Socially Distant Spring Break Ideas

Spring break’s here … and, we’re still battling a pandemic. But happily, spring has arrived here in Southwest Ohio, and between outdoor parks and attractions, there are a multitude of options for epic spring break fun. If you’re staying local for spring break, the area has tons of kid- and socially-distant-friendly activities to keep the whole family busy! Explore some new places or things you’ve never done this spring break.

Visit a museum

The Cincinnati Museum Center is always a good idea, and if you haven’t visited in awhile, you’ve probably missed out on some new exhibits. In the National History Museum, the “You Are Here” exhibit is one big love letter to Cincinnati, highlighting the people and places that make the Queen City special. And in the Museum of Natural History and Science, the Neil Armstrong Space Exploration Gallery’s recent expansion includes an immersive audio-visual experience (don’t worry — it’s hands free) that puts kids in space alongside the astronauts.

Cincinnati Museum Center

For a classic museum-going experience, Northern Kentucky’s Behringer-Crawford Museum is a total hidden gem. This under-the-radar museum is all about transportation, from trains to boats to classic cars. Outside, there’s an epic nature playscape, which is the perfect place for kids to run off that pent-up winter energy.

And, of course, Dayton’s Boonshoft Museum of Discovery is beyond cool, and features an impressive number of permanent and rotating exhibits. Kids will especially love the Discovery Zoo, Treehouse, and Explorers Crossing.

Be a tourist

Southwest Ohio offers not one, but two “big little cities,” each offering lots of opportunities for exploration. If you’re into the arts, head to Cincinnati. 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, and admission at the Taft is free on Sundays.

Prefer to experience art 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. At CAM, the new Art Climb is a fun way to experience art outside. And Butler County’s Pyramid Hill is perhaps the most incredible outdoor art museum ever, featuring larger-than-life sculptures across 300 rolling acres.

Art Climb

While you’re in Downtown Cincy, stop by Findlay Market, Ohio’s oldest continuously operated public market. Or rent a pedal bike ride from Pedal Fun Cincinnati, an active outdoor adventure that lets you experience the city in a whole new way.

Of course, the Cincinnati Zoo is one of the area’s best attractions, and spring is *the* time to visit. Embrace the beauty of the season with Zoo Blooms, an exuberant celebration of spring.

Running April 1-30, Zoo Blooms features over 100,000 colorful tulips in bloom, and is a must-visit spring event.

Another worth-the-drive ‘must’ is Franklin Park Conservatory, located just outside Columbus. This hidden gem is easily one of the most beautiful and breathtaking places in all of Ohio, and truly accessible to everyone, from curious toddlers and active kids to avid gardeners and horticulturists. There, the Scotts Miracle-Gro Foundation Children’s Garden is an incredible outdoor playscape kids will never want to leave.

Other socially-distant tourist musts in Southwest Ohio? Trammel Fossil Park in Sharonville is an outdoor site where kids can dig (and take!) fossils from Ohio’s ancient past. And up in Yellow Springs, Young’s Jersey Dairy is a beloved favorite. Kids will love visiting the farm animals and enjoying a fresh scoop of house-made ice cream at The Dairy Store. And if you’re looking for a night away, Great Wolf Lodge makes for, well, a great staycation option. This destination has everything your entire family desires under one roof: an indoor water park, activities, spa, games, delicious dining options, and a rustic “camping” kind of vibe. It’s basically an all-inclusive family getaway right here in Ohio.

Connect with nature

Southwest Ohio has no shortage of natural beauty that’s best enjoyed in the spring. Grab the kids and take a hike: Great Parks of Hamilton County, Cincinnati Parks, Cincinnati Nature Center and Five Rivers MetroParks all boast picturesque parks and trails perfect for enjoying.

If you prefer to take in nature on wheels, the Loveland Bike Trail is the way to go. Start in Downtown Loveland (near a fun playground/picnic area), and from there, make the ride as long (or short) as you’d like. Grab a helmet and spend a day pedaling along the Little Miami, then stop for ice cream from the Loveland Graeter’s upon your return.

Loveland Bike Trail

And if the campgrounds are calling your name, plan a night (or two) at 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 for the ultimate ‘hygee’ experience.)

This spring break, embrace the season in Ohio, and plan some socially-distant fun with your family!

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