12 Best Places to Live in Ohio (For Highest Quality of Life)

by Jem
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Ohio is more than a mere spot on the map; it’s a tapestry of experiences. From the serene shores of Lake Erie to the rolling hills of the Amish countryside and the vibrant city life in Columbus, the Buckeye State presents a rich variety of living options. Yet, with its considerable diversity, pinpointing the ideal place to settle in Ohio can be a challenge. To assist you in your quest, I’ve crafted a guide to the finest places to call home in Ohio.

My journeys through Ohio have revealed the state’s stunning variety and charm. From the peaceful Cuyahoga Valley National Park to the historic allure of the Northeast’s wineries, and from the innovative spirit of Columbus to the lakeside tranquility of Sandusky, Ohio’s range is truly impressive. Whether you’re captivated by the quiet of rural landscapes, the buzz of urban centers, or the friendly hum of suburban communities, there’s a slice of Ohio that seems tailor-made for you.

But where to begin? The perfect location is subjective. Some may seek proximity to nature, others desire excellent educational institutions, or the culinary adventure, and for many, affordability is key.

Join me as I delve into the best cities to live in, tailored to what you cherish most. As someone who has experienced Ohio’s many dimensions, I’m here to navigate you through the top places to reside in Ohio. I’ve perused articles, analyzed data, and engaged with residents to compile a list that accommodates a spectrum of preferences and financial plans. Let’s get started!

The top places to live in Ohio for all

The Best Places to Live in Ohio   

Eager to explore the most charming places to call home in Ohio? Nestled in the heartland of the Midwest, Ohio offers a locale for every preference. Continue on to uncover the top living destinations in the Buckeye State.

Searching for your perfect Ohio haven? Whether it’s urban buzz or serene landscapes you’re after, Ohio has a place that’s just right for you.

  • Best for cultural experiences: Bexley
  • Best for cultural diversity: Cincinnati
  • Best for arts and entertainment: Cleveland
  • Best for economic growth: Columbus
  • Best for aviation history: Dayton
  • Best for family-friendly suburban living: Dublin
  • Best for small-town charm: Hudson
  • Best for affluent suburban living: Pepper Pike
  • Best for top-rated schools: Solon
  • Best for historical charm: Toledo
  • Best for upscale neighborhoods: Upper Arlington
  • Best for revitalization: Youngstown

Here are the prime spots in Ohio that you need to check out:

1. Bexley

A gem within the heart of Ohio, Bexley is a beacon for those seeking a blend of suburban charm and urban convenience. This quaint city is not only one of the best places to live in Ohio. It also shines as a hub of academic excellence with institutions like Capital University fostering a vibrant, intellectual community. Tree-lined streets lead to picturesque parks and family-owned businesses, creating a tapestry of community spirit and engagement.

The city’s commitment to education and safety is unparalleled, making it a top choice for families. Bexley’s schools are consistently rated among the state’s finest. This fact contributes to the city’s reputation as a nurturing ground for the next generation.

Bexley’s allure doesn’t stop at its educational prowess. The city’s cultural scene is robust, with a variety of events that knit the community closer together. From summer movie nights under the stars to farmers’ markets bursting with local produce, Bexley offers a quality of life that is both enriching and accessible. It’s no wonder it’s considered the best city to live in Ohio for those who value a tight-knit community feel coupled with the amenities of a larger city.

This city’s unique character and charm offer a serene yet stimulating environment, perfect for those looking to plant roots in a place that offers the best of both worlds.

For individuals looking for a fusion of urban convenience and suburban charm, Bexley is a shining example.
For individuals looking for a fusion of urban ease and rural charm, Bexley is a shining example.

2. Cincinnati

With a skyline that stretches towards the horizon, Cincinnati offers a metropolitan lifestyle amidst the rolling hills of Ohio. It’s a city where every neighborhood tells a story, and the blend of historic architecture with modern innovation is seamless. Recognized as one of the coolest places to live in Ohio, it’s a haven for foodies, creatives, and entrepreneurs alike.

The city’s heart beats in its bustling downtown, a testament to Cincinnati’s economic vitality and cultural richness. Here, the historic Over-the-Rhine district boasts an array of artisanal shops, breweries, and some of the best activities and experiences in the Midwest.

