6 Easy Day Trips from Columbus, Ohio that are Perfect for Families

Spread the Love
  • 18
    Shares

Plan an easy day trip from one of these 6 road trip ideas that are one hour or less from Columbus and great for families!

Even though there is so much to do in Columbus, sometimes we need a little change of scenery! I love when we discover a cute little downtown area, an amazing park or a great museum that is just outside of Columbus! It’s like being on vacation, even though you’re just a short drive away!

Archway in Hartman Rock Garden in Springfield, Ohio

Hartman Rock Garden in Springfield, Ohio

I’ve put together this list of easy road trips from Columbus, Ohio that are great for families. These are all trips you can do in a day.

The criteria for this list is that they are a one hour or less drive from downtown Columbus! So if you’re looking to break up the weekday routine or want a weekend getaway, pick one of these nearby cities and go exploring!

Easy Day Trips from Columbus for Families

Ohio has so much to explore! Central Ohio is in the middle of all of it and I’m so happy we can take mini vacations to some pretty cool places! I hope you are inspired to plan a day trip to one of these places with your kids! Tag me in your pictures on Instagram @whatshouldwedotoday_cbus !

IMG_8735

Share this post with your friends!

Save this post on Pinterest!

6 Easy Day Trips from Columbus, Ohio for Families


Spread the Love
  • 18
    Shares

5 Fun Things to do with Kids in Bellefontaine, Ohio

Spread the Love
  • 7
    Shares

Just one hour from downtown Columbus, Bellefontaine, Ohio provides a fun, family-friendly way to spend the day!

Thanks to Logan County Visitors Bureau for partnering with us on this post.

I love discovering new (to me) towns that are easy day trips from Columbus! I am always happy to end up pleasantly surprised by the places we find within an hour’s drive! One of those happy discoveries happened this fall when we were invited by the Logan County Visitor’s Bureau to visit Bellefontaine, Ohio – just a tad less than an hour from downtown Columbus!

Downtown Bellefontaine, Ohio

My family spent the day exploring the area including mini golf, pizza, and, of course, coffee! 😉 Plus we found one of the most adorable and inspiring toy stores I have ever been in! Set aside a day for a trip from Columbus to Bellefontaine and enjoy what this cute town has to offer!

buildings in downtown Bellefontaine, Ohio

child in downtown Bellefontaine, Ohio

5 Family Friendly Things to do in Bellefontaine, Ohio:

1. Logan County History Center

  • 521 E Columbus Avenue, Bellefontaine, Ohio 43311, 937-593-7557

Our first stop in Bellefontaine was the Logan County History Center. Housed in an impressive mansion, the museum was filled with a surprising amount of displays and things to see!

Logan County Museum in Bellefontaine, Ohio

Honda opened in Marysville in 1979 and opened another plant in Logan County in 1997. The Logan County History Center, in conjunction with Honda, celebrated 40 years of Honda with an ongoing display of cars, car parts and history. The display includes donations from the International Friendship Center, an organization created to support families moving to Ohio from other countries to work with Honda. The display includes many Japanese items.

Transportation Museum in Bellefontaine, Ohio

The Logan County Transportation Museum was added in 2014 and includes examples of transportation throughout history from Conestoga to railroads to planes. My kids enjoyed seeing the many vehicles on display!

plane on display in the Transportation Museum in Bellefontaine, Ohio

The museum is filled with rooms that rotate displays. Some of the displays we enjoyed were communication devices through the years, the civil war and old toys! (And by old I mean the 80’s and 90’s haha). There really is a lot to see here! It would be a definite stop for kids who love vehicles!

child inside the Logan County History Center


2. The Fun Company

  • 136 S Main St., Bellefontaine, Ohio 43311, 937-599-2993 

Inside The Fun Company toy store in Bellefontaine, Ohio

I’m still thinking about how magical this toy store is. What an amazing hidden gem just outside of Columbus! I loved how The Fun Company had little nooks and crannies for playing and reading. 

