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June
16

Celebrate Great Outdoors Month at These 9 Ohio Destinations

Great Outdoors Month Around Ohio - Cutler Real Estate

June is Great Outdoors Month, and Ohio is a particularly beautiful place to spend some time outside in June. In every corner of the Buckeye State, an endless array of parks, lakes, rivers, and trails are just waiting to be explored. If you're looking for an outdoor adventure this month, be sure to check out these wild destinations in Ohio!

Geneva State Park

4499 Padanarum Rd., Geneva, OH 44041

Overlooking the vast expanse of Lake Erie in Northeast Ohio, Geneva State Park is one of the state's true gems when it comes to summer fun and relaxation. Geneva State Park includes a sandy swimming beach, beautiful picnic areas, and a campground with nearly 100 sites for tents and RVs. But one of the park's greatest attractions is fishing. Lake Erie provides some of the best fishing in America for walleye, perch, smallmouth bass, and other species. You'll find a marina and boat launch facilities along with a fishing pier and ample open shoreline in Geneva State Park.

Cuyahoga Valley National Park

5793 Boston Mills Rd., Peninsula, OH 44264

Cuyahoga Valley National Park feels worlds away from civilization despite being less than an hour from major cities like Cleveland and Akron. It is, without a doubt, one of the most spectacular outdoor attractions in Northeast Ohio. Spanning more than 50 square miles, the park follows the course of the Cuyahoga River through its namesake valley, providing a haven for native plants and wildlife. You can explore more than 125 miles of hiking, biking, and horseback riding trails within the park, including the beautiful Towpath Trail, which follows the historic route of the Ohio & Erie Canal. If you're experiencing Cuyahoga Valley National Park for the first time, the Boston Mills Visitor Center is a great place to start.

Rocky River Reservation

Valley Parkway, North Olmsted, OH 44070

One of 18 reservations that make up Cleveland's extensive Metroparks system, Rocky River Reservation is a long, narrow park that follows the meandering course of the Rocky River. Trails and other attractions draw visitors to both sides of the river, which is a prime waterway for fishing and paddling. But what makes the Rocky River Reservation really stand out is its equestrian trails, which stretch for miles through the riverside forests. It's one of the best destinations in Northeast Ohio for horseback riding. Rocky River Stables offers riding lessons and guided horseback riding trips.  

Alum Creek State Park

3305 S. Old State Rd., Delaware, OH 43015

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A popular destination for boating, fishing, and water sports of all kinds, Alum Creek Lake is one of Ohio's largest reservoirs and is located just minutes from Columbus. The lake is long and narrow, making it ideal for water skiing and personal watercraft, but it also has plenty of secluded coves and shorelines perfect for canoeing and kayaking. Campgrounds, picnic areas, fishing access, and a swimming beach are located within Alum Creek State Park. Alum Creek Lake can get a little busy on summer weekends, so it's always a good idea to visit mid-week if you want to beat the crowds. 

ZipZone Outdoor Adventures

7925 N. High St., Columbus, OH 43235

We hope you aren't afraid of heights! ZipZone Outdoor Adventures offers one of the most thrilling, adrenaline-fueled outdoor adventures in Ohio, and you can experience it all without leaving the Columbus city limits. ZipZone provides a wide range of aerial thrills, including zip line tours high in the forest canopy, and an exciting treetop obstacle course with five routes and over 60 challenge elements. There's a ground-level kids' park as well, making ZipZone a great option for the entire family.

Hocking Hills State Park

19852 OH-664, Logan, OH 43138

The entire Hocking Hills region has a reputation as one of Ohio's great outdoor playgrounds, a haven for everything from hiking and paddling to camping and fishing. Hocking Hills State Park, just over an hour southeast of Columbus, is one of the region's great destinations to enjoy all of the above. The park's rugged landscape includes towering cliffs, tumbling waterfalls, and dense, shady groves of hemlock trees crisscrossed by hiking trails. Campsites and cabins are available too. 

Little Miami National Scenic River Trail

211 Railroad Ave., Loveland, OH 45140

Flowing between Dayton and Cincinnati, the Little Miami River was one of the first streams in America to be designated a National Scenic River. It's one of Ohio's most beautiful paddling destinations, meandering through mile after mile of forests and farmland. The community of Loveland, OH is a popular place to begin paddling trips on the river. Guided trips and gear rentals are available through Loveland Canoe & Kayak. For anyone who prefers to stay on dry land, the river is paralleled by the 78-mile Little Miami Scenic Bike Trail.

Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden

3400 Vine St., Cincinnati, OH 45220

Always one of Cincinnati's biggest summer attractions, the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden is operated with a commitment to inspiring visitors and helping preserve wildlife. One of the oldest zoos in the U.S., it's been open since 1873 and is currently home to the world-famous hippo Fiona. The adjoining botanical gardens are just as impressive, displaying a spectacular variety of Ohio native plants and trees, as well as non-native plants from around the world. The Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden is frequently ranked among the best Zoos in America, although the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium gives it a run for its money! 

