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Western Kentucky is a fascinating region that doesn’t get a whole lot of press. The area known as the Western Coal Fields, which centers around the towns of Owensboro in Kentucky and Evansville in Indiana have a culture all their own that’s quite different from what you’d find in Louisville or cities farther east. Unsurprisingly, many of the residents work in the coal mining industry, but it’s also a part of the state known for its delicious BBQ, handcrafted whiskey, and bluegrass music. If you’re going to book an RV in Daviess County, Diamond Lake Resort is one of the best places to camp with one.
For a campground at the far western end of Kentucky, Diamond Lake Resort has some excellent amenities to enjoy when you’re camping with an RV there. Sites can include full hookups or just water and electricity depending on the needs of your RV rental. If your clothes get dirty, there are washing machines and dryers available 24 hours a day.
However, one of the most unique aspects of the RV campground is its go-kart track, which can be set up for one or two passengers, making it an excellent family-friendly experience. Adults can also rent one of their “drifter” vehicles, which are sort of like motorized tricycles that go really fast (they also require a driver’s license to use). If that sounds a little too thrilling, they have paddle boat rentals to use on the park’s lake, and small mini-golf and disc golf courses. On some evenings, you can catch a performance at the park’s Good Time Theater, which is actually one of the largest music venues in the county.
If you need to pick up some essentials, there’s a grocery store on the premises that stocks food, ice, firewood, and propane. Don’t feel like cooking? The park has its own restaurant where you can order meals at any time of the day, and the burgers there have been rated as some of the best in the state.
The mountains of western Kentucky are a veritable playground to those looking for outdoor adventures during a motorhome camping trip. For a quick and easy green space to have a picnic in, check out Smothers Park in Owensboro. It sits on the south shore of the Ohio River and has some fantastic views of the waterfront. You’ll also find a great playground there with a spray park for the kids to run off some energy and cool down on a hot day.
Panther Creek Park to the southwest of Owensboro is another solid option with its miles of hiking and horseback riding trails circling a small lake. If you’ve got the proper state license, this is a good spot for catching rainbow trout and largemouth bass. The wetlands surrounding the lake are great for bird watching too.
Less than two hours' drive from Diamond Lake Resort is Mammoth Cave National Park, which is home to the longest cave system in the world. There are over 400 miles of passageways in the cave system, though only a fraction of them are open to visitors. Rangers give daily tours of the caves ranging in length from only a half of a mile up to five miles. You can also hike outside the caves with the knowledge of what amazing landscapes lie just beneath the surface of the earth.
The city of Owensboro is only 20 minutes' drive away when you get an RV rental near Diamond Lake Resort Campground. It’s one of the largest cities in the state but still has a great small-town feel. The city has a number of great restaurants, with steakhouses and pizza parlors dominating, but the true gems are the BBQ restaurants. With a focus on lamb and mutton, Kentucky is an entirely different style of BBQ compared to Texas or the Carolinas, and you’ll definitely want to indulge in some while you’re here. Additionally, since this is Kentucky, you’ll probably want to tour the city's bourbon distilleries; one of them has been here since the mid-1800s.
Owensboro has some excellent museums too, like the Museum of Science and History, which covers everything from mammoth fossils to the events of World War II. It’s not a very large museum, but many of the exhibits are interactive, so this is one of the better places to take the kids on a rainy day when RV camping at Diamond Lake Resort.
There’s also the Owensboro Museum of Fine Art showcasing works from both Appalachian and international artists; it’s actually the second-largest art museum in Kentucky. The museum hosts a number of traveling exhibits from larger art museums too, but one of the most popular permanent displays is the kaleidoscope room, which is always a big hit with the kids.