It has been over six years since I moved away from Columbus, Georgia. And though we have visited several times the last few years. It has always been for short periods of time, about a week or less. But this summer I was able to spend a little over three weeks in what I once considered home. This time was not only great for spending time with my family but also for discovering new gems in the small town that has a special place in my heart.
So, I’ll say that I was impressed by the progress the town has made since we moved away. So much, that we contemplated moving back. But then bounced out of it, I guess my love for Houston is much stronger. Either way, I thought I could pass on details on things to do while in Columbus. This would be especially useful to military families who move in and out of the Columbus and Fort Benning area.
Uptown Water Park
When I lived in Georgia, this was not around. I also didn’t have any kids, so it would not have been a place where you’d find me. However, now that I have two girls it was a great and refreshing way to cool down during the summer days we spent. What is it? It’s a giant Splash-pad, adjacent to a playground and overlooking the river.
Columbus Public Library
This is not a new attraction, and possibly not one that most people think to visit. But there’s something beautiful about the library; the architecture is what I’m probably drawn to. The Aflac Children’s Room is divine; it’s like walking into a story book. The space is large and perfectly decorated. We easily spent two hours there, while the girls picked out books, colored and played with other children who were visiting.
Coca-Cola Space Center
I had visited before and though it is not a large center, there are a handful of hands-on activities for the little ones. Our personal favorite was the simulator, not only is it informative but it is also fun, as it moves simulating a spaceship’s blast off. My littlest loved it of course – as if she were on a carnival ride.
Mercy’s Jamaican Kitchen
I am a self declared foodie. So I am always on the hunt for the next best meal. I had driven by Mercy’s on several occasions but had never stopped. All I could think after trying the food, was why didn’t we eat here sooner. The food was delicious, so flavorful! The portions were also perfect, so much that we split our plates with the littles. My oldest is not as picky as the littlest, this is depending on her mood of course. But I was honestly surprised that she asked for more. With that said, yes, restaurant is family friendly. 🙂
I have searched and searched and searched for another Thai Restaurant since moving away. I have not found one. Not even in Houston, a city known for its diverse cuisine. Because I was in town for Father’s Day, this is where we chose to celebrate dad. My parents had never been and they loved it, those two are as picky as my little ones. I often think they were food critics in another life. 🙂 So, if they liked it and had nothing bad to say, then it is worth recommending.
I could go on with my list. There are a few other places that offer great cuisine in Columbus, Ga but I will save them for another post perhaps.
As always, thanks for stopping by and make sure to share or pin this post so that others can discover Columbus’ little gems.
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56 comments / Add your comment below
We’ve been meaning to explore more of Georgia now that we live here. Columbus looks like a great spot—especially with that Jamaican food! 🙂
Kaity, do get out there and explore Georgia. There’s quite a bit to do, especially if you’re down for a drive. 😉 Ps. You have got to try this restaurant, it has amazing Jamaican food.
These sound like some really great places to visit. I’m glad you enjoyed going back there with your family 🙂
Yes, Columbus is a little gem. 😉
That Jamaican Kitchen looks delish! Ahhhh thanks for sharing this to us.
It is. I can’t wait to go back 🙂
Great ideas! We have friends that live in Georgia and would love to visit! We do visit the library here often though.
You should visit. Columbus is such a nice little city.
Finding free family fun is my jam! Good list. You found things that can be visited multiple times and still be fun!
Thanks Patrice. 🙂
I love that the uptown water park is free and it must be so refreshing during warm weather. I have always wanted to go to Georgia x
Yes, I’m all about free fun and it was a good way to cool down and tire out the girls.
The Coca Cola center sounds like a great place! There is a lot to do. I love the combination of a small town with lots to do!
I have honestly never have even heard of Columbus, but it looks like such a fun place to spend a relaxing weekend!
It is a nice town to consider visiting.
Those water parks are a must when you have kids. They just love them. It’s really nice on those days when it’s super hot out. I also can’t live without a killer Thai restaurant. Still searching for one in my hometown.
