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DINE and Destinations - - VATICANO -

A won­der­land of na­tional parks, Ken­tucky of­fers wild and scenic out­door ad­ven­tures. Mam­moth Cave Na­tional Park has the long­est cave sys­tem in the world. Red River Gorge Ge­o­log­i­cal Area is world renown for rock climb­ing and rap­pelling, but the hik­ing alone of­fers breath­tak­ing vis­tas while cross­ing nat­u­ral arches over the deep gorge be­low. Ca­noe Ken­tucky pro­vides rentals for pad­dling Elkhorn Creek. The serene, slow-mov­ing river me­an­ders through fast­flow­ing rapids. Laze the af­ter­noon down­stream with the calm­ing ser­e­nade of swirling wa­ter. Brandy pre­dates bour­bon. Cop­per and Kings is a re­turn to roots on an­other wave­length. An event space with an art gallery in­side, pa­tio grills and fire pits out­side, in the cel­lar, four gi­ant sub woofers blast ’90s grunge 24/7 to son­i­cally ag­i­tate the spir­its. Strains of Soundgar­den and Alice in Chains vi­brate bar­rels of Mus­cat grapes to in­cite more molec­u­lar con­tact with the wood. Taste dy­namic ex­pres­sions of brandies from com­plex craft­dis­tilled with a vel­vety fin­ish and clean trop­i­cal Chenin blanc, to har­mo­nious and sweet gin­ger, cit­rus and laven­der ab­sinthes. Ken­tucky is home to mu­se­ums of cul­tural im­por­tance. “Float like a but­ter­fly, sting like a bee,” while shadow box­ing with The Great­est. Learn his tech­niques from Laila Ali at the Muham­mad Ali Cen­ter. Pur­chase a per­son­al­ized bat at the Louisville Slug­ger Mu­seum. En­ter a raf­fle at the Na­tional Corvette Mu­seum to win a corvette. Learn about horse train­ing at the Ken­tucky Derby Mu­seum and bet on races at Churchill Downs. www.ken­tuck­y­tourism.com

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