Explore the boundless natural wonders of the Buckeye State.
Each year on November 2nd, National Ohio Day commemorates the anniversary of when the state officially joined the United States. There's no better way to celebrate Ohio’s rich history and diverse beauty than by exploring its outdoor treasures. Often referred to as the Heart of America, you’ll find everything from captivating landscapes and hiking trails to stunning national parks and serene waterways. Here are a few of our favorite places to visit in the Buckeye State.
Cuyahoga Valley National Park
Located just a short drive from Cleveland, Cuyahoga Valley National Park is a nature lover’s paradise. Visitors can go hiking, biking and kayaking among the picturesque vistas, tranquil lakes and cascading waterfalls. Take a leisurely stroll along the Ohio & Erie Canal Towpath Trail or paddle down the Cuyahoga River for an unforgettable adventure. Be sure to keep an eye out for the diverse wildlife, including bald eagles, beavers and various species of birds.
Hocking Hills State Park
Nestled in the southeastern part of Ohio, Hocking Hills State Park is renowned for its enchanting rock formations, deep gorges and lush woodlands. Adrenaline-junkies flock there for rock climbing, rappelling and zip-lining among its rugged cliffs. Travelers of all skill levels can also wander the numerous hiking trails that guide you to some of the park's most iconic attractions, including Old Man's Cave, Cedar Fall and Ash Cave.
Lake Erie Islands
To enjoy an island getaway in Ohio, head to the Lake Erie Islands. You can easily access them by ferry, and each island has its own unique charm, making them perfect for exploration. Put-in-Bay on South Bass Island offers exciting opportunities for kayaking, boating and fishing during the day; and transforms into a vibrant nightlife hub after dark. For a more relaxed vibe, hit up Kelleys Island to marvel at glacial grooves and unwind on pristine beaches.
Cedar Point Amusement Park
For an action-packed adventure the entire family will love, Cedar Point Amusement Park in Sandusky boasts a unique blend of thrills, recreational activities and nature’s finest backdrops. While known for its world-famous roller coasters, Cedar Point is also home to an indoor and outdoor water park, sandy beaches and lakefront games with go-karts, mini golf and more. At Frontier Town, you can mine for gemstones, dip your own candles, try your hand at glass blowing or even ride on a pony—there is truly something for everyone.
Wayne National Forest
If you're seeking a more remote and rugged outdoor experience, Wayne National Forest in southeastern Ohio is the place to be. This vast expanse covers more than a quarter of a million acres of Appalachian foothills and is a haven for hiking, camping, fishing and mountain biking. Serious backpackers can explore the Buckeye Trail, a 1,444-mile expedition that encircles the entire state; or they can venture onto the North Country National Scenic Trail for breathtaking views of the surrounding wilderness.