Can you ‘spring break’ in the Miami Valley? Cool Airbnb rentals, museums and more to check out

Move over, Daytona Beach — the Dayton, Ohio region is here to be a spring break vacation spot. There may be no ocean to assist in the relaxation, but there are some fun options for new experiences and lively entertainment.

Airbnb rentals we found

The River House

Location: Xenia

Number of Guests: Up to four

Price: Starts at $229 per night

This two-bed, one-bath cottage in Xenia is located right on the bank of the Little Miami River, giving guests direct access for fishing or other water activities. Guests also have access to hot tubs, grill, fire pit, tree swings and two bicycles. Inside the cottage there is a full kitchen, laundry area, sunroom and even a Pac-man arcade cabinet.

The Dayton Yurt

Location: 15 minutes outside of Dayton

Number of Guests: Up to eight

Price: Starts at $45 per night

The Dayton Yurt is a spot for those looking for a rustic lodging experience. While there is only one room with a fold-out bed, guests are allowed to roam as much of the property as they would like -besides the house- with treasures to find in the woods on-site. The property also has a trampoline, swings and plenty of space for tents or leisure. For those looking to explore the area, the Dayton Yurt has quick access to the downtown area as well as many fishing, kayaking and hiking spots. Keep in mind that there is no running water or electricity in this space, but there is a stove for warmth.

Helen’s House

Location: Southeast Dayton, just off Interstate Highway 75

Number of Guests: Up to six

Price: Starts at $98 per night

Described on their page as “the ultimate in Grandmillenial decor,” Helen’s House is a historic two-bedroom home with rooms themed around various decades. With the original 1930s wallpaper and antiques lining the rooms, guests here are transported to another era. While the living and dining room are themed to the early 20th century, the kitchen is straight out of the 1950s, wallpaper and all.

Nature Spa House

Location: New Richmond

Number of Guests: Up to 10

Price: Starts at $726 per night

Marketed specifically with larger groups in mind, the Nature Spa House is on a 10-acre lot full of places to explore, including a large pond just outside the home. Inside there are four bedrooms of various sizes, with additional air mattresses provided. Other rooms include a library, a game room, a movie room, fitness center and indoor pool. Many rooms also include large windows for guests to see the nearby woods.

The Gem City Condo

Location: Dayton

Number of guests: 5 people

Price: $216 per night

The Gem City Condo is nothing but chic. It boasts incredible wall decor, with something to look at with every head turn. It is a former office building converted into a five-bedroom Airbnb with a game room, smart TVs throughout and a theater room. Note: The owner states in the “about” section, this space is not for partying. But it looks great to stay in each night before you head out and do the fun stuff in Dayton. The home also has a 6-person poker table that features an Ohio State logo.

Parks and nature reserves

Hartman Rock Garden

Location: 1905 Russell Ave., Springfield

Hours: Daily from dawn until dusk

Price: Free

More info:

The Hartman Rock Garden is a collection of sculptures based on various historic and cultural subjects, placed and decorated with a vast collection of flowers. Guests can experience the garden with self-guided tours.

The Grotto Gardens

Credit: Lisa Powell

Credit: Lisa Powell

Location: South Gettysburg Ave. and Tennessee avenues on the campus of the VA Medical Center, 4100 W. Third St., Dayton

Hours: The park is open all day, every day

Price: Free

More info:

With history dating back to the 1860s, the Grotto Gardens is a piece of Ohio history that not many are aware of. Throughout the decades, this place was lost to time until 2012, where it was decided to fully renovate the gardens. Now, the Dayton VA Medical center campus has a garden filled with trees, flowers and more.

Oakes Quarry Park

Credit: Photo contributed by Dr. David Schmidt

Credit: Photo contributed by Dr. David Schmidt

Location: 1267 E Xenia Drive, Fairborn

Hours: 7:30 a.m.- 8:30 p.m. every day.

Price: Free

More info:

A large rock well welcomes guests to Oakes Quarry, in Fairborn. Featuring many flora and fauna, this wetland offers a 2-mile long hiking trail for guests to travel as well.

