Anyone who lives in Akron, Ohio knows that there are few other spots in the country that offer the same charm. The town is filled with friendly people, cozy shops, historical attractions and excellent restaurants, all of which make it one of the most attractive places in the state to find a home. Located just 39 miles south of Lake Erie, the town offers convenient access to Cleveland as well as the Ohio’s capital city, Columbus, but there’s really no reason to leave. There are so many amazing things to do right here in town.
While it’s impossible to experience all that Akron has to offer in one day, we’ve rounded up some of our favorite activities and created what we believe to be the perfect, day-long itinerary for visitors and locals alike. So peruse this list and get some rest, you have a busy day ahead of you!
7 a.m. First Comes Coffee at Nervous Dog Coffee Bar
Photo courtesy of William Levack via Nervous Dog Coffee Bar
We don’t know about you, but we can’t start the morning on a good note without a bit of a caffeine boost. Nervous Dog Coffee Bar is our first stop for this reason, and is sure to get your day on the right track. Try a signature latte if you’re in the mood for something sweet (our pick is the apple pie variation with apple, brown sugar, cinnamon and caramel), or keep it simple with a drip coffee or Americano. Either way, we’re sure you’ll be satisfied with the incredible quality and the friendly atmosphere. Stop in to see what all the buzz is about!
8 a.m. Fuel up with a Hearty Breakfast at Fred’s Diner
Photo courtesy of Fred’s Diner
If it’s large, hearty portions at low prices you’re after (and why wouldn’t you be?), look no further than Fred’s Diner. This no-frills restaurant is a favorite for locals and visitors alike. We suspect they keep coming back for Fred’s signature crispy bacon, but it could also be the fresh coffee, the big-as-your-face omelettes, or flavorful corned beef hash. There will likely be a line on the weekends, so plan ahead — and know that the wait is well worth it.
10 a.m. Visit the Akron Zoo
Photo courtesy of The Akron Zoo
The Akron Zoo is one of our favorite places to experience on the weekends! It is one of the best in the state, offering 35 acres of animal exhibits, lush scenery, entertaining guest amenities, and 700 animals from all over the world. Go in the morning to escape the heat and see the animals before they settle in for their afternoon naps.
12 p.m. Hungry? It’s Time for Lunch at Mi Casa.
Spice up your usual lunch habits and settle down for a mid-day meal at Mi Casa. This spot may look unassuming from the outside, but is actually the best place to find flavorful tacos, fajitas, rellenos and many more of your favorite Mexican classics. Plus, nearly the entire lunch menu is priced under $7 — you can’t beat that!
1 p.m. Meander Through the Stan Hywet Hall & Gardens
Photo courtesy of todd v. of Wasted Talent Media via the Stan Hywet Hall & Gardens
The Stan Hywet Hall & Gardens is one of many castles that graces Ohio’s countryside, and the perfect destination for a leisurely afternoon. It is an accredited museum of the American Alliance of Museums (one of only 26 in the state), and features five historic buildings and eight historic gardens sprawling over 70 acres. All collections and furnishings in the house are original, and the gardens are tended to daily! The estate is open to the public April through December from Tuesday to Sunday. A self-guided tour is the most popular way to experience the property, but the Stan Hywet also features a number of fun events throughout the year, including Shakespeare readings and murder mystery nights.
Interested in castles? Check out the 14 coolest castles in Ohio, and the fascinating stories behind them.
2:30 p.m. Get Ice Cream
There’s no doubt about it — ice cream is a universal favorite as far as desserts go. Whether you’re a fan of plain vanilla, a mint chocolate aficionado or a crazy flavor chaser, there are so many amazing ice cream shops in the Akron area to satisfy your sweet tooth. Many of them have been fan favorites for decades, and offer a hard-to-find old-school charm. Find our top picks here.
3 p.m. Walk Through the F.A. Seiberling Nature Realm
Photo courtesy of Summit Metro Parks
In 1898, F.A. Seiberling co-founded Goodyear Tire and Rubber, putting Akron on the map as the “rubber capital of the world.” He played a leading role in developing our town, donating a large portion of his fortune to the creation of parks all over the area. The Nature Realm is a piece of land that he owned, and was converted into a metro park in 1964. This multi-use nature reserve is a popular destination for afternoon walks, bird watching, picnicking and studying flowers in the gardens.
4 p.m. Marvel at the Akron Art Museum
The Akron Art Museum is the largest collection of modern and contemporary art in the area, and takes pride in exhibiting significant art by international, national and Midwestern artists. The work here is often eclectic, but always fascinating, and rotates frequently so that every visit here is a new adventure. If you choose to take a tour with a docent (groups of 15 or more), you’ll get a more in depth look at the featured work. Don’t miss the chance to engage with the several interactive exhibits on site! The museum shop and cafe feature fair trade items and the work of local artists. Bonus: Take advantage of free admission and extended hours (11 am to 9 pm) on Thursdays!
5 p.m. Experience Dinner at Crave
Photo courtesy of Crave
A meal at Crave will make you feel like you’ve travelled to New York city. The swanky, modern atmosphere offers an eccentric yet cozy dining experience, and the food is nothing to scoff at either! We can’t get enough of the inventive new American dishes, which include green curry coconut ceviche, root beer braised pulled pork and wasabi pea crusted tuna. Anything on the menu is sure to thrill, so pick something to satisfy your craving and enjoy the culinary adventure!
7 p.m. Catch a Show at the Akron Civic Theatre
Photo courtesy of CD Madden via The Akron Civic Theatre
The Akron Civic Theatre was designed by John Eberson in 1929 as one of the grand movie palaces of the roaring 20s. Today, it is one of only 16 remaining. Even after $19 million in renovations (which were completed in 2001), the theatre hasn’t lost any of its antique charm, and oozes elegance from all corners. Step inside the historic venue to experience plays, concerts, musicals and more — there isn’t a bad seat in the house!
9 p.m. Grab a Nightcap at Northside Speakeasy
This prohibition-era craft cocktail lounge will whisk you back to the 1920s with its swanky atmosphere and boozy creations. Northside Speakeasy is our last stop, and the perfect place to end the night (Or get it started before a fun night out!). Conveniently located in the heart of the Arts and Entertainment district in Downtown, this speakeasy was designed with comfort in mind, offering plush seating surrounded by dark velvet curtains and hidden entrances. The cocktails are all created and hand-mixed by a team of talented mixologists, and include the “Joe Juice,” a twist on a classic espresso martini, and “Giggle Water,” made from lemon-infused vodka, limoncello, fresh lemon, Cointreau and red wine.
Can’t Get Enough of Akron? Make a Home Here!
This home is for sale at 885 Bath County Drive, Akron | Agent: Steve Merkle
We hope you enjoyed this itinerary — but locals will likely tell you that it is only the tip of the iceberg. And once you’ve gotten a taste of what makes this town so great, you might never want to leave! Luckily, there are plenty of gorgeous properties for sale in Akron. Contact one of our experienced agents to learn more!