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Adventure trails in Ohio: Here’s how to explore off-the-beaten-path

On the heels of summer vacation planning, TourismOhio has unveiled a map of Ohio Adventure Trails at Ohio.org. 

"Themed trails continue to be a popular, engaging way to help visitors explore off-the-beaten-path locations to find diverse and memorable experiences within our state. Ohio’s Adventure Trails truly offer a unique way for visitors to Find It Here in Ohio," said Tamara Brown, TourismOhio’s public relations manager. 

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Milton’s Donuts are on the Butler County Donut Trail. BUTLER COUNTY VISITORS BUREAU

Ohio’s tourism industry continues to grow, generating an estimated $44 billion in 2017 — up from $43 billion the year prior. The number of tourism visits to and within Ohio increased from 212 million in 2016 to 219 million visits in 2017, according to Brown. 

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The interest in seeing the best of what Ohio has to offer has extended to the new website content. Since the Ohio Adventure Trails page launched on May 7, it has seen more than 48,000 page views and now features 50 trails with 773 stops for visitors to peruse. Users can take the map with them using their mobile device or print it out ahead of time. 

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"We’re finding that Ohio travelers enjoy a wide variety of themed trails from food and beverage to local makers, history and architecture. Some of the most popular trails on Ohio Adventure Trails are the Hocking Hills Comfort Food Cruise, Made in West Ohio, the Columbus Coffee Experience and the Dayton Aviation Trail," said Brown. 

The Shawshank Trail features 15 sites used in filming The Shawshank Redemption. CONTRIBUTED

We asked Brown to give us some examples of the trails featured on the Ohio Adventure Trails with itineraries and here's what she shared with us: 

Brewed on the Bikeway (Athens) 

7 stops easily accessible along the 21-mile bike trail 

Multiple Brewing Company 

Eclipse Company Store & Craft Beer Hall 

Devil’s Kettle Brewing 

Jackie O’s Taproom & Production Brewery 

Jackie O’s Brewhouse 

The West End Cider House 

Little Fish Brewing Company 

Bring your own bike or local rentals are available 

While in the area take the chance to check out Ohio’s most-visited state park, Hocking Hills 

Debuted 2 new trails in 2017 — Hemlock Bridge Trail and Whispering Cave Trail 

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Butler County Donut Trail 

12 tasty stops with a downloadable passport to track your progress and work toward a special T-shirt 

Central Pastry Shop 

Holtman’s Donuts 

Jupiter Coffee & Donuts 

Milton’s Donuts 

Stan the Donut Man 

The Donut House and so many more 

Exciting flavors including fruity pebbles, cheesecake, banana pudding, apple cider, pineapple fritter or S’mores 

Hosting an inaugural Donut Trail Cycle Challenge on Sept. 1 

28 or 58 miles rides as part of the challenge 

Steel Vengeance on the Cedar Point Lake Erie Shores & Islands Adventure Trail.

Lake Erie Shores & Islands Thrills Trail 

10 action-packed stops along the Lake Erie shore & South Bass Island 

Cedar Point (new Steel Vengeance coaster) 

Soar above the lake at North Coast Parasail and Perry’s Victory and International Peace Memorial 

Enter the Ghostly Manor Thrill Center for a scary good time 

Explore high above the treetops at Common Ground Canopy Tours 

Surf and slide at the Kalahari Resort & Convention Center 

Spend a weekend experiencing the thrills across the area 

While in the area, sample delicious dishes and brews along the Put-In-Bay Foodie Trail or the Black Swamp Ale Trail 

Also check out the many events being held this year for Sandusky’s bicentennial. 

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"Trails are a popular trend in the tourism industry," said Matt MacLaren, director of TourismOhio. "These trails have been created by destinations and small businesses collaborating to share stories that visitors might not discover on their own. Whether travelers prefer history, wine, culture, sight-seeing, or even donuts, we invite them to Find it Here in Ohio." 

The Adventure Trails web page complements the Ohio Department of Natural Resources' map of nature trails launched earlier this year at Trails.OhioDNR.gov. 

"Next month, in celebration of National Ice Cream Month, TourismOhio will launch a new Ohio Ice Cream Trail featuring ice cream companies churning out their delicious treats right here in Ohio. As part of the effort, we’ll ask consumers to vote for additional ice cream companies to be added to the trail," said Brown. 

Watch for more trails to be added throughout the summer and know that vacation planning in Ohio just got a little bit easier. 

Contact this contributing writer at alexis.e.larsen@hotmail.com. 

 Find out more 

Download or order the 2018 Travel Guide and calendar of events www.ohio.org/order-guide.

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