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Danville (Kentucky)

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Danville is in Bluegrass Country, Kentucky, United States.

Danville is a small town located in the Bluegrass Region of Central Kentucky, just 45 minutes south of Lexington.

Understand[edit]

Downtown Danville, Kentucky, is colorful and historic.

Danville is a small town located in the heart of the Bluegrass Region of Kentucky. The city is known for its Southern hospitality, small-town charm, and its commitment to preserving its unique heritage and history. Alongside the desire to keep things the same, Danville is also striving to move forward and embrace progress, change, and growth, making it known as a place "Where Preservation Meets Progress."

Others know Danville as "the City of Firsts," because of the many "firsts" it can claim: It housed the first courthouse in Kentucky. It had the first U.S. post office west of the Allegheny Mountains. It hosts the first state-supported school for the deaf. It is the site of Ephraim McDowell's groundbreaking removal of an ovarian tumor. It is the home of Centre College, housing the oldest college administration building and campus west of the Allegheny Mountains.

Visitors to Danville often comment on the friendliness of its people, the beauty of its colorful, historic downtown, and its quintessential small-town, Kentucky character.

Get in[edit]

Danville map.png
Major airports are located in Louisville, KY (1.5 hr drive), Lexington, KY (45 minute drive), and Cincinnati, OH (2 hr drive). Interstates 75 and 64 run through Lexington, making it easy for drivers to divert to Danville from Lexington.

Get around[edit]

Danville is small enough that most of its downtown shops, restaurants, and attractions can be seen on foot. There is no public transportation, and there are multiple other small towns and area attractions nearby that are best accessed by car.

See[edit][add listing]

A variety of attractions are on offer in Danville and Boyle County, Kentucky. Danville is rich in local history, including a world-famous abdominal surgeon, the site of the signing of the Kentucky Constitution, a Civil War battlefield, the first school for the deaf West of the Alleghenies, and historic Centre College, one of the oldest colleges in Kentucky.

For those looking for unique finds, the Great American Dollhouse Museum and Pioneer Playhouse Outdoor Dinner Theatre are two truly singular attractions Danville boasts. Along with unique attractions, Danville has stunning countryside and a variety of outdoor activities in neighboring lakes and forests.

Danville also boasts a vibrant arts culture, with its Community Arts Center, West T. Hill Community Theatre, the Norton Center for the Arts on Centre College's campus, and the Boyle County Public Library. In fact, Danville is one of only five official Cultural Districts in the entire state.

Downtown Danville is colorful and historic.
  • Abraham Lincoln Museum, 16479 Forkland Road, (859) 332-7146. The Abraham Lincoln Museum contains artifacts, genealogical records and displays related to Abraham Lincoln's relatives, who lived in the Forkland area. The museum is open by appointment or during special events held at the Forkland Community Center.  edit
  • Boyle County Public Library, 307 W. Broadway, Danville, KY 40422, 859-236-8466. The Boyle County Public Library is a destination library that has won awards for its architectural design. It also boasts an interactive children's area and outdoor reading area.  edit
  • Central Kentucky Wildlife Refuge, Carpenter Creek Rd., Hwy. 37, (859) 332-4870. Study nature at the Refuge, a 500-acre preserve, located 13 miles from Danville in the Parksville knob land. The area is a permanent sanctuary for plants and animals native to Central Kentucky.  edit
  • Château du Vieux Corbeau Winery, 473 Stanford Rd., (859) 236-1775. This winery produces more than 5,000 gallons of wine per year, using berries and grapes bought from local farmers. The winery boasts a tasting room and the Vineyard Room, a special event space.  edit
  • Community Arts Center, 401 W. Main St., (859) 236-4054. Located in the historic Federal Building, the Arts Center is the regional hub for artist activity. Offers exhibits, events, and educational programs centered around visual arts, music, drama, and dance.  edit
  • Constitution Square Historic Site (Constitution Square), 105 E. Walnut Street, 859-236-7794. The birthplace of Kentucky's statehood, featuring frontier-style replicas of the courthouse where the Constitution was signed, a meetinghouse, and jail, as well as the oldest post office West of the Alleghenies.  edit
  • Great American Dollhouse Museum, 344 Swope Drive, (859) 583-8000. Contains hundreds of miniature buildings, depicting various time periods in history. The museum is full of activity, with both a play and educational center, as well as outdoor landscaped gardens.  edit
  • Jacobs Hall, Kentucky School for the Deaf, 202 S. 2nd St., (859) 239-7017. Jacobs Hall is a restored Italianate structure on the campus of the Kentucky School for the Deaf (KSD), the first school of its kind in the nation. Formerly a dormitory for deaf students, Jacobs Hall now hosts a museum about life at KSD.  edit
  • McDowell House and Apothecary Shop, 125 S. 2nd St., (859) 236-7197. Original restored home of Dr. Ephraim McDowell, the Father of Abdominal Surgery. On Christmas morning in 1809, McDowell performed the first successful removal of an ovarian tumor. Tour his home, apothecary shop and gardens.  edit
  • Norton Center for the Arts, 600 W. Walnut St., (859) 236-4692. The performing arts venue of Centre College, it is widely recognized as one of Kentucky's most important cultural resources, offering exceptional programming in the performing and visual arts to students, faculty, and staff of the College as well as residents and visitors to the region. All Norton Center events are open to the public.  edit
  • Penn's Store, 257 Penn's Store Rd., (859) 332-7706. The oldest country store in America being run continuously by the same family since 1850.  edit
  • Perryville Battlefield State Historic Site, 1825 Battlefield Rd., (859) 332-8631. A must-see for history buffs, the Perryville Battlefield is the site of one of the bloodiest battles in the Civil War and the most important battle fought in Kentucky. Visitors from around the world have explored the more than 1,000 acres of hallowed, preserved and interpreted battlefield land. This park provides 40 miles of trails through native habitat and has excellent area for wildlife viewing.  edit
  • Pioneer Playhouse Dinner Theatre, 840 Stanford Ave., (859) 597-5297. Experience the performing arts in an authentic setting at Kentucky's oldest outdoor theatre. Lee Majors, Bo Hopkins, John Travolta and Jim Varney are just a few actors who have graced the stage.  edit
  • Traveller's Rest, Isaac Shelby Cemetery, 6725 KY Hwy. 300, (859) 239-7089). Kentucky's first and fifth governor, acquired land south of Danville as payment for a surveying job. He is buried at his estate, "Traveller's Rest."  edit
  • West T. Hill Community Theatre, 117 Larrimore Ln., (859) 236-8607. This Off-Broadway theatre seats 125 people and offers a variety of plays, musicals and special events throughout the year.  edit
  • Wilderness Trail Distillery, 445 Roy Arnold Blvd., (859) 236-3040. Tour Danville's first bourbon distillery, which is part of the Kentucky Bourbon Trail Craft Tour®. Wilderness Trail produces locally sourced spirits, including Blue Heron vodka, Harvest Rum made from sorghum molasses, and Wilderness Trail bourbon.  edit

