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Active outdoor family outings in Ohio

With so many beautiful state parks, there are no limits to what you can do outdoors as a family in Ohio. From skiing to canoing, there’s something to keep even the most active family entertained, and developing hobbies and memories together.

Family Canoe

Mad River Mountain

The number one destination for winter fun near Columbus is Mad River Mountain. The mountain is a great destination in the daytime thanks to its four ski lifts and well-equipped bunny hill area. It’s also a thrilling destination at night as the lifts stay open well past midnight, offering the thrill of night skiing down slick, icy slopes. Mad River also has a huge tubing area, with 10 900-foot shoots and two rapid lifts to get you tubing down faster.

1000 Snow Valley Rd, Zanesfield, OH 43360.

800-231-SNOW (7669)

Alpine Valley

Alpine Valley sits right in Ohio’s snowbelt, reaping the benefits of the lake effect weather. If you can withstand the freezing winter temperatures, your family will enjoy ski and snowboard slopes and trails, Ohio’s largest Xtreme half pipe with a dedicated snowboard lift, snow tube park, chalet with cafeteria and lounge, ski and snowboard shop and rental facilities.

10620 Mayfield Road, Chesterland, OH 44026

Phone 440-285-2211

Snow Line: 440-729-9775

Boston Mills Brandywine

This is Ohio’s largest ski resort, actually two separate resorts, five minutes apart, operated by the same management company. Lift tickets and passes are valid at both locations. Polar Blast Snow Tubing is located right next to Brandywine. The resort is well known for its excellent ski team program.

1146 W Highland Road, Sagamore Hills, Ohio 44067.


Bolivar’s Canoe Livery

The operators of the Bolivar Canoe Company limit the number of guests allowed on the river at one time, guaranteeing a private eco-adventure on the Tuscarawas River. Families will be able to canoe, fish, kayak, tube, and camp for a day of river fun. Kids will travel down the river, experiencing it as the Native Americans once did, unspoiled and calm.

NTR Canoe Livery, 11358 ST RT 212 NE

PO Box 203, Bolivar, OH 44612


Ben’s Happy Trails Riding Stables and Campground

Ben’s Happy Trails is located in the Shawnee State Forest, and provide horses for gorgeous trail rides. Their convenient location to the Shawnee Forest cabins make it a perfect weekend activity for older kids. They specialize in Morgan horses.

3494 Big Spruce-Little Bear Road

Otway, OH 45657-8804

(740) 372-2702

Hocking Hills Canopy Tours

The Hocking Hills now offers a thrilling adventure for children aged 10 and up: zipline tours. For three hours, your family will zip over the treetops of the Hocking Hills, viewing waterfalls, rock faces, and the beauty of nature. Recreational tree climbing is also available. In Spring 2010, the thrill gets kicked up a notch with the launch of the new, faster Super Zip.

Hocking Hills Canopy Tours

10714 Jackson Street, Rockbridge, OH 43149

Call: 1-740-385-9477

Hot air ballooning with America’s Unknown Destination

Surprise your children with a ride of a lifetime on hot air balloon. Rides take place at sunrise and sunset when wind conditions are optimal. Once the balloon is aloft, following a loud gust of flames, you’ll be truly able to appreciate the beauty of the Ohio landscape.

America’s Unknown Destinations

4187 Lynwood Road, Kent, OH 44240 

Phone number: (330)-673-4180

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