Areas & Neighborhoods In Cincinnati
Cincinnati is largely divided by east and west, with something for all visitors to see during their time in town. Many neighborhoods pride themselves on good eats and art, and you wont find any shortage of sports enthusiasts here. Whether you want to take in spectacular views from afar or get right into the heart of the city, there is a district in Cincinnati right up your alley.
Mt. Adams Head to Mt. Adams on the east side of the city for a taste of the art in Cincinnati. This community considers itself an urban village, and it blends the modern with the nostalgic quite well. As a bonus, you will be able to enjoy stellar views of downtown from the vantage point Mt. Adams provides.
Downtown Plenty of the most appealing things to do in Cincinnati, Ohio, are nestled downtown. This includes eating at a broad selection of restaurants, touring historic sites like the Betts House, and seeing a Cincinnati Bengals® game at Paul Brown Stadium.
Hyde Park If its town squares and quaint boutiques you seek, make your way to Hyde Park. This neighborhood boasts a unique atmosphere, and in that endeavor it certainly delivers. Specialty shops, a successful farmers market, and an annual arts show are all a part of the cultural landscape in Hyde Park.
John A Roebling Suspension Bridge
Suspension Bridge between Cincinnati, Ohio and Covington, Kentucky spanning the Ohio River. Leonid Andronov | Shutterstock
Address: John A. Roebling Suspension Bridge, Covington, KY 41011
- It was completed in 1886
- It was the longest bridge in the world at its completion
Why you should go: The John A. Roebling Suspension Bridge takes people across the Ohio River from downtown Cincinnati to Covington, Kentucky.
It is open for both motorists and pedestrians and offers some of the most breathtaking views of the river and the two cities.
Since it has a designated walkway for pedestrians, you can take a leisure walk in no hurry as you soak up the magnificent views.
Things to do: You can either take a walk or drive across the bridge, either way, you will enjoy the view of the Ohio River.
However, we recommend a walk so that you can go at your own pace, take photos, and just enjoy the scenery.
If you love sunsets, this is the best spot to watch the golden sun as it sets on the horizon across the Ohio River.
It is one of the most breathtaking views.
Use the bridge to cross over to Covington to explore its attractions which are some of the best things to do near Cincinnati.
- It is 17 minutes from Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport
Cincinnati Reds Hall Of Fame Museum
Did you know that the Cincinnati Reds are the oldest professional baseball team? They also had many other firsts, including the first no-hitter of the 20th century, the first to host a night game in Major League history, and the first to participate in a televised baseball game in Major League history.
Learn all about these first and more at the Museum. The history of the team was fascinating, and the museum layout was great. We especially liked the section where we could make our own baseball cards and try out being a professional sports announcer and television reporter.
Insider Tip: Located a short walk from Smale park. Plan your trip so you can explore the park before or after visiting the museum.
Cincinnati Reds Hall of Fame Museum100 Joe Nuxhall Way, Cincinnati, OH 45202Website
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Cincinnati Music Hall Cincinnati Ohio
Built in 1878, the glittering chandeliers and Old World ambiance of the Cincinnati Music Hall undoubtedly make it one of the most beautiful concert theaters in the world, and one which has been attracting music, opera, and theater lovers for over a century.
The Music Hall is home to an array of world-class performing arts, including the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, the Cincinnati Pops Orchestra, the Cincinnati Opera and the Cincinnati Ballet, as well as playing host to May Festival, which is the longest-running choral festival in the Western hemisphere.
Designated a National Historic Landmark in 1975, the Music Hall is located in the Over-the-Rhine neighborhood across Elm Street and a few blocks from Findlay Market.
1241 Elm St, Cincinnati, Ohio 45202, Phone: 513-744-3344
Take A Picture With Shark Girl At The Contemporary Arts Center
FreeDowntownRight downtown, in a distinctive building designed by Zaha Hadid, is the Contemporary Arts Center. The non-collecting museums exhibits are constantly rotating, and has brought in works from famous artists like Andy Warhol and Shepard Fairey, as well as countless up-and-comers. It has also attracted its fair share of controversy . Start at the top and work your way down to the lobby, which houses a killer gift shop and cafe that comes complete with a full bar. Bonus points if you attend one of the awesome events they put on: yoga, art labs, and the always popular Drink and Draw nights.
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Dare To Go On A Ghost Tour
Hearing spooky stories on a ghost tour is one of many great things to do at night in Cincinnati. The experience takes you to a selection of haunted spots throughout the city. Places to visit include Washington Park and the Cincinnati Music Hall.
Your guide will explain the eerie events connected with each sight and recount paranormal sightings and stories.
A fun and convenient way to see Cincinnati’s best breweries is by going on a craft brewery tour. This experience allows you to spend the evening hopping from bar to bar, tasting the best beer in the city.
The tour generally begins at 7 PM and lasts for three and a half hours. After the tour, you can return to your favorite spot to enjoy the rest of the night.