Do[edit][add listing]

Throughout the year, Danville and Boyle County hosts a variety of fun-filled events and festivals celebrating brass band music, barbecue, beer, battles, and more. History buffs can enjoy the Battle of Perryville Commemoration, while those who love good music and good food can try the Great American Brass Band Festival, BBQ Festival, or Oktoberfest on Main. If you're looking for a slice of authentic Kentucky lifestyle, attend the Forkland Heritage Festival and Revue.

The parade down Main Street is a highlight of Danville's Great American Brass Band Festival.
  • Great American Brass Band Festival, Danville, KY, (859) 319-8426. Each June, The Great American Brass Band Festival has been a Danville tradition for 25 years. Picnics, parades, and big brass bring delight and excitement to the streets of downtown. This free event brings tens of thousands of people together to enjoy a beautiful weekend of music, family and fun.  edit
  • Cruise, Blues & BBQ, Perryville, KY, (859) 332-1862. In summertime, bring your lawn chair and an empty stomach and spend the day listening to sweet sounds of the blues while enjoying delicious food from local vendors. Spend a lazy day along the banks of the Chaplin River and enjoy fireworks that night.  edit
  • Kentucky State BBQ Festival, Danville, KY, (859) 319-4444. Each September, the festival features three days of some of the world's best barbecue, good music, and family fun. This is an eating event, so bring your appetite and get ready to enjoy America's original cuisine served up by celebrity pit masters from all over the country.  edit
  • Oktoberfest on Main, Danville, KY, (859) 236-7794. In late September, visitors can enjoy a night of good food, live music, and beer! The festival offers a sampling of craft beers--some from local microbreweries located right in Danville.  edit
  • Battle of Perryville Commemoration, Perryville, KY, (859) 332-1862. During the first weekend of October, thousands of guests visit Perryville battlefield to watch a re-enactment of that bloody battle. On the battlefield, you can see stationary camps for Union and Confederate soldiers, living history displays, and more.  edit
  • Forkland Heritage Festival and Revue, Gravel Switch, KY. Each fall, the Forkland community celebrates its heritage with historical displays, crafts, live music, food, and more. Visitors can experience what life was like in the 1800s and early 1900s in the Forkland area.  edit

Buy[edit][add listing]

Danville's historic downtown is a wonderful place to take a stroll and peek into a variety of local shops, whether you're looking for antiques, jewelry, clothing, sweets, or other specialty gifts. The Centre College bookstore offers a selection of Centre-themed gifts and apparel, while the Constitution Square Gift Shop specializes in Kentucky-themed and locally crafted products. From gourmet teas and local artwork to unique jewelry and housewares, Danville has a variety of shops to browse.

