Why Do People Visit the Cincinnati Mushroom House?
It’s not made of the fungus, but yes, there is a house in Cincinnati called the Mushroom House.
It really does look like a mushroom and draws in visitors every year to view its creative architecture.
Let’s check it out!
Where Is the Cincinnati Mushroom House?
You’ll find the Mushroom House in the Hyde Park neighborhood at 3331 Erie Ave. in Cincinnati, Ohio. Although it’s not open to the public, you can grab a cup of coffee from the Coffee Emporium across the street or sit down for a bite to eat at St. Francis Apizza and then admire this work of art.
About the Cincinnati Mushroom House
The architect, Terry Brown, spent more than a decade creating this masterpiece. Sitting about a 20-minute drive from the University of Cincinnati — Design, Architecture, Art, and Planning campus, the Mushroom House features colored glass, twisting metals, and even seashells. Professor Brown invited his students to participate in the design process, and what they produced is truly a work of art.
Since it’s only a one-bedroom residence, the Mushroom House isn’t a beautiful mansion or ornate estate. However, it remains a popular landmark in Cincinnati with its cone-shaped addition, winding staircase, and fungus appearance. The warped shingles even look like the underside of a mushroom. The Mushroom House would fit into a Smurf village or Disney movie.
What Inspired the Mushroom House?
Professor Brown built this Mushroom House as his studio and a teaching tool for his students. Basically, it was an experiment in architecture. Brown wanted to use unusual materials and weave untraditional elements together in the design.
Most people would agree that he nailed it. Even though Brown died in 2008, a friend currently takes care of the Mushroom House and maintains its unique craftsmanship.
Best Hikes Near the Cincinnati Mushroom House
You don’t go to Cincinnati just to see the Mushroom House. But it’s a great photo spot for tourists. After you visit the Mushroom House, take a drive to Mt. Airy Forest or Bass Island Trailhead for some great hiking and enjoy the beautiful scenery Ohio has to offer.
Mt. Airy Forest
About 20 minutes west of the Mushroom House is Mt. Airy Forest, which offers almost 1,500 acres of woodlands with trails for hiking, horseback riding, and mountain biking. You’ll also find a dog park, disc golf course, and a wheelchair-accessible treehouse. Bring a picnic lunch and enjoy one of the 23 picnic areas with grills, tables, and swing sets.
The number-one-rated Mt. Airy trail on All Trails is the Beechwood, Quarry, and Red Oak Trail. This moderate trail is a 4.2-mile loop and has an elevation gain of about 500 feet. If you’re looking for a longer trail, check out Mt. Airy Explorer’s Trail, which stretches nearly 14 miles. This loop has an elevation gain of more than 1,850 feet.
Whether you’re a seasoned hiker looking for a challenge of a family with younger children just looking for an easy trek, Mt. Airy Forest has a trail for everyone. With eleven trails ranging from easy to moderate, you’ll find the perfect trail when you visit Mt. Airy Forest.
Bass Island Trailhead
About 12 minutes east of the Mushroom House lies Bass Island Trailhead near Little Miami Golf Center. This 2.3-mile trail is part of the greater Little Miami Scenic Bike Trail, one of the longest paved trails in the U.S. The Bass Island Trail is pretty easy and appropriate for all skill levels. It also features views of the Little Miami River.
Best Camping Near Cincinnati Mushroom House
If you’re in the Cincinnati area, check out these two campgrounds near the Mushroom House. The FMCA Campground is about 13 minutes east of the Mushroom House, 30 minutes east of Mt. Airy Forest, and only three minutes south of the Bass Island Trailhead.
The Winton Woods Campground is about 22 minutes northwest of the Mushroom House, 18 minutes north of Mt. Airy Forest, and 30 minutes northwest of the Bass Island Trailhead.
The FMCA Campground is open to FMCA (Family Motor Coach Association) members only. Members can stay up to two nights free every month and a maximum of five additional nights every month. There are full hook-up sites and electric-only sites available.
Location: 3590 Round Bottom Rd., Cincinnati, OH 45244
Pro Tip: Don’t let their name fool you. FMCA allows people with towables into their association. If you’re interested in learning more about FMCA, check out the membership page here.
Winton Woods Campground
Winton Woods Campground is part of the Greater Parks of Hamilton County. It’s situated along Winton Woods Lake and within walking distance of the harbor. A paved hiking and biking trail runs through the campground and across Winton Woods Lake. Tent sites, RV sites, and cabins are available.
Location: 651 Lakeview Dr., Cincinnati, OH 45231
Is a Cincinnati Mushroom House Road Trip Worth It?
If you just want to take a trip to see the Mushroom House, a road trip probably isn’t worth it. But if you want to explore the greater Cincinnati area, add this stop to your list of things to do. It’s worth driving by and viewing this unique architectural masterpiece.
Add a few hikes to your trip and check out other Cincinnati attractions, shopping, and restaurants, too. This area of Cincinnati has a lot to offer, so plan on visiting and exploring more than just the Mushroom House. So when are you headed to Ohio?
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