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The Travel Well Guide
City: N/A State: Ohio Country: USA
Columbus is the capital, the largest, and the most populous city of the U.S. state of Ohio. Located near the geographic center of the state, Columbus is the county seat of Franklin County, although parts of the city also extend into Delaware and Fairfield counties. Named for explorer Christopher Columbus, the city was founded in 1812 at the confluence of the Scioto and Olentangy rivers, and assumed the functions of state capital in 1816. The city has a diverse economy based on education (it is home to Ohio State University, the largest university in the United States), insurance, healthcare (three major hospital systems operating in Central Ohio), retail, and technology. Among its best known events are the Oktoberfest in late September, ComFest, the Ohio State Fair, the Asian Festival in Franklin Park, the Columbus Arts Festival, the satirical Doo Dah Parade, the Festival Latino and the All American Quarter Horse Congress. It is also renowned for Red, White, and Boom, the largest Independence Day celebrations and fireworks display around. For those who come here at one of the rare times when there is not a festival going on, the city also has a wealth of other things to see and do, from the Victorian and German villages and the heritage districts of Old Oaks, Driving Park and Livingston Park, to the Columbus Museum of Art and the Ohio Craft Museum. Next door to the Ohio Historical Center is the Ohio village, a reconstruction of a 19th-century settlement. More modern are the Jack Nicklaus Museum (on the University campus, as is the Wexner Center for the Arts) and COSI, an interactive science and technology museum. Short North is an area popular with both locals and visitors: it has an eclectic mixture of shops, restaurants and art galleries. Easton Town Center is definitely the upmarket area for shopping and eating, while the North West Market is ideal for people-watching. In the evenings, the riverfronts, and the Arena and Brewery districts are the places to go, while for those who need a break from the excitement, Franklin Park is among the best of Columbus' open spaces and is renowned for its conservatory's large collection of tropical plants.The Ohio Statehouse is a beautiful pre-Civil War Greek revival building, while the explorer after whom the city is named is commemorated by the replica of the Santa Maria on the Scioto River.
Climate | When to Visit
Visit during: April to October
Directions | How to Reach
By Air:The Port Columbus Airport is 10 miles east of town. There is no direct public bus. Port Columbus provides service to a few foreign and dozens of domestic destinations, including all the major hubs.By Train:Columbus used to have a major train station downtown called Union Station, most notably as a stop along Amtrak's National Limited train service until 1977. The station itself was razed in 1979, and the Greater Columbus Convention Center now stands in its place. The station was also a stop along the Cleveland, Columbus and Cincinnati Railroad and the Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Chicago and St. Louis Railroad. Columbus is now the largest metropolitan area in the U.S. without passenger rail service.By Road:Columbus is bisected by two major Interstate Highways, Interstate 70 running east–west, and Interstate 71 running north to roughly southwest. The two Interstates combine downtown for about 1.5 miles (2.4 km) in an area locally known as "The Split", which is a major traffic congestion point within Columbus. Greyhound buses run at least six times daily to Cincinnati and Cleveland. Often cheaper, Megabus runs once daily to Cincinnati and twice daily to Chicago. It departs from downtown and the university.
miscellaneous | Important Information
Don't Miss:Deer Creek State Park or the Wayne National Forest, the only forest in Ohio.James Thurber House - home to famous author and cartoonist for the New Yorker, James Thurber and his family, from 1913-1917. Visitors are encouraged to sit on the chairs, play a few notes on his piano and tap a few keys on his typewriter.