two boys inside The Fun Company in Bellefontaine, Ohio

Toys were out on display for kids to test out. The colors and decor in the store made it absolutely dreamy. Can I move in? My kids loved it, I loved it, it was a highlight of the trip for sure!

reading area inside The Fun Company in Bellefontaine, Ohio

Books for sale at The Fun Company in Bellefontaine, Ohio


3. Six Hundred Downtown

  • 108 S Main St Bellefontaine, OH 43311, 937-599-6600 

Six Hundred Downtown, pizza restaurant in Bellefontaine, Ohio

We stopped for lunch at the restaurant Six Hundred Downtown. The restaurant is owned by Brittany Saxton who is a 5 time World Pizza Champion. I can’t say for sure what that is, but it sounds like major #goals! She has also competed on Guys Grocery Games on the Food Network!

pizza at six hundred downtown in Bellefontaine, Ohio

The name Six Hundred comes from the temperature at which you bake pizzas – 600 degrees. The atmosphere in the restaurant is classic and comforting. It was great for kids and it would also be great for a date night!

boy playing with dough at Six Hundred Downtown in Bellefontaine, Ohio

We had garlic knots as an appetizer and a pizza for our main course. The pizza was VERY good.  The restaurant offers a kid’s menu and some of the meals do include a drink. All kids meals are $4.50. The best part for my kids is that they bring pizza dough to the table for kids to play with while they wait!


4. Putt & Play Golf Center

  • 209 W Columbus Ave., Bellefontaine, Ohio 43311, 937-404-1330 

boys playing mini golf at Putt and Play in Bellefontaine, Ohio

In downtown Bellefontaine you will find a fun indoor activity center called Putt & Play Golf Center. Inside they have a golf simulator, a mini golf course, laser tag and a virtual reality booth. We chose to play a round of putt putt golf! Indoor mini golf courses are somewhat hard to find so this was a lot of fun on a cold day!

boy and dad playing mini golf in Bellefontaine, Ohio

This course was unique because of its train theme! The course was fun and not too challenging for the kids. My kids are still young enough to get frustrated by really complex mini golf courses, but this one was just right! 

trained theme mini golf at Putt and Play in Bellefontaine, Ohio

train themed mini golf at Putt and Play in Bellefontaine, Ohio

If you’re in the Northwest area of Columbus this might even work for a unique birthday party idea – especially if you’re having a train-themed party! There is a party room and Birthday Party Packages start at $12.99/person.


5. Sweet Aromas

  • 120 Court Ave., Bellefontaine, OH, 937-599-CAFE

kids at Sweet Aromas Coffee shop in downtown Bellefontaine, Ohio

We stumbled upon Sweet Aromas after we came out of the toy store! My husband and I got an afternoon pick-me-up in the form of caffeine! I’m always thrilled to find local coffee shops when we visit new cities. This one  had a large seating area, cute decor and fun gift items for sale! 

merchandise for sale at Sweet Aromas coffee shop in downtown Bellefontaine, ohio

Sweet Aromas, Six Hundred Downtown, Putt & Play and The Fun Company are all within walking distance in downtown Bellefontaine so any of these stops  would be great paired together!


6. Marie’s Candies

  • 311 Zanesfield Rd., West Liberty, OH 43357, 937-465-3061

Marie's Candies in West Liberty, Ohio

I’ve added a bonus stop to the list! It’s a bonus because it’s not in Bellefontaine so it requires and extra 10-15 minutes of driving to West Liberty, but it’s worth it! There are a lot of fun and unique candy items for sale here and everyone who comes into the store gets a free sample. They even let us sample other candies that were for sale behind the counter before we made our decisions!

inside Marie's Candies in West Liberty, Ohio

We picked up a Christmas gift, jelly beans for the boys and I got the most amazing maple cream candies! I’m thinking I need to drive back for some more ASAP!


Bottom line: Just an hour from Columbus, a day trip to Bellefontaine, Ohio with your kids will be filled with surprising finds, yummy treats and lots to explore! Put this one on your list!

IMG_8735

Share this post with your friends!

Save this post on Pinterest!

