COLUMBUS, Ohio—Columbus, the 14th largest city in the U.S., one of the fastest-growing cities in the Midwest and Ohio’s capital city, has several new experiences awaiting visitors. From new restaurants by some of Columbus’ top chefs to the city’s tallest rooftop lounge to a new exhibit at the country’s best science museum, here are five reasons visitors should add Columbus to their must-visit list for 2023.
Step back in time and learn about the life of King Tut at COSI’s newest exhibit
The best science museum in the country, COSI, has a new traveling exhibition, Tutankhamun: His Tomb and Treasures. Visitors are invited to explore the archaeology of ancient Egypt and view King Tut’s tomb and treasures as they were discovered in 1922. The reproduction of the burial treasure, in its original archaeological context, provides an insight into the historically unique discovery of the Pharaoh’s tomb in the Egyptian Valley of the Kings. With 1,000 objects, graphics, movies and an audio guide, the monumental complete context is presented in an educational, exciting and entertaining way.
Dine at Top Chef Season 18 Contestant Avishar Barua’s newest restaurant
Acclaimed Columbus Chef Avishar Barua has a full plate. Just six months after opening Joya’s, a Bengali American daytime café in Old Worthington, he has opened the doors to a new restaurant in Columbus’ Brewery District. Agni, named after the Hindu god of fire, offers a menu built around foods prepared over an open flame. Pulling from fond memories of Midwest backyard barbecues, the Top Chef Season 18 contestant, is serving up a five-course tasting menu that includes dishes such as Bengali Shrimp Taco, Dry Aged Rohan Duck and Caramelized Chai Pudding.
Try more new restaurants and discover why Columbus is a growing culinary capital
Agni is not the only new restaurant to open in the past month. Downtown, Chef Josh Dalton of Veritas opened Speck in February. The restaurant, which offers a modern interpretation of Italian cuisine in a vibrant and eclectic setting, has quickly become one of the hottest reservations in town. In Columbus’ historic Trolley District, more carefully restored historic buildings are opening with a new purpose. Joining East Market food hall is the Columbus Brewing Company Beer Hall, which features multiple bars and dining areas, 24 taps and globally inspired food. The 13,000 square foot building, which dates to the late 1800s, was originally used as a mechanic’s shop to repair the trolleys that ran down Broad Street and throughout Columbus. Towering 28 stories over High Street in the vibrant Short North Arts District is the city’s new and tallest rooftop lounge, Stories on High, which offers 360-degree views of the city with floor-to-ceiling windows and two expansive outdoor terraces.
Columbus is also celebrating the news that acclaimed restaurateur BJ Lieberman of Chapman’s Eat Market (named in The New York Times’ 2021 Restaurant List) and Ginger Rabbit Jazz Lounge, was recently named a semifinalist in the Best Chef: Great Lakes category for the 2023 James Beard Awards.
Attend the 2nd Annual Greater Columbus Cherry Blossom Festival
Join a citywide celebration of Columbus’ cherry trees April 1-9. Home to more than 5,000 of the iconic trees with a high concentration in Franklin Park and Berliner Park, Columbus offers all the beauty of spring blooms without the crowds. The Greater Columbus Cherry Blossom Festival, presented by the International Voluntary Organizations, builds upon the gift from Japan of 20 cherry trees during the 2012 Columbus Bicentennial Celebration and celebrates cultural understanding and friendship. Head to Franklin Park on Saturday, April 8 from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. for the main celebration featuring entertainment such as Japanese drum performances and cultural displays ranging from ikebana to calligraphy to kite-making.
Book a stay at Columbus’ new independent lifestyle hotel
It’s not too early to plan a summer getaway by booking a stay at Columbus’ new independent lifestyle hotel opening this summer. The Junto is now accepting reservations for its grand opening in June. Located in a brand-new neighborhood Downtown known as The Peninsula, which is being called "Columbus' next great neighborhood,” the 198-room hotel is the first Makeready property in the city and will offer visitors a place to stay that’s walkable to the Scioto Mile riverfront and top attractions like COSI, the National Veterans Memorial and Museum and the Franklinton Arts District. Visitors can take advantage of the exclusive grand opening offer, The Founders Package, and enjoy a complimentary upgrade based on availability, a signature keepsake, food and beverage perks and access to the Gear Garage, which offers complimentary bikes, scooters and longboards for exploring the city.
To learn more about all there is to do in Columbus this spring, visit ExperienceColumbus.com/SpringBreak. Learn about other reasons to plan a trip to Columbus in 2023 here.
Columbus is a city unlike any other. Vibrant and alive, Ohio’s capital is known for its open attitude, smart style and entrepreneurial spirit. Columbus' blend of neighborhoods, dynamic nightlife, noteworthy music scene, arts and culinary experiences, events, attractions and accommodations are all made unforgettable by the diversity of its outgoing locals who eagerly await and warmly welcome visitors. Columbus is proud to be selected as the host city for the 2023 U.S. Conference of Mayors Annual Meeting coming in June and to have hosted PCMA Convening Leaders 2023, which brought together the world's business events professionals in January. Free travel guides, maps, online booking and detailed information are available at www.ExperienceColumbus.com. Visitor information is also available on Facebook: @ExperienceColumbus, Twitter: @ExpCols, Instagram: @ExperienceColumbus and TikTok: @ExperienceColumbus.
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