Riverboat Casino Alongside Championship Golf Course
The boat docked alongside the Horseshoe Southern Indiana is one of the largest riverboat casinos in the world—longer than a football field and wider than a basketball court. More than 2,000 slot machines jingle and flash across four stories, but the ship is best known for its poker room, which has hosted World Series of Poker events. And if you feel slightly overwhelmed by the resort’s size, there’s a simple and fun solution: hop aboard a golf cart to breeze between the hotel rooms and the floating casino.
The onshore buildings show off Vegas-style flair with neoclassical pediments, grand colonnades, and ceilings painted to resemble the sky. Inside, there are enough dining options to serve a village. Jack Binion's serves Maine lobster and porterhouse steak, and the Paula Deen Buffet dishes out comfort fare from the eponymous cooking show, including cheeseburger meatloaf and butter cake. To combine dinner with entertainment, mosey over to the 7,000-square-foot Legends restaurant, which hosts Thursday-night karaoke in a cavernous dining room with 25 TV screens showing sports games and C-Span blooper reels.
For a break from the neon lights, head outside to the horse-themed Chariot Run golf course, named one of the country's top casino courses by Golfweek. There's also a walking trail that meanders through the property's forest-covered hills. In the deluxe rooms, you can take in views of the woods or the riverfront from broad picture windows.
Greater Louisville: Historical Museums and Horseracing Tradition
The resort itself is located in Elizabeth, a southern Indiana town so small that for much of the 19th century, the local school was a single-room log cabin. Yet just across the Ohio River, downtown Louisville brims with indie-music venues, art galleries, and museums, including the Frazier History Museum. South of downtown, you’ll encounter block after block of Victorian mansions in Old Louisville and stately brick buildings at the University of Louisville.
Louisville’s pride and joy lies a little farther south at Churchill Downs, which has hosted the Kentucky Derby since 1875. If you’re not around during a race, it’s still worth checking out the Kentucky Derby Museum’s impressive trophy display, historical race footage, and jockey diaries.