This post is written by Nadine Champsi, a stay-at-home mom from Pittsburgh. She is married with two children–a 1 year old son and a 3 year old daughter. She writes The Pittsburgh Mommy Blog, which is dedicated to raising adventurous, healthy, and environmentally-conscious children in the city of Pittsburgh. Her blog covers a variety of topics, including outing ideas for kids, recipes, green living, and even personal reflections on her decision to leave a medical career to stay at home with her children.

columbuspenguinsEarlier this summer my family and I were invited to visit Columbus for a Mommy Blogger Weekend hosted by Experience Columbus. I was excited about the trip, but also a little skeptical. Columbus? Ohio? It didn’t seem like your usual tourist destination. And yet, I learned something very interesting about Columbus when I asked my social media networks for help planning our trip. I discovered that everybody who knows the city–absolutely loves it.

And after visiting it myself, I can definitely say the same. I love Columbus! And I think it’s the perfect spot for a short trip from Pittsburgh for young families. Here’s why:

columbuskidsdinoFirst off, it’s easy to get there with little ones–only 3 hours away! And as a parent with two small children, I really, REALLY don’t want my road trips to be much longer than a few hours. Secondly, it’s easy to be there with kids. It’s easily navigated with minimal traffic and no-sweat parking. It’s cheap! The people are welcoming and chatty. And there are tons of wonderful, kid-friendly attractions in the city including the Center of Science and Industry (COSI), the world-famous Columbus Zoo and Aquarium, Zoombezi Bay Waterpark, Franklin Park Conservatory, Easton Town Center, and many more. We were only there for a weekend, but we easily could have spent much, much longer!

columbusbookloftcourtyardAs a resident of The Most Livable City in America, I’m picky. I’m used to an affordable, family-friendly, culturally-rich lifestyle. So when I travel, I definitely want my destinations to have these amenities too. Columbus turned out to be a city that offers all these great features of Pittsburgh, but also something more–the opportunity to enrich our children's lives with unique, educational, and fun experiences that they simply can’t get at home in Pittsburgh. I highly recommend embracing an adventurous spirit and making the trip to Columbus! And thanks to Experience Columbus and the City of Columbus for the warm welcome to your neighbors from the Steel City!