Mt. Airy Forest

5083 Colerain Ave, Cincinnati, OH 45223

At 1,500 acres. Mt. Airy Forest is Cincinnati's largest park. It was also, at the time of its establishment in 1911, one of the earliest urban reforestation projects in U.S. history. Today, the park offers some of the best opportunities for Cincinnati residents to get off the grid and enjoy some time in the great outdoors. Mt. Airy forest is home to many miles of multi-use trails for hiking, mountain biking, and horseback riding, as well as picnic areas, playgrounds, a dog park, disc golf course, and Ohio's only wheelchair-accessible public treehouse. 

Share Your Adventure

Ohio is filled with incredible destinations where you can immerse yourself in the natural world. Be sure to tell us all about your Great Outdoors Month adventures in the comments section!

May
5

9 Ohio Trails to See Wildflowers in Bloom

Wildflower Trails - Explore Ohio - Cutler Real Estate

Spring is in the air, which means Ohio's wildflower season has just begun. In parks and preserves all over the Buckeye State, the first flowers of the year have already started to bloom.

But the great thing about wildflowers in Ohio is that they don't all appear at once. We get to experience a rainbow of color that changes with the seasons. These wildflower hikes offer opportunities to see a dazzling array of native wildflowers throughout the spring and well into summer.

California Woods Nature Preserve

5400 Kellogg Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45230

Southern Ohio parks tend to see the state's earliest spring wildflower blooms, and California Woods Nature Preserve is a prime spot to see early spring flowers in Cincinnati. This Hamilton County preserve encompasses 113 acres of forests, with steep ravines and shady woods that harbor diverse spring bloomers. Visit in May to see Virginia spiderwort and fire-pink in bloom, along with the yellow blossoms of cinquefoil and trout lilies. California Woods is home to an extensive trail system, and the 1-mile Junction Loop is a great place to start. Stop back in summer to explore the preserve's butterfly and hummingbird garden!

Three Creeks Metropark

3860 Bixby Rd., Groveport, OH 43125

One of the several picturesque Metroparks in the Columbus area, Three Creeks Metropark has a reputation as one of the most beautiful destinations for wildflower hikes in Central Ohio. This 1,053-acre park takes its name from the spot where Alum, Big Walnut, and Blacklick creeks meet, and the area around the confluence of these three streams offers a diverse bounty of spring blooms. The 1-mile Confluence Trail meanders along the creek banks, and you may spy flowers including yellow and white trout lily, Dutchman's breeches and spring beauty, among others. The nearby Bluebell Trail abounds in its namesake flowers, and the small maroon blossoms of sessile trillium are also a common sight. 

Wilson Nature Preserve

4082 OH-132, Batavia, OH 45103 

Less than 30 minutes from Cincinnati in the small town of Batavia, OH, the James L. and Frances Wilson Nature Preserve spans 145 beautiful acres along the banks of the Little Miami River, including a 25-acre river island. Three miles of trails traverse this picturesque woodland, the ground often carpeted in spring wildflowers. Eagle-eyed hikers can spot several different species of trilliums here. Picnic areas and additional trails, including the aptly named half-mile Wildflower Trail, are available in the neighboring Sycamore Park.

Wildcat Hollow Trail (Wayne National Forest)

Co Rd 58, Glouster, OH 45732

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Few places in Ohio offer a more immersive nature experience than Wayne National Forest, which spans a quarter of a million acres among the Appalachian foothills in the southeastern part of the state. There are endless wild experiences to be had here, but if spying spring and summer wildflowers is your goal, head to the Wildcat Hollow Trail. This 17.5-mile loop meanders through diverse woodland and meadow habitats, including carpets of the endangered running buffalo clover, and dense thickets of native rhododendrons in full bloom. The trail is about a 90-minute drive from Columbus, and worth every second of the journey.

North Kingsville Sand Barrens

Conneaut, OH 44030

A stone's throw from the shores of Lake Erie, the North Kingsville Sand Barrens represents a unique landscape of fossilized dunes that supports many plants and animals seen almost nowhere else in Ohio, including the endangered blue bead lily. The spectacular blooms of native blue lupine, which appear in late May and early June, are especially enchanting. This 174-acre property is managed by the Cleveland Museum of Natural History and offers some of the most spectacular wildflower blooms in Northeast Ohio

Holden Arboretum

9550 Sperry Rd., Kirtland, OH 44094

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The Holden Arboretum is a 3,600-acre wonderland for anyone interested in unique plants and flowers. Home to diverse gardens, collections, and ecologically sensitive habitats, it's one of the largest arboreta in the state and home to a vast network of walking paths. Keep an eye out for native beauties like marsh marigolds, trilliums, and Virginia bluebells. Just 30 minutes from Cleveland, the arboretum is one of the best places to see native wildflowers in Northeast Ohio. They even have an annual plant sale in early May, where you can purchase native wildflowers reared at the arboretum to transplant into your own garden. 

