City Escape: Louisville, Kentucky

Text: James T. Parks • Photography: James T. Parks

Escape the congested urban humdrum of Kentucky’s largest city, and motor into a pleasing rural landscape west of town. Traveling through two states, you’ll discover soothing scenic vistas, meandering country lanes, back-in-time river towns, and enlightening historical sites that help tell the American story. Spring and fall are optimal times to visit this area.

Length

Approximately 215 miles

Meetup Spot

Starbucks, 200 New Albany Plaza, New Albany, IN

Lunch Stop 

The Overlook Restaurant is perched on a high bluff with a 20-mile panoramic view of the Ohio River. Enjoy lunch either inside or alfresco on the deck. Find it at 1153 W State Rd 62, Leavenworth, IN.

Scenery (3 out of 5)

This route follows rolling rural countryside. Hoosier National Forest and Ohio River overlooks are particularly pleasing to the eye and are great photo opportunities or rest stops.

Difficulty (2 out of 5)

The terrain in southern Indiana and northern Kentucky is generally hilly with gentle curves and moderate elevation changes, making it appropriate for most riders.

Road conditions (3 out of 5)

The roads on this tour are paved and generally in good repair. Traffic is typically light once you leave the Lousiville metropolitan area, but can be heavier along Route 62 in Indiana.

Points of Interest

1. Lewisport, KY, Civil War Site
A historical marker commemorates the December 1864 capture of a Union steamboat by Confederate guerrilla forces at this town on the Ohio River. www.tinyurl.com/lewisport

2. Ohio River Scenic Overlook
The Overlook Restaurant in Leavenworth, IN, is an excellent high perch from which to enjoy a picturesque view of the Ohio River. www.theoverlook.com

3. Corydon Capitol State Historic Site
The town of Corydon was Indiana’s first capital. The Federal-style capitol building, constructed between 1814 and 1816, is open for tours. Find it at the Corydon Town Square. www.indianamuseum.org