Green spaces are abundant, with parks like Eden Park offering panoramic views and a respite from the urban buzz. The city’s commitment to the arts is evident in its world-class institutions like the Cincinnati Art Museum and the Music Hall.

Living in Cincinnati means embracing diversity and enjoying the vibrancy of city life without sacrificing the warmth of a community. It stands out as Ohio’s best cities to live for those who appreciate the energy of a city that’s always on the move yet remains true to its roots.

Ohio's undulating hills provide a backdrop for the urban lifestyle that Cincinnati offers.
Ohio’s undulating hills provide a backdrop for the urban lifestyle that Cincinnati offers.

3. Cleveland

Cleveland is a city that is changing but keeping its soul. It has echoes of its rich industrial past and a spirit of innovation. From the famous Rock & Roll Hall of Fame to the paintings that cover the city’s underpasses, the arts thrive here. This makes it one of the best places in Ohio to live for people who like a strong cultural heartbeat and a vibrant night life.

The city’s food scene is a mix of tastes from around the world and farm-to-table experiences. For more than a hundred years, West Side Market has been a culinary landmark. The shores of Lake Erie offer a waterfront lifestyle, and the Cleveland Metroparks offer a green getaway that winds through the city.

Cleveland’s community is built on education and health care, with world-famous institutions like the Cleveland Clinic leading the way. With its own style, each area in the city has something for everyone, from the hip flats in Ohio City to the historic charm of Shaker Heights.

Cleveland is a nice city to live in Ohio, where the warmth of its residents shines as brightly as the lights on Playhouse Square. It’s a city that invites you to be part of its ongoing story. It is as compelling as it is welcoming.

Cleveland is a city that is evolving while maintaining its identity.
Cleveland is a city that is evolving while maintaining its identity.

4. Columbus

The pulse of Ohio’s heartland is best felt in Columbus. A city where innovation meets tradition, creating a vibrant tapestry of urban living. As the state capital, it stands out as the best place to live in Ohio for those who seek the dynamism of a city on the rise. The Short North Arts District buzzes with galleries, boutiques, and incredible places to eat, reflecting the city’s creative spirit.

Education is a cornerstone, with The Ohio State University infusing youthful energy into the city’s veins. The Buckeye spirit is palpable, fostering a sense of community that extends beyond the campus.

Families thrive in Columbus, thanks to its array of parks, museums, and a zoo that’s ranked among the nation’s best. The Scioto Mile offers an urban oasis with its expansive greenways and interactive fountains, proving that city life can indeed harmonize with nature.

As a place where to live in Ohio, Columbus is a beacon for professionals, students, and families alike. It’s a city that’s constantly evolving, yet remains grounded in a strong sense of community, making it an ideal locale for those looking to start anew in a city that offers endless possibilities.

Columbus is a city that blends innovation and tradition to create a dynamic urban fabric.
Columbus is a city that blends innovation and tradition to create a dynamic urban fabric.

5. Dayton

Amidst the crossroads of innovation and history, Dayton stands proud. It’s truly a city where the legacy of the Wright brothers’ flight continues to inspire. This city, marked by its inventive past, is now flying towards the future. This makes it one of the good places to live in Ohio. The National Museum of the United States Air Force is a testament to this spirit, offering a journey through the annals of aviation.

The cityscape is dotted with green, offering residents a daily dose of nature. This includes everything from the peaceful Five Rivers MetroParks to the scenic Great Miami Riverway. Dayton’s commitment to the arts is robust, with the Schuster Performing Arts Center hosting performances that resonate with cultural vibrancy.

Education here is a priority, with numerous schools and colleges laying a foundation for lifelong learning. The economy is diverse, driven by sectors like healthcare, education, and aerospace, providing ample opportunities for professionals.

Dayton emerges as a best Ohio cities contender, especially for those who value a community that cherishes its heritage while embracing progress. It’s a city where every street has a story, and every resident is part of its unfolding narrative.

Dayton proudly stands at the intersection of history and innovation, one of the best places to live in Ohio.
Dayton proudly stands at the intersection of history and innovation, one of the best places to live in Ohio.

