Hit the Road and Travel the Country Music Highway
U.S. 23, also known as The Country Music Highway, passes north to south along the eastern side of Kentucky. This section of U.S. 23 was given its unique name of "The Country Music Highway" to recognize all the country music stars that have come from the region. During a road-trip along this highway you can enjoy learning all about country music stars such as Loretta Lynn, Ricky Skaggs, and Billy Ray Cyrus among many others.
Country music lovers will find attractions that focus on famous country music stars and up-and-coming young artists. Travelers along this route may want to spend a few days along these 144 miles of the highway that cross the state of Kentucky.
On the northern end of the highway, in Ashland, you can enjoy the country music at the Highlands Museum and Heritage Center as well as the Paramount Theater. The Paramount Theater is a must-see attraction, and if you can, be sure to catch a performance by one of the amazing talents that perform at the venue.
As you travel south along The Country Music Highway, you may want to stop in Louisa. Here you will find the Louisa Country Music Gas Station, where you can fill your tank with gas while continuing your exploration of the history of country music. In Louisa you will also enjoy a tour of the Kentucky Paveillon. You may even have an opportunity to see one of the area's famous country music residents, since it's said that they stop by occasionally.
Butcher Hollow in Van Lear is another country music must-see destination. This is the home of Loretta Lynn and it is also the place where Crystal Gayle's family lived. Butcher Hollow is the site of Loretta Lynn's biographical film "Coal Miner's Daughter." Finally, at the southern end of this section of the highway is the Appalshop, a great family destination located right in the heart of Appalachia. Here you can create music, videos, and more, all while you enjoy the arts and culture of the region.
If you want to stop and enjoy a few non-country music related destinations, there are quite a few along the way. At Yateville Lake State Park, you can enjoy boating, fishing, hiking, and much more. The Mayo Mansion and Church is a great place to learn about some of the region's coal mining history.
The Jenny Wiley State Resort Park is another amazing recreational destination. If you take this road-trip you can be among the thousands of people who come to this park each year. During the summer you can stop and enjoy an outdoor show, which features Broadway performers. This area of Kentucky was also an important location during the Civil War, and history buffs will love the Battle of Middle Creek Historic Site.
You may also want to take some time to take the Pikeville and Hatfield-McCoy History Tour, where you can learn all about the famous Hatfield-McCoy feud.