Underrated Escapes: Paducah, Kentucky

Uncover hidden gems and underrated destinations from the team at Rand McNally. This week, content marketing manager Valerie Hughes shares her unexpected spot for a family trip.

✨Paducah, Kentucky

The Vibe: A UNESCO Creative City, Paducah is a charming Southern town bursting with artistic energy, rich history, and a relaxed, friendly atmosphere. “It's a place where you can slow down and explore at your own pace – which is key when you’ve got a 2-year-old and a 5-year-old,” says Va. “Stroll down the historic downtown streets lined with colorful murals, visit world-class museums, browse art galleries and shops, then catch a live show – all within a quaint, walkable downtown area.”

Why It's Great:

1. Something for Everyone: From art enthusiasts to history buffs and outdoorsy folk, Paducah caters to a wide variety of interests. There's 8 different museums to check out including the National Quilt Museum of the United States and the ever-popular Railroad Museum. You can also take a scenic cruise on the Ohio River and learn about Paducah's rich riverboat history. Art fans can go for a wander around The Lower Town Arts District which is packed with galleries, studies and unique shops showcasing local talent.

2. Compact and Walkable: “My favorite vacations are the ones where you can wander around a quaint downtown, popping into local shops and cafes,” says Val. “Paducah’s downtown core is easily navigable on foot, making it easy to get around with little ones."

3. Southern Hospitality: “When you’re traveling with young kids, it’s always a relief when you're greeted with a warm welcome and a relaxed environment," says Val. “At Broussard Cajun Cuisine, we relaxed on the giant patio and listened to live music while the servers joked around with our kids and brought them extra crayons and napkins for inevitable spills.”

Where to Eat: "My absolute favorite meal was at Freight House, a delightful southern-inspired restaurant and bourbon bar. The owner and head chef Sara Bradley was runner-up on 'Top Chef'."

Don't Miss: "The Floodwall, a UNESCO Creative City landmark was a highlight. It's adorned with more than 60 life-size panoramic murals by Richard Dafford and the Dafford Murals Team which depict different significant events in Paducah's rich history," says Val. "My toddler was also mesmerized by the nearby 1923 Mikado steam locomotive complete with a baggage-mail car and a caboose."

Author: Valerie Denny Hughes
Date:May 2nd 2024