Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Eat, Drink, Explore - Butler County

Have you ever been to Butler County? If you haven't, this post will make you want to take a road trip! At just under four hours from Cleveland, it's a great place for a weekend getaway.

The Butler County Visitor's Bureau invited me to visit them and get a taste of what this southern Ohio county has to offer. 

Traveling is my favorite thing to do. I've been all over the place - all of the States except Alaska, Maine and New Hampshire, most of western Europe, Mexico and a good chunk of eastern Canada. But the one place I haven't explored nearly enough is my home state of Ohio. Admittedly, when the Butler County Visitor's Bureau invited me to come down for a visit, I had to check the map to see where it was located. After having visited Butler County, I can honestly say I can't wait to go back! There was so much to do and see, this is post #3!

Butler County is a unique mix of urban, suburban + rural. The largest communities include Hamilton, Fairfield, West Chester Township, Oxford, Middletown, Monroe and Liberty Township. We spent a long weekend driving all over and were amazed at all the fun things there are to do just a few hours from the north coast.

I already told you all about the Donut Trail, but it was so much fun, I have to mention it again. If you are a donut lover, this alone is worth the trip. But there's so much more to Butler County than donuts.
And you can't talk about Butler County without mentioning Jungle Jim's. If you missed it, definitely check out my blog post about the most incredible grocery store you'll ever see. 
Here's some of the other fun we had:

Kayaking on the Greater Miami River was one of the top highlights of our trip! We rented kayaks at Jimco's Kayaks. It was super easy thanks to our guide dropping us off and picking us up. The river is wide and has a nice current - and you may even see parachuters overhead. Bring a waterproof case or at least a Ziploc bag for your phone so you can take pictures...I forgot and decided to leave my phone on dry land just in case so there are no photos of us on the water. Serious blogger fail. Please enjoy this photo from their Facebook page instead...
Bonus: Jimco's is affiliated with Spoken Bicycles - a really cool bike shop that has a bar inside. (Why didn't I think of this??) After your paddling, you can try some of their tasty craft beers or cocktails. The owners are so nice you're going to want to stay awhile. If riding is more your speed, you can also rent a bike and explore on two wheels.
Jolly's Drive-In Jolly's is a Hamilton favorite and has been around for over 70 years. Order hot dogs, burgers, popcorn and root beer and have it delivered directly to your car. 
The Holiday Auto Theatre Drive-in Movie is a journey back in time! It's beautifully restored and has a great snack bar. Bring some chairs and enjoy seeing a movie under the stars. A summer must! (don't forget the bug spray!)
Rivertown Brewery
When we went to Rivertown, I was excited to find a really unique beer, Pineapple Whip Nitro. It's perfect for summer! I definitely brought some home as a souvenir.
They had delicious BBQ (the turkey was our favorite) with incredible sides and lots of other tasty beers too. Definitely get the corn bread and lots of pickles!

One day on the Donut Trail, we stumbled across Thai Koon and hit the jackpot! It's great Thai food in a pretty shopping area and the perfect spot to get some non-sugary eats - we had the larb and cashew chicken and both were excellent. We were so hungry I actually forgot to take photos except for the bubble tea, but trust me, it was good!
Pyramid Hill Sculpture Park and Museum is like no other place I've ever been. I was stunned at all of the giant sculptures in a beautiful park-like setting.
You can drive around but I definitely recommend renting a golf cart...and even bringing a picnic! It was storming the first time we visited so we went back the next day. The record breaking heat and humidity kept us in our air conditioned car but I definitely want to go back when we can spend more time walking around and riding in a cart.
This amazing park isn't only a summer activity - there are lots of great events year round. Art on the Hill is at the end of September and the leaves will be a gorgeous backdrop for all the other art. Don your best Halloween costume for the Zombie BallPyramid Hill also has Holiday Lights on the Hill - a gorgeous holiday light display. This runs November 16, 2018 – January 1, 2019. And you can head to the Butler County Visitors Bureau website for a $2 off admission coupon.

If you are a fan of Hamilton the musical, don't miss the Hamilton Mural...
and the Alexander Hamilton statue...
In 2004, “The American Cape,” by sculptor Kristen Vibal was installed in honor of the city's namesake. The 12 ft tall bronze Hamilton is draped in an American flag with his finger pointed to the sky. Look familiar? Find this fabulous statue on High Street in downtown Hamilton.
We also had some authentic Mexican food at Taqueria Guanajuato - a food truck that recently opened this quaint brick and mortar.
And you can bring your furry friend with you too! We stayed at the Staybridge Suites and we absolutely loved it! They don't tolerate your dog, they truly welcome them like family. They had a goodie bag of treats for Buffy and there were convenient grassy areas for walks and going potty. The room was spacious and clean and the location was perfect. They also have a nice pool and hot tub. I can't recommend them enough!
Buffy was happy that there are lots of other dog friendly places in Butler County. Buffy went to Holiday Drive-In, Jolly's, Pyramid Hill and The Cone (the soft serve was SO good!) with us.

We were in Butler County for the weekend and we didn't come close to seeing all the cool stuff it has to offer! Some other things that are on our list for next time, because we're definitely planning another trip!

Self-guided Mural Tour
Hanover Winery
Celebrate Local
Karma in the Kitchen Chocolates
Voice of America Museum of Broadcasting
Covered bridges
The Butler County Tourism Bureau website is a great resource when you plan your trip. You can sign up for their newsletter, or follow them on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter. #GetToTheBC!

This post is sponsored by the Butler County Visitor's Bureau. As always, the thoughts an opinions are my own.


  1. Sounds like such a fun weekend getaway we will have to add it to our list!

    1. There's a ton of cool stuff - I think you'll love it!

  2. I looooove covered bridges, so that last photo does it for me - if the rest hadn't already! Those tacos, especially, look amazing, & I've been dying to visit Jungle Jim's!

    1. We packed so much into the few days we were there - and there was a ton more we wanted to do! Definitely take a long weekend to explore.

  3. It looks like you guys had an absolute blast! I've been wanting to plan a weekend trip to Butler County ever since I saw your Donut Trail posts. Also, Pineapple Whip Nitro sounds delicious! Thanks for sharing, Crystal.

    1. You will really love it Leah! I still have some of the Pineapple Whip Nitro - I'll save you a can :)

  4. Holy cow! You packed a lot into your trip! There are so many things to do and to taste. I know where I want to go next <3

    1. Oh my gosh Mary - it was a whirlwind! We were there for a long weekend and could have spent a WEEK there! If you go, please let me know. Can't wait to hear what you think.


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