Columbus Attractions Every OSU Student Needs to Visit Before Graduation

By Lauren Bulkley

We, as college students, rarely get an opportunity to leave our schoolwork, jobs, or classes to have a special outing for a day. Feelings of isolation, routine, and boredom are stronger during the pandemic. However, one of Ohio State’s most enticing features is its proximity to so many fun activities and events in the Columbus area. We tend to forget this amidst all our school work. Taking a day, or even a couple hours, to do something fun gives us a break from our day-to-day routines. Here are some of Columbus’s top attractions everyone should visit at least once before we graduate:

  • The Columbus Zoo 
    • The Columbus Zoo is the largest zoo in the United States and it’s only about 25 minutes from campus. The zoo is the perfect weekend or afternoon activity during any time of the year. During the summer, Zoombezi Bay, The Columbus Zoo’s waterpark is open and running with over 17 waterslides. In the winter, the zoo sells tickets to the Wildlights, where every inch of the zoo is decorated in lights. Tickets are around $15, though D-Tix, OSU’s discounted ticket service for students, sells them on occasion for $11.00.  
  • Otherworld
    • Otherworld is an immersive art installation located less than 20 minutes from campus. It’s filled with large-scale art and mixed reality playgrounds that make the perfect setups for photoshoots or an entertaining get-away for the afternoon. Tickets are a bit pricey, though D-Tix hooks students up with tickets for only $12.00. 
  • Franklin Park Conservatory and Botanical Gardens 
    • Franklin Park Conservatory and Botanical Gardens is a perfect way to bring back the fresh and colorful feeling of summer, especially during these winter months. Only 12 minutes from campus, there are all kinds of floral and artistic exhibits to walk through, and even a butterfly exhibit coming at the end of February. The Franklin Park Conservatory also offers virtual tours of their biomes and blooming life on their website. General admission tickets are $19.00, though D-Tix offers students a discounted price of $7.00. 
  • COSI
    • COSI, the Center of Science and Industry, is only ten minutes down the road from campus. Whether you’re interested in science or not, COSI’s interactive exhibits are exciting for all ages, especially us college students. From dinosaurs, to space, to oceans and gadgets, COSI has it all for only $12.00. 
  • Short North Arts District 
    • The Short North Arts District is the closest attraction to campus, being only a short walk down High Street past south campus. Here, you’ll find unique shops, bars and breweries, gourmet restaurants, art galleries, and more. Whether you take a COTA bus to one of the many coffee shops for a study date or dine at a delicious restaurant, the Short North has endless entertaining opportunities to give you a break from your studies- or a cool new place to study! 

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