By: Lydia Reagan ~Feature Editor~

1.pngSo you’ve chosen Xavier University. You’ve been moved into your new dorm, met your roommates and neighbors and want to get off campus to explore some of the local delicacies. Where do you go? You can check out these awesome places – some near, some far – and explore all that this great city has to offer.

Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Gardens

Who doesn’t love going to the zoo? For about $20, you can see all the animals you can imagine and take a trip back to your childhood! You can check out the new hippopotamus exhibit, as well as the baby giraffe Cora. You can also pay your respects to the late Harambe.

American Sign Museum

This may sound boring, but it’s actually an extremely interesting museum! It’s filled to the brim with different types of signs, including light-up neon signs and some awesome history.

Half-Price Sushi

Everyone likes a good half-price sushi! There are quite a few places around Xavier to try some tasty rolls, including the Dancing Roll in Hyde Park, Ichiban and Cloud 9 in Mount Lookout. They’re open late, as well: perfect for poor, sleep-deprived college students.

Over the Rhine

Filled with restaurants, nightlife and entertainment of all sorts, Over-the-Rhine is a great place to be on the weekends. There’s an amazing bakery called Holtman’s Donut Shoppe where you can get unique and delicious donuts. You can also get a Segway tour of Cincinnati and see the all the highlights. Parking can be a little tricky, but there’s a ton to see and discover down there.

Findlay Market

This is an open-air market filled with locally sourced food and some of the best eats in the city. It is home to artisan and farm fresh restaurants and cafes and is open Tuesday-Sunday, all year round. It’s a great place to eat with a fun, friendly atmosphere. The best time to go is at 8 a.m. on Saturday mornings, when everything is fresh!

Eden Park

Eden Park is a large plot of land that houses both Playhouse in the Park, where you can check out some awesome theatrical performances, as well as the Cincinnati Art Museum, home of some priceless pieces of art. And if you’re not into either of those, it’s also a beautiful place for a walk or a picnic.

Eli’s BBQ

If you want to find a place that serves delicious barbeque, check out Eli’s on the river or at Findlay Market. They have awesome barbeque, as well as amazing sides that will keep you coming back for more. Plus, they’re within the budget of your average college student, so that’s definitely a plus.

Freedom Center

Who doesn’t love freedom? Visit the Freedom Center for some fun historical facts about Cincinnati’s role in the Civil War. History buffs, I’m talking to you.

Mount Adams

Mount Adams is another place that’s awesome to go for nightlife. The neighborhood on the hill offers a great view of the city, and has lots of charm in its winding streets and historical architecture. It’s also a great place to meet lots of other college kids from the area and get out of the “Xavier bubble.”

This is just a taste of the awesome things that Cincinnati has to offer. Check out a few with friends, and sooner or later this place will start to feel like a second home.