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Ohio: The Heart Of It All

Ohio’s nickname does indeed signify a reality. Although considered by many to be a Midwestern state, Ohio is really more of a crossroads between the East Coast and the Midwest. Located on the southern shore of Lake Erie, the state is geographically diverse with the Appalachian region in the southeast, the lakeshore in the north, and the till plains of the central lowland in between.

Historically, the Ohio region was populated by various Native American tribes such as the Iroquois, Miamis, Wyandots, Delawares, and Shawnees. After being used by the French for fur trading, then claimed by the British, and after the American Revolution by the newly formed US, Ohio became part of the Northwest Territory. In 1803, the state was admitted to the Union as 17th of all. Today, Ohio is the most densely populated state that is not located on the East Coast.

The climate is generally a humid continental one, with the lakeside effect bringing more precipitation in the north. The southern portion of the state borders with the humid subtropical climate zone. The subtropical influences are reflected in the fauna, especially of the southern part, where for instance the blackjack oak can be found as well as needle palms or crape myrtles.


The state capital is also geographically the heart of the state. Ohio’s largest city is home to Ohio State University, the world-famous Columbus Zoo and many more stunning sights and cultural facilities. Columbus also gives testimony to its different ethnic groups. German Village, for instance, invites for an exploration. Ohio has a thriving African American community, making up about a quarter of the city’s residents. Columbus is a vibrant, modern city that offers all amenities from top-class lodging to fine dining and state-of-the-art culture like the famous Columbus Symphony, or exhibition spaces like the Kibibi and Global Gallery, the King Arts Complex, and the Riffe Gallery.


The city of Cleveland is a music mecca where all famous rock artists have played and rock and roll music is said to have been first promoted on a large scale. Not only music lovers but families as well pour into Ohio’s second largest city in droves. Things to do go beyond a visit to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and include the Cleveland Museum of Art, the Western Reserve Historical Society, the Cleveland Museum of Natural History, the Botanical Garden as well as the world-famous Cleveland Orchestra, one of the Big Five ensembles in the US. Any form of entertainment abounds in Cleveland, whether comedy, theater, dancing or nightlife. The culinary riches offered at the West Side Market are not to be missed either.


The city of Cincinnati, located at Ohio’s southwestern tip, close to the Indiana and Kentucky borders, lies within one of the Top 20 metropolitan areas of the US. The city is famous for its vast collection of 19th-century Italian architecture, the largest in the country. North of Downtown, the Italian neighborhood is a major historic district. The topography is centered around Fountain Square. Many modern skyscrapers dominate downtown Cincinnati.

Several fascinating events take place in Cincinnati. They include the famous Flower Show in late April, the largest Oktoberfest in the US, The Taste of Cincinnati and Jazz music festivals every summer. Culinary delicacies await visitors such as the famous “Cincinnati Chili.”

Appalachian Ohio

Visiting the Appalachian Country of Ohio in the southeast of the state is a very special and in a way uniquely American experience. Naturally, the region offers stunning scenarios and great outdoor relaxation opportunities. Appalachian Ohio is a blend of the old and new, with a strong sense of the past that is reflected in the present-day culture and experience. Historic sites like the Civil War site Buffington Island in Meigs County, the picturesque downtown district of the town of Marietta or also Serpent Mound enable strolls with history’s breath surrounding.

There is also a variety of great museums in the region like Stuart’s Opera House in Nelsonville or the Vern Riff Center at Shawnee State University. In addition, Appalachian Ohio has 33 state parks, 21 state forests, 11 state nature preserves, and generally boasts the state’s most beautiful nature.

Amish Country

A visit to Amish Country in central Ohio is a trip to the past that almost feels like a time travel. The world’s largest community of Amish resides here. A great place to see for the whole family is this region around the towns of Berlin, Walnut Creek, and Millersburg, to mention only a few of the many towns and villages interspersed across the magnificent rural surroundings. Whether you want to shop some home-made bread, visit one of the farms or family-run stores or simply enjoy the cozy bed & breakfasts and other accommodation provided by the hospitable Amish, you will not be disappointed by what you experience.

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