Ashland: The Henry Clay Estate

Ashland: The Henry Clay Estate

Speciality Museums • Historic Sites • Cultural Tours • Gardens • Educational sites
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10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Tuesday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Wednesday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Thursday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Friday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Saturday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
About
The site of celebrated U.S. statesman Henry Clay's 19th-century estate, a National Historic Landmark and museum open to the public. Visitors can tour the 18-room mansion, outbuildings, 17-acre grounds and gardens. Tours include the Henry Clay Signature Tour, Traces: Slavery at Ashland, and Women's Voices. Ashland is one of the most treasured historic sites in Kentucky with over 200 years of national significance.
Lexington, Kentucky

Awards
Travelers' Choice
2022

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Ashland: The Henry Clay Estate
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Travelers talk about
(39 reviews)
Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
Popular mentions

4.5
526 reviews
Excellent
327
Very good
148
Average
33
Poor
13
Terrible
5

Erin OD
36 contributions
Apr 2022 • Friends
Though Clay portrayed himself as a benevolent enslaver whose human property preferred their lives at his square mile farm to freedom, curator and storyteller Eric has documented otherwise. Lewis Richardson was whipped when he returned an hour late after visiting his wife. He fled to Amherstburg Ontario. Hear a recording of the scathing speech he gave 3 months later. Aaron Dupuy turned the tables when ordered whipped at the behest of Clay’s wife.

Experience this yourself. The Dupuy family, Aaron, his wife, and 2 children figure prominently.

This is almost entirely outdoors. There’s another tour which includes more of the mansion.

The ground and garden are beautiful and perfect for a picnic. Young children would enjoy more running around the grounds while you take in this hour long tour.
Written April 27, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

RandyRoss
Ridgetown, Canada11,124 contributions
Jul 2022
We walked around the grounds and through the garden on our own but had an excellent tour of the house. Our guide was quite knowledgeable and we learned a lot about Kentucky history and particularly about Henry Clay (almost too much). We were disappointed that the cafe was closed (even though it should have been open according to the hours posted).
Written July 23, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

blackriverwoman
Virginia423 contributions
Apr 2021
We were only able to tour the grounds of this estate because the house tours sell out. You must book online if you want to tour the house. The grounds are beautiful and local people come here to walk their dog or just to walk the paths. The formal walled garden is beautiful. There are benches throughout the grounds to rest. Anyone can tour the grounds for free. There is a smokehouse, ice and milk cellars, etc with info explaining the history of the estate. There is plenty of free parking. The person working at the gift shop is very friendly, helpful, and knowledgeable. Glad we were able to stop here.
Written April 10, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Curtis S
Kingsport, TN2,595 contributions
Sep 2021
Most of us would have to dig deep to remember (if we ever knew) who Henry Clay was. A forerunner to Lincoln, Clay was known as the great compromiser. The house has been renovated to some extent, but does illustrate what life was like. Entry fee for the 1 hour guided tour is a little stiff. The docent was quite knowledgeable but that didn’t stop some of the folks in our tour group (who had obviously just read Clay’s biography) from asking in-depth questions. Only if you’re serious about history. Not recommended
Written November 26, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Curtis, thank you for your review. We do try to interpret Henry Clay and his home for everyone, but it can be difficult to reach the varying interest levels of everyone on a tour. We're sorry that the level presented was not satisfactory to you. We always endeavor to connect Clay's story to today's issues. Indeed, Clay is often brought up in national discussions of American law and policy, the US Congress, and statesmanship. His legacy - and that of his family and estate - still have important things to teach us today. We do hope you visit again!
Written December 23, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

TombRaider55
Atlanta, GA210 contributions
Apr 2021
During COVID-19, the tours are apparently different. I did a walking tour of the grounds and booked the house tour at the ticket center on the grounds. The house tours are socially-distanced and very well done. Since only two small groups are allowed in at once, the experience is much more intimate. My tour was led by the weekend manager who was very, very knowledgeable. Most of the artifacts in the house actually belonged to Senator Clay or family.

This is well worth the time to visit. Count on a couple of hours
Written April 11, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Nicole A
1 contribution
Nov 2022 • Family
Amazing tour with Samuel. He truly takes so much pride in the history and it was one of the best tours we’ve ever been on. I highly recommend this estate if you are visiting Lexington! We went with our three kiddos ( 11,9,7) and they were asking questions and loved playing on the grounds! Really neat and memorable experience! We also found some wonderful treasures in the lovely gift shop!
Written November 24, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Brandon Gerding
Lima, OH964 contributions
Sep 2020 • Couples
I always wanted to visit ashland and finally got to and enjoyed myself. Was thrown back that it wasn't the original home which was disappointing,but on the same token it was great to see his son had it rebuilt exactly like it would of been. My favorite room by far was the library to look up at the ceiling and the carving of the snake coming down. This house is a very historical site from the importance of clays contribution to history, to his relative in fighting for women's right to vote to this sight being the precursor to UK. What a beautiful mansion and wonderful grounds. Was expensive but I don't mind helping to preserve our history but some others may not like paying the ticket price.
Written September 4, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

brenda_sorrells
Fort Worth, TX19 contributions
Apr 2022 • Couples
Ashland in Kentucky was a wonderful tour of a stunning old home. The tour guide was extremely informative and presented the story with great detail and wonderful narration. Ashland is elegant and has most of the original pieces of furniture and art. It is worth a visit to learn about this gracious and impactive family.
Written April 28, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

JillZB
Islamorada, FL85 contributions
Mar 2022 • Solo
We had the maximum number of 25 on the tour including a wheelchair-bound person and kids. They were great but the crowding made it less than an ideal. Our volunteer docent was new. Thus, $26.50 for this tour was a bad deal. For $10, maybe worth it? I was disappointed. The house is fine; Henry Clay admirable. I just got the “short straw” this time.
Written March 17, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Pete B
Brookfield, WI31 contributions
Sep 2021
We found the estate and the surrounding area to be absolutely beautiful. The tour was good, our docent was an extremely knowledgeable history buff and re-familiarized us with many things from the history we studied so many decades ago. There are some fascinating artifacts from Henry as well as his descendants. Well worth the time spent and the modest admission price in my opinion.
Written September 28, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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Ashland: The Henry Clay Estate (Lexington) - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go