Astride the Ohio River and a stone’s throw from Kentucky, Cincinnati at times feels Southern, Eastern, and Midwestern – and that unique combination makes the city a major destination for travelers.
This city on the river is home to dynamic museums, exciting sports teams, fascinating historical parks, and a big-time arts scene. But the city’s urban heart is never far from the rolling countryside of Southern Ohio, where you’ll find scenic drives, denes forests, great hiking trails, and family-friendly attractions.
Downtown Cincinnati is focused around Fountain Square, and nearby are some of the city’s most iconic buildings. Downtown is also home to the major league stadium homes of the Reds and the Bengals and is also where you’ll find the annual Flying Pig Marathon and Tall Stacks, an irregularly-scheduled event which celebrates the city’s river heritage.
Outside of town you can gaze at the stars from the Cincinnati Observatory or scream on thrilling rides at Kings Island amusement park. Cool off at Splash Cincinnati, go for a swim at Paint Creek State Park, or visit the prehistoric Serpent Mount Historical Site. Interested in native flora and fauna? Spend a day at beautiful Chalet Nivale Nature Preserve.
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Cincinnati is a major sports town, and some of the best in the business play here. Major League Baseball’s Reds inspire a passionate following while the NFL’s Bengals draw tens of thousands of fans to home games. Minor league teams include FC Cincinnati (soccer) and the Dutch Lions (soccer). For Division 1 NCAA action, don’t miss exciting play by the Xavier University Musketeers and the University of Cincinnati Bearcats.
Cincinnati knows how to party and year-round you’ll find a calendar full of events. The holiday season is ablaze with light displays – one of the coolest is at the Cincinnati Zoo. In spring, check out the International Wine Festival, while summer hums with the Buckeye BBQ Fest, the Wildflower Festival, and the Oxford Wine Festival. For fall, enjoy the Country Pumpkins Fall Festival and Great Outdoor Weekend.
America’s second oldest zoo is found here in Cincinnati. Opened in 1875, the zoo today is a modern facility showcasing some of the world’s most interesting wildlife – in all there are nearly 1,900 animals representing 500 species. The zoo breeds rare animals such as California sea lions and South African cheetahs, and was the home of Martha, the last living passenger pigeon. The zoo is well-known for its African animals.
There’s a ride for everyone in Cincinnati. Coney Island Amusement Park is a historic attraction with a giant pool and live performances – kids love it! When it’s time to get wet, head for Splash Cincinnati, an indoor water park with thrilling tube slides, a relaxing lazy river, and giant hot tubs. For thrills, head to Kings Island, an amusement park home to roller coasters, thrill rides, and family fun.
Few cities do as good of a job as Cincinnati protecting their art and culture. Families love the Duke Energy Children’s Museum, which makes learning and science accessible for everyone. The Cincinnati Art Museum holds 67,000 works. The Taft is Cincinnati’s home for art – here you’ll find great permanent exhibits. For a unique look at the area’s history, spend a few hours at the fascinating National Underground Railroad Freedom Center.