Blake Walsh

20 Best Things to Do in Ashland, OH

  • Published 2022/09/29

Boasting vast lands, beautiful landscapes, and activities that can be enjoyed throughout the year, Ashland is an ideal destination for solo wanderers, couples, and families who are looking for a peaceful yet enjoyable getaway.

Explore Ashland County Park District and enjoy the calmness that nature brings.

Go on an outdoor adventure with your family at Pleasant Hill Lake Park.

If you want to go shopping, there are plenty of unique finds available here as well.

No matter what you are set to do in Ashland, you will surely find this city exciting.

For an unforgettable trip, check out the list of the best things to do in Ashland, Ohio, below.

Go on a Guided Tour at Ashland County Historical Society

Learn more about the city of Ashland when you visit Ashland County Historical Society.

The museum features artifacts and exhibits that will give you an insight into how the city has developed into what it is now.

Take a look at the veteran’s history display and be inspired by the experiences of local Ashland County military personnel that have served the country.

While you are here, you can also learn more about living conditions in the early Ashland through the museum’s displays.

For those interested in studying insects, the museum houses the second-largest insect collection in the United States, which is the Thornburg Insect Collection.

If you want a guided tour, make sure to check their website and arrange a schedule for you and your group before heading to the museum, as the tours are by appointment only.

The tour can be scheduled at 10 am, and 1 pm and is priced at 3USD for adults and 1USD for children.

Spend Your Day Outdoors at Freer Field

If you are traveling with the whole family and would like to spend a fun day outdoors, then a visit to Freer Fields is a good idea.

When going to Freer Fields, make sure that you have at least a whole day to spare as there are many sights to explore and plenty of things to do here.

This 78-acre park has a 2-mile-long trail, perfect for when you want to go on a scenic hike.

Enjoy the beautiful views of tall hickories, oaks, and pines, and green grassy meadows.

If you do not want to walk, you can opt to ride a bike for a more fun way of exploring the trail.

For those who are bringing their kids with them, don’t worry as there is a playground here where they can enjoy.

Freer Fields is also used as the venue for Ashland’s Balloon Festival, so remember to check out their website so you won’t miss this exciting event.

Go for a Refreshing Swim at Brookside West Park

Another place where you can bring the whole family and enjoy the calming views of nature is Brookside Park.

Enjoy a day full of activities here that travelers of all ages can enjoy.

Take a refreshing swim at the park’s swimming pool.

Engage in a friendly competition among your loved ones at the park’s basketball courts.

Practice your swing at the tennis courts and show off your putting skills at the mini-golf course.

For kids who want to have fun with other kids, there are play areas here too.

There are also restrooms in the park to ensure that your visit is hassle-free.

The park also offers summer recreation programs.

For a more fun vacation, do not forget to inquire about this if you’re visiting during the summer.

Stay Close to Nature at Audubon Wetlands Preserve

One of the most frequented parks by tourists in the Ashland County Park District is Audubon Wetlands Preserve.

This 215-acre park features a 300-foot long newly renovated boardwalk and a picnic pavilion with a view of the swamp.

Aside from the many open spaces where guests can walk around, the calming outdoor views make the visit to this park worthwhile.

Spend a lovely afternoon at the park, walking and admiring the riverbanks, wildflowers, and wetlands where you can find different creatures.

The park is open all year round, so if you want to spend some quiet time amidst nature, make sure to include this park in your itinerary.

Go Hiking at Byers Woods

Whether you are an experienced hiker or just getting started on hiking, Byers Woods is a great place to visit as it has 3-mile-long trails that are well-maintained and are beginner-friendly.

Aside from the health benefits that you will get from hiking, you will also be gifted with beautiful views of a lush forest, grasslands, and fishing ponds while you are exploring the area.

For fishing enthusiasts, there are four fishing ponds available here where you can catch bass, bluegill, and catfish.

However, please do take note that all fishing here is catch-and-release only.

Nonetheless, this makes a good activity for solo travelers and families alike.

There is also a pavilion that you can use here if you want to take a breather.

For guests who are traveling by private cars, there is a parking space here as well for a more convenient visit.

Book a Tee Time at Ashland Golf Club

Are you looking for a way to unwind after a busy week?

Why not go to Ashland Golf Club and play on their 18-hole golf course?

This will not only allow you to relax and spend some time outdoors, but it will also keep you active.

If you are new to golf and would like to learn the basics, the club also offers golf lessons.

For kids who want to learn how to play golf, the fee is 35USD per hour or 90USD for a package of 3 lessons.

