Tickets in hand, gas tank full, bags packed, it was time to go! Louisville, Kentucky was our destination. We were off to see Roger Waters, a show I had been looking forward to for months. We packed all of our road trip gear, planned our route, and set off for bourbon country. This was going to be a great weekend road trip.
We were leaving a full day early so we could travel and not be tired or rushed when we got to Louisville. Instead of relying on the interstate, we decided to take the scenic route for a while. We took highway 231 through Murfreesboro through the hills of northern Middle Tennessee. The scenery was beautiful and certainly started our trip on the right foot.
National Corvette Museum
Another part of our decision to leave early was to give us time to stop and check stuff out on the way through Kentucky. First stop, The National Corvette Museum in Bowling Green. I wouldn’t consider myself a car enthusiast, but I do have a passing interest in classic and high performance cars. The National Corvette Museum is educational, fun, and pretty affordable too! Admission was 10$ per adult for a museum tour. Unfortunately the plant was closed during our visit so we did not get to see the assembly of new vehicles.
From the moment you enter the Corvette Museum, you see nothing but incredible cars. The first cars you come across are new vehicles that have been scheduled for delivery to the new owners. There is a program that allows you to take delivery of your new Corvette at the museum instead of a dealership.
After purchasing your ticket you enter a small exhibit with an area for a souvenir photo, and then you pass into a theater that shows a brief history of the Corvette. The film is short, but really informative.
Next you move into the larger displays in the museum. Highlighting the Corvettes success in racing, the engineering of this vehicle, and the culture around it, the exhibits are incredible. They take you from the first generation of Corvettes all the way through to the most high performance modified versions of this American Classic.
The National Corvette Museum received some international attention in 2014 when a security camera captured footage of a sinkhole opening in the floor of the museum and swallowing multiple high end Corvettes. Since that time the sink hole has been repaired, an exhibit about the sinkhole has been created, and restoration has begun on some of the cars. The amount of damage done to these vehicles and the craftsmanship that goes into their restoration is mind-boggling.
Next Stop Louisville
After grabbing some lunch at the 50’s style cafe at the museum it was time to get on the road. Louisville, Kentucky was still a long drive and I was ready to get there and settle in for the night.
We Made It
When we got into Louisville, we headed straight for our hotel. The hotel we were staying at had a fantastic location. It is situated right on the banks of the Ohio River and connected to the concert venue we would be attending. Unfortunately, that is the best thing it has going for it. The hotel was pretty dated, confusing to navigate, and smelled terrible on the lower floors (maybe the river). Luckily, we were on a higher floor and didn’t have to deal with the smell unless we went downstairs.
Our room was decent. The bed was comfortable, and the floor was quiet despite being crowded. Once we got settled, we walked down to the river and checked out the rest of the hotel. I really liked the lounge that connected the two towers of the hotel. It had a bar and a deli along with ample seating looking out over the river. Satisfied with our location we turned in for the night.
The day of the show we got up early and went on a short walk to explore some of what downtown Louisville, Kentucky had to offer. There is a lot to do, but our time was limited. We decided to check out the Evan Williams Bourbon Experience and I am glad that we did. This tour is loaded with history about the area, the Bourbon industry in Kentucky, and information about distilling in general.
Starting with a video about Evan Williams (Kentucky’s first commercial distiller), the tour guides you through the growth of Evan Williams Bourbon. The facility has a working artisanal distillery, where they demonstrate the hows of bourbon making.
The tour finishes with a guided tasting experience. There are multiple tasting rooms, each with its own theme. We were in the 1800’s tasting room. Our guide took us through different ways to taste, and guided us through 3 incredible bourbons. First was regular Evan Williams, second was Evan Williams Single Barrel, and the real treat was the 12 year aged red label single barrel (it was so good!!!!).
We grabbed an early dinner and went back to the room to get ready for the show. I was a little concerned because of all the buzz around the show. Lots of people online were upset over the political nature of the performance, and there were reports of people walking out of the previous show just a couple of nights before. My hope was that the crowd in Louisville would be different and they were.
We made our way through the parking garage to the KFC Yum! Center and passed through security check quickly. The venue was nice; there was plenty of room and it was easy to navigate to our seats on the second level. Our seats were perfect too, center stage overlooking the floor, with a bar and a bathroom just a short walk away.
From the moment the house lights went down, I was blown away. This was an incredible production, both musically and visually. Roger Waters was amazing, and the rest of the band was on point as well. Lucius absolutely killed as the backup vocalists too! The first half of the set had me on the edge of my seat. Roger mixed Pink Floyd Classics with some of his new material, and the crowd loved it!
As the second half of the set opened, the show went to a whole different level. There were things dropping from the ceiling, lasers everywhere, a flying silver orb, it was something to behold. I was a huge fan before the show, but my admiration since the show has only grown! The message of unity that was carried through the performance was moving. I can not wait to see Roger Waters again.
As we headed home we knew we weren’t ready to be done with our little trip just yet. We stopped off on the way home at Mammoth Cave National Park. I had not been to Mammoth cave since I was about 10 years old. I expected it to be incredibly crowded, and thought we might not even be able to get in. Fortunately I was wrong. It was crowded, but we were able to get tickets for a self-guided tour.
We started our tour by walking around the museum in the visitor center. There was a wealth of information about the history, biodiversity, and geology of Mammoth Cave.
After visiting the museum in the visitor center we made our way down the hill to the self guided tour entrance. The rangers were very informative from the moment we started into the cave. They explained the entry and exit procedure to prevent the spread of white nose syndrome that is devastating to bat populations.
We made our way into the cave. There were lots of interesting geological and archaeological features. It also felt amazing in the cave. The temperature was in the mid 50’s in the cave despite the 90 degree weather above ground. I definitely want to go back and explore more of the park. The hiking trails and camp grounds were calling my name, but it was time to get back on the road.
Since this was a pretty short trip there is a lot we missed out on. Hopefully we will return in the future and get to check out more of what Louisville has to offer. I would like to explore more of the museums like the Louisville Slugger and Muhammad Ali Museums, visit more of the distilleries, and check out more of the food scene. What are your recommendations? Do you have a favorite place to eat or visit in Louisville, KY? Let us know in the comments.