6. Dublin

Imagine a city where Irish charm and modern amenities merge seamlessly, and you’ll find yourself in Dublin. This suburb of Columbus is a celebration of cultural heritage and contemporary living. This earns its place among the best areas to live in Ohio. The city’s annual Dublin Irish Festival is one of the largest of its kind, drawing visitors from far and wide.

Families flock to Dublin for its top-rated schools and the promise of a high quality of life. The city’s 60 parks and 100 miles of bike paths offer endless outdoor activities, while the historic district provides a picturesque backdrop for dining and shopping.

Innovation thrives here, with an array of tech companies choosing Dublin as their home base. The city’s forward-thinking initiatives, like the Dublin Link pedestrian bridge, symbolize its commitment to connectivity and community engagement.

Dublin is one of the nice parts of Ohio to call home, especially for those seeking a balance between the tranquility of suburban life and the buzz of a thriving city. It’s a place where community values are as strong as the coffee at the local cafés and where every resident contributes to the city’s collective story.

Dublin is a city that perfectly combines modern conveniences with traditional Irish charm.
Dublin is a city that perfectly combines modern conveniences with traditional Irish charm.

7. Hudson

Nestled in a landscape where historical architecture meets modern living, Hudson offers a serene retreat from the hustle of city life. This charming town, with its New England-esque ambiance, is a great place to live in Ohio. The well-preserved downtown area invites leisurely strolls, with unique shops and eateries dotting the quaint streets.

Education is a cornerstone of the community, with schools that rank among the state’s best, drawing families who value academic excellence. The town’s green initiatives and commitment to sustainability are evident in its lush parks and community-wide recycling programs.

Hudson’s calendar is filled with community events that bring neighbors together, from the summer Screen on the Green to the taste-bud-tempting Ice Cream Socials. It’s one of the best towns to live in Ohio that values tradition while fostering a sense of belonging among its residents.

For those pondering where is the best place to live in Ohio, Hudson’s blend of historic charm, educational prominence, and tight-knit community makes it a top contender. It’s a town that doesn’t just offer a place to live but a place to call home.

Hudson is a tranquil haven from the bustle of the big city, making it one of the best places to live in Ohio.
Hudson is a tranquil haven from the bustle of the big city, making it one of the best places to live in Ohio.

8. Pepper Pike

Pepper Pike stands out with its lush, forest-like beauty in Ohio’s residential settings. One of the most livable cities in Ohio, this Cleveland suburb is a haven for people who want peace and quiet without being too far from the excitement of the city. The people who live here are close and value privacy and peace. Homes are tucked away among old trees and well-kept lawns.

In this city, both public and private schools are famous for being very good, which brings in families who value learning and growth. Parks, golf courses, and other recreational areas give people a chance to connect with nature every day.

The people who live in Pepper Pike are hands on in running the city and making sure that the infrastructure supports a good quality of life. A lot of people show their interest in the community by going to events like the Pepper Pike Fall Festival and the yearly summer concert series.

Pepper Pike is a good choice if you’re not sure where the best places to live in Ohio are. It’s a place where the fast-paced modern world slows down, letting the people who live there enjoy every moment in their green Ohio paradise.

In Ohio's suburban settings, Pepper Pike is distinguished by its lush, forest-like splendor.
In Ohio’s suburban settings, Pepper Pike is distinguished by its lush, forest-like splendor.

9. Solon

A city where community well-being is the cornerstone, Solon’s harmonious blend of residential charm and business acumen has earned it a spot among Ohio’s best places to live. The city is a beacon of suburban excellence, with a school system that’s consistently ranked among the state’s top performers, drawing families who value education highly.

The city’s economic landscape is robust, with a mix of Fortune 500 companies and small businesses providing a stable job market. Solon’s commitment to sustainability is evident in its extensive recycling programs and the award-winning Solon Community Park.

Recreational opportunities abound, with a state-of-the-art community center and a vibrant arts scene. The Solon Center for the Arts offers classes and performances, fostering a creative spirit within the community.

If you are wondering what places to move in Ohio, Solon represents an ideal blend of growth and stability. It’s a city that not only invests in its infrastructure but also in the well-being of its residents, creating a nurturing environment for families and businesses alike.

