In Bardstown, Kentucky, they like their history, and they love their music. This is apparent when you discover that the state song, “My Old Kentucky Home,” is also the name of a state park established to commemorate the building for which the song was written. My Old Kentucky Home State Park is located 30 minutes east of Elizabethtown, 45 minutes west of Lexington, and an hour south of Louisville.
In the early 1920s, the farm that inspired the hit song became Kentucky’s first historic shrine. “Federal Hill,” it was called, and its beauty has inspired generations of visitors since the song debuted. In 1936, the area was dedicated by the town to become My Old Kentucky Home State Park.
This park is a wonderful place where nature, history, and old-time entertainment intersect. Load up the RV rental and see some theater, play a few rounds of golf, or have a picnic. This quaint park is rich in character, and you’re sure to be entertained throughout your stay. Simply start by booking an RV in Nelson County, then the rest of the trip can fall into place.
Did you bring your golfing gear? It’s okay if you didn’t. Head to the on-site pro shop where you can rent clubs, gloves, balls, and anything else you’ll need to play. Kenny Rapier Golf Course is an 18-hole green that provides fun for any golf enthusiast. It was named after the former Commissioner of Parks, Kenny Rapier. The course is open seven days a week, as long as the weather is nice enough to play.
As you can probably tell by the name, this park has a sense of entertainment and a theatrical vibe. The park offers guided tours of the home of Stephen Foster, who wrote the state tune All the tour guides are dressed in period clothing and are sure to be singing a number of songs along the way. Make sure to also check out the play, The Stephen Foster Story. It's performed regularly in the park, with actors in brightly colored period attire and spritely choreography. There are over 50 songs in the performance.
Birding at My Old Kentucky Home State Park is also a major draw to the park. The woods are teeming with so many different species of birds. Goldfinches, cardinals, Carolina wrens, owls, warblers, and mourning doves are just a few of the birds you’ll see. They make their homes right alongside you in the park, so you might not even need binoculars to see them.
Camping at My Old Kentucky Home State Park
Planning to do some RV camping at My Old Kentucky Home State Park? There are 39 campsites to choose from which provide a few of the lovely comforts of home. Full and partial hookups are available at many of the campsites, including 30 and 50-amp electric service. The park provides a dump station for motorhome campers to empty their tanks before they get back on the road.
Enjoying the outdoors but still want to keep connected to the outside world? The park provides Wi-Fi for its guests, and a few of the major cell phone carriers have good service in the area. Also located within the facility are picnic shelters, drinking water, hot showers, and modern toilets. There might be a musical performance taking place in the amphitheater as well that can be heard sporadically through the park. My Old Kentucky Home State Park campers will also find some tennis courts at which to practice their backswing.
If you need to refill on anything at all, there's a store across the street that sells snacks, ice, firewood, drinks, and other goodies. And if you want to bring home some memorabilia, check out the gift shop within the park. Stop by and get something fun to take home, like a handmade quilt, pottery, or a t-shirt.
Exploring the Area
No My Old Kentucky Home State Park camping excursion is complete without a little trip up to Bourbon City. Louisville is alive with culture, food, drink, music, and history. You’ll never be bored in this city, whether you’re taking a Horse Country Tour, seeing where the Kentucky Derby takes place, or going to see your favorite band in concert. Take the baseball fans to the Louisville Slugger Museum. There's always a bourbon-themed event happening somewhere in town. A vacation to the area wouldn’t be complete without a trip to Kentucky’s biggest city.
Or head over to Elizabethtown and have a nice dinner date. A laid-back area with some good places to eat, Elizabethtown is a good day trip to take. Elizabethtown is the birthplace of bourbon and one of the world’s largest caves. You can also visit the world-famous Fort Knox. Take a tour of a bourbon distillery or have dinner at any of the over 100 restaurants in the area.
Did you know that Lexington is the horse capital of the world? Besides its bourbon, Lexington is known for its thoroughbred horse farms. Lexington is where you want to go for a special night out. This elegant city will have you visiting wineries, breweries, and distilleries all day before enjoying a fantastic meal at your new favorite restaurant.
When your trip to My Old Kentucky Home State Park is complete and it’s time to hit the road, you'll find plenty of gas stations in the area to get your camper rental road-ready. With I-65 and I-75 on either side of the park, you’ll be on your way to the next stop in no time. Louisville is the closest big city north, Nashville to the south.