38 Things To Do In Bardstown KY

38 Things to do in Bardstown KY

In Kentucky’s Nelson County, the city of Bardstown has home rule status. In 2010, 11,700 people were living there. It serves as Nelson County’s county seat. The intrepid Bard brothers gave their name to Bardstown. In 1785, David Bard was granted a grant of 1,000 acres in Jefferson County, Virginia.

The second-oldest city in Kentucky, which is awash with Georgian and Federal-style buildings, is dubbed the Bourbon Capital of the World.

Since 1776, bourbon has been distilled in Bardstown, and the business is now more thriving than ever with new distilleries opening every year.

It’s similar to going to Reims to explore the champagne cellars to visit the maturing warehouses and distilleries. You still wouldn’t see them all if you stayed for a week and went to a new distillery each day.

The ancient former plantation at My Old Kentucky Home and the Basilica of St. Joseph Proto-Cathedral, which is adorned with outstanding paintings by Renaissance and Baroque masters, are just a few of the historical sites in Bardstown.

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List of things to do in Bardstown KY 40004

Given below is the Things to do in Bardstown KY during your visits such as Old Kentucky home state park, Oscar Getz museum, Bardstown art gallery, and many more.

1. My Old Kentucky Home State Park

My Old Kentucky Home State Park Bardstown KY

Stephen Foster Ave Bardstown composed more than 200 songs, but the ballad “My Old Kentucky Home, Good Night,” which is famously performed during the Kentucky Derby and was designated the State Song in 1928, is the one that resonates most with the people of the Commonwealth.

The Commonwealth of Kentucky later bought the former plantation Federal Hill and its surrounding 235 acres of tidy gardens and farmland in the 1930s as a result of the song’s ongoing popularity.

Foster ave is said to have visited this place; he was a cousin of the Rowan family who owned it. You are welcome to visit Kentucky Home State Park, which has a more than 200-year history and is filled with exquisite artwork, antiques, and authentic architectural features.

Your tour guide will perform a brief performance of “My Old Kentucky Home” while dressed historically. Along with an outdoor amphitheater in which you can watch biographical Stephen Foster Ave Bardstown story musicals in Kentucky’s home state park. Where the site also has one of Kentucky’s top golf courses.

2. Cobblestone Path

Cobblestone Path Bardstown KY

The Bardstown Historic District in Bardstown, Kentucky, extends over eight acres of property, and this ancient route winds through it.

It has been located just across from the Bardstown Civil War Museum in Kentucky, between Flaget Avenue and Broadway.

The city of Bardstown ky owns the Cobblestone Path even though it only currently accommodates pedestrians because it was once thought to be a part of the city’s road system.

Males who were not ministers and were between the ages of 16 and 50 were required by law to work on the construction of this and other roads; failure to do so would result in a $1.25 per day fine.

3. My Old Kentucky Dinner Train

My Old Kentucky Dinner Train Bardstown KY

You may enjoy delicious food and a two-hour tour of the countryside aboard “My Old Kentucky Dinner Train.” Usually, you can choose between a lunch or dinner excursion.

Coming early allows you to purchase a drink at the bar or a souvenir from the gift shop, and check-in is quick and simple.

You’ll discover a wonderful interior on board for your tour. A cheeseburger, pan-seared pork sirloin, salted caramel cheesecakes, roasted corn powder, Mahi Mahi and prime rib, apple dumplings, and the more delectable fare will be served to you throughout your tour.

The prime rib supper is also excellent since it melts on your tongue, especially when you dunk it in horseradish.

A very relaxing experience, in addition to the mouthwatering meals, is looking out the window at the lovely fauna, plants, flowers, and trees.

My Old Kentucky Dinner Train offers mouthwatering fare, a tranquil setting, and a unique experience.

4. The Women’s Civil War Museum

The Women’s Civil War Museum Bardstown ky

The Women’s Civil War Museum is one of the most fascinating attractions in Bardstown; you’ll enjoy coming here, especially if you’re a history buff. The Women’s Civil War Museum provides a wealth of information about the significant sacrifices women made during the Civil War and their valiant efforts to stay alive.

Women had major roles in journalism, medicine, suffrage, military duty, writing, the arts, and many other fields throughout the Civil War.

