15 Reasons Cincinnati is the Best!

Call us biased, but we love Cincinnati. And as we get into spring, our city is arguable at its best and most beautiful. We’re feeling the love, and want everyone to know it! After asking around, it seems we’re not alone: you all love the Queen City, too! How much do we love Cincinnati? Let us count the ways.

Here are 15 reasons Cincinnati is the best:


1. It’s a beautiful city

Go downtown, and you’ll be taken by the mix of modern architecture and Art Deco designs. From the top of Carew Tower, you can see Cincinnati’s diverse neighborhoods, riverboats on the Ohio River, Union Terminal and skyline. Ride the brand-new streetcar and take in Fountain Square, the two-block Main Library, Washington Park, Findley Market and the Banks. Our city is a beauty.

2. It’s affordable

Kids are expensive — but raising kids in Cincinnati isn’t. Need clothes? Head to Once Upon a Child or Plato’s Closet. Books? The library warehouse. Sports equipment? Play It Again Sports. Stuff to do? Check out our monthly free guides. Or 50 Fun Activities for $5 or Less in Cincinnati.

3. The sports

Reds GABPWe are a baseball city — and proud hometown of the Cincinnati Reds! Opening Day is a holiday around here, and we wear our pride, well, proudly. {Need more proof? Head to the Reds Hall of Fame and Museum!} If you’re more of a football fan, you can say “Who Dey” all fall long at Bengals games. Prefer the ice? Cincinnati Cyclones games make for a family friendly evening. And basketball? Look no further than the Xavier Muskies and Cincinnati Bearcats for the best rivalry in town!

4. Location, location, location

Midwest is best — and we think the tri-state area of which Cincinnati is a part, is the prime location. Hop in the car, and you’re in Indianapolis, Dayton, Columbus, Louisville or Lexington — on just one tank for the entire round-trip! Plan a day canoeing in Athens, exploring Southwestern Ohio’s waterfalls, taking in the horses at Kentucky’s Horse Park or visiting the best children’s museum in the U.S. (in Indianapolis!) — you can do it all from Cincinnati.

5. The seasons

We get all four seasons in Cincy, and some pretty fantastic events to mark each one. Breathe in spring at Zoo Blooms or Krohn Conservatory’s Butterfly Show; soak up summer at an outdoor festival, amusement park or Reds game; fall for fall at a pumpkin patch or apple orchard; embrace winter at the Festival of Lights or Winterfest!

6. LaRosa’s, Skyline and Graeter’s (oh my!)

graetersMaybe people don’t think of Cincinnati as a foodie destination — but they should. Our chili is famous; LaRosa’s is the only place to get a pie; and Oprah gave Graeter’s rave reviews! We’d like to add Holtman’s to the list for its delectable donuts; Blue Oven Bakery for its bread; Aglamesis’s opera creams and chocolate-covered anything; Montgomery Inn’s barbecue sauce and Saratoga Chips; and Jungle Jim’s selection of cheese, candy, wine and international foods. Oh — and the fine dining scene in Cincinnati deserves a category all its own (Jeff Ruby would own that category).

7. We have a streetcar

After years of rumors, talk and votes, we finally got our streetcar last fall. The Cincinnati Bell Connector is fantastic — you can literally travel from the river to OTR in one quick, easy and inexpensive trip. And it’s fun, too. Take your kids for a round-trip ride aboard this beauty on the next rainy day.

8. Our public library system

Not to brag, but we have a killer public library system. The Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County has 40 branches with everything you’ll ever need: free ebook loans, indoor play areas, a Maker Space with a 3D printer, sewing machines and Espresso Book Machine, bi-annual book sales, story times six days a week, loads of free activities for kids, fun exhibits, author lectures and, of course, books.

9. The museums

From classic art to contemporary art, children’s interests to museum centerhistory, indoor to outdoor, Cincinnati’s Museums are top rate. And, they’re super affordable: the Cincinnati Art Museum and Contemporary Art Center are always free, Taft Museum is free every Sunday and the Duke Energy Children’s Museum and Behringer-Crawford Museum are super affordable. And if you’re looking for interesting local gems, the Fire Museum of Greater Cincinnati and American Sign Museum are especially cool.

10. The parks

Playgrounds? Check. Parks? Great ones! (And fabulous city parks, too). If you’re looking for vibrant green, lush forests, babbling brooks, nature preserves, rolling hills and state-of-the-art playgrounds, you’ve come to the right place.

11. The arts

From The Children’s Theatre of Cincinnati to Sunday Funday (and now Taft Jr.!) at the Taft, to Families Create! at the Weston to the Cincinnati Ballet’s Otto M. Budig Academy, kids can get a world-class arts education in the Queen City.

12. The children’s hospital

No parent ever wants to take their child to the hospital, but when it happens, we have access to one of the best in the entire country. Most recently, The Children’s Hospital of Cincinnati ranked third in the nation among all Honor Roll hospitals in U.S. News & World Report’s 2016-17 Best Children’s Hospitals report. In addition, Cincinnati Children’s was ranked among the top five pediatric hospitals in seven of 10 specialties. We recently highlighted Cincinnati Children’s contribution to autism research through its participation in SPARK, the largest autism study to date. This local hospital is a tremendous asset to Cincinnati Parents.

13. Carol Ann’s CarouselCarol Ann's

London has the Millennium Wheel. Chicago the Navy Pier Centennial Wheel. Cincinnati — Carol Ann’s Carousel. This hand-painted and locally built carousel is magical. Each figure represents a different place, landmark or piece of Cincinnati. Carol Ann’s is a downtown destination that epitomizes the warmth and character of out city. It’s inviting and friendly, just like Cincinnati. Oh, and it’s loads of fun to ride!

14. Great support and resources for parents

In addition to the stand-out medical services (see above), we have an amazing resource in the YMCA of Greater Cincinnati (Swim lessons? Safety training? Camps? They have it all!); we have an active MOPS community; the Ronald McDonald House for families going through tough times; great volunteer organizations and print resources (cough *Cincinnati Parent* cough) to make parents feel like part of a great(er) community.

15. Big-city amenities with a small-town heart

If you want to live somewhere that has the amenities of a big city, Cincinnati’s the place. If you crave the pace of a small town, Cincinnati’s the place. Perhaps it’s because of our almost-southern location, but we’ve got the hospitality you’d expect from the South, the relaxed pace you’d expect from the Midwest and the attractions you’d expect from a cosmopolitan city. Cincinnati is a great place to live — we have it all, plus a whole lot of heart.


Why do you love Cincinnati? Share your reasons in the comments below!



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