Day Trip to Elizabethtown Kentucky


We spent the better part of the day on Elizabethtown, Kentucky- about an hour drive south of Louisville. 

Funtopia at American Legion Park

A brand new playground opened, we went to a giant, nearby park, and we ate some delicious food on our day trip to Elizabethtown.

Enjoy a day trip to Elizabethtown! We know that our readers love day trips. This one is really not far at all. Just down I-65, you can be there in under an hour from many parts of Louisville. And, once you get there, you can enjoy free family fun outdoors.

A brand new playground opened in Elizabethtown, KY in April of 2022, and it is SUPER FUN. Funtopia Playground is on the grounds of the American Legion Park.

The park also includes a swimming pool (fee) and splash pad area, tennis courts, green space, lots of seating, a War Memorial for Hardin County residents complete with a mini tank, and nice, clean bathrooms. We know you love clean bathrooms. 

The old, wooden playground was torn down a year ago, and replaced with a new, giant metal playground. The playground is great for everyone – it has big kid equipment, little kid equipment, handicap accessible equipment, and a little paved trail next to playground (the little paved section is called the “Born Learning” trail is for following directions for the painted trail activities, riding tricycles, and chalk art).

This is a playground for a wide range of ages. We took teenagers and they had fun so don’t assume the ‘big kids’ won’t enjoy a day at the park. 

Day trip to Elizabethtown
The swim area has a separate entrance and is open seasonally. Check it out for a summer day trip to Elizabethtown. It has a deep pool, giant waterslide, rock climbing wall on the water, basketball nets on the water, little kid playground structure, splash pad areas, and other fun activities.

Be sure to keep scrolling to see more fun things you can do in summer at this park. If you are going to make the day trip, you want to know all that the park has to offer. It’s a really expansive park because of the lake and water fun is particularly great in the summer!

The photo above shows the playground for the little kiddos. The features of the playground are very unique making this day trip all the more worthwhile because we cannot find play areas like this in the heart of Louisville.


There is lots of seating around, wonderful for tired parent legs. There is a covered picnic table pavilion, open picnic tables, benches, and swings inside the playground area and around the green space. Perfect if you are coming from Louisville and want to pack a picnic. 

There is also a Hardin County War Memorial commemorating Hardin County residents who sacrificed their lives in service of the country. In park all over the commonwealth you can usually explore and find monuments. 

Nearby the memorial, there is also what looks like a small tank. It’s actually a locally created prototype for a remote control warfare vehicle created in 1981. It was created with a machine gun, grenade launcher, and self-destruct function. Very cool.

The bathrooms were very clean (we know parents care about this stuff too) and up by the office where there is staff on site to monitor the park. We can’t wait to go back when the swim area is open and explore the park in a whole new way!
Day trip to Elizabethtown Freeman Lake State Park:

Then we headed to Freeman Lake Park. This 170 acre park is a hidden gem behind a busy commercial area. They have a lot of events at this park throughout the year too. It has so much to offer. As the name states, this park is along a very large lake, and has some historical buildings on site too.

There are paddle boats, Jon boats, and kayak boat rentals for $2 to $5 per an hour, or $10 to rent a row boat all day. You can buy a fishing permit on site, but bring your own fishing equipment. The boat dock is handicap accessible/stroller accessible too.
day trip to Elizabethtown
There are pavilions for rent, or single grills and picnic tables around the area if you want to bring stuff to grill at their picnic areas. This is something to remember for summer and would be a great outing for family gatherings. 
Day trip to Elizabethtown
There are playgrounds, swings, a tennis complex, pickleball court, sand volleyball court, 18-hole disc golf course, a very long, paved walking/stroller/bike riding trail, and dog parks. Bring your sporting supplies, bikes, walking shoes on your day trip to Elizabethtown. You can have a day of active fun all over this park. 
day trip to Elizabethtown
As for the history on site, there are the Lincoln Heritage House, One Room Schoolhouse, and Sarah Bush Johnston Log Cabin. Tours are available the 1st Saturday and Sunday of each month between 1:00 and 4:00 p.m. from June to September. 

The Lincoln Heritage House is a restoration of a four room cabin built around 1805. Abraham Lincoln’s father grew up in Hardin County and did carpentry work on this house. Who knew?!
Day trip to Elizabethtown
The 1892 one room school house looks like something out of an episode of Little House on the Prairie. How interesting to find all of this after just looking for a cool playground!

The Sarah Bush Johnston Log Cabin is a replica of Abraham Lincoln’s step mother’s house. There’s always something to learn when you are out having fun and this is proof that Lincoln is everywhere you turn in Kentucky. 

Check out some area food spots on your day trip to Elizabethtown:

Back Home Restaurant is a great place to pick up lunch because you can look around at the interesting items as well. You can find their menus here full of things like Honey Chicken Mac N Cheese and the Fried Green Tomato Burger. The shoppe has treats, gift items, and home décor among other things. 

We made a quick stop by Amazin Glazin Donuts. It did not disappoint. If you are around for lunch or dinner, there are tons of fast food chains to chose from in the area, but I highly recommend Back Home Restaurant and Shoppe. Delicious food and a cute shop downstairs and boutique upstairs.
Day trip to Elizabethtown
We’ll have to come back soon for another day trip to Elizabethtown!

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