Anyone who knows me knows that I am a bargain-hunter. Yes, I am THAT mom who kept a list of each and every restaurant that offered “kids eat free” nights and planned accordingly. So it should be no surprise that I like to seek out budget-friendly adventures. I decided to look around Warren County, Ohio’s Largest Playground, for the best bargains of all – free activities.
The Great Outdoors
Biking, hiking, and canoeing are all part of the natural appeal of Warren County in Southwest Ohio. The Little Miami Scenic Bike Trail winds along the Little Miami River for a stretch of 76 miles. You can bike, walk, or rollerblade your way along this path which moves through woodlands, countryside and towns alike. The River itself is awesome for canoeing or kayaking (if you don’t have your own gear, there are boat/kayak rental options).
Caesar Creek State Park offers swimming, boating, hiking and even fossil-hunting. Surrounding the lake (which boasts a 1,200 foot beach) are more than 43 miles of hiking trails that lead visitors through beautiful territory that is home to more than 65 different species of plants. The trails range from mild to extremely rugged as the trails traverse everything from open meadows and shoreline to steep ravines. Bikers can ride over 8 miles of trails, while horseback riders can explore 31 miles of Warren County wilderness.
Art & History
Interested in art? Have you visited the Franklin Murals? The city of Franklin calls itself the “City of Murals”, and once you see these spectacular creations for yourself, you will understand the city’s pride in its art. Painted by award-winning muralist and Franklin resident, Eric Henn, the Franklin murals have won 3 different international sign and graphic arts competitions. The murals depict everything from a 19th century park scene to the city’s once proud Great Miami Suspension Bridge.
Does your family boast history buffs? If so, then Springboro, Ohio is a must-see. Springboro played a major role in the Underground Railroad, and was heavily involved in harboring slaves on their flight to freedom. A guided tour of the area will take you on a journey of 50 confirmed safe houses in the area.
Window-shopping in the charming towns of Waynesville and Lebanon is a history lesson in itself. The plethora of antique shops offer an amazing glimpse into the area and our country’s past. Guessing games as to the use for various items can be a fun and educational exercise for the young (and young at heart).
Free festivals abound in Southwest Ohio. From apples to blues, sauerkraut to peeps, holidays to horses, there are a wide variety of themed events to be enjoyed by families, empty nesters, and groups in the various cities and towns that make up Warren County. In fact, they are a big reason that this area is known as Ohio’s Largest Playground!
You might find these other blogs of interest too:
A Tour Through Time: Historical Wonders of Warren County
Eco-Friendly Adventures in Warren County
Your Two-Day Itinerary for Outdoor Adventures in Warren County
Fall Fun at Caesar Creek State Park
Making Memories at the Summer Festivals in Warren County, Ohio