Day trips from Columbus: where to go and what to see?

Are you ready for some amazing adventures near Columbus, Ohio? Explore top attractions just a short drive from the city. You’ll find outdoor fun, cultural spots, and natural beauty. Get set to enjoy the best day trips from Columbus!

Columbus has lots to offer but sometimes you want a new scene. Ohio has many great places for day trips. You can visit pretty state parks, interesting museums, and lovely small towns. There’s something for everyone at these close by spots.

Did you know great day trips are really close to Columbus? You can find peaceful spots not far from the city. Many amazing places are just a drive away. Weekends and last-minute getaways are covered with these options.

We will look into the best day trip spots near Columbus in the next parts. If you love nature, history, or just having fun with friends and family, there’s much to see. So, pack up and start a memorable journey through Ohio’s marvels!

Hocking Hills State Park: Outdoor Paradise

Take an unforgettable day trip from Columbus to Hocking Hills State Park. It’s only an hour’s drive away from the city. This natural paradise is the perfect break from urban life.

It’s a dream for anyone who loves the outdoors. The park is full of lush forests, beautiful hiking trails, and amazing views. Put on your hiking boots and discover the trails. You’ll see unique rock formations, smell the wildflowers, and walk through the forests.

The park is famous for its stunning waterfalls. These falls flow into clear, shimmering pools, making a peaceful scene. Visit Old Man’s Cave, Ash Cave, and Cedar Falls. Listen to the water and enjoy the cool, fresh air.

For something exciting, check out the caves and tunnels in the park. Places like Rock House are a special find. Native Americans used this rock as a shelter long ago. Don’t miss Cantwell Cliffs. It’s like a maze ready for you to explore.

There’s plenty to do, from hiking to spotting birds. Or you can just relax with a picnic. Remember to bring your camera. You’ll want to capture the beauty of this place.

Outdoor Activities at Hocking Hills State Park:

  • Hiking through scenic trails
  • Exploring awe-inspiring waterfalls
  • Discovering hidden caves and rock formations
  • Bird-watching and wildlife spotting
  • Picnicking in beautiful natural surroundings

So, why wait? Plan a trip to Hocking Hills State Park soon. Dive into the nature and excitement of Ohio’s outdoor scene. It’s a place where quiet nature moments and fun adventures mix to make unforgettable memories.

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Amish Country: Peaceful Countryside

Take a break in the peaceful countryside of Ohio’s Amish Country. It’s just a short trip from Columbus. Day trips here let you escape the city’s rush.

This area is well-known for its Amish community. They live a simple, traditional life, putting faith, family, and tradition first. It’s a chance to see their unique ways, from their buggies to their crafts, and feel like you’re in a different time.

Exploring the little towns and villages is a big part of experiencing Amish Country. In Berlin, the main spot, you can shop for handmade quilts and furniture. And you must try the homemade treats and Amish food at the local places.

Amish Country

Feel peace in Amish Country with views of farms and beautiful landscapes. You’ll love the slower lifestyle and the natural beauty all around.

Exploring Amish Country: Things to do and see

Make sure to visit these top spots when you head to Amish Country:

  1. Take in the countryside on a lovely drive. See well-kept farms and beautiful scenery.
  2. Learn about Amish and Mennonite history at the Amish & Mennonite Heritage Center.
  3. Go on a horse-drawn buggy tour to see Amish life up close.
  4. Shop for handmade crafts in Berlin, Walnut Creek, and Sugarcreek.
  5. Taste a hearty Amish meal at a farm-to-table spot, using local ingredients.
  6. Visit The Amish Farm and House to see Amish history, a farmhouse, and even join a “mud sale” auction.

Amish Country is a unique place with a culture that values simplicity, quality, and community. It’s a great change of pace. Plan your visit from Columbus to enjoy this beautiful, serene part of Ohio.

Cedar Point: Thrilling Theme Park

For a thrilling adventure, head to Cedar Point from Columbus. Known as the roller coaster capital, it’s packed with rides to make your heart race.

A short drive from Columbus, this park is ideal for families and those who love excitement. It boasts over 70 rides, including 18 top-notch coasters.

Ride Millennium Force, a top roller coaster worldwide. Don’t miss the excitement on rides like Top Thrill Dragster and Maverick.

