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24 Hours in Frankfort, Kentucky

Buffalo Trace Distillery

Frankfort has a lot to offer for a quick getaway, from restaurants to bourbon distilleries 

By Sara Sybert

Frankfort serves as the capital of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, but it also plays host to several restaurants, family-friendly activities, universities and, what the state is known for best, bourbon distilleries. If you’re looking for a quick getaway, 24 hours in Frankfort is an ideal trip.  

Perhaps the most well-known bourbon distillery in Frankfort is Buffalo Trace Distillery. The distillery’s history dates back to the 1850s and is still up and running today, producing popular bourbons such as Pappy Van Winkle, Blanton’s, E.H. Taylor, Jr., and W.L. Weller. There are several tours offered by the distillery, all of which are complimentary and include tastings of some its products following the end of the tour. The tour takes you around the property and gives you an inside look at where the bourbon ages, how it’s bottled and how the brands under the Sazerac umbrella came to be so well known.  

Buffalo Trace Distillery

Buffalo Trace Distillery isn’t the only bourbon stop in Frankfort, however. Other distilleries in the city, or within a short drive, include Castle & Key Distillery, Glenn’s Creek Distillery, Whiskey Thief Distilling Co. and Woodford Reserve. If wine or brews are more your thing, fear not, as there are several wineries and breweries also in or near Frankfort. Prodigy Vineyards, West Sixth Brewing, Goodwood Brewing and Spirits and Sig Luscher Brewery (Kentucky’s oldest brewery) are in Kentucky, and Goodwood even has an on-site restaurant in the heart of downtown Frankfort.  

Woodford Reserve

History buffs will revel in all that there is to read about on the Capitol Grounds of Frankfort. The Governor’s Mansion and Floral Clock, along with the Capitol Building are just a short distance apart and are must-see. The clock, on the West Lawn of the Capitol Grounds, dates back to 1961, and is 34 feet across and planted with thousands of flowers that are changed out seasonally. There’s also a fountain for those who want to summon a bit of good luck with a coin toss. Other historic spots to visit in Frankfort include Berry Hill Mansion, Capital City Museum, Daniel Boone’s Grave at Frankfort Cemetery, the Frank Lloyd Wright Ziegler House and Green Hill Cemetery.  

Capitol Building in Frankfort

Foodies aren’t forgotten about when it comes to things to do in Frankfort. The city has a long list of restaurants and dining establishments that are sure to satisfy any palette. Some of Frankfort’s unique restaurants include Bourbon on Main, Buddy’s Pizza, Cliffside Diner, Brick Alley and Benson Marina and Willie’s Tiki Bar.