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Old 06-24-2015, 03:03 PM
 
Location: Unfortunately between DC and Balto
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Is there a good place to vacation in Eastern Kentucky? A place with houses or cotages to rent but alos mountains, lakes and rivers?

We are burned out on the Outer Banks and Hatteras Island and the Adirondacks are too far for my son and his family from Dallas, Texas. Smith Mountain Lake in VA sounds good but that is still 16 hours from Dallas.

Would appreciate any inut. Mo one knows the best places like the folks who live there.

Thanks

Brian
bdoon51@gmail.com
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Old 06-24-2015, 08:08 PM
 
Location: New Albany, Indiana (Greater Louisville)
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Biggest mountains are along the Virginia border but the most tourist friendly area is the I 75 corridor. Red River Gorge, Berea, Renfro Valley, Cumberland Falls, Stearns scenic railroad, and Lake Cumberland would be good to group together
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Old 06-24-2015, 08:08 PM
 
Location: In the Pearl of the Purchase, Ky
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Here's a map of state parks in eastern Kentucky. Might check out Cumberland Falls and Buckhorn Lake.

Maps - Kentucky State Parks
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Old 06-24-2015, 09:12 PM
 
Location: U.S.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kygman View Post
Here's a map of state parks in eastern Kentucky. Might check out Cumberland Falls and Buckhorn Lake.

Maps - Kentucky State Parks
I second Cumberland falls. Depends on the flavor of wilderness. Cumberland falls is not Gatlinburg but lots of people like it that way.
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Old 06-25-2015, 05:42 AM
 
Location: Unfortunately between DC and Balto
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Default "Not Gatlinburg" ?



What does "it's not Gatlinburg" mean? I have heard of Gatlinburg but do not know anything about it.

Thank you for responding.

Brian
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Old 06-25-2015, 06:59 AM
 
Location: In the Pearl of the Purchase, Ky
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Gatlinburg is a big tourist trap. I don't mean that in a bad way, because we enjoy going there and looking around. But it's almost nothing but shops and hotels. I haven't been to Cumberland Falls since I was 5, so couldn't tell you much about what's there but I'm guessing it's not that bad there.
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Old 06-25-2015, 08:03 AM
 
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Cumberland Falls State Resort Park is located well away from the nearest town, Corbin, which helps keep it largely uncommercialized. It has a beautiful CCC-built lodge and comfortable cabins. The park is wooded, hilly, and includes hiking trails and other amenities. It is also quite popular, so you'd need to check about cabin availability. The falls themselves are quite close to the lodge, and are spectacular.

Berea is about 45 minutes up the road, and is the arts and crafts capital of Kentucky. It is also known for traditional music and dance, and is the home of Berea College, whose beautiful campus is in the center of the town. There are many antique and craft shops in Berea, which is home to many artists and craftspeople. Check out the Kentucky Crafts Center beside I-75 on the outskirts of town for a good sampling of wares from throughout the state - great place for Christmas shopping for unique gifts.

Berea College owns a large tract of wooded mountains south and east of the town, and the Indian Fort Mountain trails are open to the public, as is the Anglin Falls preserve a short distance south of town.

Good food can be had at Boone Tavern Hotel and Restaurant, Pappaleno's (pizza and pastas), Berea Coffee and Tea (soup, salad, sandwiches), The Dinner Bell (Southern home cooking), and other restaurants.

Berea is about 45 minutes south of Lexington, famous for its beautiful thoroughbred horse farms, the University of Kentucky, historic homes of Henry Clay, Mary Todd Lincoln, and other famous Kentuckians, plus the Kentucky Horse Park, with horse shows and competitions each weekend plus a large museum devoted to the history of the horse and horses' relationship with people, over 200 resident horses of all breeds, and more. If you make Berea your base, you can easily spend an afternoon in Lexington and be back in time for supper.

