The Columbus Family Guide

The Columbus area offers a wonderful array of options for the whole family. Whether you’re a local looking to mix up your routine or visiting from out of town, these awesome attractions, kid-friendly restaurants , and family-centric hotels, are some of the best that Columbus has to offer.


COSI – Center of Science and Industry (333 West Broad Street, Columbus). Located in the heart of downtown, our Center of Science and Industry has something for everyone. Their special exhibits are always worth the trip and we love the hands-on area they have for littles. Instagram

Franklin Park Conservatory (1777 East Broad Street, Columbus). The Children’s Garden is a go-to for us during the summer with a variety of outdoor activities for the kids. From a natural play zone, to mini pools and waterways to splash in, it’s perfect for warm summer days. Don’t forget to check out the Garden Railway while you are there. Instagram

Columbus Zoo & Aquarium (4850 West Powell Road, Powell). We are so lucky to have one of the best zoos in the country and it’s a must if you are visiting our city. Plan an extra day to check out the adjacent waterpark, Zoombezi Bay. Instagram

Legoland Discovery Center (157 Easton Town Center, Columbus). The perfect activity for a rainy or chilly day. Located at Easton Town Center, it has rides, a large play area, and of course LOTS of lego. Instagram

Metro Parks. Columbus has such a variety of gorgeous parks for families to enjoy all year-round. With play areas, zip lines, trails, and educational centers, we love spending time exploring the natural beauty of our city. Instagram

Columbus Clippers and Columbus Crew. Even if you aren’t a sports fan, planning an evening attending one of these games is such a delight and offers great activities for the kids. Both are located right downtown, so there is plenty to do before and after.


Cambridge Tea House (1885 West Fifth Avenue, Columbus). A darling treat for the littles to enjoy. Offering traditional afternoon tea and more. Instagram

Kittie’s Cakes (2424 East Main Street, Bexley; 693 High Street, Worthington, & 495 South Third Street, German Village). The ideal morning stop for a quick coffee for the adults and delicious breakfast or sweet treat for the kiddos. With 3 locations around town, we love visiting them all. Instagram

Kitchen Social (8954 Lyra Drive, Columbus & 6791 Longshore Street, Dublin). Casual, delicious, and with a great kid’s menu. Be sure to make reservations, it’s one of the hottest spots in town. Instagram

Ghostwriter Public House (49-1/2 South Main Street, Johnstown). We love their outdoor patio during the summer months for dinner with the family. Nights with live music are worth the trip to the charming town of Johnstown. Instagram

Pins Mechanical (141 North Fourth Street, Columbus). You can bring your own food in from restaurants in the area and enjoy an afternoon or evening full of fun activities, including DuckPin Bowling, pinball, and foosball, name a few. Instagram


The Junto (77 Belle Street, Columbus). The newly opened hotel, located right across the street from COSI, offers some amazing amenities for families. Free tickets to COSI, access to their Gear Garage with scooters, bikes and more, and access to the Scioto River for kayak and paddleboard trips. Instagram

Hotel LeVeque (50 West Broad Street, Columbus). Located in the heart of the city, with walking access to COSI, the National Veterans Memorial & Museum, and the Scioto Mile, we love the convenience of staying at this stunning and iconic hotel. Instagram

South Wind Motel (919 South High Street, Columbus). With a retro flare, this newly renovated gem in German Village is a fun and casual place to stay. With suites available, it’s a great option for families. Instagram 

Idyll Reserve (25050 Purcell Road, South Bloomingville). If you want an escape and some time to explore the gorgeous Hocking Hills area, Idyll Reserve is an amazing option. With 6 different cabins to choose from, it’s perfect for one family or a group. Instagram

For additional recommendations for what to do, see, and experience in Columbus, browse or buy a copy of The Scout Guide Columbus and follow TSG Columbus on Instagram.