Edge of Appalachia Preserve

4274 Waggoner Riffle Rd., West Union, OH 45693

A 16,000-acre preserve dedicated to restoring Southern Ohio's Appalachian landscape, the Edge of Appalachia Preserve's dense forests and vibrant meadows are home to many plant species that are found almost nowhere else in the state. It's a truly unique and beautiful place to go looking for native wildflowers. Be sure to explore the Lynx Prairie Trail, which offers a glimpse at rare species like Indian paintbrush, western sunflower, and the endangered scaly blazing star.

Bigelow Cemetery State Nature Preserve

600 Rosedale Rd, Irwin, OH 43029

Although it spans just half an acre, Bigelow Cemetery Nature Preserve is a unique and special place. This small park 30 minutes outside Columbus has never been grazed or plowed, a fact that becomes all the more striking when one looks out at the cultivated farmlands that surround it. This small plot of land was first used as a cemetery in pioneer times, and the grave markers dating back to the 1800s still stand among the tall prairie grasses and blooming wildflowers, giving it an almost dreamlike appearance. The blossoms are frequented by hummingbirds and butterflies and reach their peak in July and August.

Brecksville Reservation

9000 Chippewa Rd., Brecksville, OH 44141

The largest of Cleveland's 18 Metroparks, the Brecksville Reservation is home to the striking Chippewa Creek Gorge, as well as a section of the 1,400-mile Buckeye Trail, which forms a circular loop through the entire state of Ohio. The Brecksville Reservation is a great place for a spring wildflower hike, with prolific blooms of trout lily, great white trillium, marsh marigold, spring beauty, Jack-in-the-pulpit, and many other species. The 0.75-mile Wildflower Loop Trail packs a lot of great flora into a short, sweet hike. 

Walk on the Wild Side

Ohio has hundreds of amazing parks and trails where you can see blooming wildflowers throughout the spring and summer months. If we forgot to mention your favorite place, be sure to let us know in the comments below!

September
16

8 Spots to Spot Pawpaw Trees Around Cincy

Pawpaw Trees - Cincinnati Outdoors - Cutler Real Estate

We love our pawpaws here in Cincinnati. Farmers sell them at local markets. Clever cooks make pawpaw chutney and jam. Local craft brewers even make small-batch pawpaw beers when the fruit is in season. It's a unique fruit, with a creamy avocado-like texture and a flavor that some describe as a cross between mango and banana. But if you're not from Ohio or Kentucky, there's a good chance you've never heard of one of America's most abundant native fruits. 

That's probably because of their brief season, short shelf life, and readiness to bruise make them all but impossible to ship outside their native region. But if you live in Cincinnati, there's a good chance you have pawpaws growing right in your own backyard. Keep an eye out for pawpaw trees at these beautiful Cincy area parks this fall.  

French Park 

3012 Section Rd., Cincinnati, OH 45237

 
 
 
 
 
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Once the vast estate of Herbert Greer French, the land now known as French Park has been a popular hiking spot in Cincinnati for the better part of a century. In addition to the park's handsome brick manor, the park includes 275 acres of woods, wetlands, and meadows with a lovely 2.9-mile loop trail. The terrain is moderately hilly, and pawpaw trees are fairly common understory plants along the trail. Watch for the trees' distinctive large, oblong leaves, and for the fruit itself, which is green, kidney-shaped, and grows in clusters. 

Sharon Woods

11450 Lebanon Rd., Sharonville, OH 45241

A beautiful 730-acre park just 25 minutes from the heart of Cincinnati, Sharon Woods is a popular spot for hiking and birdwatching. The park also includes a small lake that offers great fishing and kayaking opportunities. Keep an eye out for pawpaw trees along the lakeshore as you paddle around! They love to grow in wet, low-lying areas. Sharon Woods is home to several beautiful hiking trails as well, including a 2.6-mile paved pathway that encircles the lake. Pawpaws have also been seen growing along the 0.7-mile Gorge Trail. 

Shawnee Lookout

2008 Lawrenceburg, North Bend, OH 45052

 
 
 
 
 
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Tucked away in Ohio's southwestern-most corner, Shawnee Lookout offers rich history and splendid scenery. The park overlooks the Ohio River and Great Miami River valleys, with some truly exceptional views, especially as the leaves begin to change in fall. Shawnee Lookout is most famous for its Native American earthworks and historic Springhouse School and Log Cabin, but also offers a wealth of peaceful hiking trails where you can often spot pawpaws in bloom. Keep an eye out for the fruit along the 1.4-mile Miami Fort Trail in particular. 