Solon offers the perfect balance of stability and progress if you're looking for a place to move in Ohio.
Solon offers the perfect balance of stability and progress if you’re looking for a place to move in Ohio.

10. Toledo

Gazing out over the Maumee River, Toledo captures the essence of Midwestern charm and industrial grit. This city, known for its world-class Toledo Museum of Art and the historic Old West End neighborhood, offers a cultural richness that makes it one of the top cities in Ohio to live in. The museum’s glass pavilion shines as a beacon of the city’s artistic heritage, reflecting Toledo’s nickname, “The Glass City.”

Residents enjoy a cost of living that’s hard to beat, coupled with a waterfront lifestyle that’s both relaxing and invigorating. The Maumee Bay State Park and the Toledo Zoo add to the city’s family-friendly appeal, providing ample spaces for recreation and education.

Toledo’s revitalized downtown pulses with energy, from the eateries of Adams Street to the shops at the Erie Street Market. The city’s entrepreneurial spirit is on the rise, with new businesses and startups finding their footing in this supportive community.

For those seeking the best Ohio cities experience, Toledo offers a blend of urban amenities and lakeside living. It’s a city that honors its past while building a promising future. This city invites all who visit to consider staying a little longer—or perhaps, even a lifetime.

Toledo, with its view of the Maumee River, epitomizes the beauty and industrial grit of the Midwest.
Toledo, with its view of the Maumee River, epitomizes the beauty and industrial grit of the Midwest.

11. Upper Arlington

Upper Arlington is a canvas of leafy neighborhoods and vibrant community life, painting a picture of suburban idyll. This city, with its close proximity to Columbus, offers a retreat for those who appreciate a quieter pace without sacrificing urban conveniences. This makes it a nice city to live in Ohio. The city’s schools are among the best, reflecting a community deeply invested in education and youth programs.

The city’s parks and recreational facilities are a testament to its commitment to an active lifestyle. From the annual Labor Day Arts Festival to the winter ice rink, there’s a sense of year-round community engagement. The Lane Avenue Shopping Center provides residents with a mix of local and national retailers, ensuring that all shopping needs are met within a stone’s throw.

Upper Arlington’s civic pride shines through its well-maintained public spaces and the involvement of its residents in city initiatives. This is a place where neighbors know each other, and the sense of belonging is as tangible as the shade provided by the city’s mature trees.

The best place to live in Ohio is the one that balances suburban tranquility with an active community spirit, Upper Arlington stands out as a prime choice. It’s a city that not only welcomes newcomers but also turns them into lifelong residents.

Upper Arlington is a vision of suburban paradise, with its lush neighborhoods and lively community life.
Upper Arlington is a vision of suburban paradise, with its lush neighborhoods and lively community life.

12. Youngstown

Steeped in a rich industrial past, Youngstown is reinventing itself while keeping its heritage alive. This city, once the backbone of the nation’s steel production, now stands as a symbol of resilience and renewal. It’s a place where the past and future coalesce, making it one of the most livable cities in Ohio.

The city’s revival is most evident in its burgeoning arts scene. The Butler Institute of American Art, for instance, is a cultural gem that offers free admission to its impressive collection. Youngstown’s commitment to green spaces is seen in the expansive Mill Creek Park, which offers residents a lush escape with trails, lakes, and picturesque gardens.

Education and innovation are at the forefront of Youngstown’s resurgence, with Youngstown State University contributing to a vibrant student population and research initiatives. The university’s presence has spurred growth in the city’s downtown area, now dotted with eclectic eateries and unique shops.

If you are wondering where to live in OH, Youngstown presents an opportunity to be part of a community that’s on the upswing. It’s a city that honors its hard working roots while eagerly writing its next chapter.

Rich in industrial history, Youngstown is redefining itself while preserving its legacy.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) About the Best Places to Live in Ohio

Keen to broaden your understanding of Ohio’s prime residential spots? Below are some frequently asked questions I receive regarding the top places to settle in Ohio.

Where is the best place to live in Ohio?

Determining the best place to live in Ohio depends on individual preferences and needs. For those seeking a blend of urban amenities and suburban comfort, cities like Columbus and Cincinnati offer vibrant cultural scenes, diverse dining options, and robust job markets. If you prefer a more tranquil setting, towns like Dublin and Upper Arlington provide a serene environment with strong community bonds and excellent schools. For a unique blend of historical charm and modern revitalization, consider cities like Cleveland or Youngstown. Each location in Ohio has its unique appeal. This is true whether it’s the bustling city life, the serene suburbs, or the charming small towns.

