11 Last Minute Winter Trips from Toledo, Ohio

Posted on November 14, 2016

by Angela B

Winter will be here soon and what better way to spend those days than on a road trip? Hopefully, this list can show you a few new places to have an adventure. This is part of a series of the Trips from Toledo blog post series.

Winter Daytrips from Toledo, Ohio

Short Trips – Under 100 Miles

1. Oregon, Ohio (10 miles from Toledo)

When I have a couple hours to myself in the winter, I take a book or knitting project and warm up with the fireplaces at Maumee Bay State Park. If you can stay a while, rent cross-country skis and have dinner at the Water’s Edge Restaurant with a great view of Lake Erie.

Maumee Bay State Park Lodge - Oregon, Ohio

Photo by Nedra McDaniel

2. Ida, Michigan (16 miles from Toledo)

Since 1982, this little town has hosted a Winter Festival and Parade of Lights. The festival involves a frosty fireworks show, a craft and vendor show and fun run. The parade includes twinkling floats from surrounding states and Canada. The festival runs December 2nd through the 4th.

Winter Festival and Parade of Lights - Ida, Michigan

Photo by Monroe County Camera Club

3. Oak Harbor, Ohio (23 miles from Toledo)

Winter nature walks sure are cold, but can be rewarding, like this photo shot of Trumpeter Swans resting on the frozen lake at Ottawa Wildlife National Refuge. Stop at the Blackberry Corners Tavern on the way back to get some pizza and homemade pie.

Ottawa Wildlife National Refuge - Oak Harbor, Ohio

Photo by Patrick Bronson

4. Westland, Michigan (55 miles from Toledo)

Do you love seeing the holiday lights, but hate leaving the warmth of your car? Well, visit Wayne County Lightfest to see 5 miles of gorgeous winter illuminations. This year’s display is from November 17-December 31, with an entrance fee of $5.00 a car.

Westland, Michigan - Wayne County Lightfest

Photo by ellenm1 (flickr, Creative Commons license)

5. Troy, Michigan (78 miles from Toledo)

Visit the Somerset Mall to get out of the cold. The mall always has over the top, imaginative decorations for the holidays that will not disappoint. BONUS: Only 13 miles away, you can stop at the Great Lakes Crossing Outlets for even more shopping! You can literally shop ‘til you drop!

Somerset Mall - Troy, Michigan

Photo by Wigwam Jones (flickr, Creative Commons license)

6. Angola, Indiana (90 miles from Toledo)

Pokagon State Park has many exciting winter activities like ice skating, ice fishing, cross-country skiing and Indiana’s only refrigerated Toboggan Run. To warm up after, reserve a room at the comfy Potawatomi Inn where you can relax in the sauna, whirlpool or by one of the giant fireplaces.

Pokagon State Park - Angola, Indiana

Photo by Sara Graff

Mid-Sized Trips: 100-200 Miles

7. Independence, Ohio (118 miles from Toledo)

Start a nostalgic tradition by travelling on the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railway, which has winter tours through the end of December. Get off at one of the many stops to explore Cuyahoga Valley National Park in all of wintry glory!

Cuyahoga Scenic Railway - Independence, Ohio

Photo by Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railway

8. Frankenmuth, Michigan (131 miles from Toledo)

No winter list would be complete without an obligatory mention of Frankenmuth. It’s a magical place to visit with Bronner’s Christmas Wonderland, the World’s Largest Christmas Store, and Zehnders, which features Michigan’s largest indoor waterpark, marketplace, golf course, hotel and restaurant (famous for their chicken)!

Zehnder’s of Frankenmuth - Frankenmuth, Michigan

Photo of Zehnder’s of Frankenmuth Restaurant (Wikimedia Commons, Creative Commons license)

9. Berlin, Ohio (137 miles from Toledo)

Ohio’s Amish country is more charming than ever in the winter. Stay the night in an Amish built tree house, fully heated and equipped with a whirlpool to stay warm!

Ohio's Amish County - Berlin, Ohio

Photo by Amish Country Lodging

Longer Trips: Over 200 Miles

10. Logan, Ohio (203 miles from Toledo)

Hocking Hills is beautiful in every season, but it is shockingly gorgeous in the winter. As you can tell, I had a whimsical time hiking around the frozen waterfalls. Reserve a Furnace Cabin at Lake Hope State Park to keep snug all night.

Hocking Hills - Logan, Ohio

Photo by Patrick Bronson

11. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (232 miles from Toledo)

There is so much to do indoors while visiting Pittsburgh in the winter. If museums are your thing, visit the Phipps Conservatory, Carnegie Museum of Natural History, Carnegie Museum of Art, National Aviary, Children’s Museum and more. I personally spent over 5 hours at the Carnegie Museum of Natural History and loved it!

Carnegie Museum of Natural History - Pittsburg, Pennsylvania

Photo by Sage Ross (Wikimedia Commons, Creative Commons license)

Check out these great travel Books and DVDs from your local branch:
1,000 Places To See In The United States And Canada Before You Die by Patricia Schultz
Where to Go When by Lonely Planet
The best of one tank trips : great getaway ideas in and around Ohio / Neil Zurcher Complete national parks of the United States : featuring 400+ parks, monuments, battlefields, historic sites, scenic trails, recreation areas, and seashores / Mel White (National Geographic)
50 great American places : essential historic sites across the U.S. / Brent D. Glass ; foreword by David McCullough Tourist Trains Guidebook - from the publishers of Trains magazine ; editor: Randy Rehberg Under the Radar Michigan : the first 50 / written by Tom Daldin Lonely Planet Eastern USA

Related Toledo Library Travel Blog Posts

Trips from Toledo Series

School’s Out, It Must Be Vacation Time

Haunted Midwest Travel for Those Who Dare!

Top Tourist Spots Around the World

Ohio Travel

Looking for your next great read?

Let us help you!

Tell us what you’ve enjoyed reading, watching or listening to, and our librarians will give you personalized recommendations.

No algorithms, cookies or data mining – just real experts in your community sharing their love of great books, music and movies with you. We call it Give 3 Get 3.

Get started today at


Looking for more related content?

Here are a few selections just for you!

  • Have you ever listened to friends complaining about a disappointing hotel or a vacation spot? Well, the people in these books have entered the chat.

  • It's the Biggest Week in American Birding!

  • Youth Services Librarians love to read, too! Check out what your favorite Children’s and Teen Librarians at Main Library are reading, whether it be a picture book about penguins, a middle grade adventure in a treehouse, vampires in Louisiana, or a time-traveling phone booth!