Can’t decide between taking a hike or visiting a farm? Stratford is your place! Hike the wooded 4-mile trail, hunt for frogs and salamanders in the swamp, interact with farm animals, tend the garden, use an apple press to make cider, and so much more.
Update: Stratford Photography Club is live! It meets the third Thursday of each month, and it’s $10/year to join.
Continue reading Stratford Ecological Center & State Nature Preserve
The Dawes Arboretum is all about trees, and is home to over 1,800 acres of trees, bushes, gardens, and more. Drive the nearly 4.5-mile auto tour, then stop at a pull-off area when something strikes your fancy.
Continue reading The Dawes Arboretum
Gahanna is the “Herb Capital” of Ohio, so it’s only fitting that there’s a sizable herb garden in front of city hall.
It offers brick paths, with an overhead trellis entwined in what seem to be pea vines, and lots of different garden spaces featuring a wide variety of herbs, from culinary to medicinal. A garden shed and brightly-colored benches make playful backdrops for taking portraits, and depending on the time of year, you may find fruits and vegetables ripening as well. While the garden is not that large, it feels a lot bigger due to the variety of areas and plants it has to offer.
Continue reading Geroux Herb Gardens
Walnut Woods Metro Park has paved trails throughout, which makes it very accessible. Little to no trees overhang the trails, so the shade is minimal. It’s bike and pet friendly. There’s a mountain bike trail as well, but since I didn’t have a bike and my dogs were with me, I didn’t check it out. The park also offers a playground, pavilion, sledding hill, and bathrooms in the buckeye area.
Continue reading Walnut Woods
Columbus Art Walks are self-guided walking tours of several districts throughout Columbus. Each district has a map to direct you along the route. When you reach a point of interest, listen to a recorded message that tell you about it. You can either download the audio ahead of time, or call (614) 645-2646 and enter the number for your location. The majority of the routes are accessible and flat.
Continue reading Columbus Art Walks
If you’re looking for a shooting location downtown with a lot of variety, head straight to Scioto Audubon! Located on the Scioto River just south of downtown, it’s the newest Metro Park. Looking north, there’s a great view of the Columbus skyline. Facing south, it’s all trees and river.
Continue reading Scioto Audubon
If you’re looking to walk through a forest to take pictures of flora and fauna, you could certainly do worse than Blacklick Woods Metro Park. The park boasts a variety of habitats, including forests, swamps, ponds, and meadows. Covering over 600 acres, there’s plenty of room for critters to roam. Depending on the time of year, you might come across owls and other birds of prey, coyotes, deer, frogs, turtles, and more. This is definitely a good place to bring a long zoom lens. Continue reading Blacklick Woods
What seems to be the biggest focus at Blendon Woods? Birds. They have a variety of protected habitats for our flying friends, as well as excellent spots from which to observe and photograph them. Continue reading Blendon Woods Metro Park
Where to begin? The metro parks are a wonderful collection of 17 parks in and around the Columbus area, spanning seven counties. Each park is full of photographic opportunities, and is endlessly fun to wander, regardless of the season. Their facilities and programs are free, thanks to a 2009 levy.
Each park is unique in its own way, offering walking/riding/pet trails, nature centers, wildlife refuges, educational programs, and an array of options to get closer to nature—and photograph it, of course! Continue reading Metro Parks
4850 West Powell Road
Powell, OH 43065
Park Map (PDF)
Hours vary depending on the time of year. See the full list.
Confirm hours for a particular day on their events page.
Very generally, their daily hours are:
Open: between 9 and 10 am.
Close: between 4 and 7 pm. Continue reading Columbus Zoo and Aquarium