth Cave – ones that are geared towards families, children, school groups, adults.. you name it! You can find more information about visiting here.
While a day can easily be filled going from Abe to Cave, if you need more activities (or want some great food), head over and visit my friends in Hart County! In beautiful, nearby Horse Cave, Kentucky, one can have fabulous Amish Doughnuts from R&S Salvage Grocery and Bakery, explore Hidden River Cave, shop locally downtown, dine at 5 Broke Girls (get the Chicken Fried Chicken!), have a glass of sweet tea and a bologna sandwich at the WigWam General Store, visit the famous Dennison’s Roadside Market, pet a kangaroo at Kentucky Down Under Adventure Zoo, and grab a pizza at a local favorite, Turtlelini’s!
You can find more information on what to do, where to go, and where to eat in Hart County here.
Needless to say, there’s a lot to do in this area of the state; if I were you, I’d book a hotel + get ready to make some great memories! Take my word, my Kentucky oath, for it – you won’t regret it.
If you need help planning your trip to Central Kentucky, to the Abe to Cave Trail, or to Hart County, let me know – I’d be happy to help!
As always: Happy Eating, Happy Traveling, Happy Living!
Y’all come back now, ya hear?
FTC: This is a commissioned post; however, as always, all opinions expressed are my own.