Cedar Point is more than just roller coasters. Enjoy live shows, family and water rides, or cool off at the Cedar Point Shores Waterpark.

For a deeper dive, explore themed areas like Frontier Town or Planet Snoopy. Each spot has a special vibe and fun activities.

Cedar Point

Must-visit attractions at Cedar Point:

  1. Millennium Force: Experience the thrill of one of the world’s tallest and fastest roller coasters.
  2. Top Thrill Dragster: Reach speeds of 120 mph in just a few seconds on this adrenaline-pumping coaster.
  3. Maverick: Hold on tight as you navigate through twists, turns, and inversions on this intense coaster.
  4. Cedar Point Shores Waterpark: Splash around and cool off at the park’s water attractions.
  5. Cedar Point & Lake Erie Railroad: Take a scenic ride on a historic steam-powered locomotive.

For endless fun, Cedar Point is the place to be. Round up your loved ones and set off for an unforgettable adventure at this theme park.

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame: Musical History

Explore the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland to dive into rock and roll’s history. It’s a must for anyone who loves music. You’ll see the world of famous musicians and the culture that influenced music over time.

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

Journey through the decades at the Hall of Fame. See how rock and roll began and its impact today. You’ll get to appreciate the creativity and innovation in music.

“Rock and roll music, if you like it, if you feel it, you can’t help but move to it. That’s what happens to me. I can’t help it.”

Elvis Presley

The museum is filled with the gear, outfits, and memories of famous artists. From Elvis Presley and The Beatles to Beyoncé and Nirvana. You’ll discover their big moments in music history.

Induction Ceremony

Each year, the Hall of Fame celebrates artists who left a mark in rock and roll. The Induction Ceremony is a big event, where stars gather to honor the new inductees. It’s a chance to show respect to those who influenced following generations.

Rolling Stone Archives

At the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, dive into the Rolling Stone Archives. Find a wealth of magazines, articles, and memories. They show how rock and roll changed not just music, but culture too.

Address Hours of Operation Admission
1100 Rock and Roll Blvd, Cleveland, OH 44114
  • Monday: Closed
  • Tuesday-Sunday: 10am – 5pm
  • Adults: $28
  • Seniors (65+): $23
  • Youth (ages 6-12): $14
  • Children (5 and under): Free

Don’t miss the chance to visit the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. It’s where you can see the lasting legacy of rock and roll. Get lost in the sights, sounds, and stories that have inspired music lovers around the world.

The Wilds: Safari Adventure

Join us for a fantastic safari adventure at The Wilds, just an hour and a half from Columbus. It’s a huge place, almost 10,000 acres, full of stunning scenery. Here, you get up close to many animal species and learn a lot about them.

At The Wilds, you can do many things focused on saving animals and teaching people. Hop on a safari tour in an open vehicle to see giraffes, rhinos, and cheetahs up close. They all live here in a way that’s close to their natural homes.

If you’re feeling daring, try the zipline for a bird’s eye view. It’s a thrilling way to see the beauty from above. Or, pick a behind-the-scenes tour. You will meet the caring staff and see their important work up close.

This place is not just for adventures. The Wilds is also a key spot for animal research and saving endangered species. It teaches the importance of nature and helps protect it.

“The Wilds is a hidden gem nestled in the heart of Ohio. It provides a unique and educational experience for visitors of all ages, showcasing the importance of wildlife conservation in a mesmerizing setting.” – Local Wildlife Enthusiast

Plan Your Visit to The Wilds

Prepping for your The Wilds trip? Here are some key points to remember:

  • Location: Cumberland, Ohio (approximately 1.5 hours southeast of Columbus)
  • Hours of Operation: The Wilds opens from May to October. Please check their website for the latest on times and tours.
  • Ticket Reservations: Booking ahead for safaris and other activities is smart. You can get tickets online or by calling their visitor center.
  • COVID-19 Safety Measures: The Wilds takes steps to keep everyone safe. Check their site for any rules to follow during your visit.

Get ready for something truly special at The Wilds. It’s a must if you love nature, animals, or are after a unique experience. This safari will fill you with unforgettable moments.

