Monday, August 22, 2011

In a Kentucky state of mind

I've been in a Kentucky state of mind since our visit last month. We had a great time on our four-day trip through Kentucky's cave country. Here's what our itinerary looked like:

Day 1:
Arrived around 3 p.m. following a 6-hour drive with a couple bathroom breaks. We stopped in Munfordville at the visitors center for some information and went on to Cub Run Cave for a tour. Stopped for dinner down the road and went on to our lodging for the evening, The Country Girl at Heart Bed and Breakfast. We got settled into our room and went on a little tour of the property. The kids helped corral the chickens into the barn for the night.

Day 2:
Following a stop for lunch at Big Bubba Buck's Belly Bustin' BBQ Bliss, we visited the American Cave Museum and went for a tour of the Hidden River Cave. Stopped down the road at the bakery for a treat and then went on to Kentucky Down Under, an Australian-themed animal park, which also has a cave on the grounds that can be toured. The second night was spent at the Horse Cave Hampton Inn. It was conveniently located right off the expressway and close to Kentucky Down Under. We went for a dip in the pool before bed.

Day 3:
Our first stop was Guntown Mountain, a favorite of the whole family with stunt shows, old west gunfights, a saloon, magic shows and more. We also stopped in the Guntown Haunted Hotel and then went on to Dinosaur World, located just across the street. We later visited the Mammoth Cave Wildlife Museum and then Kentucky Action Park for bumper cars, bumper boats, the Alpine Slide and Go-Karts. There's also a zipline, but I chickened out. We settled in for night three at the Mammoth Cave Hotel inside the national park. It's a peaceful place that we love to stay at. We saw lots of grazing deer near the parking lot as we pulled in.

Day 4:
If we'd had more time, I would have loved to have gotten in a tour at the National Park. We've done some shorter tours before, but there are also long cave exploring tours, as well. After leaving the park, we stopped at Big Mike's Mystery House and then went back to Kentucky Action Park for a little more fun. Then it was on to Beech Bend Park in Bowling Green where we checked out the new water park. We left for home at closing time, drove a few hours and made a Cracker Barrel stop for dinner, arriving home early the next morning -- both exhausted and exhilarated. It was a wonderful trip to one of my favorite family travel destinations.

I'll post more specifics on the attractions we visited in the coming weeks.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Free family fun at Lincoln Park Zoo

For the last field trip of the school year for my son, we visited Lincoln Park Zoo in Chicago with his kindergarten class. It's one of the few free zoos left in the country and I love that you can walk the whole place in an afternoon. It's compact and you can see a lot in a small area. There's something for all ages.Here's my little guy in the farm section. :)

We traveled by bus, but parking can be a bit tricky. Also, be sure to check out the Lincoln Park Conservatory while you're there. For more info, visit

Prairie Guest House, Fishers Indiana

On a recent media trip in Indianapolis, I spent a little time in Hamilton County, staying at the Prairie Guest House Bed & Breakfast in ...