Her Campus Logo Her Campus Logo
The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Bowling Green chapter.

Say you want to go on a weekend vacation… but, you really can’t afford to go all out. Well, good news! Ohio has many different fun vacation spots that can be perfect for every type of thrifty traveler. While you are there make sure to stop at some of these odd and unique landmarks and museums. 

Between Geocaching and stay-cations my family and I have traveled to a lot of different places in Ohio. What I have learned is that sometimes the best place to look for a new adventure or a great weekend getaway is within your own backyard. Even though these places may not scream exotic vacation, they can be the perfect way to get out of town or explore your community, while staying budget-friendly. These places are far from your traditional vacation spots, and will have your friends begging for pictures!

**Disclaimer- A lot of these places have seasonal hours, so I recommend visiting the websites prior to visiting!**

History Fanatics 

Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad– Peninsula, Ohio ($19/adult)

  • Riding a train is an experience in itself, but this train also travels through the Cuyahoga Valley National Park. Enjoy this two-hour ride and see beautiful cityscapes and forests. While on board be sure to visit the Cafe Car for food and souvenirs.

International Women’s Air and Space Museum– Cleveland, Ohio ($7/car)

  • Showcasing a variety of artifacts, photos, and more of the many different women and their accomplishments in all areas of aviation. Schedule a tour, visit the gift shop, or just enjoy the museum.

American Sign Museum– Cincinnati, Ohio ($15/adult)

Displaying the history of commercial signs and sign making, this museum houses over 200 signs. Visit “Main Street USA”, take a guided audio tour, and check out the Neonworks of Cincinnati all located inside this bright museum.

McKinley Presidential Library and Museum– Canton, Ohio ($13/adult)

  • This presidential museum contains presidential archives, a planetarium, a history museum, a science museum, and animatronic dinosaurs, all in the same building.

Nature Lovers

Columbus Park of Roses– Columbus, Ohio

  • This 13-acre garden has five different styled gardens, and an arboretum displaying a variety of roses, herbs, and other plants. There are paved roads and benches all throughout this park and available year-round. 

Kingwood Center– Mansfield, Ohio ($8/adult)

  • Explore the King mansion and its beautiful backyard with its many floral displays and gardens. After, be sure to visit the Garden Gateway Restaurant and visitor center for desserts, food, and souvenirs. 

Gardenview Horticultural Park– Strongsville, Ohio ($5/adult)

  • Visit this effortless cottage-style scenery with a variety of rare plants and scenery. This garden houses many plants that were cultivated and patented by Gardenview.

Harry Andrews’ Chateau Laroche– Loveland, Ohio ($5/adult)

  • This medieval castle was created by hand to be a 1/5th-scale replica. Inside his castle view the medieval paraphernalia including a suit of armor and royal thrones. 

All-Around Odd

Lucky Cat Museum– Cincinnati, Ohio

  • This museum houses over 2,000 of the Japanese Lucky Cats. Visit to see the many different varieties and get a boost of extra luck.

Cornhenge– Dublin, Ohio

  • Visit and see this field of concrete ears of corn and Osage trees in this wacky park. These six-foot ears were sculpted by an Ohio State processor and are a great way to put a smile on your face.

Jungle Jim’s International Market– Fairfield, Ohio

  • This unusual grocery store has many attractions, figures, and samples for you to enjoy in addition to some of the wacky foods they sell. This store is over 200,000 square feet and includes many different gift shops, restaurants, and experiences for you to enjoy. 

Crystal Cave– Put-In-Bay, Ohio ($8/adult)

  • Home to the largest geode in the world, visitors can travel inside this crystal and see this amazing site. To complete the experience make sure to visit Heineman Winery and the gift shop.

For the Kids

Bellaire Toy and Plastic Brick Museum– Bellaire, Ohio ($8/adult)

  • Featuring many different brick builds, this unofficial Lego museum has something for everyone. Visit and take photos with the exhibits and make sure to stop at the gift shop.

Merry-Go-Round Museum– Sandusky, Ohio ($6/adult)

  • This museum holds many different merry-go-round memorabilia and history. Visit the carving shop and ride the carousel for a great time.

Judy’s Jungle– Mentor, Ohio

  • This fiberglass zoo is hidden behind a local business. The owners added the fun mostly life size animals to visit and take pictures with.

Putt-Putt of Warren– Warren, Ohio ($6/adult)

  • Visit this historic putt-putt course, created by the founder of putt-putt himself. Created to test your skills, this course is fun for all ages. 

Dickens Victorian Village– Cambridge, Ohio

  • Every year this town displays these Victorian characters to celebrate the holiday season. While in the town visit the welcome center to pick up a map, look at the gift shop, and experience the Imagination Station.
Her Campus Placeholder Avatar
Breanna Ford

Bowling Green '26

Breanna is studying Tourism, Hospitality, and Event Management and Spanish at Bowling Green State University. She loves planning events and hopes to travel the world. She is also very creative and likes to explore new places and things. In her free time she enjoys reading, watching movies, and doing paint-by-numbers. In addition to Her Campus, Breanna is also a part of the BG Crafters Club and Campus Outreach.