Ault Park

5090 Observatory Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45208

Most Cincinnatians know Ault Park as the site of local events like the Concours d' Elegance Car Show and the city's annual 4th of July festivities. Although the spectacular open-air pavilion and gardens of Ault Park may be the most well-known features of this Cincinnati green space, there's more to explore when you go off the beaten path. The more secluded corners of Ault Park offers a maze of nature trails that traverse shady woods, hills, valleys, and streams. Pawpaws are a common sight along many of the trails, particularly low-lying areas along the Valley Trail and Brook Trail. 

Burnet Woods

3251 Brookline Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45220

 
 
 
 
 
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Pawpaws grow profusely along the shady slopes of Burnet Woods, one of Cincy's most deeply forested parks. Located a stone's throw from the University of Cincinnati campus, Burnet Woods encompasses 90 acres of quiet woodlands that are popular among locals for bird watching and dog walking. It won't take you long to spot pawpaw trees along the park's shady hiking trails. They're especially common near the small lake at the heart of Burnet Woods, which is also a great spot for catch-and-release fishing if you're so inclined. 

Caldwell Preserve

430 W North Bend Rd., Cincinnati, OH 45216

Caldwell Preserve, also known as the Caldwell Nature Center, is a great place to experience the landscape of Ohio as it may have looked before settlers arrived. A mix of old-growth forest and newer plantings, the preserve includes some dense stands of pawpaw trees, often shaded beneath a towering canopy of mature beech, walnut, and oaks. Keep an eye out for pawpaws as you hike the nature trail through the Mill Creek Valley. 

Rowe Woods

4949 Tealtown Rd., Milford, OH 45150

 
 
 
 
 
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One of a handful of properties across Hamilton County that are collectively managed as the Cincinnati Nature Center, Rowe Woods spans over 1,000 acres just east of the city. It's a spectacular resource for nature lovers, including a 65-acre tract of old-growth forest and 14 miles of hiking trails that explore a wide range of habitats. The woods are popular among bird watchers and wildflower aficionados, and there are plenty of opportunities to see pawpaws here. Keep in mind that harvesting and foraging are not allowed; look but don't pick! Admission to Rowe Woods is free for Cincinnati Nature Center Members, and there is a small fee for non-members. 

Mt. Airy Forest

5083 Colerain Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45223

Spanning approximately 1,500 acres, Mt. Airy Park has the distinction of being Cincinnati's largest park. It's also one of the oldest urban reforestation parks in America and has been one of Cincinnati's most prized outdoor resources since 1911. The park includes many miles of hiking, mountain biking, and horseback riding trails, all of which traverse an amazing diversity of habitats, from hardwood and conifer forests to meadows and wetlands. You can frequently spot pawpaws along the shady wooded slopes leading down to creek bottoms. 

Savor the Flavor

Pawpaws are ripe for only a brief time, so don't miss it! Here in the Cincinnati area, the fruit is usually in its prime in late September, though it can be a little different every year. If you find some in a park we forgot to mention, be sure to let us know in the comments section below!

August
7

Northeast Ohio: 10 Places to Find Hidden Treasure on Your Next Hike

Geocaching Trails - Northeast Ohio - Cutler Real Estate

When you were a kid, did stories of hidden treasure capture your imagination? While you may not find jewels and gold coins, geocaching is a fascinating way for kids of all ages to enjoy the thrill of discovering secret treats.

New and experienced geocachers will get hours of entertainment exploring these popular trails around Northeast Ohio

Bedford Reservation All-Purpose Trail

18753 Egbert Rd., Bedford, OH 44146

 
 
 
 
 
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Located fewer than 20 miles from Cleveland, Bedford Reservation is a perfect spot for a quick getaway. The 7.6-mile all-purpose trail winds through the wooded 2,200-acre grounds, providing opportunities for hiking, biking, and horseback riding as well as geocaching. Don't miss scenic Bridal Veil Falls or the Tinkers Creek Gorge Overlook. Sheltered picnic areas are available. Park hours are 6 a.m. - 11 p.m. daily.

Bike and Hike Trail

Summersweet TR, Walton Hills, OH 44146

 
 
 
 
 
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If you're looking for a more vigorous outing, the simply-named Bike and Hike Trail is accessible just across the street from the Alexander Road trailhead of Bedford Reservation's APT. The 34.2-mile trail spans Cuyahoga, Portage, and Summit counties, passing through both rural and suburban territory. Converted from two former railway lines, the route features some gently rolling terrain to add interest without being too strenuous. 

Berlin Lake Trail

U.S. 224, Deerfield, OH 44411

When it opened in 2011, Berlin Lake Trail revealed some stunning waterfront views that were previously unavailable to the public. At a length of 2.25 miles, the crushed-limestone trail provides a satisfying hike for any level of experience. Visual highlights include the renovated train trestle bridge and frequent appearances of herons, eagles, and ospreys. Leashed dogs are welcome, so Fido can join in the hunt.