If youre in downtown Cincinnati at night, make sure you stop by Graeters Ice Cream. This much-loved local chain serves an array of yummy ice cream flavors. Just a few of the ice creams on offer include caramel macchiato, Smores, and birthday cake.
You can enjoy your ice cream in a waffle cone, a chocolate waffle cone, or as a sundae. Banana splits, floats, and milkshakes are also on offer.
Even if you arent downtown, there are Graeters Ice Cream locations across the city, so you dont have to miss out. Most outlets are open until 10 PM.
Take A Hike In The Mt Airy Forest
The largest of the citys five designated parks, Mt. Airy Forest is a 1500-acre stretch of peaceful green space that residents love to explore any time of year.
Offering miles of trails and crisscrossed with biking paths throughout, this massive park dishes up open-air opportunities for trekkers of all fitness levels:
Families and beginners tend to walk to the Mount Airy Loop and take 5 extra minutes on Everybodys Treehouse Trail, while avid hikers typically choose the 6-hour Mount Airy Explorers Trail either way, the nature is gorgeous!
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Enjoy The Views From Ac Upper Deck
Located atop the AC Hotel at The Banks, AC Upper Deck is a rooftop bar that offers a spacious area to enjoy drinks and light snacks with plenty of seating and some great views of The Banks as well as the Ohio River.
What makes this spot truly unique is the fact that they add heated igloos to the seating areas during the winter, so you can still hang out on the rooftop and enjoy the views even during the colder months. Theyre open until 12AM on weekends.
Enjoy A Picnic At Goebel Park
A brilliant green space in the city that is ideal for a picnic in the sun, Goebel Park offers a picturesque walking trail and a playground for little ones to enjoy.
The park is also home to the beautiful German-style Carroll Chimes Clock Tower, built-in 1979. One of the citys top historical landmarks, the clock Stands at 100ft. this 43 bell tower, chimes on the hour and features mechanical figures who act out the well-known tale of the Pied Piper of Hamelin.
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Hit The Bullseye Go Ax Throwing
Seemingly out of nowhere, the traditional lumberjack pastime of ax throwing has taken the recreation world by storm so why not get in on the action and try it for yourself when visiting the Queen City?
At a range of venues across town, youll not only be run through to ins and out of the pastime-turned-sport but also get the chance to participate in a handful of games and challenges with axes of all shapes and sizes!
While its not as easy as it looks, with safety-focused instructors on hand, youll be hitting the bullseye in no time.
Spend The Day At Eden Park
A sprawling, beautiful public park filled with wildlife and greenery in the charming Mount Adams neighborhood by the banks of the Ohio River, Eden Park is a Cincinnatians favorite green space and it doesnt disappoint.
The 186-acre space has something for everyone: trails and biking paths through the woods playgrounds and picnic areas perfect for kids or lazy days by the lake and the Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park which offers exciting musicals and plays in two theaters.
If you prefer to spend some time indoors, the park also plays host to the Cincinnati Art Museum and the Krohn Conservatory.
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Check Out One Of Cincinnatis Art Galleries
Another indoor activity that you can enjoy during the colder months is exploring an art gallery. Fortunately, Cincinnati has plenty to choose from. From large scale art museums to small non-profit galleries, to hotel museums, to boutique art shops, the Queen City has a variety of places where you can see paintings, drawings, sculptures, and other pieces of contemporary and historical art alike.
Check out our list of Cincinnatis 10 Best Art Museums to find a place near you to enjoy some art.
Spend An Afternoon At Taft Museum Of Art
Museums are top Cincinnati, Ohio attractions and the Taft Museum of Art is one of the best!
Featuring a permanent collection and special exhibits, visiting the Taft Art Museum is one of the top things to do in Downtown Cincinnati, Ohio.
The artwork is housed in a historic mansion that once belonged to the Taft family, who were highly influential in the development of Cincinnati. The rooms of the historic house are decorated with artifacts and masterpieces collected by the Tafts.
While the Taft Museum of Art is not one of the free museums in Cincinnati, they do offer free days and special events without charge.
Interesting Fact: US President William Howard Taft, a close relative of the aforementioned Taft Family that bequeathed their home and artwork to the city, was born and raised in Cincinnati. His childhood home stands on a hilltop in the city and is a National Historic Site. Touring the home is also one of the top Cincinnati activities.
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Where To Eat In Cincinnati
Graeters Ice Cream has been operating out of Cincinnati for nearly 150 years. The first store was opened by the son of German immigrants in Pendleton back in 1870.
They now have 53 family-owned stores and their pints are available in grocery stores across America. Graeters was one of the first things mentioned to me when I asked a Seattle couple for Cincinnati recommendations.
