Blake Walsh

15 Best Things to Do in Tuscarawas County, OH

  • Published 2023/02/15

Tuscarawas County sits in the northeastern part of Ohio.

The historic county’s name was derived from a Delaware Indian word meaning either “old town” or “open mouth.”

Before its discovery in the 1700s, only fur traders knew about the area, but in 1750, explorer Christopher Gist surveyed the Tuscarawas Valley and wrote about its natural resources.

It was in 1761 when Moravian missionaries ventured into the region and founded the first Protestant settlement in Ohio called the Schoenbrunn.

A second settlement was established in 1772 called Gnadenhütten, or the “cabins of grace.”

The present-day Tuscarawas County was formed from parts of Muskingum County in 1808.

The county is composed of three cities, including the county seat New Philadelphia, 17 villages, 22, townships, three census-designated places, and 26 unincorporated communities.

Here are the best things to do in Tuscarawas County, Ohio:

See the World’s Largest Cuckoo Clock

Front view of the World's Largest Cuckoo Clock

Nina Alizada /

Located on the corner of Main Street and Broadway in Sugarcreek is the World’s Largest Cuckoo Clock.

The over 23 feet tall and 24 feet wide structure is the centerpiece of the Swiss Village and has been featured on the 1977 cover of the Guinness Book of World Records.

The clock was originally built in 1972 at the back of the Walnut Creek Cheese restaurant in Wilmot before being donated to “The Little Switzerland of Ohio” and moved to its present location.

Closeup of the World's Largest Cuckoo Clock

Madison Muskopf /

Watch a cuckoo pop out every half an hour and hear Swiss polka music as the band comes out, followed by a three-foot-tall dancing couple.

The show happens from April through November.

Note that the World’s Largest Cuckoo Clock is closed during inclement weather conditions.

Learn about Ohio’s First Protestant Settlement at Schoenbrunn Village

Located on East High Avenue in New Philadelphia is the historic Schoenbrunn Village.

It’s known for being the first Protestant settlement in the state, having been established in 1772 as a Moravian mission among the Delaware Indians.

The village was abandoned in 1777, shortly after the start of the Revolutionary War.

At the time of its founding by David Zeisberger, five Indian families joined the mission by invitation from Delaware Indian leader Netawatwes.

Schoenbrunn Village became a neutral spot for British-influenced American Indians and American frontiersmen.

Today, the village has been frozen in time to let visitors get a glimpse of what pre-war Christian life was.

Here you can find 17 log cabins, including the first school and first church in the state.

There’s also a museum where artifacts from that time and informational videos can be found.

Ride on a Vintage Carousel at Tuscora Park

Located on Tuscora Avenue Northwest in New Philadelphia is Tuscora Park.

The amusement park has seasonal facilities, including three pools, vintage rides, a picnic pavilion, mini golf, and more.

Tuscora Park’s centerpiece is the 1928 vintage Herschell-Spillman antique carousel in operation since 1941.

It’s one of the few all-wood carousels left, with 36 hand-carved wooden horses, two chariots, and 14 oil paintings.

There’s also a 1943 Ferris wheel that’s been upgraded with modern technology for riders’ safety.

If you feel like doing a few laps, there’s an Olympic-size swimming pool complete with lanes, as well as a diving pool for the more adventurous ones.

Tuscora Park also has separately fenced kiddie pools for the young ones to take a dip into.

See Intricate Wood Carvings at the Ernest Warther Museum & Gardens

Located on Karl Avenue in Dover is the Ernest Warther Museum & Gardens.

The museum was dedicated to Master Carver Ernest “Mooney” Warther, who began carving at the age of five, focusing on the evolution of the steam engine.

Built around the site of his original home, his workshop and museum first opened in 1936 in his backyard.

Today, the museum is managed by third and fourth-generation family members who aim to share Mooney’s legacy with the world through his and his wife Frieda’s works.

The museum houses over 100 pieces, including model trains and Frieda’s collection of over 73,000 buttons.

With its Swiss-styled gardens, historic “Calico Ditch,” and three-acre park, the Ernest Warther Museum & Gardens is the perfect venue for private events, offering guided tours or catering assistance with your booking.

Visit the Dennison Railroad Depot Museum

View of Dennison Railroad Depot

JNix /

Located on Center Street in Dennison is the historic Dennison Railroad Depot Museum.

