Private Tours

A Columbus City Adventures private tour is the perfect way for any group to experience Ohio’s capital city. Whether you are hosting a convention, conference, family reunion, or have a group of friends or organization that wishes to learn about Columbus, we’ll provide an itinerary to suit your interests. We’re experienced in creating custom tours to match just about any desire, and of course also offer all of our core itineraries to private groups. Our tours can be conducted on our vehicle or by a ‘step-on’ guide on your vehicle, and some can even be conducted as walking tours. Please contact us to set up a private tour today!

Itineraries include:

City Overview Tours:

    Columbus Central City Tour– 2.5 hours

This excursion provides an enjoyable introduction to the best the city has to offer. At around 2.5 hours long, this bus tour is suitable both for the tourist looking to get their bearings in a new city as well as Central Ohioans seeking a better understanding of the places to see and be seen in Columbus.

    Columbus: Past Present & Future 3 + hours

Join us as we travel back through time, explore the development of Columbus, hear the tales of those who made the city what it is today, and discover the new developments, plans, for the future of our city.

    German Village Walking Tour 1.5 hours

We invite you to join us on a leisurely stroll among the brick lined streets and manicured gardens of German Village, Columbus’ most historic and picturesque neighborhood. We’ll explore the neighborhood’s hardscrabble German origins and its relationship to the Brewery District, the many notable period styles and details found in its buildings, and the extraordinary preservation efforts that have led it to become one of the most desirable and noted neighborhoods in the Midwest.

Neighborhood Overview Tours: 

    Franklinton 1.5 hours

Join us as we learn about how a small settlement along the banks of the Scioto River that once birthed the capital of Ohio has more recently reemerged as a new center for arts, entertainment, and creativity in Columbus.  Along the way you will hear stories of perseverance and achievement amidst the struggles endured by the neighborhood and its communities, plus exploration of the many new developments, investments, and other projects that mark the neighborhood’s robust reemergence as an integral part of downtown.

    German Village 1.5 hours

The Old South End, as it was once called, started as an enclave of immigrants struggling for a better life in America. On this tour, we’ll learn about how the neighborhood evolved from its humble beginnings to become one of the largest and most picturesque historic preservation districts in America.  View its abundance of beautifully maintained homes, manicured gardens, and verdant parks, and learn about how the many unique businesses and civic organizations within German Village collaborate to maintain and expand upon its considerable charms.

    Near East Side (Part 1) 1.5 hours 

What is now considered the “Near East Side” comprises a myriad of historically significant neighborhoods and communities.  This first segment takes a look at the communities south of Broad Street, including Olde Towne East, Franklin Park, and the Conservatory.  Visit the homes of the original “movers and shakers” of Columbus and learn about the new development plans for the Franklin Park Conservatory.

    Near East Side (Part 2) 1. 5 hours

This time we visit North of Broad and the communities of Eastgate, Woodland Park, and the King Lincoln District.  Hear stories of the Great Migration, segregation in Columbus, and visit Poindexter Village to explore it’s recent transformation.  We’ll also learn more about the artists, musicians, business leaders, and community activists who left their indelible mark upon these communities. 

    Short North/Victorian Village/Italian Village 1.5 hours

The Short North and surrounding communities were originally inhabited by a diverse range of peoples and businesses, from small Italian groceries to the largest producer of coal cutters and mining/industrial locomotives in the world. Join us to hear the stories of what made the ‘North End’ into the thriving neighborhood it was, and how it has transformed into the most vibrant and nationally recognized neighborhood in Columbus today!

    Ohio State University 1.5 hours

What started as Ohio’s land grant university, opening its doors to 24 students on September 18, 1873 in a small farming community at the northern edge of Columbus, has grown into one of the largest college campuses in the nation.  Take a look with us as we visit this rapidly growing campus and learn about some of it’s iconic buildings, athlete heroes, and academic luminaries.

    Downtown 1.5 hours 

From the Ohio Statehouse to the Columbus Museum of Art to the Topiary Park, downtown is home to many of Columbus’s most popular cultural attractions.  We will visit many of these storied locations and learn their more about their origins, not to mention exploring current developments and future plans within the central business district of Ohio’s Capital City.

Secret Columbus Tours:

Take a tour to some of the fascinating secret finds uncovered in the new book “Secret Columbus: A Guide to the Weird, Wonderful and Obscure” by Columbus native and former television news anchor Anietra Hamper. Join the Anietra and Columbus City Adventures historian Jeff Lafever on an exciting exploration of the quirky undercurrent of the capital city.

    Secret Columbus – Downtown 2.5 hours

  • Relics of the old Ohio Penitentiary hidden in plain sight
  • The oddest shaped building in downtown Columbus
  • Where the only Original Mr. Peanut still in use now resides
  • The inspiration for the unknown Columbus City Anthem
  • World’s Largest Gavel
  • An exclusive, private after-hours view of the Columbus skyline from the city’s most spectacular and secret location
  • The site of the most original television experiment in Columbus history

    Secret Columbus – Hidden East Side 2.5 hours

  • The final resting place of beloved Columbus pets
  • A hidden military city
  • Remnants of segregation in Columbus
  • The world’s first suburban strip mall
  • The Original Columbus Airport Terminal- the starting point of the first commercial transcontinental air transportation in the United States

    Secret Columbus – Spooky Columbus 2.5 hours

  • Insane asylum cemetery
  • One of the oldest and largest cemeteries in Ohio, and a soldier’s grave that was “lost” for over 90 years.
  • A visit to the final resting place for over 2,000 Confederate Soldiers
  • Exclusive private tour of the showpiece of the Columbus Mausoleum Company and resting place for over 400, including world renown magician Howard Thurston

We can also create custom itineraries to meet your needs. Call us!  We’ll try our best to put together the perfect itinerary just for you.

Reserving a private tour

• All details will be agreed upon ahead of time by the private group organizer and Columbus City Adventures.
• Advance bookings are required. We prefer a minimum of 4 weeks for booking, but may be able to accommodate shorter notice.
• Private tours are usually about 2.5 hours in length but can be customized.
• Pick up location can be customized for your group.
• Private tours can accommodate groups of up to 55 guests, with a minimum of 10.
• Once purchased, all tickets and payments are non-refundable and cannot be rescheduled
• No refunds are given for no-shows and cancellations
• We request that the group arrives 10-15 minutes prior to tour departure time
• We will do our best to accommodate any particular requirements for your private group event.  Handicapped accessible vehicles are available.
• Tours are held rain or shine
• Due to local events/ construction not all areas of Columbus are guaranteed to be accessible.
• Please visit our Columbus City Adventures FAQ page for additional information

Our regular itineraries are offered as private tours at their normal price or less per person, depending on group size and vehicle availability. 

Private Group Tours require a non-refundable deposit to hold an agreed upon date, time slot and tour guide. Final headcount and remaining balance (non-refundable) are due 7 days prior to the event.

Please contact us to discuss availability and pricing. We will need to know the size of your group, desired itinerary, date and preferred time.