For adults who want to brush up on their golfing skills, the fee is 45USD per hour or 120USD for a package of 3 lessons.

For those who are availing of golf lessons, check out their website to schedule a session with them.

Play Bowling at Luray Lanes

If you are up for a bowling match with your loved ones, make sure to visit Luray Lanes.

Perfect for traveling families who are looking for an exciting activity to do, Luray Lanes offers youth programs and themed bowling nights that are sure to make your visit even more special.

For an unforgettable night, you can attend Luray Lanes’ Cosmic Bowling every Friday at 10 pm and every Saturday at 6 pm.

Get your camera ready and have fun with your loved ones as you groove through some cool tunes while enjoying the different lights flashing across the bowling alley.

If you are craving some snacks and a cold bottle of beer, you can also avail them here.

Buy Unique Items at Gleaner

If you love collecting unique finds and beautiful antiques, you will surely enjoy going to Gleaner.

Dedicated to providing their customers with great antique finds, Gleaner adds new items to their display every day to ensure that their customers have plenty to choose from.

They offer pots, artworks, and various furniture that will make every shopper happy.

To make sure that you do miss out on one-of-a-kind items, make sure to visit the store during their operating hours, which is from Tuesdays through Saturdays, 10 am to 5 pm.

Try Grandpa’s Cheesebarn & Sweeties Chocolates’ Imported Cheese

If you are looking for a place where you can buy some snacks to munch on, go straight ahead to Grandpa’s Cheesebarn.

This is a family-owned shop that offers different kinds of cheese, candies, and smoked meats.

For those with a sweet tooth, you can buy homemade chocolates and fudge from the store.

Gummies, caramels, and doubled-dipped chocolates are also available for purchase here.

If you want something salty, you can buy flavored popcorn here too.

Make sure to buy yourself some of their imported cheese too, as this is what the shop is famous for.

There are also dip mixes and cheese spreads that you can avail if you are looking for something that you can eat easily with bread for breakfast or afternoon snack.

Attend the Antique Tractor and Engine Show

If ever you are in Ashland during the second weekend of July, don’t forget to attend one of their biggest events in the city, the Antique Tractor and Engine Show held on the Ashland County-West Holmes Career Center grounds.

They feature a different brand of tractors every year, but you will definitely see other tractors that are constantly being displayed here by members each year as well.

Some of the equipment displayed here have been part of the event since the show began in 1991.

The goal of this event is to provide a good show for the public, so everyone is welcome here.

Enjoy a savory snack, which you can buy from the food vendors at the venue while admiring the extensive display of antique tractors.

If you are traveling with your kids, there are rides available here for children to ensure that they are entertained as well.

Go on a Thrilling Outdoor Adventure with AerOhio Skydiving Center

If you are looking for an exciting outdoor adventure, AerOhio Skydiving Center, Ohio’s top skydiving center, can offer you packages that are sure to make your first jump a memorable one.

They began their operations in the 1950s and since then become the go-to place for thrill-seekers who want to be acquainted with the amazing world of skydiving.

They offer programs that can help you become a licensed skydiver as well, don’t worry, as their staff, coaches, and instructors are known all over the country as the best ones in the industry.

If you want to experience this adventure with your friends, they have a Blackhawk Caravan airplane that can accommodate up to 16 guests.

You can inquire about this through their website.

Channel Your Inner Artist at Tin Can Chandelier

Unleash the inner artist in you at Tin Can Chandelier.

Bring the whole gang with you and have fun creating your own masterpieces.

Choose a piece of pottery that you like from the studio and paint it the way you want to.

If you like to paint on a canvas, you can do that too.

You can create your own artwork or paint using one of the studio’s designs.

For those who are looking to paint a large piece, it usually takes two to three hours to complete.

If you do not have plenty of time to spare, do not worry, as you can go back to the studio some other time and finish your painting.

You can also make your own wood sign here, so make sure to drop by if you want to create some fun pieces that you can take home.

Drink a Glass of Your Favorite Cocktail at A-Town Tap

A night out with your friends in the city will not be complete without a glass of your favorite cocktail.

For a fun time, drop by A-Town Tap, an upscale bar that features cool tunes and craft cocktails.

The bar does not only offer drinks, but they also offer a wide selection of food that you can choose from.

If you want something a bit heavy, you can order one of their pasts, flatbreads, or sandwiches.

For those looking for a light meal, they offer salads as well.

Hummus and chips are also available on their menu for those who are just looking for some snack that they can pair with their drinks.

Attend the Honey Haven Fall Festival with Friends and Family

On Saturdays and Sundays during October, spend a pleasant day with family and friends at the Honey Haven Fall Festival.