Bridgeway Trail

2720 E. 31st St., Lorain, OH 44055

 
 
 
 
 
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It's wheels down on Bridgeway Trail, where inline skaters and bikers join hikers and runners. Located in Black River Reservation, the 4.5-mile path extends from Day's Dam to the High Meadows picnic area. The trail passes through peaceful meadows and wooded areas, as well as across a 1,000-foot bridge spanning the Black River. Look for interpretive signs along the way with fascinating information about the area's natural history. The Black River Reservation is open 8 a.m. - 8 p.m. seven days a week.

Bruce G. Rinker Greenway

610 S.O.M. Center Rd., Mayfield, OH 44143

The charming Mayfield Village setting of Bruce G. Rinker Greenway gives the trail a neighborhood feel. Known simply as the Greenway upon its opening in 2014, the site was later renamed after a former mayor of the village. The route passes community landmarks such as the fire station, elementary school, and library, along with a wetland preserve. 

Euclid Creek Reservation All-Purpose Trail

850 Euclid Creek Pkwy., Cleveland, OH 44121

 
 
 
 
 
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Euclid Creek Reservation is situated on the site of the once-thriving ghost town of Bluestone. The village name was taken from the substance excavated at the nearby quarry, the remains of which can still be seen from the All-Purpose Trail and the picnic area. While the APT runs a total of 3.5 miles, the two segments are currently disconnected, with the longer section reaching 2.75 miles. The trail parallels Euclid Creek, with a dense line of trees offering welcome shade. Euclid Creek Reservation hours are 6 a.m. - 11 p.m. daily.

Garfield Park Reservation All-Purpose Trail

11350 Broadway Ave., Garfield Heights, OH 44125

 
 
 
 
 
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Since 1895, Garfield Park Reservation has been a popular spot for residents and visitors of Northeast Ohio. The All-Purpose Trail's main attraction is Mill Creek Falls, but hikers also enjoy spotting pieces of historical stonework that date back to the 1930s. Spacious woodlands and wetlands hold the perpetual promise of exciting wildlife sightings. Garfield Park Reservation is open daily from 6 a.m. - 11 p.m.

Lake to Lake Trail

Middleburg Heights, OH 44130

 
 
 
 
 
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The self-descriptive Lake to Lake Trail is a 2.4-mile, universally accessible all-purpose trail stretching from Lake Abram to Lake Isaac. At 175 acres, these two form the largest glacial wetlands in Cuyahoga County and vital homes for local wildlife. Most of the trail is paved or boardwalk, although there is a small section on pavement alongside Hepburn Road. Lake to Lake Trail is part of Big Creek Reservation, which is open seven days a week from 6 a.m. - 11 a.m.

Ohio & Erie Canal Towpath Trail

Barberton, OH 44203

Each year, more than 2.5 million visitors get a glimpse of Northeast Ohio's past at the Ohio & Erie Canal Towpath Trail. Already numbering an ambitious 81 miles, the trail will eventually come in at a total of 110 miles, extending from Cleveland to New Philadelphia. As denoted by "Towpath" in the name, the trail is intended to trace the route of a historical canal where mules pulled boats. The current trail runs through Cuyahoga, Stark, and Summit counties and passes through Cuyahoga Valley National Park. 

Portage Hike and Bike Trail

1557 Lake Rockwell Rd., Kent, OH 44240

 
 
 
 
 
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Between the urban areas of Kent and Ravenna lie 10 miles of woods and meadows forming the Portage Hike and Bike Trail. One of the more picturesque sections of the trail borders the southern edge of Towner's Woods Park in Franklin Township. In addition to its natural beauty, the park features an ancient Native American burial ground on the shores of Lake Pippen.

Geocaching Tips

  • On state or municipal property, observe the rules and regulations of Cleveland Metroparks and other governing organizations.
  • Download the Geocaching app for valuable instructions and hints. This is also a great way to become a member of the geocaching community.
  • Don't bury items or hide them in any way that requires hunters to disturb the environment, whether it's natural or man-made.
  • Don't hide food and other perishable items.
  • Don't hide dangerous or illegal items. Remember that geocaching is a family-friendly activity.
  • Use transparent containers and label them clearly as geocaches.
  • Be mindful of appropriate social distancing protocols.

Hide and Seek

What item would you put in a geocache container to best represent Northeast Ohio?

June
12

Natural Wonders You Need to See Around Cincinnati

Natural Wonders - Cincinnati, OH - Cutler Real Estate

Powerful yet serene, waterfalls are the masterworks in Mother Nature's portfolio. Dramatic shots of waterfalls are often featured as highlights on travel and nature shows, giving them an exotic appeal. But you may be surprised to learn there are a number of breathtaking waterfalls on display within a two-hour drive from Cincinnati.