Local museums

The Westcott House

Location: 1340 E. High St., Springfield

Hours: Wednesday-Saturday: 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday: 12:30-4:30 p.m. Closed Mondays

Price: Adult tickets are $20. Discounts are available

More info:

Considered a lost work of architect Frank Lloyd Wright, due to significant alternation leaving it unrecognizable, this house was restored to its original glory in 2001. Now, this house serves as an architectural and design museum. A documentary is also available on site for visitors.

SunWatch Indian Village/Archaeological Park



Location: 2301 W. River Road, Dayton

Hours: Weekends, 10 a.m.- 4 p.m.

Price: Adult tickets are $7. Discounts are available

More info:

Originally named the “Incinerator Site,” this historic settlement was discovered in the 1960s and was opened to the public twenty years later in 1988. This excavation cite allows visitors to study a real native American settlement, alongside a modern-day reconstruction. Guest can also enjoy the interpretive center, which features many artifacts recovered directly from the site.

National Afro-American Museum and Cultural Center

Location: 1350 Brush Row Road, Wilberforce

Hours: Wednesday-Saturday 9 a.m.-4 p.m.

Price: Adult tickets are $6. Discounts are available

More info:

For the past 36 years, the National Afro-American Museum and Cultural center has taught visitors about Afro-American culture and history. In fact, the website states that the museum is one of the largest collections of Afro-American materials. Art, history and the military are just a selection of subject covered at this museum.

Waco Air Museum and Aviation Learning Center

Location: 1865 S. County Road 25A, Troy

Hours: Monday-Friday: 10 a.m.- 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday: noon to 4 p.m. Closed Wednesdays.

Price: Adult tickets are $8. Discounts are available

More info:

Opening in 1997, this airfield is dedicated to the history of Aviation. Named after the historic WACO Aircraft Company, a number of their classic planes are on display. The museum also has a working runway for biplane tours available to guests.

Local entertainment

We turned straight to the Dayton Daily News’ “Best of Dayton” guide to find the spots people recommend for attractions, landmarks, play and more.

Best Bar: The Century Bar, 18 S. Jefferson St., Dayton



The place has its own merch. It has one of the largest offerings of whiskeys, with 850 available at its back bar. In 2022, The Century Bar in received a write up in the summer issue of Bourbon+, a quarterly magazine spotlighting stories of farmers, distillers, mixologists and bourbon industry enthusiasts.

Best Fine Dining: Pine Club, 1926 Brown St., Dayton

The Pine Club is historic to the community — its a steakhouse that has stayed in business since 1947. Regular patrons will tell new ones to take cash ... it doesn’t take credit cards as payment. “We cut, age, and meticulously prepare our steaks with an emphasis on unparalleled flavor and quality. Receiving national acclaim, we’re proud of our excellent food, exemplary staff, and timeless atmosphere,” boasts the restaurant on its website.

Best Attraction: Dayton Dragons, 220 N. Patterson Blvd., Dayton

The 2024 season for the Dayton Dragons minor league team begins at home April 5 with a game against the Lansing Lugnuts. Tickets are available online at Games at Day Air Ballpark in downtown Dayton are action-packed with entertainment between innings that often includes fans coming onto the field to participate, lots of food options and appearances by Heater, Gem and Wink, the team’s mascots.

Best Dayton Landmark: National Museum of the US Air Force

Credit: Tom Gilliam

Credit: Tom Gilliam

Open daily, the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force is located at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Fairborn. It is the largest military aviation museum in the world and has free admission and parking. It features hundred of aerospace vehicles and missiles, thousands of artifacts and indoor exhibits. If you can’t get to it in person, there is a virtual tour online at

Best Art Gallery: Dayton Art Institute, 456 Belmonte Park N, Dayton

Credit: Jim Noelker

Credit: Jim Noelker

The Dayton Art Institute has three major art exhibitions for 2024. “The Artistic Life of Aka Pereyma” is open now through May 12 and showcases works by an artist known best for her Ukranian Easter eggs. “Riveting: Women Artists from the Sara W.and Michelle Vance-Waddell Collection” will exhibit June 22-Sept. 8 and showcases works with feminist viewpoints and by LGBTQ+ communities. “Merry Grinchmas: Art of Dr. Seuss’ Holiday Classic” and “(B)ART! America’s Funniest Animated Family” exhibit Oct. 26, 2024–Jan. 19, 2025.

More online

Find recommendations for spring break entertainment and staycationing in the Miami Valley.

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