Looking for the best things to do in Ashland, KY? Ashland is the largest city in Boyd County, Kentucky.

The city is a busy southern town with all the stores and eateries one would anticipate from a metropolis of its size. The city of Ashland is famous for its unique culture in Kentucky.  The town is home to several historic structures, one of which is Linden Grove, a 19th-century Gothic Revival castle.

Aside from being a bustling town, Ashland offers the perfect place to relax away from the rush of the big city.

Whether you want a tour of its historic area, a fun time with your kids at the arcade, or a romantic picnic by the port, you can find it here.

For your perfect trip, here is a list of the best things to do in Ashland KY.

Fun Things to do in Ashland KY

1. Visit Central Park

Begin your list of things to do in Ashland KY, with a visit to Central Park.

Outdoor activities are among the most enjoyable in Ashland, Kentucky. This is so because all of the outdoor activities in this city are located in Central Park, which is its main draw.

Central Park is a fantastic place to enjoy the outdoors and get some exercise.
Among other activities, soccer matches and running are well-known in the expansive green space that stretches down the riverbank.

Due to its breathtaking beauty and plenty of outdoor activities that both residents and visitors may enjoy, the park is known as Ashland’s “Crown Jewel.”

From its dog park to its baseball fields and exercise paths to a serene setting perfect for picnics, this historic park has something for everyone.

Central Park is free to visit anytime; it’s open from sunrise until sunset every day year-round.

2. Learn the city’s History at  Highlands Museum & Discovery center

The Highlands Museum & Discovery Center needs to be at the top of your list of things to do in Kentucky if you’re interested in learning about the history of Ashland, Kentucky.

The Highlands Museum & Discovery Center features several interactive exhibitions, classes, tours, and events in addition to a collection of local history and artifacts.

The rich history and culture of Ashland, Kentucky, can be explored at the Highlands Museum & Discovery Center, providing entertainment for the whole family.

Highlands Museum & Discovery Center features several exhibits, such as a section on satellites and aerospace, a local subterranean chamber, Morehead State University, century-old medical relics, and local aviation history.

Take your family to Highlands Museum & Discovery Center and let your kids play different educational games. You can explore science at Highlands Museum & Discovery Center while your kids enjoy other games.

3. Visit Camayo Arcade

Get ready for a throwback experience if you want to visit Ashland, Kentucky’s Camayo Arcade. The Camayo Arcade remains the first continuously operating indoor mall in Kentucky.

Originally constructed as a department store in 1926, this indoor mall is currently home to several local companies.

The Camayo Arcade was included in Ashland’s historical places list by the National Register of Historic Places in 1994.

No visit to Ashland would be complete without taking in the stunning architecture and rich history of the Arcade.

Take a day trip to Ashland and check out the Camayo Arcade for yourself if you want to have a taste of a bygone era.

4. Superhero Creamery

Located on Winchester Avenue, Superhero Creamery offers sweets such as ice cream, yogurts, live events, and more.

Are you a romantic partner searching for your preferred nighttime activities in Ashland?

If you want to try the best candies, you should make a trip to South Ashland’s brand-new Superhero Creamery. This store has your favorite flavors of ice cream, frozen yogurt, and milkshakes.

They provide more cuisine than just your favorite treats, though. In addition, there are toys, comic books, souvenirs, a creative studio, ceramic painting, and on-site custom T-shirt and banner printing.

Exploring the Superhero Creamery ought to be on your list of things to do in Ashland KY.

5. Paramount Arts Center

The National Register of Historic Places recognizes the Paramount Arts facility, a well-known historic art facility situated on Winchester Avenue.

The Paramount Arts Center is the ideal Ashland destination if you’re looking for something fun to do.

This art center seeks to preserve a unique historical monument while offering top-notch performing arts, varied cultural experiences, and entertainment.

There are a lot of reasons to adore this location on your things to-do list.

They provide entertainment and the pleasure of the arts, along with artistic development and exploration.

They also include a sizable stage for performance art and exhibit space for art exhibitions, workshops, and creative inquiry.

For the finest view of the show, go for seats in front of the balcony and on the lower level, if you don’t mind paying extra money.

6. Go Hiking at Lake Vesuvius Recreation Area

Across the river in Ohio, the Lake Vesuvius Recreation Area spans over 143 acres. The region is surrounded by sharply forested hills.

Boating, hiking, fishing, and water sports are all available in the recreational area.

Featuring some of the most fascinating geological formations in the east, Lake Vesuvius Recreation Area is a great place to take your family for picnics and just sit down.

The lake is surrounded by stunning hiking routes and breathtaking views from the recreation area.

There is lake fishing available in the recreation area. Rent a boat or bring fishing poles for a better chance at landing fish.

