Newport, Kentucky, in Campbell County, was founded in 1795. Not only does it hold fascinating history, but also has a beautiful riverfront area overlooking the Ohio River, and a contemporary area of development including the Newport Aquarium. Newport was named for the commander of the first ship to reach Jamestown, VA.
As you drive into the Newport area, you will see the Cincinnatti skyline ahead.
This is a view we had from Ohio from historic Eden Park in Cincinnatti -looking across the Ohio River into Newport.
This is a beautiful park to visit!
Heading back to the Kentucky side of the riverfront, we went to Newport on the Levee to spend some time. In the 1980s and 1990s, there was a huge shift toward a family friendly riverfront. At one time in history, Newport was known as “sin city” because of the upscale casinos on Monmouth Street and some other activities that were going on there. The revitalization towards a family friendly area has paid off. It is now a busy town full of activities for all ages.
The view to the right includes the Purple People Bridge and the Daniel Carter Beard Bridge, commonly called the Big Mac because of it’s gold arches.
The view to the right looks across the river close to where the Cincinnatti Reds play (The Great American Ballpark) and also to Paul Brown Stadium where the Bengals play.
The Riverwalk is a really neat place to hang out. There’s plenty of shops and restaurants near. There are benches all along the Riverwalk to sit and enjoy a beautiful sunset.
The Newport Aquarium entrance sits on the Riverwalk area.
The entrance to the shopping area.
The kiddie train travels a loop around the Riverwalk. The kids seemed to love it! The large fish sits outside a seafood restaurant, ironically across from the aquarium.
After a lunch at Tom + Chee, we wandered around a little more.
Shark Tank fans will appreciate this poster from Tom + Chee.
There’s a nice little candy shop on the corner near the aquarium.
This mural is found in one of the alleys on the levee.
There is a large mural with some historical photos found in the bookstore on the levee Riverwalk.
One activity to enjoy at the levee is to “Ride the Ducks”. Just follow the “duck tracks” to the ride during the open season. Other people enjoy taking riverboat cruises down the Ohio River in the much larger boats.
From the levee Riverwalk, I noticed across the street that the old Graeters Ice Cream building was there. Graeters has some of the BEST ice cream!
One of the highlights of visiting Newport was walking the Purple People Bridge. Notice the locks along the bridge. They are usually placed there by couples declaring their love or celebrating an anniversary. People place locks here for other symbolic reasons as well.
The plaque reads Newport and Cincinnatti Bridge Company -1896 -M.J. Becker- Chief Engineer
More locks on the bridge.
I’m sure I’ll go back after a while to see how many other locks have been put on the bridge.
Next, you’ll see the Thompson House. It was home to John Thompson (inventor of the Thompson Submachine Gun). Pictures of the old Courthouse which sits near the St. Paul Episcopal Church follow.
St. Paul’s Episcopal Church
This beautiful stone church holds a lot of history.
Another old building near courthouse square.
Historical marker at corner of courthouse square.
Stained Glass Theatre
Historic Baptist Church
This is the old Masonic temple building.
Getting around the area is really easy. You can rent a bike, take a city bus or take the trolley for $1.
The trolley will also take you across the bridge into Cincinnatti if you’d like.
The World Peace Bell sits near the courthouse and is much bigger than I realized it would be. It is one of about 20 peace bells in the world. This 66,000 lb bell first swung as the year 2000 began.
The bell rings at 11:55 am each day since the courthouse bells ring at noon. It also rings on special occasions. The bell has inscriptions referring to events of the past 1,000 years.
A set of miniature twin tower monuments are close to the bell. They give a timeline of the events of 9/11 and also pay tribute to firefighters who lost their lives that day.
A piece of steel from The World Trade Center is attached to the monument.
A monument honoring Chief Larry B. Atwell
It’s starting to look like Christmas back at the levee. The tree is up and ready for Light Up The Levee in November.
Light Up The Levee features a show of over a million lights which are synchronized to holiday music. The display runs through new year.
Decorations were going up inside in November.
Brickmas is a Lego lovers event at the levee. Here’s the link for info newportonthelevee.com
Who doesn’t love this Lego Olaf?
The Scooby Doo display
Several other displays will be available to see with a ticket during the event.
I’ve been able to see a little of Newport, Kentucky and I’d like to learn more about this city. I hope you’ve enjoyed a little of the sights and facts about this Northern Kentucky town.