5 Ways To Prepare For A Trip To French Lick

5 Ways to Prepare for a Trip to French Lick

Updated May 2024

Indiana can rightly be called an underrated getaway destination. From a tourist perspective, the state quickly becomes a haven of beautiful places, lovely towns, and specific attractions. If you want to unplug from your day-to-day life and enjoy a luxurious recreational trip, one place stands out: French Lick.

The resort complex in French Lick appeals to a weekend escape (or longer, if you can swing it!). You may have read here before about some of the casino entertainment you can find exploring Indiana, specifically during a trip to Evansville. But in French Lick, you’ll find something a little more involved—a full-fledged casino resort that caters to travelers from all over the country.

While casino activity is at the heart of French Lick Resort, it has grown over time to become a much more expansive vacation spot. Whether you want to relax and take it easy or enjoy some gaming and activity, this (somewhat) hidden Indiana gem has it all.

If that sounds good to you, read on for a few of our tips for what to do before you go!

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Learn the history

When we refer to French Lick Resort as a casino complex, it’s important not to get the wrong idea in your head. This is not some gaudy Caesar’s Place plopped in the middle of Hoosier National Forest. It’s a vintage, retro-American hotel that’s been rebuilt and reimagined over the years. The history of French Lick Resort dates back to 1855 and includes a devastating fire, a stint as a U.S. military hospital, and the moniker “The 8th Wonder of the World.” If you’re a fan of cultural attractions, reading up on this history before you go will only enhance your visit.

Choose a hotel

This is a small, practical step but an important one. The French Lick Resort comprises three hotels: West Baden Springs, French Lick Springs, and Valley Tower. They’re all part of the complex and enjoy many of the same amenities, so they’re a blended experience. But you’ll still need to choose one to stay at as your primary destination while visiting French Lick. Additionally, there are other hotels in the area, like the Best Western Plus and Valley Inn

In French Lick, a range of vacation rentals caters to the needs of families, couples, and solo travelers. These rentals often feature fully equipped kitchens and other amenities, enhancing the comfort of extended stays.

West Baden Springs Hotel

Brush up on your poker skills.

The French Lick Casino has over 1,000 slot machines and electronic games. But don’t worry, poker is still king here. They’ve got dozens of card tables and video poker machines, too. You don’t have to be a pro to play; it helps to know the basics. Ensure you know the rules and how the different hands rank against each other.

Polish off your golf clubs.

French Lick Resort also has its golf courses, which have wonderful reputations. They’ve even been written up by World’s Best Golf Destinations! There are now four specific courses at the resort complex: The Pete Dye Course, The Donald Ross Course, The Valley Links Course, and Sultan’s Run. Their beauty and quality have been used to host several official championships, including the Senior LPGA Championship and The Donald Ross Classic. Suffice it to say that if you enjoy golf (or want to try it on a world-class course), you should prioritize this part of the resort. Polish off your clubs, book a tee time, and enjoy.

Donald Ross course. Photo credit: Visit French Lick West Baden
Pick out a riding outfit.

The resort has plenty more activities, from bowling to spa sessions to swimming and cycling. However, horseback riding is one that you’re less likely to enjoy on any old weekend at home. French Lick Resort has its own on-site stables and riding paths, enabling guests to take rides and explore the area. It’s a wonderful way to enjoy the beauty of the land. It is absolutely one of the more unique activities at the resort. So, our last tip for a trip to French Lick is to pick out a riding outfit and book some time at the stables!

The Stables
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