Louisville Transportation

Louisville International Airport (SDF) is not a hub and therefore has few direct flights -- you'll probably stop, and possibly change planes, in either St. Louis or Chicago. The airport is "International" in name only -- there are once a week flights from Montreal and to Toronto!

Several Interstates pass through Louisville: I-65, I-64 and I-71. I-71 (North-South) begins in Louisville and heads Northeast to Cincinnati and Cleveland. I-65 (North-South) will carry you from just outside Chicago, through Indianapolis North of Louisville and to the south through Nashville, Birmingham, Montgomery, all the way to the coast at Mobile. I-64 (East-West) travels east through Lexington, West Virginia, on into Richmond, and ends at the Atlantic Ocean in Newport News. To the west you'll find its beginning/end in Saint Louis, the "Gateway to the West".

Formerly served by Amtrak's Kentucky Cardinal, Louisville presently has no passenger train service.

Greyhound (1-800-231-2222) services Louisville. Their depot is located at 720 W Muhammad Ali Blvd which is near the center of town. Service is frequent but it is inadvisable to arrive at the bus station late at night unless someone is coming to pick you up.

Louisville's public transit service, TARC, operates bus lines in all parts of Metro Louisville (Jefferson County). Fares are $1 with a possibility for two transfers in two hours. Tickets can be purchased at some banks and government offices but this will not really save you much money unless you are going to be staying in the city and getting around by bus for at least two weeks. Buses generally run from about six AM until ten PM, some later on weekends, but it is a good idea to check the schedule for each specific route. Timetables are only posted at major stops. The buses are also rather impractical in the suburbs, as they are infrequent and the stops are far apart.

Car rental services are available at the airport. Louisville is encircled by two beltways, I-264 (locally referred to as 'the Watterson') and I-265, (the Gene Snyder). Traffic is generally moderate except at peak hours on I-264 and in downtown. In particular, try to avoid 'Spaghetti Junction', the downtown freeway interchange, between four-thirty and seven on weekdays. The city streets are laid out in a grid pattern in downtown and a wheel-and-spoke system farther out. Frequently, the streets are named after outlying towns they eventually reach (Shelbyville Road, Taylorsville Road, etc).

If you are staying in the central part of town, a bicycle is a fine way to get around, as long as you are already used to urban cycling. The city has only recently begun to add bike lanes; for the time being they are rare and still something of a novelty for drivers. Do not bike in the suburbs; it's highly impractical and dangerous due to the nature of traffic on the major arteries.