Things to Do in Cuyahoga Valley National Park

If you’re looking to enjoy some time in the great outdoors, the Cuyahoga Valley National Park is the place for you. Located in Ohio, this national park is known for its vast natural beauty, and huge variety of activities you can participate in. In fact, if you plan your trip carefully, you’ll never run out of things to do in Cuyahoga Valley National Park. That said, let’s take a look at some of the specific activities that you can enjoy solo, or with the whole family.

1. Paddling the River

While you will need to bring your own equipment, taking a long, relaxing paddle down the Cuyahoga River in Cuyahoga Valley National Park is a refreshing experience. Just be aware that you will need to follow some rules such as registering your boat regardless of whether it is a canoe, motorboat, kayak, or something else.

The great thing about paddling the Cuyahoga River is that you get to see the wonders of the park from a completely different perspective as you make your way down the river. This can provide a more enjoyable way to experience the park for those who may not be into hiking.

2. Hiking

Speaking of which, hiking is a great way to get to know the Cuyahoga Valley National Park if you’re looking for a more active experience. With over 125 miles of hiking to explore, and 13 trails to follow, it’s easy to see why so many people come to Cuyahoga Valley National Park just for the hiking experience alone.

Here is a list of the trails available to the public:

  • Ohio & Erie Towpath Trail
  • Buckeye Trail North
  • Buckeye Trail South
  • Valley Trail North
  • Valley Trail South
  • Old Carriage Trail
  • Brandywine Falls Area Trails
  • Ledges Area Trails
  • Kendall Lake Area Trails
  • Tree Farm Trail
  • Oak Hill and Plateau Trails
  • Wetmore Area Trails
  • Everett Area Trails

3. Biking

Hiking trails aren’t the only ways to traverse the Cuyahoga Valley National Park by land, there are biking paths as well. The three paths are as follows:

Towpath Trail

Also known as the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad Explorer Program, this is a one way bike path which may sound odd, but it’s actually very convenient as there will be a train that takes you back when you reach the end. Just be aware that you must pay a small fee upon boarding the train.

Brecksville and Bedford

Referred to as Cleveland Metroparks’ All Purpose Trails, these two biking paths are general purpose as the name implies and can be used for walking, skating, or running as well. Motorized vehicles aren’t allowed though. In total this path covers over 60 miles so plan out your trip beforehand.

Summit Metro Parks’ Bike & Hike Trail

While smaller than the other bike paths at just 16 miles, this one is great for family biking adventures, and the path itself is managed by Summit Metro Parks ensuring that it’s always in excellent condition. There is a junction which connects to the Towpath Trail as well if for some reason you’d like to swap over.

4. Fishing

Fishing is always more enjoyable when you’re able to do it out among the incredible natural beauty that this world has to offer, and Cuyahoga Valley National Park is no exception. With several lakes in addition to the Cuyahoga River, you’ll have plenty of opportunities to cast a line, and enjoy a relaxing fishing experience.

5. Picnicking

One of the lesser known secrets of Cuyahoga Valley National Park is the fact that it is an excellent picnicking destination. This may sound odd, but when you consider the fact that it has nearly 30 picnicking areas to choose from, it certainly ranks as one of the best places to have a picnic in the entire state of Ohio. Whether you want to have a nice meal with your family, or have something special planned with a significant other, you can’t go wrong with the Cuyahoga Valley National Park’s picnicking spots.

Plan Ahead, Take Your Time, and Enjoy Yourself

The Cuyahoga Valley National Park is a pretty big place with a lot to do. The key to enjoying this natural wonder is to plan ahead so that you’re not overwhelmed with all of the options available. Remember, there’s no reason to try and fit everything into a single trip after all.

The next time you get the urge to spend some quality time out among nature, the Cuyahoga Valley National Park has everything you could ever want for an enjoyable trip that you’ll never forget. Take it slow, relax, and don’t rush. There’s plenty to do here, and plenty of time to do it.