Friday: Downtown Food and Views

Carew Tower Observation Deck
Carew Tower Observation Deck

Start your weekend in Cincinnati with a bird’s eye view of the city. Head to Carew Tower, the second-tallest building in the city, and take the elevators to the observation deck. Be sure to get there before it closes at 6 p.m. Cost: $4 for adults, $2 for children (6-11), free for children 5 and under.

Tyler Davidson Fountain on Fountain Square
Tyler Davidson Fountain on Fountain Square

Next, check out what’s going on at Fountain Square, the heart of the city. View the Tyler Davidson Fountain, a Cincinnati landmark since 1871, and see what’s playing on the giant video board. Cost: free.

Skyline Chili
Skyline Chili

For dinner, try Cincinnati’s specialty, Skyline Chili, then treat yourself to some Graeter’s Ice Cream for dessert.

Sawyer Point Playground
Sawyer Point Playground

If the kids still have energy left, head to one of Cincinnati's riverfront parks. Smale Riverfront Park offers plenty of fun options including a carousel, playground, splash fountains, and an interactive play area including a giant foot piano and flying pig. Kids also love the community-built 1,000 Hands playground at Sawyer Point & Yeatman’s Cove, a mile-long park along the Ohio River. Cost: $2 per carousel ride; other activities free.

Saturday: Over-the-Rhine and Northern Kentucky

Holtman's Donut Shop
Holtman's Donut Shop

Spend the morning in Cincinnati’s Over-The-Rhine neighborhood, starting with breakfast at Holtman’s Donuts.

Washington Park fountains, Music Hall
Washington Park fountains, Music Hall

Consider getting those donuts to go and enjoying them at nearby Washington Park. The park has a fun playground for kids and a water play area with interactive fountains (don’t forget to pack a change of clothes for the kids). Cost: free.

Fire Museum of Greater Cincinnati
Fire Museum of Greater Cincinnati

Visit the Fire Museum of Greater Cincinnati for some educational fun. Learn about the history of firefighting equipment, slide down a fire pole, and climb into the cab of a fire engine. Cost: $8 for adults, $6 for children (7-17), free for children 6 and under.

Findlay Market
Findlay Market

For lunch, head to Findlay Market. This colorful market has been in operation since 1855. You’ll find restaurants, outdoor vendors, and street performers.

Behringer-Crawford Museum
Behringer-Crawford Museum

Spend the rest of the day across the river in Northern Kentucky. The Behringer-Crawford Museum is a hidden gem in Covington’s Devou Park. This interesting museum, which focuses on Northern Kentucky’s history and heritage, is fun for all ages. Cost: $7 for adults, $4 for children (3-17).

Roebling Murals
Roebling Murals

Wander down to the riverfront for an artistic perspective of Northern Kentucky’s history. The Roebling Murals, painted by artist Robert Dafford, depict a variety of scenes from history. Cost: free.

Hofbrauhaus Newport
Hofbrauhaus Newport

Enjoy dinner at one of Northern Kentucky’s many restaurants. Both Covington and Newport offer several family-friendly options. One of our favorites is the Hofbräuhaus, where the dining experience involves standing on a bench and doing the chicken dance.

Gameworks
Gameworks

Spend the rest of the evening playing games at Gameworks at Newport on the Levee.

Sunday: Parks and Jungles

Parky's Farm - Photo courtesy of Great Parks of Hamilton County
Parky's Farm - Photo courtesy of Great Parks of Hamilton County

Enjoy a relaxing day appreciating Greater Cincinnati's natural beauty at Winton Woods Park. Kids love Parky’s Farm, a 100-acre educational farm with pony rides, live animals, and an indoor Playbarn. After a morning at Parky’s farm, head to Winton Lake where you can grab lunch at the snack bar, then spend the afternoon on the lake. Choose from a variety of boats to rent. Parky’s Ark wet playground is a great way to cool off in the summer. Winton Woods also has a riding center, two golf courses, nature and fitness trails, and a disc golf course. Cost: Free, fees may apply for some activities. A valid Motor Vehicle Permit is required to enter the parks – cost for residents of Hamilton County: $10 annual/$3 daily; other visitors: $14 annual/$5 daily.

Jungle Jim's Fairfield
Jungle Jim's Fairfield

As your weekend is winding down, head up to Fairfield for a shopping trip to Jungle Jim’s International Market. You’ve never seen a grocery store quite like this one with a monorail outside the building and fun displays throughout the store. Grab some picnic supplies, then drive over to Trammel Fossil Park for a picnic and fossil-collecting expedition.

Got a babysitter? Click here for an itinerary for a couples’ getaway.