Maple Tree Gallery is a mainstay of downtown Danville shopping.
  • Centre Bookstore, 105 E. 3rd St., (859) 236-2803. Community bookstore specializing in Centre College gifts, clothing, and accessories, as well as new releases, bestsellers, and other specialty gifts.  edit
  • Constitution Square Gift Shop, 134 S. 2nd St., (859) 236-2803. The Constitution Square Gift Shop sells Kentucky specialty items. Find delicious bourbon-infused treats, Elmwood Inn Fine teas, pottery, postcards, T-shirts, and more.  edit
  • Danville Bike and Footwear, 417 W. Main St., (859) 238-7669. For 20 years, this local family owned business has provided quality equipment for runners, walkers, cyclists, swimmers and those who enjoy an active lifestyle.  edit
  • Elmwood Inn Fine Teas, 135 N. 2nd St., (859) 236-6641. Elmwood Inn owners Bruce and Shelley Richardson are committed to spreading the good news of tea to a thirsty world.  edit
  • Karamel Kreations, 217 W. Main St., (859) 238-2288. Offers delicious gourmet caramel made from an old family recipe, as well as other sweet treats, clothing, jewelry, accessories, and gifts.  edit
  • Maple Tree Gallery, 225 W. Main St., (859) 236-0909. For over 30 years, this downtown local business has provided a wealth of unique gifts, including art by local artists, housewares, purses, scarves, jewelry, soaps, cookbooks, custom framing, and more.  edit
  • Not Just Antiques, 1036 E. Lexington Rd., (859) 239-0088. Antique mall located in the Greenleaf Shopping Center. Dealers offer a wide variety of items, including collectibles, art, jewelry, primitives, rugs, coins, pottery, vintage clothing, and more.  edit
  • V the Market, 130 S. 4th St., (859) 236-9774. Offers a variety of premium bourbons; more than 250 labels of craft beer from America and the world; a hand-selected offering of more than 75 wine labels; the best European cheeses; and fabulous handmade chocolates.  edit

Eat[edit][add listing]

Danville has a variety of food on offer, including pizza, barbecue, deli sandwiches, Mexican, upscale favorites, cafe sandwiches, soups, and salads, and burgers, beer, and bourbon. More formal dining can be had at Cue on Main, while Mallard's, the Hub, Pizza Pub or Taqueria Los Amigos offer more casual settings.

Bluegrass Pizza & Pub features from-scratch pizza and a selection of craft beer on tap.
  • Beer Engine, 107 Larrimore Ln., (859) 209-4211. Danville's oldest microbrewery offering 12 taps, three of which are in-house brews. The house beer cheese is a local favorite.  edit
  • Bluegrass Pizza & Pub, 314 W. Main St., (859) 236-7737. Full-service pizzeria, with fresh dough baked daily in a brick oven. Also offers delicious salads and sandwiches, and an extensive beer and wine list.  edit
  • Brothers Bar-B-Que & Brewing Co., 464 S. 4th St., (606) 280-9219. Family owned eatery serving mouth-watering southern BBQ and craft beer.  edit
  • Burke's Bakery and Delicatessen, 116 W. Main St., (859) 236-5661. Famous salt-rising bread, doughnuts, cookies, and cakes make this a daily stop for most locals. Also serve deli sandwiches.  edit
  • Captain Frank's Hotdog Emporium, 127 N. 4th St., (859) 238-9944. Gourmet hot dogs and sausages, as well as nachos, Bluebell ice-cream milkshakes, and more.  edit
  • Cue on Main, 303 W. Main St., (859) 236-2400. Local downtown restaurant featuring traditional foods with an upscale twist.  edit
  • The Hub Coffeehouse and Cafe, 236 W. Main St., (859) 936-0001. Local hotspot serving teas, coffees, espressos, muffins, bagels, scones, crepes, omelets, sandwiches, soups, salads, quiche, and more.  edit
  • La Hacienda Tienda y Taqueria, 801 S. 4th St., (859) 236-9438. A great place to shop for Mexican spices and food items, as well as enjoy authentic Mexican cuisine.  edit
  • Lulu's Tavern, 209 S. 4th St., (859) 238-2040. Traditional southern cuisine: burgers, barbecue, meatloaf, and fried chicken.  edit
  • Mallard's Restaurant, 101 Ben Ali Dr., (859) 936-8103. Grab a juicy burger and a beer, relax and enjoy your favorite sporting event at Danville's favorite sports bar.  edit
  • Melton's Great American Deli, 247 E. Main St., (859) 236-9874. Danville's award-winning lunch spot. All ingredients are prepared fresh every morning. If it's your first visit, make sure you ask for your free cookie!  edit
  • Summer Hokkaido, 2900 S. Danville bypass, (859) 236-4000. Serving Japanese flavors in a casual atmosphere. Try a bento box lunch or choose from many delicious sushi options.  edit
  • The Twisted Sifter, 109 N. 2nd St., (859) 285-0306. Offering fine, fancy and fun custom cakes and cupcakes for all occasions.  edit
  • Wayne & Jane's Wine and Whisky Bar, 130 S. 4th St., (859) 239-9974. Offers one of the best bourbon selections around, plus one-of-a-kind cocktails, craft beer on tap, fine wines by the glass, and other spirits. Stop in for dinner during the week, and enjoy live music on weekends.  edit

