A gorgeous sunny day in Cincinnati will find many on the hunt for a park or patio restaurant to enjoy. Why not do both by spending a day exploring the Lunken Airport. Located in Cincinnati’s Columbia-Tusculum neighborhood Lunken Airport is home to more than just an airport. Flight Schools, sight-seeing tours, a museum and more can all be found at Lunken Airport. Even as locals we often times forget about the little restaurant located inside Lunken’s terminal called the Sky Galley. We decided to venture to the Lunken Airport for an afternoon at the Lunken Playfield and Sky Galley Resturant. Here are a few fun facts and what you need to know before you go.
Learn A Little History at the Cincinnati Aviation Heritage Society and Museum
A fun fact about Lunken Airport is that it is located on the site of the first settlement in the Cincinnati area. I learned this and so much more by stopping into the Cincinnati Aviation Heritage Society and Museum located inside Lunken’s terminal. Learn about the first unofficial airman delivery via hot air balloon, see pictures of the great flood and learn about how Lunken became the birthplace of American Airlines.
The museum is only open Monday and Friday from 10:00 am- 2:00 pm. Look for the open sign when you enter the terminal. The museum can be found on the second floor located next to the Airman’s Lounge. While tiny in size, the museum is full of artifacts, pictures, and memorabilia. The staff is a fountain of knowledge. Let them take you through the museum and tell the stories that bring pictures and artifacts to life. The museum is free, however, they do take donations so be sure to bring a few dollars. Learn more about the history of Lunken and the museum.
Grab Lunch At the Sky Galley
There are not too many places in this city where you can sit out on a patio and be within feet of airplanes coming and going. Most children will love all the action that is happening while they eat at the Sky Galley restaurant. The Sky Galley is strategically located inside the Lunken Terminal. It is home to an amazing view overlooking the airport, runways, and Tarmac. They also have a patio that is perfect for outdoor lunches, cocktails or a casual dinner. The Sky Galley does have indoor seating, where guests will often request a table next to the windows. The indoor seating is slightly elevated so that your view isn’t blocked by those dining outside.
The food is standard American fare, nothing fancy. My advice is if you go with a safe bet like a hamburger or sandwich you won’t be disappointed. I was quite surprised by their kid’s menu, as it had quite a few options. Staples like mac-n-cheese, hamburger and chicken tenders should have you covered. The Sky Galley is located is open year round, but keep in mind on beautiful days to get there early if you want patio seating. They don’t take reservations so there can often time be a wait for the prime tables indoor as well. Once seated high chairs are available for tiny diners
Stroll Along The Trails
Don’t miss out on walking or biking along the trails by Lunken. At the terminal step outside, grab a bench or stroll along the pathways to take in the sights and sounds of the airport. There is a five-mile loop around Lunken Airport, that offers river views and plenty of plane spotting. Don’t forget to stop by the Lunken terminal to stroll along Tarmac. The bike trail connects to the Ohio River Trail which makes its way to downtown Cincinnati.
Also known as the Land of Make Believe is a magical playground that is completely fenced in and offers plenty of shade. You will enter through the Marian Ahlering Building during the hours of 10 am- 6 pm. When the building is closed you can access the park through the side gate that is on the opposite side of the park. Rumor has it that the cost is $1.00 per child ages 2-12, but every time we have been we entered through the side gate. We usually visit around 9:00am.
There are three play structures that can accommodate varying ages from toddler to preteen! The huge mega-structure can be slightly stressful with a younger one in tow. Naturally, they want to climb the towers, ropes, and bars like the big kids. While they have a great play structure designed just for the toddler age, she would always make her way to the big play structure. Just a little something to keep in mind, especially if you are bringing more than one child.
There is a picnic shelter with plenty of tables, swings and most of the play areas have mulch. Restrooms are located inside the Marian Ahlering Building when it is open. There are two other play structures that are across the street from the Land of Make Believe that are tied in with a shelter. We often frequent these when the shelter isn’t reserved. The only downside there isn’t shade.
When planning your visit take note that there are tons of great areas to explore around Lunken. Whether you want to hit a few golf balls, bring your furry friend to the dog park or play a set of tennis there is something for everyone. If you are looking for more fun things to do in Cincinnati look no further!
Pin For Later: Lunken Playfield and Sky Galley Restaurant