With summer on the way, it's the perfect time to plan some exciting day trips. Add these locations around Cincinnati to your list and prepare for some great waterfall viewing.

Sharon Woods

11450 Lebanon Rd., Sharonville, OH 45241 

 
 
 
 
 
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The natural delights of Sharon Woods are so spectacular that you'll find it hard to believe you're only 20 minutes outside of Cincinnati. As the oldest of the Great Parks of Hamilton County, Sharon Woods features not one but three waterfalls, including Buckeye Falls and the Lower Falls. See all three along the Gorge trail, which is less than a mile long with low difficulty. Park admission is free, but there is a $3 parking fee for Hamilton County residents. Sharon Woods is open daily from dawn to dusk.

Ludlow Falls

110 Covington Ave., Ludlow Falls, OH 45339

 
 
 
 
 
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Many waterfalls are found in parks or nature reserves, but Ludlow Falls is part of a picturesque rural landscape in the small town with the same name. Just over an hour's drive from Cincinnati, the waterfall is under a bridge right by the post office, so it can go unnoticed by travelers. Follow the path from the nearby park for best access. With a 15-foot drop, Ludlow Falls is definitely a hidden gem in the area.

Hayden Falls

4326 Hayden Run Rd., Dublin, OH 43017 

 
 
 
 
 
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Hayden Falls sits slightly north of Columbus, approximately two hours away from Cincinnati, and it's definitely worth a road trip. A boardwalk and overlook, with the backdrop of the 35-foot waterfall, allows for scenic photo opportunities. The gorge habitat, with its array of rare and endangered plants, completes the picture. Hayden Falls is open 24/7, with convenient onsite parking.

Indian Run Falls

700 Shawan Falls Dr., Dublin, OH 43017

 
 
 
 
 
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If you're heading out to Hayden Falls, double your fun with a stop-off at Indian Run Falls. Today the falls are mere minutes from downtown Dublin, but at one time the area was home to members of the Wyandot tribe, which is how the site got its name. Indian Run is actually two waterfalls, on the main and upper levels, which are traversed by a bridge. The City of Dublin has also added trails and observation decks to enhance visitors' experience. Hours are dawn to dusk, seven days a week.

Greenville Falls State Scenic River Area

9140 Covington-Gettysburg Rd., Covington, OH 45318

 
 
 
 
 
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Less than 90 minutes from Cincinnati, just past Dayton, you'll find the 92-acre Greenville Falls State Scenic Area. A network of trails leads visitors past historic features along the river, with interpretive signs explaining the significance of each one. The visual centerpiece is the 20-foot waterfall, where you may catch sight of wildlife populating the grounds. Water also left its mark forming a natural limestone arch along the river. Greenville Falls State Scenic River Area is open year-round from 8 a.m. - sunset.

Clifton Gorge Nature Preserve

2381 State Route 343, Yellow Springs, OH 45387

 
 
 
 
 
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Between Clifton Gorge Nature Preserve and adjacent John Bryan State Park, considered by many visitors to be the most beautiful state park in western Ohio, the village of Clifton is home to a number of natural delights. A series of waterfalls in the preserve, including Amphitheatre Falls, is formed by the Little Miami River passing through a 40-foot deep limestone gorge. After your visit, make a quick side trip to Clifton Mill, the largest of 47 remaining grist mills in the United States. A pair of man-made waterfalls tumble alongside the quaint building, presenting a charming picture of nostalgic Americana. 

Fallsville Falls Wildlife Area

10211 Careytown Rd., New Vienna, OH 45159

 
 
 
 
 
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The alliterative and slightly redundant name of Fallsville Falls Wildlife Area is a throwback to a town from the past that no longer exists. Now this area, about an hour from Cincinnati, is known for the 15-foot waterfall that cascades stairstep-style in a small wooded gorge. As you enter the area via the gravel road leading from the parking lot, you'll hear the waterfall before you see it. Fallsville Falls is open 24//7 all year long.

Clifty Falls State Park

1501 Green Rd., Madison, IN 47250

 
 
 
 
 
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Head over to neighboring Indiana, roughly an hour and 20 minutes away, and take in the quartet of waterfalls at Clifty Falls State Park. Big Clifty, Little Clifty, Tunnel Falls, and Hoffman Falls fluctuate with the weather and seasons, presenting an ever-changing display inviting multiple visits. Pick up a map at the Nature Center and take pictures of seven waypoints to complete the Four Falls Challenge. Park entrance fee for out-of-state vehicles is $9. Summer hours are 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. daily.

Go With the Flow

Which waterfalls around Cincinnati will you be chasing this year?

