Louisville is the largest city in Kentucky; depending on how its population is calculated, it is either the 17th or 29th largest city in the United States. Louisville is also the namesake of the Official Bat of Major League Baseball - the Louisville Slugger.
Car rental services are available at the airport. Louisville is encircled by two beltways, I-264 (officially the Henry Watterson Expressway and locally known as "the Watterson") and I-265 (the Gene Snyder Freeway, or unofficially "the 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, Bardstown Road, Taylorsville Road, etc.) Some of the urban neighborhoods, notably Germantown, Portland, and Cherokee Park, can be confusing for non-locals. Fortunately most neighborhoods are quite safe and passers-by will be more than happy to give you directions. Louisvillians generally do not honk their horns unless there is real danger imminent. If this is not the case it is liable to be viewed as aggressive behavior.
Old Louisville is an architectural treasure trove. Just south of downtown, it is the third largest National Preservation District in the country and the largest Victorian district in the United States. A particularly beautiful area is St. James Court and Belgravia Court, which plays host each fall to the St James Court Art Show. Faced with possible demolition in the 1970's, the area is now considered to be one of Louisville's best-kept secrets. A good way to see the neighborhood is to follow a walking tou. It also has a number of locally-beloved bars and restaurants, and a heterogeneous population that gives the neighborhood a particularly eclectic feel.
Main and Market streets downtown contain the second largest collection of 1800's era iron facade buildings in the United States. Some have been torn down or otherwise destroyed, but also many new developments leave the old facades intact.
Other notable areas include the Cherokee Triangle neighborhood in the Highlands and Butchertown, which is just east of Downtown.