Numerous historical objects in the exhibit demonstrate how courageous and eager women were to enlist in the armed forces during the conflict.

The Women’s Civil War Museum also features several artifacts and exhibits that detail their experiences as nurses and other roles. A sizable collection of firearms, Confederate swords, artillery, union uniforms, and many other things.

5. Bernheim Forest

Bernheim Forest Bardstown KY

If you like spending time in nature, think about going to Bernheim Forest. Bernheim is a top choice for adventurers of all ages, drawing more than 500,000 people annually. More than 16,000 acres of land in Bullitt and Nelson Counties make up Bernheim Forest.

6. Bardstown Historic District

Bardstown Historic District Bardstown KY

Walking around the city center of Bardstown to look for historical sites is one of the best things to do.

More than a third of the 279 contributing properties in the historic district were built between 1780 and 1850, demonstrating the abundance of ancient architecture in the city.

Be sure to visit the historic Old Talbott Tavern, the Nelson County Jail, Bardstown Station, and Spalding Hall, which we’ll discuss further in this article, as well as the Cobblestone Path, which runs down the east side of the neighborhood and dates back to 1785.

The Bardstown ky Visitor Center, which provides a fantastic introduction to the community, is now located in the former Nelson County Courthouse.

7. Heaven Hill Distilleries

Heaven Hill Distilleries Bardstown KY

You may be sure to get the greatest whiskey for tasting from the second-largest bourbon whiskey retailer in the world.

The Heaven Hill Distilleries’ whiskey continues to be the most popular of the several distilled spirits that the family-run company makes. Visit them for a fascinating tour and discover information about this complex procedure.

Purchase one or two bottles to bring home for you and your pals. In addition, one of the two tasting rooms and a gift shop are located to the right of the entry.

There is even a fantastic gift shop with affordable rates. If you happen to be in Bardstown, the entire heaven hill bourbon experience and tasting are outstanding.

8. Mclntyre’s winery 

Mclntyre’s winery Bardstown KY

Bardstown’s Mcintyre’s Winery is an excellent spot to go wine tasting the old-fashioned way. The winery uses blackberry and blueberry juice from nearby farms to manufacturing its fruit wines.

McIntyre offers a wide range of flavors and aromas, so there is something for everyone.

McIntyre’s Winery provides tours and wine tastings in addition to the chance to Purchase fresh fruit and sample the winery’s handcrafted fruit wines.

The winery’s interior is very tastefully decorated, and there is a wonderful patio outside where visitors can sip wine while admiring the scenery. The environment is very quiet and peaceful, and there are rolling hills and vineyards to stroll across.

9. The Old Bardstown Village Civil War Museum

The Old Bardstown Village Civil War Museum Bardstown KY

One of the biggest museums devoted to the Western Theater of the American Civil War is Old Bardstown Village Civil War Museum.

The Museum comes highly recommended, particularly if you’re interested in history. 

Original historical items from the conflicts between the Gulf of Mexico and Georgia, the Union and the Confederacy, and the Appalachian Mountains and the Mississippi River are on display at the Old Bardstown Village Civil War Museum.

Other sites of the Old Bardstown Village Civil War Museum convey information about slavery, cavalry, politics, navies, infantry, and artillery during the conflict.

10. Basilica of St. Joseph Proto-Cathedral

Basilica of St. Joseph Proto-Cathedral Bardstown KY

The first cathedral constructed west of the Allegheny Mountains is the Basilica of St. Joseph Proto-Cathedral. Established in 1816, this historical location is a significant part of American Christianity’s past.

Beyond that, it has a magnificent church as well as attractive columns and stained glass. The Basilica of St. Joseph has something to offer everyone who visits, regardless matter whether they practice religion or are just interested in learning more about Bardstown.

11. Kentucky Bourbon Festival

Kentucky Bourbon Festival Bardstown KY

A week in mid-September sees tens of thousands of Kentucky Bourbon enthusiasts descend to Bardstown to celebrate the 250-year-old local industry.

Beginning with a small gathering of 250 people in 1991, this event has grown to become one of the biggest in the state each year, drawing 50,000+ visitors from more than a dozen other nations.

The festival takes place during National Bourbon Heritage Month, and many of the events are held in front of the magnificent Spalding Hall on the lawn.

