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The Best Scenic Views In Ohio

There’s nothing quite like staring out at a gorgeous view.

Whether you’re simply looking for a mesmerizing place to admire the beauty of nature or you’re looking for a fantastic place for a big life event like an engagement, Ohio has some pretty special spots.

Some of these views will be harder to get to than others. Hidden in national and state parks as well as in the heart of cities, there are both natural and manmade overlooks on this list. But that’s enough talking. Let’s take a look at these sweeping views.

Scenic Overlooks

Mount Pleasant at Rising Park | Lancaster

Mount Pleasant at Rising Park is about a 40-minute drive from Columbus and it’s worth every second. The 250-foot high sandstone bluff overlooks Lancaster and the surrounding foothills, and it’s especially beautiful just before sunset when the lights of the city begin to twinkle below.

Conkle’s Hollow Nature Preserve | Rockbridge

From its sheer cliffs of sandstone rise to the deep gorge, Conkle’s Hollow is one of the most beautiful spots in the state. Along the trail, you’ll see numerous waterfalls, as well as an overlook that will take your breath away. It’s always a beautiful time to visit, but nestled in the Hocking Hills, Conkle’s Hollow really shines in the fall.

The Ledges | Cuyahoga Valley National Park

via National Park Service

The Ledges is one of those places that looks like it’s straight out of a fairytale. From the mossy stone steps to the jawdropping views, it should definitely be on your Ohio bucket list. The trail around The Ledges is 1.8 miles and the journey will be beautiful every step of the way.

Buzzard’s Roost Nature Preserve | Chillicothe

Take a stroll along the South Point Lookout Trail at Buzzard’s Roost Nature Preserve, and I promise, the views will not disappoint. Overlooking Paint Creek Gorge, the South Point trail is a 2-mile hike full of rugged beauty.

Chestnut Ridge Metro Park | Fairfield County

If the weather is clear, what you see from the observation deck at Chestnut Ridge Metro Park might just surprise you. If you look into the distance, you could glimpse downtown Columbus! The ridge is the first ridge of the Appalachians and The Ridge Trail is a moderate 1-mile one-way trail.

Highbanks Metro Park | Lewis Center

via Facebook

There’s a lot to take in on the trails at Highbanks Metro Park. At the scenic overlook, you’ll get gorgeous views of the Olentangy River, and if you’re lucky, you may even see a resident bald eagle soaring through the skies. The Overlook trail is 2.3 miles long and the hike is a moderate difficulty level.

Towers & Other Structures

Fire Towers | Various Locations

via Facebook

In various locations throughout Ohio, you can find Fire Towers dotted throughout the countryside where you’ll get unparalleled views. There are fire towers located at Hocking Hills State Park, Mohican State Park, and Scioto Trail State Park.

Marblehead Lighthouse | Marblehead

With sweeping views of Lake Erie, Marblehead Lighthouse is a historic gem. Built in 1821, the lighthouse is the oldest lighthouse in continuous operation on all of the Great Lakes. The lighthouse tower was renovated in 2019, but it was not open to the public in 2020 due to COVID-19. You can follow the Marblehead Lighthouse Historical Society on Facebook for safety updates.

Kalberer Family Emergent Tower | Holden Arboretum

via Facebook

Located at Holden Arboretum, The Canopy Walk and the Emergent Tower are both great ways to get a bird’s eye view of the surrounding area. The canopy walk is a 500-foot-long elevated walkway that is built 65 feet above the forest floor. The Emergent Tower is 120 feet or approximately 12 stories tall and provides sweeping views all the way to Lake Erie.

Scioto Audubon Metro Park Water Tower | Columbus

via Facebook

For one of my favorite views of Columbus, head down to Scioto Audubon Metro Park. By climbing up the water tower at the park, you can look back on a fantastic view of downtown.