Sure, I’m a proud mother of a teenager, but I’m also a wife to an awesome husband. And it turns out that we love to travel together as a couple. So, when given the opportunity, we jump on it! This summer, we had the pleasure of visiting Cincinnati, Ohio, and discovered plenty of fun things to see and do – and eat. From walking through history to catching a game, here are our favorite fun things to do in Cincinnati for couples.
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1. Stroll through a Park Named After a Founding Father
For a gorgeous place to take a stroll before or after a meal, head to Washington Park in Cincinnati’s Over The Rhine Neighborhood. Not only will you find interactive fountains and a dog park (Fido loves being a third wheel!), but you can check out year-round free programs including free fitness programs and a Summer Cinema series. All you need is a couple of lawn chairs.
2. Hunt for Art
A new feature at Cincinnati Art Museum is its MyCAM Art Hunts. The free-admission museum gives you eight themes to choose from, so all you need to do is download your fave and go. If you’re not feeling that ambitious, you can still enjoy the multi-story museum and its themed rooms.
While you’re visiting, make sure to check out the Terracotta Army: Legacy of the First Emperor of China traveling exhibit through mid-August. Yes, it’s a hard ticket event, but truly a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
3. Catch a Ball (Game)
A truly American, and affordable way for date night is to take in a game at Great American Ball Park. Home of the Cincinnati Reds, look for special event nights (we really enjoyed Fiona the Hippo night!) and get ready to have some fun. There’s plenty of Cincy dining staples, too: Skyline Chili & LaRosa’s Pizza make our short list.
Before or after the game, checking out the Cincinnati Reds Hall of Fame is not only fun, there are interactive exhibits to show off your pitching hand.
4. Toast to a Hometown Hippo Hero
While I’m talking Fiona the Hippo, there’s a craft brewery that’s actually dedicated a beer to the cutie. A New England style IPA, Listermann Brewery’s Team Fiona is a hazy brew that’s not only tasty, 25% of its proceeds are donated to the Zoo and Team Fiona, the gang that happily accepted the responsibility of caring for her.
5. See the Signs
Remember the Neon Sign Graveyard (AKA Neon Sign Museum) in Las Vegas? you don’t have to travel across the country to check out a similar experience. The only public sign museum in America, the American Sign Museum is a trip through 50 years of neon sign history. From the turn of the 20th Century through the 1950’s, the neon signs are not only Americana at its finest, they’re pretty.
6. Delight Your Culinary Palette in a Historic Market
I do enjoy a good indoor market. It’s a great way to taste test a bunch of foodie styles at once. It’s also a fun way to take a self-serve culinary tour of the city without putting in the leg work.
For Cincinnati, it’s definitely Findlay Market. Since 1855, it’s considered Ohio’s oldest, continually-operated public market. It has well over one million visitors every year and is open every day except Monday.
What we loved:
- Pho Land Tang for its Com Tam Thit Nuong (broken rice with grilled meats)
- Dojo Gelato, any flavor but its Vanilla is amazing.
7. Taste Test a Bit of Belgium
Oh man, I love a good Belgian Waffle. Having written that, there’s a cool spot to get a great one – Taste of Belgium. Located in the historic Over the Rhine neighborhood of Downtown Cincinnati, the restaurant has plenty on the menu including a hometown fave, Waffle & Chicken.
A quick backstory for Taste of Belgium: the owner, Jean-François Flechet, started making waffles in the back of a produce store at Findlay Market. The waffles were in such high demand that Flechet had to find a new, larger location and that was the sweet beginning. If I’m being honest, the waffles were in such high demand that he was told to find a new place to make them. Can’t be hurt over that kind of success, right?
8. Ooh and Aah Over Murals
Every other Saturday from June’s end through October, ArtWorks Cincinnati offers walking tours of its gorgeous murals. Covering a mile and including 12 murals, each tours lasts around 90 minutes and it’s a great way to see the City through the eyes of local artists.
If you’re not up for a guided tour, you can head to ArtWorks’ website and download a free .pdf and see the murals at your own pace.
9. Swing By the Ohio River
Literally, swing by the Ohio River. Smale Riverfront Park has a hand-carved carousel, interactive foot piano, and the cutest labyrinth to test your navigating skills. But, if you really want a laid-back vibe, find on of the large, metal swings along the riverfront area and watch the world go by.
10. See the City with a Bird’s Eye View
Think The Empire State Building was an “aha!” moment? Think again. It turns out that Carew Tower in Cincinnati was a model for the NYC skyscraper.
While a view of the city, state, and even into Indiana is a cool well to spend some quality time, make sure you visit before dinner – the observation deck closes at 7pm on weekends.
Where We Stayed
Our visit to Cincinnati, Ohio, was made even better with a stay at AC Hotel Cincinnati at The Banks. Literally across the street from The Great American Ball Park, its hip vibe & gracious staff made our visit lovely. It’s a good place to park the car and walk to Downtown locations, too.
AC Hotel Cincinnati has plenty of additional reasons to stay, too. We really loved the large gym room and outdoor patio filled with free games. The breakfast area (an additional daily charge) and valet parking were really good additions, too.
Disclosure: We were graciously hosted by the fine folks at Cincinnati USA. All opinions are my own. All photos belong to Mr. Locke unless otherwise noted!