Nicknamed both the Thoroughbred City and the Horse Capital of the World, Lexington, Kentucky, is best known for its horseracing. However there are many other attractions – museums, parks, historical sites, and cultural events – to tempt visitors, several of them free of charge.
Fun Free Things to Do in Lexington KY
Located in the heart of the Bluegrass region, Lexington is home to several summer festivals, including the Festival of Bluegrass, Kentucky’s oldest bluegrass music festival, and “It’s a Grand Night for Singing,” a Broadway solute performed by the University of Kentucky’s Opera Theatre. Both of these events are held annually in June and are followed by a 4th of July celebration in downtown Lexington that lasts for several days.
Though hot and humid, summer is the ideal time to experience Lexington’s cultural offerings. Several of the free attractions listed below, however, are open year round.
Glimpse the Thoroughbred racing world by watching an early morning workout, or stroll along the track on a self-guided tour.
Explore 734 acres of natural beauty and hike trails through meadows, woodlands and streams.
Pick up a Lexington Walking and Driving Tour Map to see historic Lexington and the Bluegrass’ legendary landscape. You can also schedule a free horse farm tour.
Lexington’s only free historic site. Located in the former Fayette County Courthouse, this museum offers many exhibits and family-friendly activities.
Take a tour of Kentucky’s 1810 Beaux Arts Style Capitol in Frankfort and see murals of historic figures, dolls dressed in replicas of First Ladies’ inaugural gowns, and, if you’re timing is right, see Kentucky legislators in action.
See how candy is made and sample this historic shop’s best sellers. Tours are avaialble Monday-Thursday at 10am. Call (859) 278-4444 in advance to reserve a spot.
Take an hour-long tram tour through America’s first and the world’s largest Toyota plant. Available only on weekdays. Fill out this form to reserve a spot.
Cast a line into this park’s 47 acre lake or try your hand at paddle boating while the kids enjoy one of Lexington’s creative playground structures.
Hike more than 5 miles of interpretive trail through this former Civil War base. Then visit the graves of nearly 1,600 soldiers buried in its cemetery.