And it didnt disappoint. A Graeters shake happened to be the first thing I ate/drank/consumed when I arrived in town. Their classic ice cream flavours include butter pecan,Dutch milk chocolate, cookies and cream, cotton candy, original salted caramel, Oregon strawberry, Madagascar vanilla bean, and Vienna coffee.
Green Papaya: Asian foods my favourite thing to eat when Im in America. American Thai, Vietnamese, Chinese and Japanese restaurants all offer eggplant dishes, and this isnt something we really get in Australia.
So I make the most of this and order Asian takeout most nights. Green Papaya was my favourite Asian restaurant in Cincinnati. The menus quite extensive, and Green Papaya can cater to all tastes and dietary requirements. My favourite dish, as expected, was heavy on the eggplant.
The crazy noodle. The service heres quick, the staff is friendly and efficient, and most mains are under $18USD.
The Fresh Market is a gourmet supermarket offering plenty of ready-to-go meals. While this isnt your typical place to eat recommendation, I really enjoyed the food here.
Explore The Trails In Daniel Boone National Forest
Lakes, trees, and rivers galore this is a day out for nature-lovers, thats for sure. Daniel Boone National Forest, just a two hour and a half-hour drive from the center of Cincinnati, across the state border between Ohio and Kentucky, it isnt just about greenery here: there are some incredible natural bridges and rock formations to marvel at in this slice of wilderness.
So wear your best walking shoes, pack yourself some lunch , and get yourself over to the forest. Its beautiful in any season, from swimming in the lakes and ponds in spring and summer to admiring the fall foliage in autumn and seeing plenty of icicles in winter. You can guarantee that youll find some suitable trails for you among the 708,000 acres of this wonderland.
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Take The Purple People Bridge To Newport Kentucky
East of the Roebling Bridge is yet another cool bridge to take a walk on: The Newport Southbank Bridge which is better known by its moniker, The Purple People Bridge.
The pedestrian-only bridge dates to 1872 when it opened for train traffic and is now listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
The bridge is easily accessible from the Cincinnati riverfront and leads walkers right to the heart of Newport, Kentucky.
Another fun city with an intriguing past, Newport is a great place to spend an afternoon or evening. Find all of our tips for what to do and see in our Things To Do in Newport, KY blog post.
Catch A Professional Hockey Game At The Heritage Bank Center
Sitting right next to the widely-revered Great American Ball Park on Broadway Street, the Heritage Bank Center home of the Cincinnati Cyclones can be a bit of a hidden gem.
But with EHL games multiple nights per week during peak season , the arena is packed to the brim with hockey fans from around Cincinnati looking for some hard-hitting action!
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Visit The Cincinnati Art Museum And Eden Park
The Cincinnati Art Museum is a must-see in Cincinnati! Boasting a collection of more than 65,000 artworks and housed in a stunningly beautiful building on the grounds of Eden Park, visitors could spend an entire day perusing the exhibits at the Cincinnati Art Museum.
The art displays at the museum range from ancient artifacts to masterpiece paintings to modern sculptures.
As a bonus, there is no entry fee making visiting the museum one of the best free things to do in Cincinnati!
While in the vicinity, visitors should partake in a few of the top outdoor things to do in Cincinnati like strolling through Eden Park to scenic Ohio River overlooks, wandering down the Presidential Memorial Groves and admiring the art sculptures around Twin Lakes.
The Krohn Conservatory an indoor botanical garden with an incredible butterfly exhibit is also located in Eden Park. While a ticket is required to enter the conservatory, it ranks as one of the fun family things to do in Cincy.
The Best Day Trips From Cincinnati
Bison in Big Bone Lick State Park
Once youve spent a few days in Cincinnati, youll probably wonder why you hadnt gone sooner. Ive only touched on the attractions and food options that appealed to me, but there are lots of things to do in Cincinnati and it has its own galleries and museums, an aquarium and a zoo, and plenty of sporting games to attend. Theres truly something for everybody.
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Catch A Comedy Show At Go Bananas Comedy Club
Map It:8410 Market Pl Ln, Cincinnati, OH 45242 | Phone: 513-873-7233| Website | Hours: Monday & Tuesday: Closed, Wednesday & Thursday: 6:30 pm 10 pm, Friday & Saturday: 6:30 pm 12 am, Sunday: 6:30 pm 10 pm| Entrance: $15 per person
Comedy shows are a great date night idea as you and your partner enjoy the unique art form of modern comedy! The Go Bananas Comedy Clud is a widely popular comedy club bursting with up-and-coming comedians. You can eat some snacks and enjoy some cocktails while you get a good ab workout!
Go Bananas Comedy Club in Cincinnati is a very affordable spot as well, with entrance to the club being only $15 for a show. Spending the evening laughing with your significant other is a great date night and an easy way to spend some time in the city.
Shows usually begin around 7:30 pm, and you will find tickets and the comedians on the Go Bananas website. It is definitely worth checking out as you plan your trip to Cincinnati, but the location is not downtown.