12. Oscar Getz Museum of Whiskey History

Oscar Getz Museum of Whiskey History Bardstown KY

A week in mid-September sees tens of thousands of bourbon enthusiasts descend to Bardstown to celebrate the 250-year-old local industry at the Oscar Getz Museum of Whiskey History.

Beginning with a small gathering of 250 people in 1991, this event has grown to become one of the biggest in the state each year, drawing 50,000+ visitors from more than a dozen other nations.

The festival takes place during National Bourbon Heritage Month, and many of the events are held in front of the magnificent Spalding Hall on the lawn.

There will be a vintage and rare bourbon auction, a tasting event, cooking classes, presentations by influential businesspeople, live music, and the World Championship Bourbon Barrel Relay Race, a competition involving rolling bourbon barrels in the Oscar Getz Museum of Whiskey History.

13. The Rusty Rooster

The Rusty Rooster Bardstown KY

The rusty rooster, which was named Bardstown’s best antique shop in 2017, is a great location to browse in Bardstown ky if you’re seeking rustic furniture or housewares.

The Rusty Rooster is one of the best locations to shop in Bardstown ky because it has everything you could need and the best rates.

At Rusty Rooster, you’ll discover one-of-a-kind and uncommon items, and there’s always something fresh and fascinating on exhibit.

The business is additionally kept up, tidy, and organized, and everybody who comes will be enchanted by its attractiveness.

14. Bardstown Peddlers Mall

Bardstown Peddlers Mall Bardstown KY

Peddlers Mall is a spot you would love to shop if you’re looking for a fantastic shopping experience.

Peddlers Mall is a family-run shopping center with a focus on furniture, curiosities, collectibles, antiques, and other products.

They provide excellent customer service, a welcoming environment, and fair prices so that you can have a fantastic shopping experience.

On their website or app, you can also shop online, and the delivery costs are reasonable.

15. Hurst Drugstore Soda Fountain

Hurst Drugstore Soda Fountain Bardstown KY

Getting a milkshake from the Hurst Drugstore Soda Fountain is a must-do tradition in Bardstown, Kentucky. Take a seat on one of their shiny red retro diner-style stools by the bar and let yourself be carried back in time.

When you treat yourself to traditional American fare at Hurst Drugstore, you’ll experience the coziness of a community diner from bygone days. The menu has grilled cheese sandwiches, fries, and homemade milkshakes that bring back childhood memories.

This storefront offers full-service pharmacy services as well as delicious meals and merchandise for sale. You can also pick up a souvenir before or after you eat because they have a wide array of delectable American whiskey and food alternatives, candles, and home decor.

16. Willett Distilling Company

Willett Distilling Company Bardstown KY

Another illustrious bourbon brand with a long history is Willett, which was founded in 1936 and is now producing its labels again after a 32-year break (1980–2012). Willett also continues to bottle other foreign brands under contract.

As soon as you enter the grounds of this tiny company, which is located on the former Willett Farm, you will understand its history. Willett has taken great care to preserve the main distillery building, aging warehouses, cistern room, and many other characteristics on the property.

The distillery still uses 19th-century belt and pulley fan operations, and the water comes from underground, spring-fed lakes.

A guided taste and your very own glass as a gift conclude the hour-long tours, which cover all there is to know about the Willett family and the production of whiskey.

17. Fishing at Sympson Lake

Fishing at Sympson Lake Bardstown KY

A reservoir in Kentucky, Sympson Lake is 157 meters deep. West of Sympson Lake is the location of Samuels Field. Despite the lake’s significance as a source of fresh water, boating and fishing are common pastimes.

Its boat ramp is still a well-liked fishing location, and many people fish there every day. Other frequent catches in this region include channel catfish and white crappie in addition to largemouth bass and crappie.

18. Shaq & Coco

Shaq & Coco Bardstown KY

In the heart of downtown Bardstown, Shaq & Coco sells chic furniture, brilliant lighting, and lovely presents, to name a few things. The clothing section is also included. You can come across fresh patterns and styles that you haven’t seen before.

You can also purchase great items such as high-quality shoes to treat yourself or your family to. Additionally, the store offers friendly surroundings where consumers may feel at ease while browsing the goods as well as first-rate customer service.

You will love every inch of this space, so bring your decorating budget with you and avoid the trip to Manhattan.