The Wilds Safari Adventure

Why Visit The Wilds
1 Experience a guided safari tour
2 Observe diverse animal species in their natural habitats
3 Participate in behind-the-scenes tours
4 Support wildlife conservation efforts
5 Enjoy thrilling zipline adventures

Franklin Park Conservatory and Botanical Gardens: Natural Beauty

Visit the Franklin Park Conservatory and Botanical Gardens. It’s a great place for a day trip from Columbus. You’ll find it just a short drive from the city. This oasis offers a break from the city’s noise and crowds.

You’ll be amazed by the variety of gardens here. They feature plants from all over the world. In places like the Pacific Island Water Garden and the Dorothy M. Davis Showhouse, you’ll see plants in full bloom.

Gardens Highlights
Community Garden A showcase of sustainable gardening practices
Japanese Garden A serene space inspired by traditional Japanese design
Butterfly Gardens Witness the beauty of butterflies in their natural habitat
The Scotts Miracle-Gro Foundation Children’s Garden Engaging interactive exhibits for young explorers

Enjoy the artful side of nature with the conservatory’s art installations. These creative displays make your visit even more fascinating. They are spread out all over the gardens.

There are also educational programs for plant lovers. Learn about gardening that’s good for the planet. And see how the gardens work to protect nature.

Don’t miss the gift shop before you leave. It has plant-themed items and books. If you’re hungry, the café serves fresh, local food.

The Franklin Park Conservatory and Botanical Gardens are perfect for nature and art fans. It’s a peaceful place for everyone. Enjoy Ohio’s natural beauty and the calm of these beautiful gardens.

Franklin Park Conservatory and Botanical Gardens

Experience the Tranquility of Nature

“The beauty of the Franklin Park Conservatory and Botanical Gardens is truly awe-inspiring. The diverse gardens and captivating art installations transport you to another world, where the stresses of daily life melt away.” – Sarah, Columbus, Ohio

Ohio Caverns: Underground Wonder

Explore the deep tunnels of Ohio Caverns. It’s located in West Liberty. This cave is full of amazing rock formations and clear streams.

As you go deeper inside, discover the beauty of stalactites and stalagmites. They hang from the ceiling and rise from the floor. These shapes have taken millions of years to form, making a magical underground world.

Inside the caverns, your adventure begins. You’ll squeeze through small paths and see Crystal King. It’s a huge stalactite and one of the most perfect in the world.

Ohio Caverns

The underground streams make it even more special. The sound of water falling echoes off the walls. It brings peace to this hidden place.

Join a guided tour to learn about the caves. Experts will tell you about the rocks and how they formed. They also share about the life that lives in darkness.

Ohio Caverns is great for anyone who loves nature or adventure. It’s also a cool place to learn something new. It’s a top spot for a trip from Columbus. Get ready to see the wonder under Ohio’s ground.

Mohican State Park: Scenic Retreat

Get away from the city life at Mohican State Park. It’s not far from Columbus and is perfect for nature lovers. The park is a beautiful place for those who seek peace and adventure.

Mohican State Park

This place is made up of dense forests, rivers, and trails. It’s great for hiking. You’ll see amazing views and maybe some animals.

Love camping? This park has a few places for you to set up. You can sleep under the stars and wake up to nature’s sounds.

Want to be on the water? The Clear Fork River is great for kayaking, canoeing, and fishing. Enjoy the calm water and the animals all around you.

Relax in the park’s beauty or visit nearby places like Mohican-Memorial State Forest. You could also check out the Mohican-Loudonville Bike Trail or the town of Loudonville.

“Mohican State Park is a hidden gem. It’s perfect for a quiet day out from Columbus. Its dense forests and winding rivers offer a peaceful escape for nature lovers.”

Why Visit Mohican State Park?

Mohican State Park has so much to offer. You can enjoy:

  • Scenic hiking trails
  • Camping grounds with spectacular views
  • Water activities on the Clear Fork River
  • Abundant wildlife spotting opportunities
  • Proximity to other attractions and towns

This park is full of nature’s wonders. Visit Mohican State Park for a peaceful and beautiful getaway.

German Village: Historic Charm

Step into the past with German Village. It’s right in the heart of Columbus. You’ll find yourself surrounded by 19th-century architecture, beautiful streets, and a lively vibe. This area shows off the city’s deep history.

