Celebrate Independence Day in Cincinnati

Beat any holiday traveling stress by coming to Cincinnati before the Fourth of July and you’ll already be here for the July 5-7 conference! You’re going to be in the area anyway, so why not make a long weekend of it? This is a great family-friendly city to explore.

In fact, Cincinnati is quickly rising through the ranks as one of the nation’s most up-and-coming cities, and was cited by the New York Times as #8 place to visit in the entire world. There’s something for everyone: from musical playgrounds to microbreweries, and from a specialty donut shop to a historic pilgrimage site high on a hill overlooking the gorgeous riverfront. You simply won’t have time for everything!

So whether you’re bringing the family to the conference or taking advantage of it as some quality time with your spouse, entrust your holiday plans to Cincinnati.

Here are some very abridged recommendations to get you started on planning your itinerary. Just click the link that best fits your interests:




Family Friendly

Congratulations, brave soul! You’re traveling with kids, which is always an adventure. The experiences they’ll have at the conference will be well worth the hassle of travel, and a little direction around the city will make the holiday unforgettable. We’ve put together a short list of family-friendly recommendations to give you an edge as you explore the Queen City.


  • Sugar and Spice Graeter’s famous Black Raspberry Chocolate Chip. Photo via Pinterest.
    • Breakfast or lunch in a brightly-colored cafe
    • Classic games like Rock ‘Em Sock ‘Em Robots to play while you wait
    • Everyone takes home a unique rubber duck
  • Zip’s Cafe
    • Lunch or dinner
    • Known for their burgers
    • Kids will love the model train that zips around the cafe
  • Graeter’s
    • Gourmet ice cream
    • Many locations, Cincinnati classic
    • Most popular flavor is a unique purple color (Black Raspberry Chocolate Chip)!


  • King’s Island and Coney Island
    • Cincinnati’s most popular amusement parks, both contain water park elements
    • King’s Island is closer to the convention center, includes thrill roller coasters
    • Coney Island is near the riverfront, great for younger kids

      Foot piano at Smale Riverfront Park. Photo via The Little Things Journal.

  • Great American Ball Park
    • The Cincinnati Reds vs. Chicago White Sox series runs from July 1 thru July 4
    • Fireworks after the game on July 4th (at approx. 10pm), which can be viewed from the riverfront if you don’t make it to the game
  • EnterTRAINment Junction
    • Fun house and seasonal rides
    • World’s largest indoor model railroad display
    • American Railroad Museum
  • Smale Riverfront Park…and the rest of the riverfront, really.
    • Free fun, great place to picnic on the Fourth (for more picnic sites, click here)
    • This and adjacent parks include giant movable chess and checkers pieces, a labyrinth, a foot piano, fun mirrors, interactive flying pig, an indoor carousel, and much more

Want more ideas? Email me for some suggestions from a local, or check out these resources: 50 Kid-Friendly Things to Do in Cincinnati, Family Friendly Cincinnati, Family Fun.




Spousal Getaway

Ahh, finally some relaxing time just you and the love of your life. There’s no shortage of great things to enjoy as an adult in Cincinnati, but we’ve put together a list of some of the most popular ones. If you want to experience some of the hidden gems of the Queen City, check out the section called Live Like the Locals.


  • The Precinct Inside The Precinct. Photo via Open Table.
    • Splurge date night, super fancy
    • First of the Jeff Ruby steakhouses
    • #treatyoself
  • City Barbeque
    • Delicious pulled pork, way more affordable
  • Skyline Chili
    • You’ll love it or hate it
    • Cincinnati classic
    • Locals swear by it



Want more ideas? Email me for some suggestions from a local, or check out these resources: The 10 Best Things to Do in Cincinnati,  Things to Do in Cincinnati, 13 Best Things to Do in Cincinnati, The Ultimate Guide to Every Cincinnati Brewery.




Live Like the Locals

If standard tourism is too mainstream for you, here’s where you can find the hidden gems that the locals enjoy. Of course, there are more than we can list here, so feel free to reach out for more recommendations and other tips to get the most out of Cincinnati.


  • Half-Day Cafe Gourmet hot dogs from The Senate. Photo via The Senate.
    • Only open for breakfast, brunch, and lunch
    • Known for their incredible menu, locally-sourced foods, and delightful atmosphere
  • Taste of Belgium
    • Delicious Belgium waffles prepared for any meal
    • Known for their frites (spiced French fries)
  • The Senate
    • Gourmet hot dogs that are so loaded you have to eat them with a fork
    • Get reservations or you might be out of luck
  • Holtman’s Donut Shop
    • Donuts like you’ve never seen them
    • If you want the freshest, get there early: the line regularly stretches down the block


  • Findlay Market
    • A farmer’s market so ridiculously Instagram-friendly that you won’t be able to put your camera down
  • Abundant night life:
  • Jungle Jim’s International Market Lavish decorations at Jungle Jim’s International Market. Photo via Jungle Jim’s.
    • Foodie heaven
    • Decorated like a theme park and, believe it or not, even their bathrooms are award-winning
  • Newport Gangster Tours
    • Learn about how the tiny city across the river from Cincinnati gave birth to the modern gaming industry
    • …and their gangs killed a ton of people in the process

Want more ideas? Email me for some suggestions from a local, or check out these resources: 8 Hidden Gems in Cincinnati, 12 Reasons I Love Cincinnati, 28 Things People from Cincinnati Have to Explain to Out-Of-Towners, 35 Things You Need to Know about Cincinnati before You Move There.




— Forest Hempen
Marketing & Communications Associate