I love the water parks, the refresh and cool down the kiddos.
I’ve never been to Columbus, Georgia before, but it looks like you and your family had a great time! I love all the different things there are to do there.
To be a smaller city, there are lots to do.
My brother lived in Columbus for several years. They really loved it there.
It’s a great place to live, I can see they would love it.
Sounds like a fun place to explore with your family! You’ve highlighted lots of activities my kiddo would love
It’s all about the kiddos and finding fun activities that they can enjoy. 🙂
That chicken looks absolutely amazing! I love it when I can find lower cost activities to do when I am traveling – since the travel itself costs so much!
I agree. Finding cheap activities is a must, especially when you have multiple kids. 😉
It’s nice to take the kids to libraries and just let them read and explore. It’s also a low cost way to entertain them, as you have proved in this post! This are all really fun and I love being able to go out without spending too much so this is great!
Libraries are fun both at home and while traveling. And the kids do love them. 🙂
If a picky child eater asks for another serving, then the food must be darn great! Sounds like Mercy’s Jamaican Kitchen is the real deal!
Oh it really is. It’s so good.
I’ll try to remember this if I ever go to Columbus. Great post!
Yes, it will be a great trip.
THanks for sharing, it is always so helpful to have ideas of where to stop when traveling and we need to take a break with the kids.
Thanks for stopping by. 😉
I haven’t visited Georgia yet (I’m from Australia but have visited the states 3 times). It’s definitely on the list! We love to do road trips so Columbus will be added to the must see’s and I’m so keen to eat!
There are definitely a few towns in Georgia that you would enjoy.
Water parks and libraries are always fun and awesome! It’s something that the kids will definitely enjoy. I love that the public library has toys for the kids to play with and they’ll learn from those toys as well. Pretty cool! Just goes to show that you can have fun without spending too much or anything at all.
Yes. And the best thing is that they’re both free 😉 Libraries truly have improved in recent years by making areas for children more appealing. My little ones love them.
Looks like a fun place to visit! I’m always down for some delicious Jamaican food!
It is Roxanne. If you’re ever driving through Georgia, it’s a great town to stop at.
I have to admit Columbus is not on my list to visit, but it is on the way to my destination. These are some good spots for us to take a driving break so the kids can play and get some tasty food!
This list is a great resource. Sometimes some of the best places are over looked.
Thanks Christine, you’re right so many good places are often overlooked.
I never had a chance to visit Columbus when I lived in Maryland, I did how ever visited other cities and my favorite places to visits where museums and libraries. Many people don’t go there they don’t consider libraries a tourists attraction but I love them. Sound like you and your family had a great vacation
Hi Nallely, love your name. And yes, libraries and museums are great – often free or cheaper than most attractions. If one is on a budget when traveling, those are two MUST do activities. Thanks for stopping by.
I’m all about low cost fun. Thanks for sharing these ideas!
You’re very welcome. Thanks for stopping by.
There looks like there is so much to do! This would make an awesome vacation spot it seems, and it really isn’t too far of a drive for me.
It’s a small town but so darling. And there are a handful of spots worth the visit. 😉
These sound like great things to do in Columbus. I’m going to send this to my cousin who just moved to the area a few months ago.
Joanna, I hope your cousin finds it helpful. It may seem like too small of a town but there are things to do, if you know where to go and look. 😉
The food especially that chicken looks amazing! Looks like a lot of fun family friendly activities to do! I love when you can have family fun on a budget!
Jeanine, the food there is amazing. I can’t wait to visit again.
Columbus, Georgia seems like a fun place to visit, especially for the little ones! If I ever go there I would love to check out that Jamaican Kitchen…the food looks delicious!
Hi Lori, thanks for stopping by. Columbus is a great town with lots of options. The Jamaican restaurant is a must.
Don’t you just love going to the library. I feel like libraries are so under-utilized these days, but they really are a great resource for parents.
I love it. While we’re home and while traveling. It’s cheap fun for the kiddos.