19. Bardstown Bowling Center

Bowling Center Bardstown KY

Bowling at the Bardstown Bowling Center offers a fantastic bowling experience and is one of the fun things to do in Bardstown.

Playing browning together with your family and friends makes it more enjoyable and creates fantastic bonding moments.

There is a place to obtain tasty food and delectable drinks at Bardstown Bowling Center, as well as an arcade game area. All ages can participate in different bowling leagues where they can compete against others their age.

Birthday parties and other festivities of all kinds are hosted at Bardstown Bowling Center for people of all ages; bowling parties are always the greatest way to be ready for a good time. You, your family, and your friends will have a great time at the Bardstown Bowling Center.

20. Town Carriage Ride

Town Carriage Ride Bardstown KY

On wheels, explore Bardstown, Kentucky’s attractions. As you explore Bardstown, Kentucky, in an antique carriage or stagecoach, take time to notice the small-town atmosphere. The Around the Town Carriage Ride, a mainstay of Bardstown, Kentucky tourism, highlights the charm of its charming, compact downtown. 

The guided tour provides details on the town’s history, noteworthy locations, and additional Bardstown, Kentucky attractions that could be of interest.

The Around the Town Carriage offers a pleasurable experience regardless of the occasion. They’ve been Kentucky’s transportation history for providing transport to proms, funerals, sweet 16 celebrations, parades, and other events. Both families and romantic couples will enjoy the carriage trip.

21. Wickland, Home of Three Governors

Wickland, Home of Three Governors Bardstown KY

Just a few miles from My Old Kentucky Home in Bardstown lies one of Kentucky’s finest Georgian homes.

This is Wickland, a brick mansion with three stories that was constructed in 1815 and has been recognized as a national historic place since 1973. You can call to schedule a tour and learn more about the building’s colorful heritage from March through October.

Wickland was constructed by Charles A. Wickliffe (1788–1869), the fourteenth governor of Kentucky, who also hired John Rogers, the architect who created the Basilica of St. Joseph.

Both his grandson J. C. W. Beckham (1869-1940), the 35th Governor of Kentucky, and his son Robert C. Wickliffe (1819-1895), the 15th Governor of Louisiana, also resided in the mansion.

22. Bardstown Ghost Trek

Bardstown Ghost Trek

Visit Bardstown Ghost Trek, which is held every Saturday, and is certain to send shivers down your spine. The Jailer’s Inn, Pioneer Cemetery, and Talbot Taverns are the destinations you’ll visit.

The historical trip is expertly led. Let’s go ghost-hunting at Bardstown Ghost Trek, so grab your cameras and audio recorders.

23. Spalding Hall

Spalding Hall Bardstown KY

A unique detail about Spalding Hall is that it is an educational facility that educates about the history of whiskey. The structure is roughly 200 years old.

Rare whiskey artifacts dating back more than 50 years, from colonial times to the Prohibition era, are kept in the museum. There is a lot to see and discover if you’re a fan of American history or Bourbon. You will undoubtedly treasure the time you spend here.

Spalding Hall served as a hospital during the Civil War before being converted into a museum that now houses many priceless historical relics.

Additionally, the museum offers a well-organized gift shop where you can find that special present for your loved ones. Everyone is welcome to visit Spalding Hall without charge, but donations are welcome if you so want.

24. 3rd Street Tap House

3rd Street Tap House Bardstown KY

Start the evening off on Third Street. More than 30 artisan beers are available on draught at The Tap House. Bourbon, wine, and bar classics like pizza and fries are also available, so you can quench your thirst and recharge with some food.

The best part is that they frequently provide musical entertainment. The environment at 3rd Street Tap House is ideal for relaxing after a day of sightseeing or having a good time. 

The beverages, music, and welcoming atmosphere make 3rd Street the best place to spend an evening in Bardstown Ky. Visitors typically gush about the relaxed atmosphere and variety of options available.

25. Bernheim Arboretum and Research Forest

Bernheim Arboretum and Research Forest Bardstown KY

The largest privately held natural area in Kentucky is something to go with James B. Beam Distilling Co.

Isaac Wolfe Bernheim, the founder of I. W. Harper founded this in 1929. Due to the land’s prior use as an iron ore mine, he was able to purchase these 16,000+ acres at a reduced price. He then recruited the Olmsted Firm to design the park’s landscaping.