5 Fun Things to do with Kids in Bellefontaine, Ohio, Family Friendly Things to do in Bellefontaine, Ohio, Road Trip from Columbus, Ohio

 


Spread the Love
  • 7
    Shares

3 Fun Things to do with Kids in Yellow Springs, Ohio

Spread the Love
  • 7
    Shares

Just 45 minutes from Columbus, Yellow Springs, Ohio makes the perfect day trip with your family! There’s a little bit of something for everyone in the family: from food and shopping to animals and nature!

Yellow Springs gets a lot of attention every fall – and for good reason! In early September, the Tecumseh Land Trust blooms with sunflowers and our Instagram feeds bloom with pics! Pumpkins become available at Young’s Jersey Dairy and cooler weather brings hikers out of the woodwork to the local parks.

downtown Yellow Springs

It’s easy to spend a day or two with your family in Yellow Springs. My family spent nearly an entire day at Young’s Jersey Dairy alone! So pick one or all of these things and plan your time accordingly! You’ll get a breath of fresh air in Yellow Springs!

3 Fun Things to do with Your Kids in Yellow Springs, Ohio:

1. Young’s Jersey Dairy

  • 6880 Springfield-Xenia Rd., Yellow Springs, OH 45387

boy feeding goats at Young's Jersey Dairy

We were invited to visit Young’s Jersey Dairy this year and had a blast doing All. The. Activities! It would be easy to spend an entire day at Young’s Jersey Dairy but the great thing is that you can pick and choose your activities based on the time you have available! At the very least, stop in for an ice cream cone!

Ice cream at Young's Dairy

A lot of farm-related activities are only available during the fall, but Young’s Jersey Dairy is open in some shape or form throughout the whole year. Check the listing of hours for outdoor activities. Special events are scheduled throughout the year!

activities at Young's Jersey Dairy

Activities available include batting cages, a fast slide, Cowvin’s Kiddie Corral, Moovers and Shakers barrel ride, two beautiful mini golf courses, a petting zoo, and pick your own pumpkins (in September and October).

boys playing mini golf at Young's Jersey Dairy in Yellow Springs Ohio

Young’s is a working dairy farm and the ice cream and cheese are made at the farm. There are two restaurants at the farm, The Golden Jersey Inn and The Dairy Store. The Golden Jersey Inn features home-style country meals with full table service. The Dairy Store offers sandwiches, bakery items and ice cream! Don’t miss the famous fried cheese curds! We loved the Italian-seasoned curds!

fried cheese curds at Young's Jersey Dairy

Activities can be purchased separately or you can purchase a Family Fun Pass with either 3 or 5 tabs allowing each member of your family to choose which activities they would like to do!

2. Downtown Yellow Springs

downtown Yellow Springs, Ohio

Yellow Springs is Ohio’s own “hippy town” – I don’t know if that’s official or if I’m just making up that designation, but you’ll find a lot of alternative and off-the-beaten path shopping and dining. When we visited recently, the downtown was overtaken by a protesters speaking out for animal rights.

boy standing against mural in Yellow Springs, Ohio

The age of your kids will probably determine how much exploring of the downtown area you are able to do! Yellow Springs has a small downtown area so it’s easy to walk the whole thing, even with kids or a stroller. Parking can be tricky so don’t be afraid to explore some of the side streets for parking.

Here are some of the highlights of our day in downtown Yellow Springs:

Super Fly Comics and Games

comic book store in Yellow Springs, Ohio

This was a fun shop for my boys! Lots to look at in terms of books, comic books, games, characters and toys!

Little Fairy Garden

little fairy garden shop in Yellow Springs, Ohio

This was a really cool store dedicated totally to building your own fairy garden. There is a super sweet room for parties and events!

Yellow Springs Toy Company

Yellow Springs Toy Company

Two rooms packed full of toys, games and books kept my kids entertained! Lots of unique toy and gift items here!

Urban Handmade

Yellow Springs Ohio

My husband and I enjoyed this store full of unique items made by local artists. 

