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The Columbus region is one of the fastest growing areas in the Midwest, home to one of the country's largest universities, the nation's foremost research organization, 15 Fortune 1000 companies, the No. 1 zoo, No. 1 science center, and even the No. 1 ice cream.
Our creative scene ranks in the top 10 in the country, with performing arts, music, theatres, museums, more parkland per capita than any other U.S. city, and a gorgeous conservatory and botanical gardens.
So much to do. So much to see. (So much to eat and drink!) Columbus has lots of exciting attractions to offer.
Discover what Ohio's largest city has to offer; visit ExperienceColumbus.com.
Don't forget to take your Cultivate badge with you! For a full list of restaurants, retail locations, and attractions that offer special discounts click here.
Within Walking Distance
Just a few steps from the Convention Center you'll find these great Columbus treasures.
THE SHORT NORTH ARTS DISTRICT
Discover the area The Chicago Tribune has heralded as an "artsy and edgy destination." One-of-a-kind shops, dining, art galleries, boutiques, pubs, live theatre, and nightlife make The Short North the unofficial cultural center of the city.
THE ARENA DISTRICT
An easy walk from the Convention Center, the Arena District offers casual eateries, friendly pubs, trendy nightlife, and "the country's best new ballpark," Huntington Park, where the Triple-A Baseball, back-to-back National Champion Columbus Clippers play.
Discover micro-distilleries that take their cues from the Old World traditions of master distillers, using locally sourced ingredients and small-batch creation. Middle West Spirits has been named one of the "World's 5 Most High-Tech Distilleries" and Watershed Distillery is getting quite a reputation for their world-class Vodka, Gin, and Bourbon.
Beer more your style? Then don't miss the Columbus Brewing Company, where you can enjoy dinner and a microbrew just a short drive away.
Where Plant Geeks Geek Out
Can't get enough plant life? We've got you covered. Columbus (which, incidentally, has more park land per capita than any other American city) has a host of horticultural attractions for you to take in:
THE TOPIARY PARK
Located in downtown Columbus on the grounds of the former School for the Deaf, the Topiary Park is a 7-acre landscape of a painting of George Seurat's A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of Grande Jatte, to be exact. The park is a quick walk from the Convention Center, and admission is free. See a map at TopiaryGarden.org.
FRANKLIN PARK CONSERVATORY
Franklin Park Conservatory and Botanical Gardens is Central Ohio’s premier botanical garden and home to the iconic John F. Wolfe Palm House which dates back to 1895. The Conservatory is approximately two miles from downtown Columbus.
The visitor experience spans about 13-acres and is comprised of the Conservatory building, the Scotts Miracle-Gro Foundation Children’s Garden and the Grand Mallway. The experience consists of botanical biomes, lush gardens, special horticulture and art exhibitions, and seasonal offerings.
Seasonal exhibitions currently on view include: Blooms & Butterflies, and Chihuly: Celebrating Nature taking visitors on a journey through the bold and colorful work of Dale Chihuly. These beautiful, breathtaking pieces are situated within the Conservatory’s botanical gardens and courtyards.
COLUMBUS PARK OF ROSES
One of the largest and most celebrated municipal rose gardens in the U.S., the 13-acre Park of Roses located in the Clintonville neighborhood just north of downtown features more than 11,500 roses with more than 400 varieties. Visit ParkOfRoses.org for hours and directions.
OSU ANNUALS TRIAL
Located at OSU's Chadwick Arboretum and Learning Gardens, the Cultivar Trials are conducted each year in order to evaluate ornamental bedding and container plants. Learn more at OhioFloriculture.osu.edu/cultivar-trials.
INNISWOODDS METRO GARDENS
A shade garden, rock garden, conifer garden, herb garden, and rose garden are the highlights of this lovely metropark located in Westerville. Inniswood.org will give you a sneak peak of the gardens.
Bring the Family
Drive a Mars Rover in Space. See real-time research. Lift a car in the Big Science Park. There's no limit to the things you can do and learn at Columbus' Center of Science & Industry. Visit Cosi.org for a virtual tour and special events.
THE COLUMBUS ZOO & AQUARIUM
Home to more than 9,000 animals from around the globe, America's number one zoo is a world of adventure that shouldn't be missed. Animals live in natural habitats including Asia Quest, Australia and the Islands, North America, Expedition Congo, and the new Heart of Africa. See what's in store at ColsZoo.org.
Want even more wildlife? Head east to The Wilds, a non-profit wildlife conservation center located on nearly 10,000 acres in Muskingum County. Home to over 25 non-native and 100s of native species, it allows you to take safaris to see zebras, rhinos, cheetahs, camels, and more roaming freely in natural, open-range habitats. The Wilds is approximately 45 minutes east of Columbus and well worth the drive. Visit TheWilds.org for schedules and tours.
Seventeen exhilarating, state-of-the-art water slides, a wave pool, an action river, a lazy river, and a kiddie play pool make this 22-acre park a splash for the whole family. Dip your toes in at ZoombeziBay.com.
COLUMBUS MUSEUM OF ART
Along with its stellar permanent collection, the museum offers a Center for Creativity where families can enjoy hands-on activities, concerts, lectures, and interactive experiences. Watch art come to life at ColumbusMuseum.org.
A good, old-fashioned baseball stadium. Columbus' Triple-A minor league Clippers put on a great game, complete with hot dogs, Cracker Jacks, seventh-inning stretch, T-shirt flings, and a bon-a-fide water dog. Visit HuntingtonParkColumbus.com for schedules and tickets.
NATIONAL VETERANS MEMORIAL AND MUSEUM
This is a must-see! Opened in 2018, this museum is a tribute to over 40 million Americans who have served this nation since its founding. The mission is to recognize and honor the experiences of veterans by sharing personal experiences, citizenship and service, and societal progress. nationalvmm.org
The Food Scene
Columbus' culinary scene has been garnering national attention and critical acclaim - Click here for Experience Columbus' full list of great restaurants within a short distance of Cultivate.