It’s one of the few remaining examples of a World War II Canteen, having served free food to 1.3 million service members during the war.

Service members in transit to the waterfront via the National Defense Strategic Railway stopped by the depot.

Train at Dennison Railroad Depot

JNix /

Today, the fully restored Dennison Railroad Depot has a museum, restaurant, theater, and gift shop.

The museum houses the Railroad History and Sports exhibits, with a large Model Train Layout depicting Dennison during its peak.

At the theater, you can watch a film on Dennison’s role as a WWII Canteen, while restored railroad cars are attached to the depot featuring exhibits, archives, and other WWII memorabilia.

View of Dennison Railroad Depot

JNix /

Catch a Show at Ohio Star Theater at Dutch Valley

Located on Old Route 39 in Sugarcreek is the performing arts center Ohio Star Theater at Dutch Valley.

The theater features family-friendly musical comedies, concerts, and events in Ohio’s Amish Country.

It was originally housed in the Carlisle Inn Sugarcreek before it was relaunched in 2017 in a state-of-the-art theater equipped with the latest sound technology.

The 514-seater performance venue is popular among Christian artists, comedic acts, and more.

Within yards from Theater at Dutch Valley is a full-service Amish restaurant and buffet and a bakery in case you get hungry after a show.

Directly next to Ohio Star Theater is a gift shop and on the other side is an Amish market.

Sip Some Wine and Meet Alpacas at Yellow Butterfly Winery

Located on Blue Ridge Road in Newcomerstown is Yellow Butterfly Winery.

It’s hard to miss as it’s housed in a 10-year-old bright yellow barn.

Yellow Butterfly Winery has more than a dozen varieties of wine, from fruit and sweet to semi-sweet and dry, which are all produced on the grounds of the winery.

Don’t be surprised to see furry friends roaming freely around the estate, as the winery takes care of beautiful alpacas.

You can even buy yarns, socks, and scarves made from their fleece at the winery’s gift shop.

Deli meats and cheese are also offered on-site in case you’re looking for something to pair your wine with.

Marvel at Fully Restored Trains at Age of Steam Roundhouse

Engine at Age of Steam Roundhouse

DogsRNice, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Located on Smokey Lane Road Southwest in Sugarcreek is the Age of Steam Roundhouse.

It houses fully restored passenger cars, trains, steam and diesel locomotives, and other railroad equipment.

Former Ohio Central Railroad System CEO built it in 2011, showcasing his private collection of vintage steam and diesel locomotives and rolling stock.

View of Age of Steam Roundhouse

DogsRNice, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The 48,000-square-foot building is made of solid bricks and heavy timber framing.

Age of Steam Roundhouse has 18 stalls that are big enough to house a locomotive, a 115-foot turntable and turntable pit, a coal dock, a wood water tank, and an ash pit.

You can join a guided tour where you’ll be taken around the compound, including the full functioning back shop where staff continues to restore and repair vintage steam locomotives.

Stay at One of Wood’s Tall Timber Resort’s Cabins

If you’re looking for a unique place to stay, check out Wood’s Tall Timber Resort on Tall Timber Road Northeast in New Philadelphia.

The 157-acre resort has camping and cottage rentals available daily, weekly, monthly, or even seasonally.

From primitive tent sites to fully equipped houses, Wood’s Tall Timber Resort has something for every type of camper.

For a small family, there are mini cabins (with or without AC) that can fit up to four people, with bathrooms and a shower house nearby.

But if you’re looking for a more comfortable stay, go all out with a fully equipped house.

Its centerpiece is the seven-acre lake where you can go swimming, fishing, or boating.

There are also driving boards, water slides, water trampolines, slides, and a playground for kids.

See the Biggest Collection of Funeral Artifacts at Toland-Herzig Famous Endings Museum

Located on North Wooster Avenue in Dover is the Toland-Herzig Famous Endings Museum.

The one-of-a-kind museum opened in 1996 when avid autograph collector John Herzig received a copy of boxer Joe Louis’ 1981 funeral ceremony program together with a signed photo.

It piqued Louis’ interest in famous funerals, so he began his collection, amassing over 2,500 pieces—the largest known collection of its kind.