The Corner Cone

The Cone Corner in Yellow Springs, Ohio

Is this even my blog if I don’t include somewhere we ate ice cream? The Corner Cone is a great walk up spot for ice cream and treats. One of the great things about it is the large patio/courtyard they have for seating! There is no indoor seating but the outdoor seating is plentiful!

Peach’s Grill

I offer this spot for meals with a little hesitation. It’s kid-friendly in terms of the atmosphere – it’s large inside, loud, and full of TV’s. But it’s more of a bar, so if that’s not your scene, then please read this as my disclaimer!

Sandwich from Peach's Grill in Yellow Springs, Ohio

There are just a few restaurants downtown. Haha Pizza next door smelled amazing but had a super long wait (even though it was 2:00 PM) so we went with Peach’s. We’ve also had brunch at Sunrise Cafe with a baby in tow several years ago. That is a nice option, too. Be prepared for a wait at most restaurants here on the weekends!

3. Glen Helen Nature Preserve

  • 405 Corry St., Yellow Springs, OH 45387

boy hiking in Glen Helen Nature Preserve, Yellow Springs, Ohio

Glen Helen Nature Preserve is a nonprofit organization associated with Antioch College. There are several things to do and see within the preserve and there a few main trails to hike! We happened to visit on a relatively cool day and had a good time hiking in the park! Glen Helen is not a state park, therefore there is a $5 charge to park at the Corry St. entrance if you are planning to hike.

Things to do within Glen Helen Nature Preserve:

Raptor Center

birds at Glen Helen Raptor Center

The Raptor Center was our first stop within the park! The center rehabilitates raptors (birds of prey not dinosaurs 😉 ) with the goal of releasing them into the wild. The center offers educational programs throughout the year and you can park at the center and walk the grounds to visit the birds that are housed there.

One note: you cannot park at the Raptor Center and proceed to hike in the park. To hike, you’ll need to park at the main entrance at 405 Corry St.

Trailside Museum

boy at the Trailside Museum at Glen Helen in Yellow Springs

The Trailside Museum has hands-on activities, displays and exhibits to help kids learn about nature and what to expect within the Nature Preserve. Public programs are offered there and you can pick up a map for the park! The museum is accessible through the main entrance on Corry St.

Vernet Ecological Center

Nature Shop at Glen Helen Nature Preserve

The Trailside Museum has a Nature Shop, restrooms and an auditorium. Nature-themed books, gifts and toys are available within the shop. This Center is accessible through the main entrance on Corry St.

Hiking

Hiking Path at Glen Helen Nature Reserve

We entered our hike at the main entrance and took the Inman Trail (which is pink on the map). Your hike here begins as a descent into the preserve. In this case, what goes down must eventually come up. Our goal was to hike to The Cascades and we made it without issue or complaint from the kids.

Pay close attention to the subtle turns and corners on the map. My only complaint is that there are no trail markers on the path. Even though the trails are named and intersections are numbered on the map, there are no signs or numbers within the park so you have to pay close attention to where you are on the map!

Boys at The Cascades at Glen Helen Nature Preserve, Yellow Springs

The Cascades made a nice turn around point for us, though there are many other points of interest within Glen Helen if you want to spend more time hiking!

Bonus: Tecumseh Land Trust

  • 4633 US-68, Yellow Springs, OH 45387

Sunflowers at Tecumseh Land Trust

I’m not including the Tecumseh Land Trust as a full blown item on the list because the sunflowers only bloom for about 2 weeks out of the year! The sunflowers typically bloom around the first week of September!

Boys in sunflowers at Tecumseh Land Trust

We visited Young’s Dairy and drove 1 mile down the road to check the field and there were no flowers in bloom. Exactly 3 weeks later we drove down to spend the day in Yellow Springs and the flowers were already dying. So we missed the peak but still managed a few fun photos!

What are your favorite things to do in Yellow Springs? Do you have a favorite restaurant that’s kid friendly?

IMG_8735

Save this post on Pinterest!

3 Fun Things to do with Kids in Yellow Springs, Ohio


Spread the Love
  • 7
    Shares