Scenic Byways

Scenic Byways

byway-signEnjoy the view! Whether by car or by foot, by water or by bike, you can’t beat our rural scenery.

Knee-high by the fourth of July – cornfields transform the landscape. Stray from the towpath trail to visit Bolivar Dam, where fishing is at its best right below the spillway.

corn fieldsTraverse our rolling hills, some of which are actually levees, protecting homes in Bolivar, Zoar and Atwood.

Look up – towering trees are a refuge for wildlife – including our ever expanding population of bald eagles.

Farmland, woodlands, wetlands – get a sense of country life – streaming past your window, just outside the city.

produce standRemember to stop and visit with the locals – produce stands pop up where you’d least expect – always worth a stop to chat.

Any season, rain or shine, you’ll find friendly folks and a view that can’t be beat.

And as we famously tell our kids from the moment they begin to drive until the day they leave our nests: Watch out for deer!


Step Back in Time

Step back in time

church in BolivarThe unique village of Bolivar harkens back to the 1800’s. Bolivar was originally settled as a canal town, and still has the historic buildings downtown to prove it, many of which are being revitalized.

Antique shop in BolivarCute shops and businesses are located downtown, and it’s worth the drive or bike ride around the village to see how the old architecture fits in with newer homes. Bolivar is home to an annual Strawberry Festival each June, and the Bolivar Main Street Renaissance group holds other festivals throughout the year, including Christmas on the Canal in late November.

Diner in BolivarFort Laurens, the only revolutionary war fort in the state of Ohio, is located in Bolivar. The museum showcases artifacts from the 1778 fort, and a large park area with picnic facilities is on the grounds. Be sure to visit the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier before picking up the Towpath Trail here!

Fort Laurens


Historic Retreat

Historic Retreat

Historic RetreatGlimpses of history can be found everywhere – sometimes when you least expect it!

From old photos in local establishments, to the establishments themselves, bask in an era long gone.

The village of Zoar is home to the Ohio History Connection’s site, featuring museums in the original Zoar Society buildings. Tour these and the public garden in the center of the historic district for a look at how the village founders lived their communal life.

Historic Zoar VillageGuided tours are available from April through October when you stop at the Zoar Store. Or visit the village during Harvest Festival (August) or Christmas in Zoar (December) for period demonstrations, crafters and entertainment.

Zoar is unique in the fact that many of the historic buildings from the 1800’s are private residences and businesses. Antique shops, a chandlery, primitives, a cannery and bed & breakfasts call Zoar home.

Visit Zoar Community Association (site manager) for information and local events.

Christmas in Zoar

Travel the Towpath

Travel the towpath

Iron BridgeTake Exit 93 to travel by foot or by bike on the Ohio and Erie Canalway Towpath Trail! You can pick up the trail in Bolivar, with your excursion taking you over top of I-77, leading to the wetlands of Zoar Lake and beyond.

Follow the old canal path for nature in its splendor, any time of year. Bird watching and wildlife abound, and picnic areas can be found throughout. Many local eateries will pack up your lunch for your sojourn, just ask!

TowpathRemember to bring a camera to capture the ruins of an old dam or structure. From the local wildlife, including bald eagles, to the old iron bridges, you’ll find surprises at every turn!

You can also enjoy towpath views from your automobile – just follow the posted signs for America’s Byway.

Be sure to stop and visit with the friendly people in the community – we know you’ll have an adventure to talk about for years to come!


Explore the Mighty Tusc!

Explore the mighty Tusc!

Explore behind the scenes!

From car to water in just a few minutes! Paddle or float down the Tuscarawas River, with the only sounds being the swoosh of water amid the songs of birds and crickets. Plenty of old ruins to be seen along the way!

River canoe or tubing rides are available at NTR Canoe Livery in Bolivar, with multiple excursion lengths to choose from.


Wander the Wetlands

Zoar Wetland ArboretumJust over the levee in Zoar Village lies a hidden treasure: Zoar Wetland Arboretum.

The natural wetland ecosystem is comprised of a 30 acre shallow marsh and 50 acres of woodland. Volunteers maintain two miles of trails and various interpretive features, including the remains of an old Zoarite dam.

Zoar Wetland ArboretumIn addition to fun eventsĀ  like the annual poker paddle and scheduled guided nature walks throughout the year, the Wetland is also a Geocaching site. Visitors have been setting and finding hidden caches for several years.

Questing was set up in 2014, offering a set of clues to follow through the wetland to discover the stories that make it special.

A large picnic shelter overlooks the marsh, and sits atop what was once the Zoar Brewery. You can see inside the old rathskeller with a short walk below the shelter. Work to repair the area and showcase newly unearthed artifacts is currently underway.

Zoar Wetland is open year round from dawn to dusk. Parking is available at the picnic shelter.

Visit for more info.

Zoar Wetland Arboretum