If you’re itching to schedule your next travel plans, there are lots of amazing mini-vacation spots within 6 to 7 hours of Columbus. Plan a long weekend and check out one of these amazing cities close to home.

Louisville, Kentucky

Travel Time: Approximately 3 hours and 9 minutes


  • Kentucky Derby Museum/Churchill Downs

It’s hard to plan a trip to Louisville without checking out the horse racing scene. Home to the Kentucky Derby, Louisville is immersed in horseracing history. Visit the Kentucky Derby Museum, which remembers the great horses, jockeys and trainers from Derby’s past, then head over to Churchill Downs to see a tour of where the action happens every first weekend in May.

  • Urban Bourbon Trail

Appropriately called Bourbon Country, Louisville is known for its expansive list of distilleries and rich bourbon culture. The Urban Bourbon Trail makes it easy for visitors to tour through the city and try out some of the best bourbon spots in town. All stops are stocked with over 50 bourbon varieties with a mix of classic cocktails and modern tastes. Definitely a stop for the bourbon enthusiast.

Nashville, Tennessee

Travel Time: Approximately 5 hours and 44 minutes


  • Grand Ole Opery

This famous stage is just one reflection of the booming music scene in Nashville and has become a place for past, present and future musical greats to share their talents. Plan your visit around weekly performances and look into the backstage tours to experience this piece of American music history.

  • Parthenon in Centennial Park

A nod to the ancient Greek Parthenon, this full-scale recreation stands in Centennial Park and serves as the city art museum. With both interesting architectural features and artwork that spans 19th century to contemporary work, this is a great stop for the artsy traveler.

Washington D.C.

Travel Time: Approximately 6 hours and 23 minutes


  • The National Mall

You can feel a sense of history and community when you visit this free destination affectionately known as America’s Front Yard. The National Mall is a park in Downtown D.C. and provides some of the best views of the nation’s most iconic buildings. This is a beautiful place to sit and people-watch on your way to the Washington Monument, United States Capitol, Lincoln Memorial or Vietnam Veterans Memorial.

  • The White House

Who wouldn’t jump at the chance to see America’s most famous house? A national icon full of mystery and intrigue, public tours of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue offer a glimpse into the life and world of our nation’s most powerful leaders through history. If you plan on booking a tour, you must register well in advance through your Member of Congress.

Chicago, Illinois

Travel Time: Approximately 5 hours and 27 minutes


  • Navy Pier

A major landmark in Chicago, this pier is located on the shoreline of Lake Michigan and is a hub of entertainment and activities for tourists. With access to shops and restaurants, the Ferris Wheel and cruise boats, there is something for everyone here.

  • Shedd Aquarium

This aquarium leaves a lasting first impression. With over 8,000 aquatic animals, visitors can see an exciting mix of exotic sea life from around the world. There are a number of exhibits to check out and guests can take part in aquatic shows. This is a great activity for kids and grown-ups alike.

Toronto, Canada

Travel Time: Approximately 6 hours and 41 minutes


  • CN Tower 360 Restaurant

Surprisingly, you don’t have to travel far from home to visit our friendly neighbors up north, but make sure your passport is up-to-date. The CN Tower was classified as one of the 7 modern Wonders of the World and is one of the tallest free-standing buildings in the world. To make the most of this attraction’s superior views of the city and fine dining experience, plan a trip to the 360 revolving restaurant where you’ll have access to lookout points and glass floors.

  • Royal Alexandra Theater

This beautiful theater is one of the oldest in North America and a showcase of architectural beauty. A National Historic site of Canada, it offers some of the best entertainment in the city. Check out the long-term list of shows to plan your visit.

We all love our city — but when you want to skip town for some adventure and new surroundings, these not-so-far-from-home cities are worth the visit!

What other destinations would you add to the list, Columbus? Tweet us @ColumBUZZ614.