Let the children play in the miniature farm zoo and indoor maze.

After wandering their 8-acre, family-friendly morning maze, browse their countryside shop for seasonal products like pumpkins, apples, and syrup, holiday decorations, and one-of-a-kind crafts.

Spend some time exploring their weekly craft exhibition in their freshly refurbished, century-old barn that features local craftsmen and their creations.

When you feel hungry, try any of their home-style apple dumplings, doughnuts, apple cider, delectable sandwiches, and salads, which are inexpensive and great!

It won’t cost the family a fortune to go on this trip!

Dine at Uniontown Brewing Company

On the back terrace of the house of founders Doug and Anna Reynolds, the Uniontown Co. was simply a dream.

Doug and Anna completed the task in Amish “barn-raising” fashion with the support of their sizable extended families.

Every dish on their delectable daily-prepared menu, which includes appetizers, pub sliders, entrees, a kids’ menu, and more, is designed to bring folks around.

Their beers range from dark to smooth to light to crisp to creamy, and both visitors and locals may choose their favorites or try something new for a change.

They provide dine-in service, but you can also place a take-out order for food or beverages.

Shop Fishing Items at Fin Feather Fur Outfitters

Fin Feather Fur Outfitters is the only place you need to look; they have everything you could imagine.

If you want to purchase fishing gear, Fin Feather Fur Outfitters has a wide range of options, including baits & lures, rods, reels, gear, clothes, and much more!

Furthermore, they provide a variety of additional items for camping, including coolers, air mattresses, duffel bags, camping supplies, and first aid and survival kits.

Also available are shoes for men, women, and children, as well as a range of accessories, including socks, insoles, polish, and more.

Fin Feather Fur Outfitters provides hunting equipment, gun accessories, handguns, rifles, archers, shotguns, knives, air guns, ammo, and trail for individuals looking to purchase weapons, go shooting, or hunting cameras.

Engage in Various Games Available at Masterminds Escape Rooms and Game Library

Masterminds Escape Rooms and Game Library created Ohio’s first game library and escape room combo.

They work to foster social relationships and intellectual growth among friends, family, and new players of all ages.

They welcome putting your gadgets down and spending personal time with friends and family.

In their escape rooms, you may test your problem-solving abilities against unique and engaging obstacles.

Experience any of their 500+ game titles from their ever-expanding game collection.

They have a wide selection of cuisine, including quesadillas, paninis, milkshakes, desserts, snacks, and hot or cold drinks.

Order Steak at the South Street Grille

Are you looking for a spot to chill and delight in a delectable dinner with a variety of possible choices?

Downtown Ashland, Ohio’s South Street Grille offers upscale casual cuisine.

On their menu, pick from various dishes such as steaks, seafood, hand-patted hamburgers, vegetarian selections, and appetizers.

They also offer a sizable kid’s menu.

The South Street Grille’s newly refurbished historic structure offers visitors something.

They have various opening and closing times but are open to the public from Tuesdays through Sundays.

Don’t pass up this popular restaurant’s delicious food and fun atmosphere.

Other Things to Do Nearby

Discover Perrysville’s Hidden History at Pleasant Hill Lake Park

Aerial View of Pleasant Hill Lake Park

M. DiCesare /

If you love learning about a place’s history, you might enjoy the Hidden History Kayak Trail, the first historic water trail.

Located in the village of Perrysville, this self-guided 5-mile water trail is a unique activity that you should not miss.

Find out the area’s hidden history by kayaking or paddle boarding to the locations marked on the map.

Know interesting facts when you reach the marked locations while enjoying the cool breeze and the beautiful scenery.

For those who do not have a kayak, do not worry, as there are kayaks that are for rent at discounted price for guests who will be exploring the water trail.

Explore the Gilliom-Cherp Nature Park

For those who are passionate about hunting and fishing, Gilliom-Cherp Nature Park is the park that you will really enjoy.

Seating on a 176-acre land, this park offers views of floodplain forests, wetlands, and marshes on the Black Fork River.

If you want to spend time near the river, you can go to the southern part of the park.

The park is also a popular destination for hikers, so go ahead and explore the park while savoring the fresh air and gorgeous outdoor views.

If you want to tour the area in a more fun way, you can go canoeing and kayaking at the Black Fork River too.

Final Thoughts

Ashland may not be a big city, but it is surely filled with exciting things to do.

Whether you are looking for a quiet retreat amidst nature or simply want to go on an outdoor adventure, this city is a great place to visit.

For a great visit, do not forget to check this list for the city’s top attractions.

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