As you walk through German Village, it feels like a different time. The old streets and homes make a scenic backdrop. Every house has its own tale to tell. The unique designs and historic feeling are all around you.

German Village

But German Village is not just beautiful. It’s also full of shops, eateries, and cafes. Foodies will love the German and other international dishes here. There are also cozy spots for coffee and beer.

Must-See Attractions in German Village

Don’t miss these places in German Village:

  1. The Book Loft: A book lover’s dream with rooms full of all kinds of books.
  2. Schiller Park: A lovely place for a picnic or a quiet walk. It has beautiful gardens.
  3. German Village Meeting Haus: This place holds events that highlight the neighborhood’s culture and past.

German Village is more than history and good food. It hosts cool events that bring people together. The Oktoberfest and touring homes and gardens are just two examples. These events showcase the area’s culture and architecture.

German Village is Columbus’ treasure trove, mixing history, culture, and food. Exploring its streets, enjoying great meals, or joining in on events, German Village always leaves you with great memories.

German Village: Experience History and Culture

German Village is a living museum to history and culture. It warmly invites anyone with its mix of old buildings, stores, and places to eat. Dive in and learn about the hidden tales of this historic area.

Toledo Museum of Art: Cultural Delights

Dive into the rich world of art at the Toledo Museum of Art. It’s known for its wide collection that covers many eras and styles. Art lovers will find a treasure trove at this prestigious museum. It’s a top spot to see everything from old artifacts to the latest in art.

When you walk in, you’ll first notice the stunning architecture. Then, the carefully arranged art in every gallery catches your eye. Each area tells its own story about different times in art.

Here, you can see artworks by the world’s best, such as Rembrandt, Monet, and Picasso. You’ll love the fine details and skill in these pieces. They share stories about our past and speak to different cultures.

“Every visit to the Toledo Museum of Art is a journey through time and creativity. The carefully curated exhibits showcase the vast range of human expression and provide a unique opportunity to connect with art.”

Along with its main collection, the museum also features changing exhibitions. These shows off new trends and ideas in art. It keeps every visit fresh and exciting for its guests.

Art Education and Workshops

There’s more than just looking at art here. The museum is a place to learn and get creative. They offer classes, workshops, and talks for everyone who loves art.

  • At workshops, you can pick up new art skills from experts.
  • Listen to talks by people who know a lot about art.
  • Guided tours offer insights into the art on display.
  • Interactive spaces let you get your hands on art and be creative.

The museum does a lot for its local community too. It works with schools and groups to bring art to everyone. Its goal is to get people from all walks of life to appreciate art.

Planning Your Visit

If you’re in Toledo, Ohio, visiting is a must. Just a short trip from Columbus, it’s open and free to all. This makes it a perfect spot for those who love art and those who are just curious.

No matter what kind of art you’re into, the Toledo Museum of Art has something for you. Whether you want to see old classics, modern pieces, or join in on creating art, it’s a place that will leave you feeling inspired.

Toledo Museum of Art

Highlights of the Toledo Museum of Art

Art Period Featured Artists Notable Works
Impressionism Monet, Renoir, Degas The Garden, The Luncheon of the Boating Party
Renaissance Leonardo da Vinci, Titian, Raphael Madonna and Child with St. Anne, John the Baptist
Abstract Expressionism Pollock, Rothko, Kline Autumn Rhythm, No. 5, Excavation
Ancient Art Egyptian, Greek, Roman Bust of Nefertiti, Laocoon and His Sons


Explore Ohio’s beauty and sights on day trips from Columbus. You’ll find adventures in nature, culture spots, and historical wonders. Hocking Hills State Park is perfect for natural beauty. While Amish Country offers a serene experience.

For fun, Cedar Point has thrilling rides. And don’t forget the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland for music lovers. If wildlife is your thing, The Wilds is a must-see. There, you can see many different animals.

Franklin Park Conservatory is ideal for nature lovers. Ohio Caverns offers a unique underground journey. Enjoy scenic views at Mohican State Park, or visit German Village for its historic charm. The Toledo Museum of Art will delight art fans.

Thanks to these great day trips, you can enjoy Ohio’s wonders near Columbus. So pack up, and set off on an adventure!

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