Are you planning a trip to Columbus and overwhelmed? I’ve made it easy for you by sharing fun things to do in Columbus Ohio with the family which includes some of my favorite spots.
Things to do with the Family in Columbus
1. The Topiary Park
My kids and I discovered this gem quite a few years ago. Step inside this green masterpiece to become part of A Sunday Afternoon on the Isle of La Grande Jatte, a painting by George Seurat. This free location is a great space in downtown Columbus to relax for a few minutes and people watch.
2. The Field of Corn
Not technically located inside the city limits, you’ll find this public art display in Dublin, a nearby suburb. A great location to stop and shoot a few photos, or a fun stop on a road trip to stretch your legs, you won’t want to miss this cornfield in the middle of an urban sprawl. The Field of Corn is part of Dublin’s Art in Public Spaces which consists of over 70 sculptural pieces. Grab your map, pack a lunch and head out for an art-filled afternoon.
3. The Book Loft of the German Village
Readers and book lovers will enjoy this stop in this historic neighborhood. The Book Loft, housed in a Victorian-style building, features 32 rooms full of books. A word of caution- this is not the location to turn your kids loose. If you want to find them again, that is. This bookstore is huge and is easy to get turned around in. Grab a map when you enter the store and prepare to spend some time navigating the aisles in search of the perfect read.
4. The Columbus Zoo and Aquarium
This large attraction guarantees a fun-filled day for the family and offers plenty to do. The complex features a new water park, Zoombezi Bay, in addition to the zoo and aquarium. Highlights for my family include feeding the stingray, watching the manatee and walking along a kangaroo strewn path. The zoo also features additional programming throughout the year like Boo at the Zoo and Wildlights.
5. The Ohio History Center and Ohio Village
History lovers can spend a couple hours touring the museum exploring exhibits pertaining to Ohio history before traveling back in time to the 1860’s in the Ohio Village (during the summer and special events). Don’t miss your chance to walk through a Lustron home which was manufactured in Columbus in the 1950’s.
Interactive exhibits, a planetarium and live shows, COSI or Center of Science and Technology provides families an opportunity to learn about science in a fun way. Favorites of the museum include the Ocean where you can meet Poseidon and climb in a mini-sub and Progress where you learn how much can change in the world in a span of 64 years. New to 2018 is the Dinosaur Gallery, a partnership with the American Museum of Natural History in New York City.
7. Franklin Park Conservatory and Botanical Garden
Travel through several continents and biomes from the Himalayas to the desert. You’ll see over 400 species of plants displayed indoors. Other features of the property include the Palm House, built in 1895 and art installations by Dale Chihuly.
8. Columbus Art Museum
With a large collection of 19th and 20th-century American modern art, guests can use their cell phones to learn more about the exhibits and art pieces for a special guided tour of the museum. The museum recently underwent a large expansion and added a new wing. Children five and under get in free and on Sundays, the museum is free to everyone thanks to a special grant.
9. Polaris Fashion Place
From Teavana to Forever 21 to Coach, this location houses many of the top names in fashion. Browse, buy or window shop, but I guarantee you’ll work up an appetite which leads me to #10.
10. Buca di Beppo
Buca di Beppo offers authentic Italian cuisine in an eclectic, vintage setting. With locations on North Front Street and East Wilson Bridge in Columbus, Buca provides the perfect spot to relax after a day of exploration in Ohio’s Capital. Buca’s family-style dishes are perfect for celebrations and groups of all sizes.
What suggestions would you add to my list of things to do in Columbus Ohio with the family?
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© 2018, Tonya Prater. All rights reserved.