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What To Do in Cincinnati: 6 Awesome Things to Do Around Cincy

Newcomers to The Queen City often ponder life's greatest question: "what to do in Cincinnati?" The answer usually comes in the form of another question: "what do you like to do?"

From outdoor destinations to pro sports teams to distinctive cuisine to a deep cultural arts scene, there's enough to keep most everyone busy in Cincinnati, OH.

Below are some of our top things to do in the Cincinnati metropolitan area, which includes some great destinations across the river, too (more on that in a bit)!

What is there to do in Cincinnati, Ohio?

There's more to do in Cincy than anyone can do in a day, so stay awhile and experience some of the fun things we like to do in the region.

  1. Sports
  2. Art Museum
  3. Northside
  4. Music & Theater
  5. Cincinnati Chili
  6. Outdoor Activities

Sports

In the summer, head to Great American Ball Park along the banks of the Ohio River. GABP has been home to Major League Baseball's Cincinnati Reds since 2003. The Reds' history dates back to the late 19th Century when they were the first professional baseball team.

In the fall, Cincinnati's thoughts turn to the National Football League's Bengals, who play at Paul Brown Stadium on the waterfront adjacent to GABP.

Entrance to Great American Ball Park for what to do in cincinnati
Photo by Seth Reese on Unsplash

College football fans should head over to Nippert Stadium to catch the University of Cincinnati Bearcats. Of course, the Bearcats are pretty solid at basketball, too. Find them at Fifth Third Arena where they battle in the Big 12.

What to do in Cincinnati on a rainy day?

Art Museum

It's always a great idea—rain or shine—to head to the Cincinnati Art Museum. Admission to the main part of the museum is free (although special exhibitions may cost extra) and with 67,000 works of art, there's probably something you didn't get to experience the last time.

If you happen to be downtown on a rainy day, make sure to take advantage of the Cincinnati Skywalk. It's an elevated, indoor pedestrian walkway that covers about a mile of downtown. But don't wait; segments have been removed recently to make room for redevelopment.

If it's not raining, check out urban destinations like Fountain Square, Over-the-Rhine, or Findlay Market (the oldest continuously operating market in Ohio) for events, nightlife, and some great fresh food shopping.

What to do in Cincinnati on a Saturday night?

Northside

The city's Northside district is one of the area's top destinations for a night out. Just 15 minutes north of downtown, Northside restaurants offer a wide range of cuisine, from African to Nepalese, burgers to tacos to, well, just about everything. Of course, there are a pair of breweries, multiple bars (many with live music), and coffee shops, too. Did we forget to mention the art galleries and unique shops?

what to do in cincinnati: the Cincinnati Music Hall
Photo by Matthew Hernandez on Unsplash

Music & theater

If you've been there, done that, there are multiple theater and performance venues in Cincinnati for a Saturday or pretty much any other night of the week. Check out the Cincinnati Music Hall, the Ensemble Theatre CincinnatiCincinnati Shakespeare CompanyCincinnati OperaThe Performance Gallery, the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, the Cincinnati Boychoir or the Cincinnati Ballet

What Food is Cincinnati Known for?

Chili

Plain and simple, Cincinnati is known for its chili. No, we're not talking about chili con carne or Texas Red chili; Cincinnati chili exists on its own unique branch of the chili family tree.

Start with ground beef cooked in tomato paste, then add Mediterranean spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice and cloves.

Then, the meat mixture is served over spaghetti noodles or hot dogs (coneys). Customize your dish by adding "ways," or layers of cheese, onions and/or beans.

While many restaurants around town serve their special brand of Cincinnati chili, the two originals are Skyline Chili and Gold Star. Be careful if you pick sides in this debate!

What Else is Around Cincinnati?

Outdoor activities

Getting outside is a requirement around these parts. Two of the top destinations for hiking, biking and horseback riding are Mt. Airy Forest and Winton Woods. If you're looking for a fun diversion for the kids, head to Smale Riverfront Park for the Spray Grounds!

One of the other great things about Cincinnati is its proximity to a lot of cool places just a short drive away. Just across the river is Newport, Kentucky, home to the Newport Aquarium at Newport on the Levee. From 'gators to penguins to "Surrounded by Sharks," the aquarium has more than 90 species and 20,000 animals to take in.

A little more than a half-hour away is Big Bone Lick State Historic Site, the site of a Pleistocene salt lick where many large animals met their demise. Fortunately, they left behind plenty of cool fossils.

Cincinnati's Roebling bridge
Photo by Robert Conklin on Unsplash

FAQs

Cincinnati is home to almost 310,000 residents in the city and almost 2.2 million in the region. It sits between Columbus, OH, and Louisville, KY, and is a short drive from Indianapolis, IN, Lexington, KY, or Dayton, OH.

Q: What is Cincinnati famous for?

A: All of the above. Just mention "Reds" and people know you're talking about the baseball team. Tell someone you've got a hankering for "Skyline," and they'll start thinking about the "ways" they like their chili. Ask where the nearest Botticelli, Monet, Van Gogh or Picasso is, and the answer is the Cincinnati Art Museum.

Q: What is the main airport in Cincinnati?

A: If you're flying into town, you'll land at Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport, about 25 minutes from Downtown Cincinnati. Technically, the airport is in Hebron, Kentucky, but its designation of CVG stands for Covington, also in Kentucky. It's one of the busiest cargo hubs in the United States.

Q: What time zone is Cincinnati in?

A: Cincinnati and all of Ohio are in the Eastern Time Zone.

What To Do in Cincinnati: What's Next?

Whether you're in Cincinnati for a day, a week, the near future or it's your forever home, there are plenty more things to do when you're in The 'Nati.

Now that we've helped you figure out what there is to do in Cincinnati, it's up to you to get out there and experience it.

When your adventures, souvenirs, or market finds start to take up too much space in your home or apartment, head over to your local Cincinnati Store Space Self Storage facility to get a great deal on a self-storage unit.

$1 Rent for your First Month!

Rent Online Right Now. Skip the Counter & Go Straight to Your Space.

 
 

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