Recommended by The New York Times, Louisville Historic Tours has specialized in guided walks in "America's Grandest Victorian Neighborhood" since 2004. Once home to the city's bourbon barons, racetrack royalty, and titans of tobacco, Old Louisville is a transitional near-downtown neighborhood where the love of Americana and architecture lives on today. Centered around Olmsted-designed Central Park and the charming residential enclave of St. James Court, this 40-square block historic preservation district is jam-packed with Gilded Age grandeur, as can be seen in the hundreds of mansions and townhomes that line its shady streets and tranquil, pedestrian-only walking courts. Beaux Arts, Italianate, Vernacular, Richardsonian Romanesque, Châteauesque, Victorian Gothic - these are just some of the architectural styles that await you. All tours are based on the research and writings of best-selling author David Dominé, who often guides the tours himself. Please treat your tour tickets as you would theater or concert tickets.
[Scroll to bottom of page for important information and FAQs including recommendations
for local restaurants and bed and breakfast inns.]
Private tours ($100 for 1-3 people) arranged at your convenience: 502-718-2764
Daytime tours start and end at Adrienne and Co. Donuts & Desserts, near the corner of Fourth and Oak, about a mile straight down the road from the historic Brown Hotel in downtown Louisville. Other than using them as a meeting point, Louisville Historic Tours has no affiliation with the coffee shop. Their employees do not handle tour bookings.
NOTE: We start at the transitional edge of the neighborhood and you might see things you would see in any larger city across the US; this includes homeless people, panhandlers, or others who do not look like you. If you do not like a diverse neighborhood, this is not the tour for you.
Generally, there is plenty of street parking, especially near the corner of Fourth and Ormsby. If you're parking on the street, do not leave valuables in plain sight in your vehicle. Also, be mindful of your surroundings, as you would in any large urban area. We don't recommend walking from the downtown area, especially at night, as Uber and Lyft are easy options. And...the free LouLift downtown circulator now stops at the corner of Fourth and Ormsby (stop 72/Filson Historical Society).
Tours generally take about 90 minutes and involve 1.5 miles of walking, with stops every block or two. Wear sensible shoes! Although there are bumpy patches here and there, people in wheelchairs have very few problems on our tours. Tours are suitable for most children. Well-behaved dogs are welcome! By purchasing tickets, you agree to release David Domine's Louisville Historic Tours and its agents from all liability during your time in the neighborhood, as well as during your travel to and from Old Louisville.
Please treat your tour tickets as you would theater or concert tickets. IF YOU MISS YOUR TOUR, THERE ARE NO REFUNDS! If you arrive late and the group has already departed, it is up to you to find your guide. Because these are walking tours, weather plays an important role; tours that are cancelled because of inclement conditions will be refunded or rescheduled. In the case of manageable rain, bring an umbrella!
If you are looking for a lunch or dinner spot before or after your tour, consider Buck's Restaurant or Amici Cafe, both of which are just a half block away. The Dupont Mansion bed and breakfast, the Louisville Bourbon Inn, and the Central Park Bed & Breakfast are all within a block. St. James Court and the Conrad-Caldwell House Museum are about three blocks away, on the other side of Central Park. If you're looking for more coffee and donuts, try North Lime Coffee & Donuts, which is just a couple of blocks away.
Tours are based on the bestselling books by David Dominé. Since 2004, we are Old Louisville's original guided walking tours! Recommended by The New York Times! Check us out on Facebook and TripAdvisor!