The easily accessible Lake Vesuvius Recreation Area is available weekdays and weekends.

Two family campgrounds are located on the edge of Lake Vesuvius Recreation Area, which also has a beach and swimming area.

7. Shop at  Aladdin’s Art Gallery

Ashland, Kentucky’s historic downtown, is home to Aladdin’s Art Gallery. The store is a gallery and boutique, with an emphasis on presents and art frames.

Aladdin’s Art Gallery is the ideal location, whether you are an artist, a lover of art, or just seeking somewhere to buy presents.

Aladdin’s Art Gallery sells paintings, photographs, decorations, frames for artwork, and ornamental signage.

In addition to lovely ornaments, the art museum has a store where you can frame personal artwork. Aladdin’s Art Gallery offers frames with a variety of sizes and distinctive patterns.

Prices for the frameworks at Aladdin’s Art Gallery are affordable. The greatest of Ashland’s cultures is on exhibit in the gallery.

People choose to shop for art and presents at this family-run art gallery. Weekends and weekdays are when the gallery is open.

8. Shop at Ashland Town Center

The main focus of Ashland Town Center is ultimate shopping.

Ashland Town Center has over 70 businesses, food courts, and Cinemark Movies 10, making it the ideal destination for a romantic evening with your significant other or a family outing.

Here are a few dining options: Sbarro, China Max, and Charley’s Cheesesteaks.

Ashland Town Center provides a wide range of retailers, from big-name designers to little local shops. Several stores, including Claire’s, GameStop, JCPenney, TJ Maxx, rue21, Kay Jewelers, American Eagle Outfitters, and Victoria’s Secret, are available for purchase.

9. Tri-State Escape

Tri-State Escape is an entertaining arcade and escape room that opened on Winchester Avenue in 2017.
The Tri-State Escape is an arcade and escape room combined that you will adore.

Players can choose from three distinct themed rooms and have an hour to solve a sequence of clues and riddles to try to make it out of the area in time.

You have the option of escaping to places like the well-known Waverly Sanitorium, an antique pirate ship, a haunted mansion, an awful jail, or a beautiful pyramid in Egypt.

After spending an exciting time in the escape room, replenish your energy with delectable food from a local restaurant if you’re hungry.

Take a 12-minute stroll from Tri-State Escape to GattiTown, a pizza restaurant.

10. Experience a Fun Day at Malibu Jack’s

With over 20 rides, attractions, and games for all ages, Malibu Jack’s Ashland is a sizable indoor theme park.

With its entertaining and reasonably priced menu, Malibu Jack’s is quickly gaining popularity as a place to spend a day with friends and family.

This theme park has a ton of games, rides, and dining options.

Malibu Jack’s offers everything you could want in an indoor theme park.

You can carry on having fun wherever you are, regardless of the weather—whether it’s bright or cloudy, snowing or scorching.

It’s the ideal location for enjoyable days out, birthday or anniversary celebrations, and quality time with loved ones.

For an enjoyable family outing, Malibu Jack’s is hard to top. There is adventure, excitement, and fun to be had every day.

11. Enjoy a Match at Ashland Tennis Center

If you’re a lover of tennis, Ashland Tennis Center ought to be on your list of things to do in Ashland KY.

A day spent at the Ashland Tennis Center in Ashland could not be more tranquil.

Everything you may need for a tennis center is available at the facility. Visit the well-stocked pro shop or enroll in fundamentals-only camps.

For one-on-one guidance from the pros, schedule private classes.

At one of the camp sessions, you may pick up the game quickly and simply if you’ve never played it before.

Both competitive and recreational tennis players can find something to do here thanks to the incredibly varied program offered to aficionados of the game of all ages.

The center also offers year-round tennis, featuring four indoor and eleven outdoor courts, and has something for everyone.

12. Visit the Garden Roller Rink

The Garden Roller Rink is more than simply a roller skating rink, as you’ll quickly discover.

The family-run Garden Roller Rink is a popular Ashland attraction for kids, having opened its doors in 1986.

Families and friends gather at the Garden Roller Rink for a fun-filled evening.

The rink features disco lighting and mirrored walls. For events or get-togethers, you can rent a variety of private rooms and have delectable food and beverages.

There’s no better way to spend a Friday night than rolling around at this colorful rink.

13. Take Horse Riding Lessons at the Black Horse Farm

Black Horse Farm is the ideal venue for you to tie the knot if your dream wedding is to have it outside in a modest, cultural setting.

Black Horse Farm is one of the most well-known locations in Ashland, Kentucky, where many weddings and celebrations are held.

Numerous barns on Black Horse Farm provide for both indoor ceremonies and sizable parties.

Black Horse Farm provides horseback riding trails on over 40 acres of pasture land. If you don’t know how to ride horses, plan a visit to Black Horse Farm and take horseback riding lessons.