There are more than 40 miles of paths at the Bernheim Arboretum, which has a multitude of sights to view in various knobs, valleys, ridges, and hollows. The Bernheim Arboretum first opened to the public in 1950. 

The LEED-certified Visitor Center, the Education Center, with art exhibitions and a beautiful Wildlife Viewing Room, the scenic Fire Tower (961 steps), Isaac’s Cafe, which uses foods from the arboretum’s Edible Garden, and the 75-foot-tall Canopy Tree Walk are all must-see activities.

26. Fine Arts Bardstown Society

Fine Arts Bardstown Society Bardstown KY

The Fine Arts Bardstown Society provides a wonderful platform for such beauty, which is a lovely expression of the spirit through art.

This lovely gallery, which opened in 2005, features magnificent works of art and paintings. Additionally, there are exquisite antiquities and crafts on show. You can research a variety of topics, including woodworking, painting, and other things at Fine Arts Bardstown Society. 

This Bardstown art gallery is a great location to find some undiscovered local artists and pieces of art.

27. Mammy’s Kitchen & Bar

Mammy’s Kitchen & Bar Bardstown KY

One of the best things to do in Bardstown Ky for some wonderful food is to visit Mammy’s Kitchen & Bar. You should visit Mammy’s Kitchen & Bar since it is one of Bardstown’s best and most well-regarded eateries. 

You can pick from a variety of other bourbon-themed items on their extensive menu, such as steak and eggs, grilled cheese sandwiches, ribeye, country breakfast, chicken salad, and much more.

Breakfast and brunch items prepared in the American way are offered at Mammy’s Kitchen & Bar at a fair price.

28. Old Talbott Tavern

Old Talbott Tavern Bardstown KY

Both experts and beginners in history will love the Old Talbott Tavern. This historic location, which dates back to the late 1700s, is situated on Bardstown’s Court Square and has offered rest to numerous Kentucky tourists throughout the years. 

This Old Talbott Tavern is one of the most genuine locations to go to if you want to spend the night in Bardstown Ky. You are welcome to eat, stay, or just drop by to learn more about the area of Talbott Tavern.

29. Abbey of Gethsemani

Abbey of Gethsemani Bardstown KY

The Order of Cistercians of the Strict Observance, better known as the Trappists, is the owner of this monastery, which is located about 15 minutes south of the center of Bardstown ky.

The Abbey of Gethsemani, which was established in 1848, serves as the motherhouse for all of this order’s monasteries in the United States. It is situated on a working farm that encompasses more than 2,000 acres.

Thomas Merton, a theologian, and social activist lived here for a while (1915-1968).

At the Welcome Center, guests can explore museum exhibits, watch a documentary on monastic life, and purchase souvenirs manufactured at the monastery, such as bourbon fudge and homemade fruitcake.

30. Bardstown Community Park

Bardstown Community Park

One of the nicest places to spend time with family and friends is in a park. The Bardstown Community Park is one such park in Bardstown ky that you’ll fall in love with. This park’s acre size makes it the ideal location for a picnic with the family.

A basketball court, horseshoe pits, picnic tables, and more can be found in this neighborhood park. Your youngsters will enjoy playing on the many slides and swings on the playground. 

31. The Blind Pig Bourbon Market

The Blind Pig Bourbon Market Bardstown KY

The blind pig bourbon market is another lovely location you may visit to savor the amazing taste of bourbon and related items, in addition to the ancient Talbott and Willet distillery. The adage “good things come in tiny packages” well describes this charming little market.

The Blind Pig Bourbon Market, which is situated in the center of charming, historic downtown Bardstown ky, is one of the best places to go for fantastic bourbon and other bourbon-related things.

This bourbon-tasting bar is a must-stop on every trip to Bardstown ky because it is connected to a lovely little gift shop.

A very large variety of bourbon, antique whiskey bottles, and whisky goes much beyond the state of Kentucky. In addition to bourbon gifts, they also sell bourbon cuisine, decanters, whiskey sweets, caps, and a range of other things.

32. Louisville

Louisville Bardstown KY

A trip to Louisville, Kentucky, is a fantastic way to cap off your stay in the Bardstown ky region. One of Kentucky’s most populated and well-liked tourist destinations in Louisville. Similar to Lexington, it has an equestrian-focused reputation due to being the location of the renowned Kentucky Derby, which is held there in May. 

