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“Do the trailride if you can”

Kentucky Horse Park
Ranked #4 of 128 things to do in Lexington
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: The only park of its kind in the world, the Kentucky Horse Park is a working horse farm, educational theme park and equine competition facility dedicated to man's relationship with the horse. Set on more than 1,200 acres in the heart of the Kentucky's famous Bluegrass region, the park is THE place to get close to horses! Featuring dozens of breeds of horse at work and at play, the park showcases the horse in daily equine presentations, horse drawn tours, horseback and pony rides, and an array of horse shows and special events throughout the year. The park's International Museum of the Horse, a Smithsonian Affiliate, is the world's largest equestrian museum. Offering both the experienced horseman and novice an opportunity to explore the many facets of humanity's relationship with the horse, the museum is dedicated to all breeds and disciplines of horse and covers some 50-million years of equine history. State-of-the-art technology complements rare artifacts and scholarly research to present a unique, educational, museum experience for all ages. The American Saddlebred Museum, the Showplace for Saddlebreds, celebrates Kentucky's first native breed of horse. The museum features interactive exhibits and a movie. With the park's own tourist activities and the numerous additional horse shows that take place in the equine competition facilities throughout the year, there can be a fair amount of walking involved, depending on visitor interest level. Comfortable shoes and clothing is recommended, appropriate for Kentucky's seasonal weather. Dogs and other pets are permitted on park grounds, as long as they are on a leash or in an approved carrier, although they may not be permitted in some buildings.
Useful Information: Wheelchair access, Stairs / elevator, Food available for purchase, Bathroom facilities, Activities for older children, Stroller parking
Reviewed August 13, 2011

Lexington, KY prides itself on being "The Horse Capital of the World" and since they hosted the first Equestrian Games that were ever held outside of Europe, I would say that claim is pretty valid. The Equestrian Games were held at The KY Horse Park in the fall of 2010 and the Horse Park added a lot to the facility to get ready for the games. There is now a museum with a significant amount of history about the evolution of how we use horses. There is also a training ground behind the museum where you can see horses being trained, sometimes 2 or 3 at a time. But perhaps the best part of the park is the pony/horse rides they offer. Pony rides are for young children (under 7 or under 40 lbs I think) and the ponies are lead around the paddock by one of the staff. Trailrides are 30 minutes into the back pastures of the park (which do sort of run along I-75 so it sort of kills the ambiance of riding along the prairie, but you are far enough away that there's no danger of your horse getting spooked and accidentally running out onto the interstate. Also, there's a fence). And the horses are trained to never move faster than a slow walk. It's what they call a head-to-tail trail ride. The staff is AMAZINGLY good with pairing human to horse and they take into account not only the age of the rider, but also the experience and physical size/confidence of each person. Dad got paired with a stubborn horse and my youngest niece, who's 7 and never been on a horse was paired with a very gentle horse and rode right behind the leader. No one in our group had any problems.

The staff will tell you it's best to leave cameras and purses back at the stable, locked up in the office. If you drop something on the ride, you may or may not get it back. But there is a staff member who takes 2 or 3 photos while you're on the ride and they are available for purchase when you return. We were all pretty happy with our photos and each purchased one 4 x 6.

The admission into the park is steep. $16/adult and to ride is $22/person. For the five of us our total was something like $120. So my best advice is to try to pick a day where they have discounted admission or find a coupon. But the trail ride was a fabulous way to introduce the girls to horses and spend an afternoon "out on the range."

1  Thank Gymgirltravels
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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2,039 - 2,043 of 2,142 reviews

Reviewed August 12, 2011

Kentucky has the biggest and best living horse park. Ireland has the only other. The park is the only US venue to have hosted the World Equestrian Games. It also hosts many national and world horse events. The Hall of Champions gives visitors the chance to see a parade of retired but lively champion horses such as Cigar and Krntucky Derby winner Funnycide. Visitors also can see horses of many breeds in daily shows. The museum of the horse has displays of horses from prehistory to today. A special exhibit is devoted to Arbrian horses. A vast collection of trophies and special displays of champion horses are included. There are hands on activities for children and adults. Walk the extensive grounds, visit the horse barns, see a blacksmith work, see a show, ride a pony or carriage , and enjoy the beautiful pastures. This is a park and museum with class. Restrooms and food available. Easy access off interstate near Lexington Ky

2  Thank Elaine M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 10, 2011

Great horse history museums, active horse events, and shows. A beautiful venue! More food venues would be nice. Low key but educational and beautiful!

Thank lildrummer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 7, 2011

We got an afternoon off from doing business in Lexington and headed for the Horse Park. What a beautiful place, we wished we had an entire day to spend there! The history of the thoroughbred in the Bluegrass is just a starting point. The Horse Park has many different breeds of horses. A great learning experience for children and adults.

2  Thank TornadoJohn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed July 31, 2011

The Kentucky Horse Park is large, very nicely done, and well worth the visit. We actually drove from Louisville for the day, and the 1.5 hr drive is worth it (and scenic). There is probably a full days worth of activities at the park.

One of the big draws for us to Kentucky is horses, and the Kentucky Horse Park covers it in a perfect way. If you are in Lexington, I'd say this is a must see. If in Lousiville, and have a half day or so, it is worth the 1.5 hour scenic drive.

Check the schedule and see if there are any horse shows...you can watch them for free when they are going on.

Thank adamsaintlouis
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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