In the museum, you’ll find photos and documents about the deaths of former presidents, including Abraham Lincoln and John F. Kennedy, world leaders like Queen Victoria and Princess Diana, celebrities including Michael Jackson and Farrah Fawcett, and sports icons like Joe DiMaggio.

Audio recordings and photographs from famous funerals, gravesite markers, and monuments are also included in the Toland-Herzig Famous Endings Museum collection.

Enjoy a Glass of Wine with Live Music at Casella Winery & Distillery

Located on Roxford Church Road Southeast in Dennison is Casella Winery & Distillery.

The winery is set on the historic Roxford Park, a ridge-top ghost town in rural Tuscarawas County lost in the 1900s.

It’s housed in a 1918 schoolhouse, which served as a school until 1954.

The building’s original foundation concrete pad can still be seen in front, but it has since undergone some renovation when Casella Winery moved in 2013.

Enjoy a glass of wine with live music while admiring the scenic surroundings.

Casella Winery & Distillery has a limited menu that includes homemade pizzas, artichoke dip, and a trail and cheese platter.

Explore the Trails to Dundee Falls

Scenic view of  Dundee Falls during fall

arthurgphotography /

Located on Dundee Wilmot Road Northwest in Dundee is the 15-foot Dundee Falls.

It’s the highlight of the 1,912-acre Beach City Wildlife Area, with crystal-clear water plunging into a rocky gorge.

It’s surrounded by lush forests that serve as habitats for different wildlife species.

To reach the falls, you’ll have to go on a 2.1-mile out-and-back trail hike which begins on the trail on the right out of the parking lot.

View of Dundee Falls

carlosramos1946 /

Along the trail, you’ll see birds gliding freely above.

It’s a popular trail for cross-country skiing and fishing, but it’s relatively quiet during the off-season.

The trail will take you to a vantage point where you’ll see Dundee Falls in its full glory.

Top view of  Dundee Falls

carlosramos1946 /

Enjoy Lasagna at Uncle Primo’s

Craving some Italian food after a full day of activities?

Uncle Primo’s is the place to go.

Located on Minnich Avenue Northwest in New Philadelphia, the Italian restaurant serves classics like pasta, seafood, and steaks.

Housed in a circa 1880 home, the restaurant was founded by Bob Heifner in 1990 with only eight tables and a three-seater bar.

Order Primo’s Homemade Lasagna, made from scratch in-house with fresh ground beef, three kinds of cheeses, and homemade marinara.

There’s also the Ravioli, which you can either have filled with beef or cheese topped with homemade marinara and homemade meatball or Italian sausage.

If you’re not strictly looking for Italian food, try Uncle Primo’s Crab Cakes served with a zesty aioli dip.

Have Wood-Fired Pizzas at Brickyard Dining Co

Located on Commercial Avenue Southeast in New Philadelphia is Brickyard Dining Co.

The restaurant is known for its 11-inch Neapolitan-style wood-fired pizzas.

The pizzas are hand-stretched and baked in a live wood-fired oven, which gives the crust some bubbles and slight charring for added flavor.

Try the pepperoni pizza topped generously with pepperonis and fresh mozzarella, or the Margherita with fresh tomatoes, basil, and balsamic reduction swirl.

Brickyard Dining Co also has salads and pasta that are worth trying.

Have Coffee and Pastries at What’s Cooking Cafe

Located on 2nd Street Northwest in New Philadelphia is What’s Cooking Café.

Restaurant Guru hailed it the Best Café in the city in 2021, having been under development for almost a decade.

Mother-and-daughter tandem of Anna and Kathy Martinelli founded it in 2015.

Anna, who has been baking since she was six, is a graduate of the Art Institute of Pittsburgh’s Culinary School.

Today, What’s Cooking Café serves delicious pastries and espresso-based drinks.

It also has breakfast, lunch, and salad menus that include paninis, sandwiches, and wraps.

Final Thoughts

Tuscarawas County offers the perfect mix of historical and gastronomic finds.

With its colorful past translating to the present, it’s hard not to look back and appreciate its humble beginnings as a small Protestant settlement and its role in the country’s war efforts.

Not only will you be fed with new knowledge, but you’ll also be fed with good food in the county.

Try these best things to do in Tuscarawas County, Ohio, on your next adventure.

© All rights reserved.