5 Midwest winter getaways near Dayton that will make you WANT cabin fever


The Midwest, particularly the region around Southwest Ohio, has some major advantages over other regions this time of year. 

It’s hard to completely loathe winter when you’re curled up under a mound of blankets, feet away from a crackling fireplace, sipping a cup of hot chocolate that just reached its ideal temperature. That kind of warm and cozy feeling is only earned after enduring months of a Midwestern winter.

>> Your chance to take a guided hike of one of the area’s most beautiful preserves 

So free up a few days on your calendar, because there are plenty of perfect getaways within a few hours of Dayton that are guaranteed to warm your spirits.

1. MAUMEE BAY RESORT

Located in the heart of Maumee Bay State Park, Maumee Bay Resort might be one of the best ways to experience Ohio’s lake life during the frozen months. 80 acres of preserved wetlands, right on the shores of Lake Erie, transform into frosty hiking fields during winter. Cross-country ski equipment is available to rent for a day of exploring on the three-mile Mouse Trail where winter birds can be seen by the dozens. 

The cozy resort is within minutes of the beach, where you’ll be able admire the frozen tundra of the Great Lakes, then head back to defrost by the fire.

>> Why did this 170 year-old church close in Trotwood?

Want to go? 

WHAT: Maumee Bay Resort

WHERE: Maumee Bay State Park, 1750 State Park Rd., #2, Oregon, Ohio

INFO: Facebook

2. MURPHIN RIDGE INN

This getaway is truly a getaway. Situated on 142 acres of some of Amish Country’s most breathtaking vistas, the Murphin Ridge Inn was recognized as one of the U.S.’s Top 10 Bed and Breakfasts in 2016.

>> 5 underground railroad sites near Dayton you should visit

The lodge, furnished with “museum quality shaker reproductions” according to Ohio Magazine, isn’t a cheap stay. However, special off-season prices that last through the end of March make winter a perfect time to visit. Rave reviews from almost every guest on their website make it easy to see why this destination is a getaway lover’s dream come true.

Want to go? 

WHAT: Murphin Ridge Inn

WHERE: 750 Murphin Ridge Road, West Union, Ohio

INFO: murphinridgeinn.com

3. SHAWNEE LODGE

At Shawnee Lodge, any stressors that have been weighing you down are bound to get lost somewhere in Shawnee State Forest’s 63,000 acres of rolling hills— also known as “Ohio’s Little Smokies.” You can choose between staying at the resort lodge, where you’ll be able to soak in a steaming hot tub after an afternoon of picturesque winter hiking, or snuggle in with your loved ones at one of the 25 cottages available— fireplaces most definitely included. 

Want to go? 

WHAT: Shawnee Lodge

WHERE: 4404B State Route 125. West Portsmouth, Ohio

INFO: shawneeparklodge.com

4. FRENCH LICK RESORT

If you are really trying to put your feet up and make lavish memories you’ll want to revisit over and over again, then the French Lick Resort needs to be on your agenda. The nationally recognized resort complex, which boasts two AAA Four Diamond hotels, two spas and a Vegas-style casino, is only three hours and some change from Dayton.

Not only is the resort ultra luxurious, its history will make your relaxing weekend getaway all the more alluring. Although destroyed in an 1897 fire, the complex was originally known as the French Lick’s Springs Hotel. Guests would come from near and far to benefit from the advertised healing properties of the town’s sulrfur springs— three of which were on the hotel’s properties.

>>9 things to see and do in Ohio’s only national park

If you still need more convincing, dogs are very, very welcome to partake in all the resort has to offer.

Want to go? 

WHAT: French Lick Resort

WHERE: 8670 W. State 56, French Lick, Indiana 

INFO: frenchlick.com

5. CLIFFVIEW RESORT 

Dubbed as “Winter in the Kentucky Mountains,” Cliffview Resort is about as cozy as winter gets. The eastern Kentucky hilltop resort is just three hours away from the Gem City and situated right next to Red River Gorge and Daniel Boone National Forest. If gorgeous views are what you’re after while you get away from it all, look no further.

Want to go? 

WHAT: Cliffview Resort

WHERE: 455 Cliff View Rd., Kentucky

INFO: cliffviewresort.com


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in

PG's all good, right? Sorting out which movies are right for your kid
PG's all good, right? Sorting out which movies are right for your kid

Time flies, especially when you stroll down your cinema memory lane. It may seem just a year or two ago you were wrangling with your own parents over whether you could see the R-rated  “Breakfast Club”or “Kill Bill Vol. 1,” now you're the parent trying to figure out if “Transylvania 3” will scare your...
What age should you stop breastfeeding your baby?
What age should you stop breastfeeding your baby?

It's motherhood 101: Breast is best for your new bundle of joy. However, there are few hard and fast rules on when to wean your little one from breastfeeding. August is National Breastfeeding Awareness Month, so it’s the opportune time to take a look at some of the benefits for nursing mothers and their babies.  Breastfeeding comes with...
Local hot-dog stand is one of Kettering’s hidden gems
Local hot-dog stand is one of Kettering’s hidden gems

Jon McElroy was operating from a mobile food unit long before the term “food truck” took off, and over the course of eight years, his Lefty’s Hot Dogs trailer in Kettering has quietly evolved into one of the Dayton area’s hidden gems. The hot dog venture is on the corner of East Stroop Road and Wilmington Pike, tucked...
How these Dayton kids gave back and got even more in return 
How these Dayton kids gave back and got even more in return 

Dayton youth recently learned to give back in Toledo.  Eleven students in eighth-grade through college took part in Grace United Methodist Church’s GU Mission trip to Toledo.  The event was led by Sean Walton Senior, the  Harvard Boulevard church’s outreach and youth director.  “Four years ago, Sean wanted...
Here’s how to make sure your pooch is ready for the new baby 
Here’s how to make sure your pooch is ready for the new baby 

Your dog is a member of the family, right? So when that family expands to include a new little human member, your pup is one of the many "loved ones" you'll need to prepare for the arrival of a baby. Expectant parents can take heart from the multitudes of social media compilations featuring gentle dogs playing with their angelic baby...
More Stories