Drink[edit][add listing]

Those looking for a night out on the town won't be disappointed in Danville; Wayne and Jane's Wine and Whisky bar offers an upscale, artsy atmosphere, while Beer Engine is more cozy and casual, and Mallard's has a traditional sports bar atmosphere. Multiple restaurants, including Bluegrass Pizza & Pub, Brothers Bar-B-Que, Cue on Main, and Lulu's Tavern, all have bars within their restaurants.

Wayne and Jane's Wine and Whisky Bar is one of Danville's best bourbon and cocktail bars.
  • Beer Engine, 107 Larrimore Ln., (859) 209-4211. Danville's oldest microbrewery offering 12 taps, three of which are in-house brews. The house beer cheese is a local favorite.  edit
  • Bluegrass Pizza & Pub, 314 W. Main St., (859) 236-7737. Full-service pizzeria, with fresh dough baked daily in a brick oven. Also offers delicious salads and sandwiches, and an extensive beer and wine list.  edit
  • Brothers Bar-B-Que & Brewing Co., 464 S. 4th St., (606) 280-9219. Family owned eatery serving mouth-watering southern BBQ and craft beer.  edit
  • Cue on Main, 303 W. Main St., (859) 236-2400. Local downtown restaurant featuring traditional foods with an upscale twist.  edit
  • Lulu's Tavern, 209 S. 4th St., (859) 238-2040. Traditional southern cuisine: burgers, barbecue, meatloaf, and fried chicken.  edit
  • Mallard's Restaurant, 101 Ben Ali Dr., (859) 936-8103. Grab a juicy burger and a beer, relax and enjoy your favorite sporting event at Danville's favorite sports bar.  edit
  • Wayne & Jane's Wine and Whisky Bar, 130 S. 4th St., (859) 239-9974. Offers one of the best bourbon selections around, plus one-of-a-kind cocktails, craft beer on tap, fine wines by the glass, and other spirits. Stop in for dinner during the week, and enjoy live music on weekends.  edit

Sleep[edit][add listing]

Accommodations in Danville and Boyle County vary from traditional franchise hotels and motels located on the outskirts of town to charming bed and breakfasts dotted throughout downtown and the surrounding farmland. Those looking for traditional hotel experiences can stay at the Hampton Inn or Best Western; those wanting a taste of downtown Danville can stay at the Golden Lion or Morning Glory Manor & Cottage. For a dose of country living, guests can stay at the Farm, LLC (a working farm that offers guests the opportunity to learn farm chores and animal husbandry) or The Cottage, nestled among the rolling hills of traditional Kentucky farmland.

The Farm, LLC, is a working farm and bed and breakfast.
  • The Cottage Bed and Breakfast, 2826 Lexington Rd., (859) 236-9642.  edit
  • The Farm, LLC, 450 Waterworks Rd., (859) 583-0244.  edit
  • Golden Lion Bed & Breakfast, 243 N. 3rd St., (859) 583-1895.  edit
  • Morning Glory Manor & Cottage, 244 E. Lexington Ave., (859) 236-1888.  edit
  • Best Western, 210 Brenda Ave., (859) 236-5525.  edit
  • Comfort Suites, 864 Ben Ali Dr., (859) 936-9300.  edit
  • Hampton Inn, 100 Montgomery Way, (859) 236-6200.  edit
  • Quality Inn, 96 Daniel Dr., (859) 236-8600.  edit
  • Super 8 Motel, 3663 Hwy 150-127, (859) 236-8888.  edit

Contact[edit]

The Danville-Boyle County Convention and Visitors Bureau is responsible for promoting Danville and Boyle County to visitors and is a great first stop for those visiting Danville. The visitors center, located inside Grayson's Tavern in Constitution Square, contains a wealth of brochures, maps, and other information on Danville and Boyle County, as well as cities, counties, attractions, state parks, and events all over the state. Contact us via email, phone, or in person to receive information to help you plan and enjoy your next trip.

Get out[edit]

If you're looking to get out beyond the borders of Danville and explore nearby areas, here are a few recommendations for easy, relaxing day trips in and around Danville.


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