I’m going to be honest, I had never heard of Columbus, Georgia. Which to be honest is quite embarrassing considering I’m from the U.S. and am always researching where to go on my next adventure. So when in December I got the opportunity to explore the town, you know I jumped on it. Visiting Columbus, Georgia with toddlers was a great experience and I’m excited to share it with you!
Having never been to Columbus before, on the drive down I was itching to research the city. I was finally able to do some research when the girls tucked into their hotel bed for the night. December is a wonderful time to travel. Peak season is great and all but you never truly see a place unless you go in the off season.
Columbus was founded in 1827 originally as a trading post because the Chattahoochee river runs through much of Georgia, Alabama, and parts of Florida. The city is located in the west central part of the state, right next to the Alabama border. Lord, Just thinking about Alabama is giving me flashbacks to that time we broke down outside of Montgomery on Memorial day when all the auto parts stores were closed. But, I’ll have to share that story another time.
Columbus has come far since it was just a small milll town and is now the second biggest city in Georgia. What gives the city its popularity is the river. (anyone else fighting the urge to start singing? …way down yonder on the Chattahoochee… just me?)
The town has a lot of educational activities for you history lovers and homeschooling moms out there. There’s also the Coca Cola Space Center, National Civil War Naval Museum, the Columbus Botanical Gardens, as well as the Flat Rock State Park.
While we were there we explored around the Chatahoochee Riverfront Park. If you only do one thing while in Columbus, definitely go to the riverwalk. We watched people kayak and tube in the river. Some people were even using lay down floats just to float down the river. The Chatahooche is a popular place for white water rafting and other water sports.
Ever so often the water at the dam is released. You will hear a horn blare to warn you that the water is coming. The water will rise and the rapids will strengthen. While there they blared the warning horn, but we couldn’t stay long enough to watch the water release because my oldest daughter was having a hissy fit.
Oh! Another exciting thing to do at the Chatahoochee is zip-line over the river. A downside to Columbus, Georgia with toddlers is that I miss out on that kind of stuff that I would normally have been thrilled for. Nonetheless, we enjoyed the river.
If there are any other hammockers out there visiting Columbus the river front has a hammock park by the water. I didn’t get to hammock while I was there. Next time though! When visiting the river, there are spots were you can get down to the water and do some rock hopping as well. My daughter had a blast playing in the water, even in December Columbus has beautiful weather.
If you are a photographer in Columbus, I envy you. The town is beautiful and the river offers so many great spots for a photoshoot. Next, we explored downtown. Downtown Columbus is a great place to walk around and has the added bonus of having wide sidewalks if you go with a stroller. I ended up letting my oldest walk while I carried my three month old in an infant carrier. I used a parking garage to pay for parking on this trip and it was located close to where we wanted to go. Again, Columbus does not fall short on photo opportunities. I think the old industrial vibes in downtown are to die for.
While we walked around, we ended up around the Columbus Convention Center. The outside has beautiful architecture and several water features. Which we of course had to keep our one year old from diving into! We explored around the convention center which has a beautifully designed interior. They also were decorated for Christmas which really added to the experience. Once we were behind the convention center, I see out of the corner of my eye an old boat ramp and a metal bridge stretched above the water that made for wonderful pictures.
My husband and I saw several restaurants that we wanted to eat at, but due to our little ones being so picky we ended up eating some chicken strips from Raising Canes.. however we do have a list of places we want to try when we make it to Columbus, Georgia again!
The perfect place for American dishes in a casual restaurant.
The Cannon Brew Pub
A Microbrewery famous for their wood-fired pizzas and large selection of beers.
Raising the bar a bit, we would love to dine at Houlihan’s. This restaurant is in the Double Tree Hotel. They have a large menu of steaks, pub fare, and pasta.
Of course, no trip is complete without visiting a sweet shop! I’d love to stop by Kilwins for some delicious old-fashioned homemade ice cream.
For more ideas on what to do while in Columbus, click HERE.
I hate that our stay in Columbus was so short and I would love to go back and be the one careening down the river! I also would love to take the time to explore eastern Georgia, specifically Savannah.
Have y’all been to Columbus, Georgia with toddlers? If you have please leave me a comment and tell me were I should go next time I’m there. I’d love to hear from you!
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