You could easily accuse me of loving each of the Kentucky State Parks and State Resort Parks, because I absolutely do. You could also accuse me of, on any given day, saying that THIS park or THAT park was my favorite. All I can do is plead guilty. After all, at that moment it may be!
It’s sort of like eating a chocolate cupcake on Monday and cheesecake on Thursday… your favorite dessert Tuesday morning will be different from your favorite dessert Friday morning!
That’s how it is with the Kentucky State Parks. My favorite one is the one I just arrived at, the one I’m currently enjoying, or the one I’ve just left. However… and you just have to trust me on this one… Kenlake State Resort Park has a special place in my heart. Kenlake is amongst my top three favorites irregardless of where I am or where I’ve been.
The scenery at and around Kenlake State Resort Park is breathtaking. Kentucky Lake, is of course the star attraction. We Kentuckians are understandably proud of this magnificent lake! However, there is more to Kenlake State Resort Park than the most beautiful lake in the world. There’s a little something we like to call SERENITY. This is simply one of the most beautifully relaxing places on earth. The tall, beautiful trees, the flowers and the butterflies and birds they attract, the peacefulness, the delicious Southern food in the Lodge’s restaurant (Aurora Landing Restaurant), and the unbelievably friendly people work together to create one of the most special State Parks anywhere.
Things to do at Kenlake State Resort Park
- Boating – Rentals include fishing, pontoon, bass and ski boats, as well as jet skis. Visit Kenlake Marina’s Website for more information.
- Swimming in the pool – While there isn’t a swimming area in the lake, there is a large pool behind the lodge for lodge and cottage guests.
- Tennis – You can play tennis year round at Kenlake! An indoor tennis center features four indoor courts, locker room facilities, and even a fully equipped pro shop. Four lighted outdoor courts are adjacent to the tennis center, and one court is available near the lodge. Indoor tennis center is open November 1-April 1.
- Hiking – Kenlake has two nature trails through wooded terrain.
- Photograhy! – One of my favorite things about Kenlake is the fact that there’s a photo opportunity everywhere you turn. Kenlake has beautiful scenic gardens filled with the most magnificent butterflies and birds a photographer could hope for. Kenlake is a member of the American Association of Botanical Gardens and Arborea.
- Picnicking & Playgrounds – Facilities are available throughout the park.
- Breakfast & Lunch in the Marina Restaurant, Cindy’s on the Barge! – Omelets, pancakes, French Toast, pizza, bacon, sausage, hash browns, burgers, blts, Grilled Chicken Salad, chicken sandwiches, fries, butterfly shrimp, and even more.
- Enjoy OUTSTANDING Frozen Desserts on the Marina – Udderly Delicious Dairy Desserts will leave you weak in the knees.
Obviously, Kenlake State Resort Park can stand on its own. Even if Aurora (Kentucky’s best kept little secret) wasn’t withing walking distance. However, the fact that tiny, but terrific, Aurora is Kenlake’s neighbor only adds to the magic.
Aurora boasts not just 1 but 56 of the coolest places to eat in the entire Land Between the Lakes region. Maybe even all of Kentucky. And that’s on top of the fact that Kenlake State Resort Park’s own Aurora Landing Restaurant is an outstanding place to eat. Here’s a rundown of the places you HAVE to eat in Aurora, Kentucky:
- Aurora Bar-B-Que – Home of the Winking Pig! If you love bar-b-que, Aurora Bar-B-Que will become a favorite destination. The food’s outstanding.
- Belew’s Dairy Bar – This legendary “drive in” has one of the best burgers in the entire area and the ice cream is uncommonly delicious. Everything is.
- The Willow Pond – Aurora’s Willow Pond has, quite possibly, the best catfish and hush puppies in the world. The red relish that sits on each table – just waiting to go on the delicious white beans – is unbelievably good. Read a recent review of the blackened catfish at Aurora’s Willow Pond!
- Chicago-Style Hot Dogs at Dixie Dogs – Hot dogs that are so ridiculously delicious they make your jaw drop can be found in the front parking lot of The Hitching Post & Old Country Store. These hot dogs are MUST HAVES!
- Dinner Bell Restaurant – This is one of those places you have to see to believe. Then, when you see it, you still won’t believe it – so you have to GO on faith and experience it for yourself. The restaurant is a tiny little thing, very unassuming and… yet… it’s nearly as famous in these parts as UK Basketball. The food here (especially the fried chicken!) is to die for. You’ll have to trust this Southern food expert on this one – you have to eat at the Dinner Bell.
Speaking of The Hitching Post & Old Country Store (and I am often speaking of them!), this should be one of your first stops in the area as well as one of the last places you see before you leave. After all, you’ll want some of their fresh fudge for your trip home, right?! As a proud Kentuckian (born here, raised here, and they’re never getting rid of me), I always try to send people to places that I KNOW will leave a good impression of Kentucky on them.
Come on, why would I send you anywhere else?!?!
In fact, I’ll let you in on a little secret, if you see a restaurant, store, or place mentioned often on Genuine Kentucky, you can rest assured that it’s not just a favorite personal spot – it’s a place I want my online friends (you!) to go. I know these particular places and faces represent my beloved state in the way I want it to be represented. The food, the service, the friendliness, the cleanliness – all of these things matter greatly to me and to the image I want everyone to have of Kentucky.
Kenlake State Resort Park, as well as EACH of the places I named above fulfills this to perfection.I don’t care what time of year it is, Kenlake State Resort Park and Aurora – with its Hitching Post and amazing restaurants (Belew’s is seasonal, however) – will make you fall in love with Kentucky if you haven’t already. If you’re already in love with our beautiful state, you’ll fall further in love!
And that, friends, is what Genuine Kentucky is all about: Promoting our very special state and it’s warm and wonderful people.