Family Winter Staycation Ideas

Looking for family winter getaway ideas? You don’t need to leave southwest Ohio (or travel too far from it) to find lots of family fun!

Although hopping on a plane and setting off to a far-away destination for the holidays is exciting, it’s often less expensive and more relaxing to stay close to home. A winter staycation might be the perfect idea to spend quality time with your family and explore your hometown.

For Art Lovers

Are you into the arts? Cincinnati is an art lover’s paradise! Between the Cincinnati Art Museum (CAM), Contemporary Arts Center (CAC) and Taft Museum of Art, you can easily spend a weekend immersed in the visual arts. Bonus: Admission to CAM and CAC is always free, including the brand new Creativity Center. Prefer a physically distant trek outdoors? Bundle up and take a mural tour with ArtWorks Cincinnati. Many of these stunning works of art showcase Cincinnati history, making this activity both educational and Insta-worthy.

For the Foodies

Located in Fairfield, Jungle Jim’s is a legendary food lover’s destination in Southwest Ohio, and people travel from all over the Midwest to visit. It’s so much more than a grocery store, as they carry a diverse selection of items from all over the world, including an entire section devoted to hot sauce.

In Downtown Cincy, stop by Findlay Market, Ohio’s oldest continuously operated public market. While you’re there, try a goetta sandwich from Eckerlin Meats — it’s rumored to be the best in town.

Yellow Springs’ Youngs Jersey Dairy is a family favorite. While activities are limited during the winter, kids will love visiting the farm animals and enjoying a fresh scoop of house-made ice cream at The Dairy Store. While you’re in Yellow Springs, stop by the Little Fairy Garden to create your own fairy paradise!

For the Outdoor Enthusiasts

Hit the rinks at Cincinnati’s Fountain Square Ice Rink (ice skating and bumper cars are available!), Summit Park’s Ice Rink (an under-the-radar fave), Dayton’s MetroPark Ice Rink or Goggin Ice Center, where the Miami University RedHawks practice.

Bundle up and take a hike! Great Parks, Cincinnati Parks, Cincinnati Nature Center and Five Rivers MetroParks all boast picturesque parks and trails perfect for enjoying when the weather turns cold. Or, head out east for winter fishing and eagle-watching at Stonelick State Park or Rocky Fork Lake.

For the Family who loves a fun time

Southwest Ohio is packed with fun play places, museums and more! Play in the dungeon at King Arthur’s Court, pick up a game of duck pin bowling at Pins Mechanical where kids play free on Sundays, rent out an hourly selfie-studio and play dress up or create your own tie dye masterpiece at Kaleidoscope Colors!

For the Family Looking for Something All-Inclusive

Looking for a night away? You don’t have to travel far! Adventure awaits in Warren County (Ohio’s Largest Playground) at Great Wolf Lodge. This vacation destination has everything your family desires under one roof: an indoor water park, activities, spa, games and delicious dining options. It’s basically an all-inclusive family getaway in Ohio.

Prefer more of a “rugged” experience? Travel a bit north to Hueston Woods Lodge. There you can rent a cabin in the woods and enjoy a beautiful weekend of R&R. (We recommend buying a s’mores kit and having a bonfire outdoors!)

This winter break, make plans to rest, relax and rediscover Southwest Ohio with a staycation. You’ll be surprised by how many fun experiences there are hiding in plain sight that are not too far from home!

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