12 Kid- Friendly Day Trips from Dayton

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Spring has sprung- and if you are like us you are feeling a little stir crazy! If you have already finished your spring cleaning (or maybe not!)  Here are 12 day trips from Dayton that won’t leave you too far from home but far enough to be able to get away and enjoy quality time with your family!


COSI (Center of Science and Industry) 

COSI- Center of Science and Industry

Where: 333 W. Broad Street, Columbus, OH 43215
Drive time: ~1 hour 15 minutes 
COSI provides an exciting and informative atmosphere for those of all ages to discover more about our environment, our accomplishments, our heritage, and ourselves.They motivate a desire toward a better understanding of science, industry, health, and history through involvement in exhibits, demonstrations, and a variety of educational activities and experiences.When you go check out the Little Kids Space, Sensory- Friendly area, Camp- In COSI, Camp Cosi or even schedule your child’s next birthday party!

Zoombezi Bay

Where: 4850 Powell Road, Powell, OH 43065
Drive time: ~1 hour 15 minutes 
Check out the water park at Columbus Zoo! Zoombezi Bay is the premier water park in central Ohio. It features 17 water slides, a wave pool, action river, adults-only lazy river, children’s interactive play structure with over 100 features and much more! Don’t forget to get a  Zoompass to beat the lines! you are already there…

and since you are already there…

Columbus Zoo 

Where: 4850 Powell Road, Powell, OH 43065
Drive time: ~1 hour 15 minutes The Zoo is home to more than 9,000 animals representing 650 species from around the globe. The Zoo provides more than $1 million annually to support over 70 conservation projects worldwide. A recreation and education destination that includes the 22-acre Zoombezi Bay water park and 18-hole Safari Golf Club, the and Aquarium!

Trammel Fossil Park 

Where: Tramway Dr, Sharonville, OH 45241
Drive time: 45 minutes 
You won’t find many places like this because there are very few places to dig for fossils in the Cincinnati area that are safe and accessible. Since the plot of Trammel Fossil Park has never been disturbed, there is a plethora of fossils in very good condition. Be sure to check out their website for complete directions to the park!

Serpent Mound

Where: 3850 State Route 73, Peebles, OH
Drive time: ~ 1 hour 30 minutes 
The Great Serpent Mound in southwest Ohio is the world’s largest serpentine effigy mound. Writhing in a seemingly effortless way, the mound winds through trees on a cliff overlooking the Brush Creek Valley of Adams County.

Pyramid Hill Sculpture Park

Where: 1763 Hamilton-Cleves Road, State Route 128, Hamilton, OH
Drive time: ~45 minutes 
This outdoor museum features larger-than-life, colorful, three-dimensional sculptures kids will love! Sprawling hills and lush greenery make for a gorgeous mini getaway. Pack a picnic and eat with a view of some of the most awe-inspiring feats of artistic vision. If you’re feeling lazy, rent an art cart and enjoy the sites on wheels!

Pyramid Hill Sculpture Park

Young’s Jersey Dairy

Where: 6880 Springfield-Xenia Rd., Yellow Springs, OH
Drive time: 30 minutes 
Playgrounds? Petting zoo? Mini golf?! Young’s Jersey Dairy is absolutely worth a trip to Yellow Springs.
This family owned gem is a real working dairy farm, where guests can watch the cows being milked – and then enjoy a bowl of homemade ice cream! How’s that for “farm to table?”

Clifton Gorge State Nature Preserve

Where: 2381 OH-343, Yellow Springs, OH
Drive time: ~ 30 minutes 
This 268-acre preserve protects one of the most spectacular dolomites and limestone gorges in the state. In some areas, cliff overhangs have broken off, forming massive slump blocks scattered along the valley floor.


Kentucky Horse Park

Where: 4089 Iron Works Pkwy, Lexington, KY
Drive time: ~ 2 hours
You’ll meet Thoroughbred legends at the Hall of Champions, see interesting breeds at the Parade of Breeds Show or head out for a walking barn tour to meet our police horses, see our blacksmith facility and explore a kids’ barn with stories and activities perfect for young visitors. Also, visit their museums for a comprehensive look at horse history and culture around the world–there’s nothing else like it! Celebrate history’s greatest horses at the memorials and statues located around the park. And take a horseback riding tour of the grounds to capture the true essence of the Kentucky Horse Park.

The Wilds 

Where: 14000 International Road, Cumberland, OH
Drive time: ~2 hours and 30 minutes 

The Wilds is a private, non-profit safari park and conservation center that combines cutting-edge conservation science and education programs with hands-on experiences and one-of-a-kind adventures that include ziplining, horseback riding, fishing and more!

Red River Gorge

Where: Robbie Ridge Rd., Stanton, KY
Drive time: ~ 3 hours
The Red River Gorge is a unique, scenic natural area featuring “gorge”-ous sandstone arches and towering cliffs. Outdoor enthusiasts come to the gorge year round to enjoy hiking, camping, canoeing, wildlife viewing and other recreational opportunities.

Kings Island

Where: 6300 Kings Island Drive, Mason, OH 
Drive time: ~ 45 minutes 

Kings Island is the largest amusement park and water park in the Midwest. And for good reason. Start with the thrill rides. The 5,282-foot, 80-mph Diamondback roller coaster. Then there’s the Vortex, where you go through two vertical loops, one corkscrew, one boomerang turn and a 360-degree helix.  Then there’s the kid-centric fun like Planet Snoopy. There’s also Dinosaurs Alive!– 60 life-sized dinos spread across seven acres of Jurassic thrills!

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