Largest Cities in Kentucky 

By PropertyClub Team
Jan 31st 2024
With 4.5 million residents, Kentucky is the 26th-largest state by population. The Bluegrass State is home to several large metro areas and smaller cities that offer outdoor recreation and a proud local heritage. Read on to discover the ten biggest cities in Kentucky by population. 

hash-mark10 Largest Cities in Kentucky (2024)

  1. Louisville
  2. Lexington
  3. Bowling Green
  4. Owensboro
  5. Covington
  6. Georgetown
  7. Richmond
  8. Elizabethtown
  9. Florence
  10. Hopkinsville

hash-markLouisville (Population: 633,045)

Louisville is the largest city in Kentucky by population, the 6th largest in the southeast, and the 27th largest in the United States. It’s also the 24th largest city in the nation by land area, although it’s the 265th most dense. The city of Louisville merged with Jefferson County to create a consolidated city-county government in 2013, and today, they share the same borders. 

So, while the city of Louisville is home to about 246,161, the total consolidated population of the metro area is 782,969. The balanced population – which excludes other incorporated cities in Jefferson County, is 633,045. Louisville is also the principal city in the Louisville-Jefferson County KY-IN MSA, which includes 12 counties in Kentucky and 5 in Indiana and is home to nearly 1.4 million people. 

hash-markLexington (Population: 322,570)

Lexington is the second largest city in Kentucky and the 60th largest in the US by population. Similar to Louisville, Lexington has a consolidated government with Fayette County, which includes a total population of 332,570 residents. The city also anchors the Lexington Metro area, which is home to 516,811 residents, and the Lexington-Fayette-Richmond-MSA, which is home to 747,919 residents. Known for its equestrian traditions, rich history, and delicious cuisine, Lexington attracts residents from all over the world, and its population increased by 9% between 2010 and 2020. 

hash-markBowling Green (Population: 72,294)

Bowling Green is the third largest city in Kentucky, with a population of 72,294. Its metro area is the fourth largest in Kentucky after Louisville, Lexington, and Northern Kentucky, with an estimated population of 179,240. It’s also part of a combined statistical area with the city of Glasgow, which has an estimated population of 233,560. Home to several prominent manufacturers, including General Motors and Fruit of the Loom, as well as Western Kentucky University, Bowling Green is a great place to live for students and young professionals. 

hash-markOwensboro (Population: 60,183)

The fourth largest city in Kentucky is Owensboro, a home rule city and the seat of Daviess County. The city of Owensboro has a population of 60,183 residents, although an estimated 116,506 residents live in the broader metro area covering Daviess, Hancock, and McLean Counties. Residents in Owensboro enjoy an affordable cost of living, low crime, and plenty of outdoor recreation, making it a good place to raise a family. 

hash-markCovington (Population: 40,961)

Covington is the fifth largest city in Kentucky and features a population of 40,961 residents. Located in Kenton County near the Ohio border, it’s the largest city in Northern Kentucky and a part of the Cincinnati metro area, which is home to over 2.2 million residents. Covington is a quiet suburb that offers low crime, great job opportunities, and gorgeous views of the Ohio and Licking Rivers. Although the population has declined since the 1950s, it did increase by 0.8% between 2010 and 2020. 

hash-markGeorgetown (Population: 37,086)

With a population of 37,086, Georgetown is the sixth largest city in Kentucky and part of the Lexington-Fayette metro area. Home to Georgetown College and Toyota Motors Manufacturing Plant, Georgetown offers both educational and job opportunities for residents of all different ages. It’s a young, relatively affluent community with a median age of 32.8 (20% lower than the statewide average) and a median household income of $74,530 (25% higher than the statewide median). It’s also seen rapid population growth in the past few decades, and it increased by 27.5% since 2020. 

hash-markRichmond (Population: 34,585)

Richmond is the seventh largest city in Kentucky and the fourth largest in the Bluegrass Region after Louisville, Lexington, and Georgetown, with a population of 34,584 residents. It’s also the center of the Richmond micropolitan region, which is the 9th largest in the state with over 100,000 residents. Richmond is a major retail shopping center for south-central Kentucky. It’s also home to East Kentucky University and is very popular among college kids and young professionals. The median age is 27.7, which is 34% lower than the statewide median.  

hash-markElizabethtown (Population: 31,394)

Elizabethtown is the eighth largest city in Kentucky, with a population of 31,394. It’s the main city in the Elizabethtown-Fort Knox MSA, which also is home to over 150,000 residents. Plus, that region is also part of the larger Louisville-Jefferson County MSA. Elizabethtown is known for its southern charm and rich history. Along with Bowling Green, it’s one of the two major urban areas along I-65 between Louisville and Nashville, and the population has steadily grown by 10% between 2010 and 2020. 

hash-markFlorence (Population: 31,946)

The ninth largest place in Kentucky is Florence, a home rule city in Boone County with a population of 31,394. It’s the second largest city in Northern Kentucky after Covington and also part of the Cincinnati metro area. Ranked among the safest cities in Kentucky, Florence has a violent crime rate that is 56% lower than the rest of the US, making it a good place for families and young professionals looking for a safe area with an easy commute. 

hash-markHopkinsville (Population: 31,180)

Hopkinsville is the tenth largest city in Kentucky, with a population of 31,180. Located in Christian County in southwestern Kentucky, Hopkinsville is close to the Tennessee border, about 72 miles northwest of Nashville and 15 miles north of Clarksville. It’s also part of the Clarksville TN-KY MSA, which includes 336,447 residents. The Hopkinsville area is home to over 50 major businesses, including Fortune 500 companies. It’s also a relatively young community, and the median age is 34.9.