Road Trip! Four drivable destinations perfect for a spring vacation

Jack McLaughlin

It’s that time of year again, when us Ohio folk are tired of being cooped up inside all winter dreaming of warmer days, sunshine and adventures. But spring is just around the corner! 

It’s the perfect time for getaway; you’re never too old for Spring Break! You don’t need to travel too far, or buy a plane ticket, to find a destination suited for every type of traveler and adventure. So pack up the car, create a new playlist and let’s Spring Break!  

Outdoor Action  

New River Gorge National Park (Fayetteville, W. Va. – about 4 hours from Columbus) 

It’s true what they say about West Virginia–it really is wild and wonderful! The New River Gorge area is GORGEous (get it?) in spring; imagine tree-covered mountains in bloom, with a whitewater river, one of the oldest on the continent, running through it. With more than 100 trails for hiking and biking, this national treasure is a thrill-seeker’s paradise, with many opportunities to get wild. The area is known for its whitewater rafting, fishing, BASE jumping off of the nation’s third largest bridge. With plenty of unspoiled wilderness to enjoy, New River Gorge is a place of beauty, especially in spring. 

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Serenity Now

Farmington, Penn. – about 4 hours from Columbus

Who isn’t in need of some relaxation and pampering? For an upscale treat, head to Nemacolin, a luxurious resort in Farmington, Penn. that truly features something for everyone. Nemacolin has insane wellness amenities including a Holistic Healing Center and a spa. Choose a bespoke treatment or go all-in with one of their “journeys.” And if upscale resorts aren’t your thing, Farmington is also home to Fort Necessity National Battlefield for history buffs, as well as a variety of natural escapes, like the extensive Laurel Caverns–the largest cave system in Pennsylvania–and the nearby Ohiopyle State Park. 

Southern Comfort 

Nashville, Tenn. (about 5 hours from Columbus) 

Plan a getaway to Music City, where you can fill up on hot chicken and cool tunes. Find out why it’s called the Country Music Capital, head to Rippy’s, Nudie’s or Tootsie’s Orchid Lounge on Broadway for some authentic Nashville talent. To check out some bigger acts, hit up the Grand Ole Opry or the famous Ryman Auditorium. For a fun day, check out the Johnny Cash Museum and then tour the Ole Smoky Moonshine factory.

Natural Wonder

Niagara Falls, NY (about 5 hours from Columbus)

Spring is a great time to enjoy the beauty of nature. Why not visit Niagara Falls, the largest, most magnificent waterfalls in all of North America? Straddling Canada and New York state, the falls are fun for everyone, with plenty of activities for tourists. Stay in a hotel with a view of the falls for a special experience and take a boat ride behind the falls on the famous Maid of the Mist. Don’t forget your poncho; those powerful waterfalls don’t mess around! Walk across the Rainbow Bridge to the Canadian side, where fun abounds. Check out the “Las Vegas of Canada,” where casinos line the streets. Prepare to laugh if you head to Louis Toussant’s Waxworks on the Canadian side, where the wax figures of celebrities are notoriously bad. Sure, it’s a tourist trap, but after a few drinks, it’s amusing as hell. Finally, don’t miss out on the Skylon Tower, where you can see out 80 miles on a clear day.

If you like this, read: Spring into action with a weekend away

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