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Columbus is the capital of Ohio and the 15th largest city in the United States. What the stats won’t tell you, though, is that it’s a secret gem of the Midwest. The diverse population that calls CBUS home makes it a testing ground for new trends — from burgers to fashion statements. It’s the location of the headquarters for Express and Victoria’s Secret, Wendy’s and White Castle. But Columbus’s biggest attraction is its people, who are notoriously kind, smart, and progressive. Their innovative spirit and multi-faceted interests paired with the city’s relatively inexpensive rates and easy travel makes a visit to the 614 a non-stop adventure. Whether you take a stroll through the thriving independent arts districts or make a stop at the cultural mainstays (hello, best zoo and aquarium in America), time spent in the heart of Ohio will have you falling in love.
Jackie Mantey is a creative writer and freelance journalist. Raised in Central Ohio on a dairy farm, she’s lived in and written about Columbus since 2008 for Columbus Monthly Magazine and the Dispatch Printing Company and was named the 2014 Best Freelance Reporter in Ohio by the Press Club of Cleveland. She lives in Harrison West with her reformed farm cat.