Natural Bridge State Resort Park is in the mountains and is adjacent to the world-famous Red River Gorge. It includes a modern lodge and cabins, hiking and riding trails, a chairlift to the mountain top Natural Bridge, and more. Check out the Red River Gorge online - it includes one of the world's largest "collections" of natural arches and bridges, cliffs, hiking, camping, picnicking, a good visitor's center and museum at Gladie, the very scenic Red River, canoeing and kayaking, and more. Like Cumberland Falls, this area gets heavy use on summer weekends., but it is large enough that remote areas can be found if you avoid the most popular places. Weekdays are quiet, however.

Cave Run Lake, near Morehead, provides swimming and sailing and other activities. There are lots of privately owned cabins in this area - none on the lake itself, due to Army Corps of Engineers regulations, but nearby. I am not sure if some are rentals, but it would be surprising if there were not.

However - if you're coming from the DC-Baltimore area, Kentucky is at least a day's drive for you, while it would be a day and a two-day drive for your son, coming from Dallas. This may not be a factor, but in your place, I'd also check out Arkansas's Ozarks and the three mountains along the Arkansas River Valley: Mount Magazine, Mount Nebo, and Petit Jean Mountain. Each has a beautiful mountaintop state park, and Petit Jean (pro. "Petty Gene") is especially good for family reunions, with trails, overlooks, great cabins, CCC-built Mather Lodge, with good food, a pool, ranger-led activities, remarkable rock formations, Cedar Falls, the tallest in the state, and more. It is located near Morrillton, about 60 miles north of Little Rock. Petit Jean is about a seven hour drive from Dallas.

Another good location would be Mountain View, Arkansas, with the Ozark Folk Center just outside of town and the Ozark National Forest right next door with camping, canoeing, swimming, and gorgeous Blanchard Springs Caverns. The Folk Center has traditional music concerts regularly, comfortable cabins, a good restaurant, and demonstrations of traditional arts and crafts. The town offers more traditional music, jamming, plus craft and antique shops. However, Mountain View is not as easy to reach as is Petit Jean.

Texas itself has beaches, of course - Padre Island, accessible from Corpus Christi, is probably the best known but Galveston is also located on the Gulf.

Hope you find the right location for your get-together. You have lots of choices!

Last edited by CraigCreek; 06-25-2015 at 08:15 AM..
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Old 06-29-2015, 07:47 AM
 
Location: U.S.
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Originally Posted by johnsonkk View Post
I second Cumberland falls. Depends on the flavor of wilderness. Cumberland falls is not Gatlinburg but lots of people like it that way.
My reply was to imply that Cumberland falls, while amazing and a possible "destination", there aren't many additional places to visit unless you plan on hiking. I've hiked portions of the Cumberland trail in that area covering over miles but for typical tourist activities, even sightseeing the falls, one day is about it.

I'm certainly not endorsing Gatlinburg but with the Smokey mountains, Fontana dam, Dragon's tail (twisty road), and chairlift to other hiking, it has more activities for a multi-day visit.

Motorcycle riding from Kentucky to Gatlinburg and around that area is an amazing experience.
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Old 06-29-2015, 08:56 AM
 
Location: Lexington, Kentucky
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My husbands family is from Baltimore, so we have driven there many times, you can drive it in a day, but would advise leaving early in the morning. If you are looking for a forested retreat in nature - away from everything, Kentucky has that in spades!

Red River Gorge Cabins - Only $77 $97 $127 Per Night Rentals

Red River Gorge Cabin Rental | 5 Star Cabins

Cumberland Falls State Resort - Dupont Lodge (Corbin, KY) - Hotel Reviews - TripAdvisor

Get a cabin! - Review of Jenny Wiley State Resort Park, Prestonsburg, KY - TripAdvisor
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Old 06-30-2015, 12:58 AM
 
Location: Sacramento CA
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Cumberland Falls and Red River Gorge do sound like something you'd enjoy. Both are beautiful. My favorite place to tell people to visit in Kentucky is Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill outside of Harrodsburg. It's a bit more central Kentucky rather than eastern but it's my favorite attraction to send people to. Any time I go back to KY (I live in California now), I like to go back there. I hope you have a great trip!
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