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Paddling the Kentucky River Palisades

Paddling in the Kentucky River Palisades
As summer winds its way to an end this August, take the time to get one last adventure in, before we turn our attention to the glorious fall ahead.  Kentucky has a variety of lakes and rivers, perfect for paddling.  Whether you choose to canoe, kayak, or paddle around on a standup paddleboard, come down to Kentucky this August and explore our breathtaking waterways.  Considered to be one of the most beautiful places in the state, and  certainly the quintessential paddling destination for adventurers of all skill levels, the Kentucky River Palisades is the perfect place to dip your oar.  The Palisades region covers approximately 100 river miles of the Kentucky River, which meanders its way through central Kentucky. Nearby, you'll find a number of exquisite Kentucky Bed and Breakfasts, which make the perfect choice for lodging.  Use our search tool to find the Inn that best suits your needs, and book your adventure today!

Exploring the Scenic Kentucky River Palisades

The Kentucky River Palisades is one of the state's oldest and most unique ecosystems. It dates back to roughly 450 million years ago and consists of dramatically-rising limestone cliffs, deep gorges, springs, and a massive cave network.  While the entire area is breathtakingly beautiful, what makes it a truly wonderful destination for paddling are its remote qualities, and the sheer number of miles of river that can be paddled, each section offering its own unique scenery season by season. There are so many miles, that one trip won't be enough. Most paddlers take several trips through the Kentucky River Palisades.

As you enjoy your day paddling down the Kentucky River, you'll pass by a variety of side creeks, waterfalls, and caves to explore.  You can keep busy for hours, without traveling too many miles down the river. Thanks to its remote location and protection by the National Conservancy, paddlers will also likely encounter plenty of diverse wildlife, including bobcats, great blue heron, kingfishers, and peregrine falcons. There are dozens of places to start your trip along the river, but a popular put-in is at Camp Nelson State Park. From there, a popular paddle down the river will take you 10 miles to the High Bridge Boat Ramp. High Bridge is the first cantilevered bridge of its kind in the country.

Another great place to access the Kentucky River Palisades is at Shaker Landing, in the historic Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill.  If you want to enjoy the scenic Kentucky River Palisades, but don't enjoy canoeing, kayaking, or standup paddleboarding, there are also boat tours of the area. The Dixie Belle, a historic 115-person paddle wheeler, leaves from Shakers Landing and leaves on its 1-hour narrated journey through this incredible area.
Paddling in the Kentucky River Palisades

End Your Day at a Kentucky Bed and Breakfast

The Kentucky River Palisades is about 30 minutes from Lexington, 90 minutes from Louisville, and less than two hours from Cincinnati.  Your choices for adventure and lodging are plentiful, especially when you look beyond the traditional motels and hotels, and consider something unique and extraordinary. From rural to urban, rustic to modern, and everything in between, you'll find exactly what you're looking for from our member Bed and Breakfasts. Use our search tool for Central Kentucky, and find your ideal lodging. Book a room direct with our Inns, and enjoy the best value, amenities, and hospitality in Kentucky.