You can book one of the indoor barns for parties, as it is one of the biggest venues for outdoor activities in the region.

14. Gr8r Gaming

Gr8r Gaming is an arcade that opened in 2018 and offers your favorite Xbox, PlayStation, and other games.

When you are at a loss for things to do in Ashland KY, nothing compares to going to a well-known arcade game.

The Tri-leading State’s video gaming club and contemporary arcade is called Gr8r Gaming.

There are more than 250 modern arcade games available for the Xbox, PlayStation, and other systems.

Spend your afternoon with friends and family playing different types of video games. They offer a wide array of games, from indie to triple-A.

The Nintendo Switch is a great option if you’re looking for games for the whole family. Up to eight players can play at once, and the majority of its proprietary games are geared toward families.

15. Fun Times Bus

Are you looking for inexpensive things to do in your area? In Ashland, Fun Times Bus was founded in 2018 and offers cheap bus excursions to different parts of the United States.

Enjoy your time on the Fun Times Bus.

Traveling with Fun Times Bus Tours is one of the best ways to experience the Tri-State region and see other places throughout the United States.

Kentucky was among the states where this tour bus won awards for “Best Overall” and “Best Bus Tour Company.”

They provide customized itineraries for your family, making them one of the most affordable family-friendly bus tour providers. Plus, they give discounts if you’re traveling with a large group.

16. Visit the Port of Ashland

Situated next to the well-known Ben Williamson and Simeon Willis bridges, the Port of Ashland is a sculpture-filled riverfront park accessible via 15th Street.

For couples looking for romantic activities in Ashland, the Port of Ashland is one of the best options.

This gorgeous riverbank is a peaceful spot for picnics, fishing, and contemplating the Ohio River.

Throughout Ashland’s Summer Motion Festival, numerous well-known artists have performed on the dock.

This location is great for seeing a fireworks display in addition to offering breathtaking views of the sunrise or sunset.

Additionally, a notable collection of enormous sculptures created by Spanish artist Ginés Serrán-Pagán can be observed in the park.

17. Watch a Movie at Cinemark Movies 10

On our last list of things to do in Ashland KY, is to visit Cinemark Movies 10.

Cinemark Movies 10 is located on Winchester Avenue. Cinemark Movies 10 offers first-run films at a nice cinema with good acoustics and comfortable reclining chairs.

It’s a nice concession to have warm popcorn and the option to replenish if necessary. The concessions also include great food options.

When purchasing your ticket, if you arrive early, you might be able to select your seat or have one assigned to you, saving you the trouble while you gather your refreshments.

Bring your loved ones to the movies; it’s a family-friendly venue!


frequently asked questions about Ashland, Kentucky

What is Ashland known for?

Ashland, Kentucky, is known for its history in the coal, steel, and transportation industries. It’s home to the AK Steel plant, the Ashland Oil Refinery, and the Paramount Arts Center. Additionally, it’s known for its beautiful parks and outdoor recreational areas.

What are some popular attractions in Ashland?

Popular attractions in Ashland include the Highlands Museum and Discovery Center, Central Park, the Ashland Area Art Gallery, and the Jesse Stuart Foundation. Visitors also enjoy the Poage Landing Days festival and the Catlettsburg Labor Day Parade.

What outdoor activities are available in Ashland?

Ashland offers various outdoor activities, such as hiking and biking trails in places like Central Park or along the Ohio River. There are also opportunities for boating, fishing, and picnicking in parks like Armco Park and Riverfront Park.

Are there any historical landmarks in Ashland?

Yes, Ashland has several historical landmarks. Notable ones include the Ashland Floodwall Murals depicting the city’s history, the Henry Clay Estate, and the Mayo Mansion, which was once home to the founder of the Mayo Clinic.

What educational institutions are in Ashland?

Ashland is home to Ashland Community and Technical College and satellite campuses of other universities like Marshall University. These institutions provide a range of programs and courses for local students.

How is the transportation system in Ashland?

The city is well connected through roadways like Interstate 64 and US Route 23. Ashland also has public transportation services, including bus routes, and is served by the Ashland-Boyd County Airport for regional air travel.

What is the cost of living in Ashland?

The cost of living in Ashland is generally lower compared to national averages. Housing, utilities, and groceries tend to be more affordable, making it an attractive option for some residents.

Are there any annual events or festivals in Ashland?

Yes, Ashland hosts various events and festivals throughout the year, including the Ashland Summer Motion Festival, Winter Wonderland of Lights, and the Ashland Train Day.

What are some dining and shopping options in Ashland?

The city offers a mix of local restaurants offering diverse cuisines along with shopping centers and boutiques. The Ashland Town Center Mall is a popular destination for shopping.

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