What is the nicest place in Ohio?

Ohio boasts a variety of places each with its unique charm and appeal, making the choice of the nicest place quite subjective. Here are a few contenders:

  • Dublin: Known for its lush landscapes and strong community spirit, Dublin is celebrated for its cultural events like the Irish Festival.
  • Oberlin: A haven for arts and education enthusiasts, Oberlin is renowned for its college, conservatory, and vibrant arts community.
  • Hudson: Offers a perfect mix of historic charm and modern conveniences, set against a backdrop of natural beauty.

Is Ohio USA a good place to live?

Ohio, in the USA, offers a diverse range of living experiences, catering to various preferences and lifestyles. Here are some key reasons why it’s considered a good place to live:

  • Affordability: Ohio is known for its relatively low cost of living, including affordable housing options.
  • Education: The state boasts numerous top-rated universities and schools, making it ideal for educational opportunities.
  • Diverse Locations: From bustling cities like Columbus and Cleveland to serene suburbs and quaint small towns, Ohio offers a variety of environments.
  • Cultural Richness: Ohio is rich in cultural experiences, including museums, theaters, and a vibrant music scene.
The cities of Ohio provide a friendly and rewarding atmosphere.
The cities of Ohio provide a friendly and rewarding atmosphere.

What is the best city in Ohio to move to?

Choosing the best city to move to in Ohio depends on individual preferences, but here are some top choices:

  • Columbus: As the state capital, it offers a dynamic mix of job opportunities, cultural diversity, and a vibrant social scene.
  • Cincinnati: Known for its historic architecture, strong job market, and rich cultural life, including sports and arts.
  • Dayton: Offers a more affordable cost of living with a strong sense of community and growing job opportunities in various sectors.

What is the richest city in Ohio?

The term “richest” can refer to various factors like median income, property values, or overall economic health. Here are some of the wealthiest cities in Ohio:

  • Indian Hill: Known for its luxurious homes and high median income. It’s often considered one of the wealthiest communities in Ohio.
  • Pepper Pike: This suburb of Cleveland is notable for its affluent residents and upscale living.
  • Dublin: With a high median household income and quality of life, Dublin is also among the wealthier cities in Ohio.

What is the safest city in Ohio?

Safety is a crucial factor for many when choosing a place to live. Here are some of the safest cities in Ohio:

  • Broadview Heights: Known for its low crime rates and strong community policing, making it one of the safest in the state.
  • Mason: Offers a safe living environment with a low incidence of crime and a strong sense of community.
  • Powell: This city is recognized for its safety, thanks to its low crime rates and proactive public safety measures.

Final Thoughts on the Best Places to Live in Ohio       

As we wrap up our exploration of Ohio’s diverse and inviting cities, it’s clear that the Buckeye State has much to offer for those seeking a new place to call home. From the bustling streets of Columbus to the serene suburbs of Dublin, each location presents its unique blend of culture, community, and comfort.

Ohio’s cities cater to a wide range of preferences, whether you’re drawn to the vibrant cultural scenes of Cincinnati and Cleveland or the peaceful, family-friendly atmosphere of Mason and Powell. The state’s affordability and quality of life make it an attractive option for individuals and families alike.

Beyond the practical aspects of living, Ohio is a treasure trove of cultural experiences. The state’s rich history is reflected in its architecture, museums, and cultural festivals. The thriving arts scene, from local theaters to world-class museums, offers endless opportunities for exploration and enjoyment.

For those considering a move, Ohio’s cities deserve a closer look. Each city has its unique charm and strengths, making it essential to consider what matters most to you in a home. Whether you’re seeking economic opportunities, educational excellence, safety, or cultural richness, Ohio’s cities offer a welcoming and fulfilling environment.

In conclusion, Ohio’s best places to live offer a blend of economic opportunity, cultural richness, and community spirit. As you consider your next move, remember that the best place to live is not just about the amenities and statistics; it’s about finding a community that feels like home.

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