June
25

A Complete Guide to Being Outdoorsy in the Akron & Canton Area

The Akron and Canton area isn't nationally known as being an outdoor destination — but it should be! We have some truly incredible hiking, biking, running and walking trails along with stunning fishing holes and sprawling campgrounds. Plus, we're only a few miles away from the Cuyahoga National Park, which draws thousands of visitors to the area each year. So, in our quest to put our beloved area on the map of must-visit outdoor destinations in the United States and to help you make the most of your surroundings, we've curated a complete guide to being outdoorsy in the Akron and Canton area. Happy adventuring!

Hiking

Outdoor Activities in Akron & Canton

Photo courtesy of Denny Williams via Quail Hollow Park

When you need to escape from the hustle and bustle of city life, your best bet is to lace up your boots and hit the trails! There are tons of trails and Metro Parks within easy driving distance from the Canton and Akron area, allowing for a quick and easy outdoorsy escape. The trails in our area feature everything from stunning lake views and lush foliage to rolling meadows and unique carnivorous plants. Our favorite hiking trails in the Akron & Canton area include: 1.) Cascade Valley Metropark The Cascade Valley Metropark is one of the most gorgeous parks in the area. The park is complete with several places to camp, fish, bike, picnic and hike. If you're new to hiking, try the Overlook Trail, a half-mile trail that provides spectacular views of the Cuyahoga River. For a more advanced adventure, head out to the Chuckery Trail, a 2.4-mile challenging loop that will allow you to glimpse the famous Indian Signal Tree before passing the river. 2.) Jackson State Nature Preserve Jackson Bog State Nature Preserve is a 58-acre preserve located in northern Stark County and supports over 20 state-listed rare plants. This area is a stunning location for a summer stroll and will give you an opportunity to view and learn about a vast population of flowering and carnivorous plants! 3.) Quail Hollow Park There's no better place to experience Ohio's incredible scenery than Quail Hollow Park in Hartville. The area offers over 700 acres of rolling meadows, marshes, scenic woodland trails and gardens. The lovely, 40-room H.B. Stewart family home is also located in the park and is now used for educational and community programs and events. The park is open from sunrise to sunset and features 5.4 miles of easy to traverse trails, including the Nature for All Trail, which is an asphalt paved trail perfect for any experience level!  

Running

Outdoor Activities in Akron & Canton The Akron and Canton area offers runners an abundance of options for getting in a little extra cardio. A nearby Metro Park would be a great place to start, but there are also some great running groups and clubs in the area that can help point you in the right direction. Consider joining the Second Sole Akrun, a group that meets every Saturday at 8 a.m. and Sunday at 7 a.m. at the North Portage Path. Or, head up to Cuyahoga Falls every Wednesday to participate in the weekly Falls Beer Run 5K and socialize with a pint afterward! Our favorite running trails in the Akron & Canton area include: 1.) Sand Run Metro Park Whether you're looking to practice on-trail or off-trail running, you can do it at the Sand Run Metro Park. The area features both one-mile and two-mile trails along with numbered exercise stations that you can utilize during your workout. Plus, there are multiple hills in the area that you can use to your advantage (and the fantastic views from the top don't hurt).   2.) Middle Branch Trail Hike, bike, walk, run or jog on this 6.4-mile trail that connects neighborhoods with nature from Canton to Plain Township. The trail is mostly limestone and reinforced with asphalt in a few spots so you can count on a smooth workout. The trail runs north along the railroad tracks and meanders through Gervasi Vineyard past Rice's Nursery and then loops around Plain Township's Veterans Community Park — making it the perfect way to see the area on foot!  

Biking

Photo courtesy of Tim Fitzwater via the Ohio & Erie Canal Way

There's no better place in Ohio to be a cyclist than Canton and Akron. Not only do we have some of the best bike trails in the state, but we're also incredibly bike-friendly. You can ride your bike almost anywhere in the area. Don't have a bicycle yet? Not to worry, we also happen to be home to a few of the best bike shops around — including Ernie's Bike Shop, a North Canton and Massillon staple since 1978. Our favorite bike trails in the Akron & Canton area include: 1.) The Towpath Trail For bicyclists, the Ohio & Erie Canal Towpath Trail, which is a trail that extends from Akron to Cleveland, offers 85+ miles to explore. The trail closely parallels the Cuyahoga River and the Tuscarawas River south of Akron. The terrain is smooth, perfect for those with families or for cyclist commuters, and passes through a variety of wooded environments and urban neighborhoods. 2.) Hampton Hills Metro Park Mountain Bike Area The Hampton Hills Metro Park is home to the district's first mountain bike trails that include beginner, moderate and intermediate sections. With about seven miles of rideable trails available, and plans to add more to the course, you won't run out of spots in Hampton Hills to traverse on any time soon. 3.) Freedom Trail Located along an unused railroad corridor, the Freedom Trail starts near Portage Hike and Bike Trail in Kent and extends six miles to Eastwood Avenue in Akron, with current plans to extend it even further to downtown near the University of Akron campus. Freedom Trail is not only a great way for humans to get around — bald eagles, coyotes and white-tailed deer also use the grounds as their home!    

