Things to Do With Toddlers in Louisville

It can be hard to find fun things to do with a toddler in Louisville. The following Louisville attractions are toddler-friendly: safe and fun for your children aged three and under.

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    The Louisville Zoo

    Louisville Zoo
    Rhinos at the Louisville Zoo. Jim Bowen / Flickr / CC BY 2.0

    The Louisville Zoo is a great place to take your toddler for a day of fun when the weather is nice. Obviously, the main attraction at the Louisville Zoo is the wildlife, but there are a lot of other fun things to do with your toddler at the zoo that have nothing to do with animals: a splash water park, several playgrounds, and a carousel. Best of all, a year-long membership to the zoo for an entire family is less than $100.

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    Henry's Ark Petting Zoo is an exotic animal petting zoo in Prospect, Kentucky. The petting zoo features animals such as water buffalos, capabras, emu, llamas, zebras, yaks, camels, ostriches, and an albino peacock, among others. Admission to Henry's Ark Petting Zoo is free.

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    Parents throughout Kentuckiana rave about how much their kids love All About Kids. All About Kids is a 47,000 square foot sports center where kids can take classes in gymnastics, cheerleading, swimming, dance, and taekwondo. For younger kids, there is the Inflatable Fun Zone featuring inflatable mazes, slides, tunnels, and ball pits your toddler will love so much that you'll have to drag her home.

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    To get to Huber's Farm, you have to take a lengthy drive through the country, but it's definitely worth it when you get there. Huber's Farm has a ton of things to occupy your toddler: wagon rides, a petting zoo, a cornfield maze, a train, and playgrounds. In the fall, your toddler will enjoy picking the perfect pumpkin from Huber's huge pumpkin patch. Some of the activities are free and some have an admission cost, but it's really easy to fill an entire day at Huber's Farm.

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    Though many of the exhibits at the Louisville Science Center are geared toward school-aged children, there are plenty of things toddlers can enjoy there too. Exhibits that use bubbles, building blocks, or bright colors attract the attention of toddlers, and there is even a room for younger kids.

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    You can always read to your kids at home, but if you just need to get out of the house and let someone else do the reading for a change, you may want to check out Story Time Tuesdays at the Pottery Barn in Oxmoor Mall. Kids receive a free gift after attending five story sessions.

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    Metro Louisville is home to more than 100 parks covering more than 14,000 acres. No matter where you live in Louisville, you're probably just a few miles away from a park. Every park has different amenities, but those with splash parks, playgrounds, and sandboxes are most likely to appeal to your toddler.

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    Louisville Nature Center is a place where you can explore, learn about, and enjoy nature. The Louisville Nature Center features butterfly and dragonfly gardens, wildlife exhibits, hiking through Beargrass Creek State Nature Preserve, and children's activities. If your toddler is a fan of flowers, butterflies, and animals, she will love the Louisville Nature Center.

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    The Ogle Center at Indiana University Southeast in New Albany, Indiana, hosts a number of free shows for children throughout the year. Every year brings new shows which are appropriate for children of all ages.

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    There are tons of free events for children of all ages going on every day at Louisville Free Public Library locations all over the city. Babies and toddlers especially enjoy story time at the library.

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    Chuck E. Cheese may be an obvious place to take your toddler for a day of fun, but it's still worth mentioning because of its popularity. If I took my daughter to Chuck E. Cheese every day for a year, I don't think she would ever get bored with it. One section is geared entirely toward toddlers with small rides and simple games, so you don't have to worry about the games being too advanced for your little one.

    Note: Jessica Elliott's article was edited by a current expert in April ​2016.