The event, which is held in the spotless Churchill Downs Racing complex, attracts equestrian and gambling fans from all around who want to strike it rich.

33. Jim Beam Whisky at the Jim Beam American Stillhouse

Jim Beam Whisky at the Jim Beam American Stillhouse Bardstown KY

Worldwide, Jim Beam whiskey is well-known and adored by a large population. Their expertly distilled bourbon is their secret, and they have been producing high-quality alcohol ever since.

This location is unquestionably a must-visit if you enjoy learning more about your drinks. It truly merits a special place on your agenda with guided tours available across the site.

34. Low Row Distillers 

Low Row Distillers  Bardstown KY

This is a good spot for individuals that enjoy some luxury in their bourbon, just as the name implies.

Lux Row Distillers is a popular hangout for locals and tourists looking for premium whiskey in Bardstown ky, which is known as a den of bourbon.

Lux Row is a lovely location. The farm is well-kept, and if you’re lucky, you might see some lovely peacocks there. There are various brands in Lux Row Distillers, and the gift shop is decent. Even if the trip is similar to others, it is nevertheless educational.

35. Lincoln Homestead State Park

Lincoln Homestead State Park Bardstown KY

Lincoln and his family spent a lot of time at the Lincoln Homestead State Park. In this wide park, Lincoln’s mother and her family formerly resided. Rustic furniture is present, and classical pieces are tastefully used to decorate the spaces.

There is a cabin there as well. The home is protected by fences, which are still sturdy. There are 18 holes on the opulent golf course, which is spread out over the broad hills. There is a museum nearby that displays a variety of antiquities.

36. Whispering Wheels Roller Rink

Whispering Wheels Roller Rink Bardstown KY

One of the most enjoyable pastimes in Bardstown ky is skating, which is even more enjoyable at Whispering Wheels Roller Rink.

Local skating rink Whispering Wheels Roller Rink opened its doors in 1973. has become a well-liked vacation spot over time for both locals and visitors.

They also provide other services, such as hosting birthday celebrations, holiday festivities, other events, skating classes, and many others.

37. Kentucky Derby Museum

Kentucky Derby Museum Bardstown KY

Churchill Downs is the site of the renowned Kentucky Derby race. Every May, visitors dress in cheery headgear and springtime attire to watch the horse races and place their wagers.

Even though this event only occurs once a year, there is a specific museum for it that is available all year so that visitors may see it and learn about it. This historic area, near Churchill Downs Racetrack, is approximately ten minutes from Louisville’s downtown and boasts gorgeous architecture.

38. Flea Market

Flea Market Bardstown KY

Flea markets are fantastic locations to find great deals and purchase some very awesome items. Here, you may purchase genuine furnishings and artwork for a reasonable price.

With 500 store owners and business people offering a range of goods, including organic veggies, sunglasses, t-shirts, toys, fishing gear, jewelry, books, and so on, it offers a sizable shopping area.

You will undoubtedly have a fantastic shopping experience thanks to the combination of affordable rates and amazing deals.


What is Bardstown Kentucky known for?

Bardstown, which is in the center of the Bluegrass State, is the perfect bourbon retreat. All of your bourbon dreams can come true in Bardstown, the Bourbon Capital of the World, where there are 11 distinctive distilleries within 16 miles of court square.

What is the prettiest place in Kentucky?

Bardstown ky. The Rand McNally named Bardstown, a lovely town in central Kentucky’s Bluegrass Region, as one of the “most attractive small towns in America.” Bardstown, also known as the “Bourbon capital of the world,” has perfected the craft of bourbon distillation.


Bardstown ky is a little town, so it could seem uninteresting and quiet to you, but once you go there, you’ll discover a lot of fun amenities and things to do. Although Bardstown ky may not be a place with many exciting adventures, you must accept the beautiful city and its laid-back vibe to have a fantastic time.

If you love history and bourbon and whiskey, this city is a terrific place for you to visit because it is full of historical landmarks and museums. For a unique experience, hang out with your family and friends at parks or game rooms. You may visit the neighborhood restaurants and sample various cuisines in the city, which boasts many mouthwatering traditional foods.

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