Camping

Outdoor Activities in Akron & Canton Sometimes a day in the great outdoors just isn't enough, so why not make a weekend out of it? Gather friends or family, pull the sleeping bags out of the closet, and pitch your tent for a fun night under the stars. There is an abundance of incredible camping destinations around the area and even a few that are just a short drive away. Our favorite camping destinations in the Akron & Canton area include: 1.) Akron Canton Jellystone Park The Akron Canton Jellystone Park is a family-oriented camp and resort that features a water park, miniature golf and gem mining! Join Yogi Bear as you swim in the 500,000-gallon pool or eat homemade ice cream from the Pick-a-Nic Basket. Plus, you can make it a weekend affair by staying in one of their adorable cabins or by setting up a tent and enjoying the great outdoors! 2.) Clay's Park Resort This spacious, 500-acre resort offers an RV park, a campground, an event center and a water park, so no matter how you're looking to spend your evening away, you're sure to have a blast at Clay's Park Resort! Settle into one of their custom-built canvas tents, each featuring one queen bed, one set of bunk beds and a day bed, along with a charcoal grill, a hammock, a fire ring and a picnic table. The area also boasts a stocked fishing lake, kayaks and canoe rentals, miniature golf, and a heated indoor pool. 3.) Cutty's Sunset Camping Resort Nestled near Louisville, this family-owned and -operated resort features full-service facilities and campsites. And, they just happen to be conveniently located near Ohio's Amish Country, the Football Hall of Fame, the Hartville Flea Market and the Maize Valley Farm Market and Winery. Relax at their spacious filtered pool and Spray Park attraction before settling in your RV or tent and enjoying the laid-back atmosphere.  

Kayaking

Outdoor Activities in Akron & Canton

Photo courtesy of Dawn Despoth-Frank via Pier 619

One thing that we don't have a shortage of in Ohio is creeks, lakes and reservoirs! And what better way to explore those incredible waterways than by kayak? Our favorite spots to go kayaking in the Akron & Canton area include: 1.) Portage Lakes With over 400 acres of stunning scenery, Portage Lakes offers a variety of outdoor experiences from boating and swimming to fishing and kayaking! There are several places you can rent kayaks in the area, but we recommend Pier 619, where rentals are just $15 an hour and you can pick up some essential snacks at their convenience store right on the lake. 2.) Gorge Metro Park One of our favorite places to visit any time of the year is the Gorge Metro Park in Cuyahoga Falls. While it's a little bit of a drive from Akron and Canton, we promise it's worth it. The remarkable rock structures and views of the Cuyahoga River are some of the most magnificent sites in Ohio!  

Fishing

Outdoor Activities in Akron & Canton All of those spectacular water destinations in our area also happen to house plenty of fish! Whether you're a traditional angler or a fly-fishing enthusiast — there are plenty of places to drop your line in Akron and Canton. Our favorite fishing destinations in the Akron & Canton area include: 1.) Berlin Lake Wildlife Area This gorgeous, 8,518-acre wildlife area is situated in Akron on land adjacent to Berlin Lake. The area offers a multitude of outdoor activities including hiking, biking, running and so much more, but we can't think of a better way to spend an afternoon than fishing on Berlin Lake. There, you'll find largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, channel catfish, walleye, bluegill, white bass and several other types of fish along with some spectacular views for you to enjoy while you're relaxing. 2.) Petros Lake Park Picnic, play, hike and fish on over 127 acres of water and rolling meadows at Petros Lake Park. When you visit, enjoy using the two covered picnic shelters, a sand volleyball court, a loop trail around the lake and several short nature trails. Fishing aficionados will love settling themselves on the water and bringing out a few of the trout that live under the surface.  

Skiing

Outdoor Activities in Akron & Canton

Photo courtesy of Thomas Conti via Boston Mills and Brandy Wine Ski Areas

Skiing? In Ohio? You bet! When the weather gets chilly, make your way to one of Ohio's ski areas to get a few laps in. One of our favorite skiing destinations in Ohio is just a hop, skip and jump away in Cuyahoga Falls — the Boston Mills and Brandywine Ski Areas. Boston Mills and Brandywine Ski Areas Boston Mills and Brandywine are sister resorts and are located within a five-minute drive of each other. The resorts' locations make it possible to venture to both in the same day if you wish! Combined, the resorts boast 88 skiable acres, 18 trails, four terrain parks, and several advanced trails. Like most Ohio resorts, Boston Mills and Brandywine offer night skiing, but unlike other resorts, the trails are open until 1 a.m. in January and February. Get ready for some late-night winter adventures!  

Enjoy your adventure!

Did we miss your favorite outdoor destination in the Canton and Akron area? Let us know in the comments!

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