Kentucky Tourism
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Kentucky’s Southern Shorelines

One of the state’s most popular sporting and family vacation destinations with over 1,200 miles of shoreline and lake beaches, it’s hard to pass up Lake Cumberland. Home to Kentucky’s Only One Houseboating Capital, a houseboat rental makes for the most memorable family fun adventures on the water. Swimming, skiing, fishing, sunbathing and snoozing with a large portion of Southern hospitality are abundantly available in the family-friendly Southern Shorelines region. Ready to dive in?

DAY 1 and 2 of your Family Fun Adventure

Lake CumberlandWhen traveling to "Kentucky’s Only One Houseboating Capital" your itinerary should include two-day and two-night Lake Cumberland houseboat rentals so that you can truly experience Lake Cumberland. Houseboat rentals, ski boat and pontoon boat rentals are available through numerous companies – here is a sampling of websites to get your search started . . .

Be sure to note the 2012 Kentucky Official Visitor Guide page 88 list all of the marina options in Kentucky’s Southern Shorelines region. This information is also downloadable on the KY Department of Travel and Tourism website

This region with it’s amazing 1,200 miles of shoreline offers numerous docking facilities which provides your family opportunities to disembark and visit the wonderful attractions and restaurants in the area.

Estimated drive time between the Lake Cumberland State Dock Marina and Somersplash is 35 minutes.

If you are traveling with toddlers and tikes, you may want to plan to visit the Somersplash Water Park in Somerset which has 20 acres of safe family fun with slides and pools to accommodate all ages plus a giant wave pool. For seasonal dates/hours of operation and admission information visit their website or call (606) 679-7946.

Lake Cumberland State Resort ParkDock and dine at the Lake Cumberland State Resort Park in Jamestown and enjoy traditional southern Kentucky cuisine. The dining facility is a culinary destination for both travelers and locals alike. For menu and serving hours call (800) 325-1709 or visit their website

Estimated drive time between Lake Cumberland State Dock Marina and Mills Springs National Battlefield is 25 minutes.

In honor of the Civil War Sesquicentennial, your family may want to take a day trip to Mills Springs National Battlefield Visitor Center and Museum in Nancy, KY. Learn more about The Battle of Mill Springs, the first Union victory in the western theater of the American Civil War, and tour the battlefields. For dates/hours of operation and admission information, visit their website or call (606) 636-4045.

DAY 3 of your Family Fun Adventure

Estimated drive time between Lake Cumberland State Dock Marina and Big South Fork Railway is 90 minutes.

It’s time to transition from riding the waves to riding the rails as you make your way to the Big South Fork Scenic Railway in Sterns. This is a truly unique destination as your family visits one of the last complete “company” towns and short-line railroad coupled with rich coal mining and lumber heritage of scenic Southern Kentucky. For dates/hours of operation, ticket purchase information, special events and departure times, visit the Big South Fork Railway website at or call (800) 462-5664.

Estimated drive time between the Big South Fork Railway and Yahoo Falls at Big South Fork National Rivers and Recreational Area is 10 minutes.

What a great way to end your Kentucky family fun adventure by visiting the Yahoo Falls at South Fork National Rivers & Recreational Area in Whitley City. Yahoo Falls, located in the northern portion of Big South Fork is Kentucky’s highest waterfall dropping 113 feet from the lip to the pool below. A short one-mile loop will take you down to, behind and back to the top of the falls. The Yahoo Falls area also has picnic facilities and scenic overlooks into the Big South Fork river gorge. For more information visit their website or call (606) 376-5073.