Travel to Columbus and Central Ohio – Episode 595

categories: USA Travel

Travel to Columbus, Ohio - A One Week Itinerary in Central Ohio (Podcast)

Hear about travel to Columbus and central Ohio as the Amateur Traveler talks to Matthew Caracciolo from about what to do in the Buckeye State.

Matthew says of Columbus, “I know Columbus isn’t the most obvious choice for most people but the two words that come to mind are variety and value. There’s a surprising variety of things to do, both in the city and an hour and a half to two-hour radius in any direction around the city. I say two hours mostly to include Cedar Point. An hour and a half is going to get you everything else.”

Matthew starts us at the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium which is not only one of the larger urban zoos in the U.S. but also includes a waterpark. Some families make a two-day event of their visit.

We get inside of some of the neighborhoods of Columbus like German Village where you can go for some good bratwurst or the Short North Arts District. We stop at North Market for some unusual ice cream flavors like Churro or Gooey Butter Cake and for some fried chicken.

We talk about the art museum a number of festivals and a science museum where you can leave the kids at home for an adults-only night program.

You may encounter Somalis in its large expat community or Amish from rural Ohio. You will encounter Ohio State football fans… everywhere.

As we get out of the city on side trips Matthew recommends a visit to the Hocking Hills area, as well as a visit to the Wilds conservation park which he describes as “like Jurassic Park but without all the carnage”. We also talk about the theme parks of Cedar Point and Kings Island. Nearby Dayton, Ohio celebrates its aviation heritage as the home of the Wright Brothers and not coincidentally the home of the National Air Force Museum.

Come hear what Ohio, my home state, and its capital Columbus have to offer.

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Show Notes

Matthew Caracciolo
Travel to Northern Ohio – Episode 246
Travel to Cincinnati, Ohio – Episode 511
Columbus Zoo and Aquarium
German Village
The BookLoft
Stauf’s Coffee
Valters at The Maennerchor
Ohio Statehouse
Ohio Theatre
Jazz & Rib Fest
Columbus Arts Festival
The Columbus Food Truck Festival
The Scioto Mile
COSI After Dark
Columbus Blue Jackets
North Market
Hot Chicken Takeover: Nashville Hot Chicken in Columbus
The Ohio State University
Jeni’s Ice Creams
The Columbus Book Project
Wexner Center for the Arts
Hocking Hills Ohio
Rock House
The Wilds
Cedar Point
Kings Island
National Museum of the USAF
Yellow Springs, Ohio
Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park – The Wright Cycle Company and the Wright-Dunbar Interpretive Center


more on Travel to Joshua Tree National Park – Episode 594

Two follow-ups. I noticed as we got to Keys Ranch, we mentioned two restricted areas. We didn’t mention the second. The park has several Day Use Areas which are sunrise to sunset. Check the park for a map. These are areas around desert water sources. The restriction allows the native wildlife to visit these watering holes without human presence and vital to their survival.

The other item we can mention is the park is doing a two year trial on a shuttle bus from both Joshua Tree and 29 Palms visitor centers with stops at certain locations in the park along the loop road. I think the service runs about every two hours. This just started January 31st, 2018.


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Chris Christensen

by Chris Christensen

Chris Christensen is the creator of the Amateur Traveler blog and podcast. He has been a travel creator since 2005 and has won awards including being named the "Best Independent Travel Journalist" by Travel+Leisure Magazine.

5 Responses to “Travel to Columbus and Central Ohio – Episode 595”

Andrew Vidal


Canton, Ohio also has a few things to see. The Pro Football Hall of Fame, which is both a museum of American football memorabilia and a Hall honoring the greats to the game, and the Presidential Library of William McKinley, who was assassinated in 1901.



I’ve lived in Columbus for 35 years and on the whole this was fairly accurate, but as a member of the Columbus Landmarks Foundation I do want to defend the Ohio Statehouse. If I hear one more hipster bemoan how we need a “dome” on our state capitol I might scream. This building a beautiful example of nineteenth century Greek Revival Architecture. ( It is beautiful and unique just like our state and our flag.
Thanks for your work, Chris, I always make sure to check your archives before I travel. -e



I do so hope you were accusing me of being a hipster 😉 It would amuse my children.

Kacy Wander


Thanks for the great episode on central Ohio! I agree with your guest’s suggestion of visiting Jeni’s Ice Cream, but since Columbus is somewhat of an ice cream Mecca, why not turn a visit into an ice cream crawl? Graeter’s Ice Cream is another Ohio staple, famous for its Black Raspberry Chip. Although this crawl may not require a designated driver, it is possible to walk from the Graeter’s to the Jeni’s locations in the suburb of Bexley. While in Bexley, I’d also recommend visiting the Franklin Park Conservatory and Botanical Gardens. Finally, as a registered architect and Columbus native, I must agree with the other comment that the Statehouse is perfect with no dome. It’s Greek revival architecture, not Roman!



Icream crawl? I’m in.

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