Friday, 14 February 2014


"Kentucky, you are the dearest land outside of Heaven to me", The Everly Brothers sang. You can hear it 'Foreverly' on the new covers album of the brothers hits by todays pairing of modern greats Norah Jones and Billie-Joe Armstrong of Green Day. Or you can just see it for yourself. Miles and miles of beautiful country, Kentucky is the place to be. Even if you've seen New York, Boston, Chicago, Miami, San Fransisco or Los Angeles, THIS my friend is America. This my friend is the birthplace of Kentucky Fried Chicken. The home of one of the proudest and best college Basketball franchises of all-time and not to mention coaches. This is a place where you can find a falls more picturesque than Niagara. This is a place famous for Bourbon, big trucks, even bigger roads and even bigger personalities still. Yep, you're not going to find much nicer people this side of Canada than the warm welcome you'll receive in Kentucky.

Make a drive to the big city of Lexington then you'll see plenty of cool stuff for your cameras, along with a lot of shops, places to eat, drink and a real cool old fashioned stretch in this modern place. You can even catch a U.K. game at the Rupp Arena as the University Of Kentucky are known for the NBA great likes of Anthony Davis, DeMarcus Cousins, Eric Bledsoe and John Wall...and that's just over the last few graduations. Don't make us list the whole roster. This legendary legacy is one of the reasons you see the symbol U.K. on every drive and in every car rear-window and just everywhere like you where in England. The other is simply dedication and devotion. People here don't give up and after meeting some of the locals you'll feel like you've been here for years...and you wish you could stay that long too. Lexington and Louisville (where the greatest Muhammed Ali came from) offer you big hoops, lights and the big city, but if you want to see the heart of Kentucky and therefore the real America its time to hop in your pick-up and head to Corbin. It's got a few shops, places to grab a good bite to eat ('Crackerbarrell', the 'Waffle House' and everything else is a roadside must), a great new coffee shop that offers books, bands, board games and a place that'll put the chains to shame (the aptly named 'You & Me, Coffee & Tea', it really is the new hot cup of Joe spot to be) and a cinema. Still, this isn't why your on holiday. These things are cool but you can do these things at home. Your here to relax and see the real landscape of this place.

A place where just simply driving around from the streets to the highways is a tourist experience in itself. With beautiful mountains and greenery no matter what time of the year that you'll drink in like a shot of Bourbon, just make sure you watch the road and your camera hanging out the window. Still, there's more than just a backseat view to take in when touring this town. From the beautiful, vast Cumberland Gap to the crafted 'Chained Rock' on Log Mountain there are countless feats of nature and man to explore. With each place steeped in rich history I hope you have a great tour guide or have a friend that can tell you all the stories that speak loudly and proudly out of this cool and calm place. Now, if you want to see one of the best things you'll witness in the United State of Kentucky and all of America then you have to go to Cumberland Falls. It's known as 'Little Niagara', but with all due respect to one of the eight wonders that connects Toronto and New York, this is better than big brother. No hand me down in any way Cumberland Falls is incredibly beautiful. Words on this page, or pictures found don't do justice to what you will witness with your own two. Plus when you turn around you don't see a mini Vegas or Atlantic City either. With all due respect to Niagara (and Vegas and Atlantic) it is incredible, a wonder in itself and perhaps seeing it in December was the wrong idea. Still, even in late January and all frozen over to the end of the waterfall the Cumberland Falls still looked like nothing else especially iced over to a true Winter wonder.

Just wait until you go there in the Summer because if you think this place is beautiful now then there's a lot more in store. Like the NIBROC (Corbin backwards you know) festival of open-air concerts, carnival attractions and one hell of a parade. Or fishing and even scuba diving in Laurel River Lake. Through all these parks, roads and rivers you're going to work up more than an appetite, so how about some history while you eat? If you visit the first ever K.F.C, in the world you'll see that Kentucky is the true home of fried chicken. You won't find a better wing or side of slaw anywhere. Plus with the original roadside shop and hotel preserved in it's original way, with photos and more documents detailing its history this place is a museum in itself. Here you'll see how Harland Sanders (I know thought his first name was 'Colonel' too?!) revolutionised the fast-food game. Proud of its seasoning, this place offers more than a quick bite or trip however. There's much more for all the senses in this place to smell, taste, feel, see and hear. So it's time to stop reading and get out there and start experiencing. More than just a simple holiday this is a place that you'll feel settled in like you want to live and even for a small-trip you'll feel truly relaxed and refreshed. After all isn't that why we "get away" in the first place? Like The Everly Brothers sang, Kentucky will see you soon. TIM DAVID HARVEY.

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