8 Amazing Things To Do In Columbus Worth The Money

Columbus is generally known for having an atmosphere that is innovative, young, and hip, this is largely thanks to its booming tech industry and innovative arts scene.

Plus, being the capital of Ohio, it is also home to one of the largest campuses in The United States. Therefore, you can find plenty of creativity and energy all year round.

8 Amazing Things To Do In Columbus Worth The Money

With a trip to Columbus, you should expect charming historic districts and gleaming skyscrapers, as well as eccentric boutiques and modern galleries up and down the streets.

One of the best things to do in the city is to simply walk around the neighborhoods and see what you discover.

You’ll be rewarded with expansive parks, scenic Scioto riverfront, and plenty of bikeways.

To truly appreciate the city’s history and acres of gardens and parks, you can’t go wrong with a walk. You may even come across famous attractions, such as Columbus Zoo.

However, deliberating where to go in Columbus can sometimes be an overwhelming experience. This is where we’re here to help.

With this in mind, this article will explore the most amazing attractions and things to do on your visit to Columbus (see also “Amazing Things To Do In Cleveland“).

Let’s get straight into it.

1. Learn All About Technology And Science At COSI

The Center of Science and Industry (COSI) is home to hands-on science experience. Packed with fun activities and interactive exhibits, there is tons of fun to be had here.

There’s a planetarium, a large IMAX screen, a massive room simply dedicated to dinosaurs, and tons of other fun to explore.

A visit to COSI is one you’re sure to remember forever – making it one of the top destinations in Columbus. It is targeted to all ages, plus, there is something new to discover with each visit.

On your visit, you’ll want to make sure to check the opening times since the center can become quite full on certain dates.

You can easily dedicate your whole day to a visit to the COSI museum. In fact, there is even a cafeteria/ cafe where you can grab a bite if you need to refuel.

2. Explore The Outdoors At The Scioto Mile

If you happen to visit Columbus in some good weather, then there is no better way to enjoy the sunshine than by visiting the Scioto Mile – one of the coolest destinations in the city.

Situated along the Scioto River, the Scioto Mile starts at the Arena District and stretches towards Whittier Peninsula.

The promenade is made up of an impressive 175 acres, where you’ll find plenty of parks offering tons of outdoor activities and hiking trails in the heart of the city.

On the Scioto Mile, you’ll find some of the best activities in Columbus. This includes a 15,000-square-foot interactive fountain where you splash around.

Additionally, you’ll find the country’s largest outdoor climbing wall, as well as plenty of galleries at the Cultural Art Center.

Alternatively, you can choose to grab a CoGo bike and ride along the scenic trails while breathing in the fresh air and taking in your surroundings.

If you’re visiting in the summer months, then make sure to attend the annual Rhythm on the River Music Festival, Jazz & Rib Fest, and much more.

At the Scioto Mile, you’ll also find the amazing glass-enclosed Milestone 229 restaurant which offers some of the best weekend brushes in the region.

Conversely, you can keep things casual and pick up some farm-fresh supplies at the local farmer’s market and have a picnic in one of the many green spaces.

3. Level 1 Bar + Arcade

If you’re looking for a throwback to the ’80s, then you’ll want to stop at Level 1 Bar and Arcade. Here, you’ll find tons of fun.

All you have to do is purchase a drink and you’ll be able to play all the video games you desire. However, keep in mind that there is an additional small cost for pinball and skeeball games.

On the weekends, children (or those under the age of 21) are allowed to play between 12:00 pm to 6:00 pm.

Plus, you’ll find party packages for both kids and adults. For children or anyone not drinking alcohol, you’ll find “Mocktails”.

4. Ohio Statehouse

The Ohio Statehouse constitutes a seat for the state government – plus, is it one of the oldest running statehouses in the whole of the U.S.

The building itself was built during the beginning of the American Civil War, and its elegant architecture is considered to be a prime example of Greek Revival.

Inside the building, you’ll find plenty of historical artifacts and a collection of portraits, as well as a marble bust detailing Abraham Lincoln.

Between the hours of 10 am and 3 pm, you can participate in free guided tours, which teach you all about Ohio’s earliest female legislators and topics such as balancing the budget.

Plus, there are even smartphone audio tours available for the building and its grounds which are narrated by the Governor and House speaker.

Once your tour has come to an end, you can grab a cup of coffee or some cake at the Capitol Cafe.

5. Stroll Around The Botanical Gardens

Built in 1895, the Franklin Park Conservatory and Botanical Gardens feature a colorful and spacious garden. Here, the grounds cover an impressive 88 acres with over 400 species of plants.

One of the garden’s top attractions is the butterfly garden. Plus, between the months of April and December, guests can be amazed by glass-blowing demonstrations.

Plus, you can visit the Palm House which showcases over 43 species of palms.

When it comes to family attractions, this is one of the best attractions in Columbus. Regardless of your age, you’re sure to enjoy this outdoor haven.

Make sure to bring a blanket and a few snacks to enjoy a picnic on one of the benches where you can enjoy a relaxed and calm afternoon before exploring more of Columbus.

6. Eat Your Way Through North Market

For any foodies out there, you’ll certainly want to add North Market to your Columbus itinerary.

The sprawling market dates back to 1876. Today, you’ll find 30 independently-owned businesses, as well as pop-up events and farmer’s markets.

The market even doubles as a small business incubator – helping food makers and local restaurateurs. It is open seven days a week, although, make sure to visit the website for the exact opening times when visiting.

Plus, make sure you visit the market with an empty stomach as you’re sure to be leaving with a full one!

Here, you can sample some local seasonal cheeses from The Black Radish Creamery, as well as Bavarian glazed roasted almonds from the American Nut Company. Plus, from the Omega Artisan Baking, you’ll find freshly baked scones.

This is only a small selection of what is available in the market. From Indian and Mexican to Thai and Vietnamese, there is sure to be something at the North Market that agrees with your tastes.

If you visit the market on the weekends between June and October, you can pick up some farm-fresh veggies, fruits, cheeses, meats, and much more.

Depending on when you’re visiting, you can even check out the Farmer’s Festival, Ohio Wine Festival, Mix & Shake cocktail night, or even the monthly Night Market.

7. Chadwick Arboretum

The beauty of Chadwick Arboretum Gardens is that they are completely free to visit! If you keep your eyes peeled, then you may even come across a larger-than-life-sized praying mantis!

This is a fun activity for the children in the family to take part in, exploring the gardens and trying to locate the bright green bug.

When you’re in the area, make sure to check out the Labyrinth Garden.

8. Columbus Zoo & Aquarium

The Columbus Zoo & Aquarium features award-winning wildlife enclosures with unmissable sights. This includes a 100,000-gallon tank containing coral reefs and one of the largest collections of reptiles in The United States.

Besides reptiles, you’ll also find Mexican wolves, red pandas, Amur tigers, and bald eagles.

Plus, there are plenty of hands-on activities to take part in too, this includes letting birds sit on your shoulder and feeding the towering giraffes.

Likewise, the tide pools provide children with the opportunity to handle small sea creatures.

At Columbus Zoo & Aquarium, there are plenty of demonstrations and lectures the whole family can take part in.

We can’t forget to mention that the zoo donates to over 70 conservation projects all over the world, therefore, you’ll be happy to know that your visit is supporting a good cause.

Final Thoughts

A trip to Columbus is sure to be an unforgettable one, with tons of amazing experiences to take part in, you won’t be short on activities.

From nightlife to peaceful gardens, there is something for everyone.

Hopefully, this guide has provided you with some inspiration on how to spend your time in Columbus.

Julia Wright
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