Malabar Farm State Park

Malabar Farm State Park, Lucas: Hours, Address, Malabar Farm State Park Reviews: 4.5/5

Malabar Farm State Park
4.5
11:00 - 20:00
Tuesday
11:00 - 20:00
Wednesday
11:00 - 20:00
Thursday
11:00 - 20:00
Friday
11:00 - 20:00
Saturday
11:00 - 21:00
Sunday
11:00 - 19:00
About
Park that features a working farm and the 32-room country home built by Pulitzer prize-winning author, Louis Bromfield.
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The area
Address
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4.5
150 reviews
Excellent
99
Very good
39
Average
10
Poor
1
Terrible
1

Stephanie L
Toledo, OH49 contributions
Be cautious if you are going to hike
Oct 2020
Review for navigation of hiking trails, blazing, and park maps. The trails itself are beautiful natural wonders and worth the visit, especially the caves on the Butternut path. However, the park makes access difficult to figure out. First, the hiking trail maps at the visitor center are printed incorrectly. The compass rose is flipped in regards to east/west. The roads leading to the park were barely discernible in terms of print. I spent about 30 minutes trying find the trail head. There is also another pamphlet with details on where to park for the trailheads and more information about how to navigate the park, but it lacked clarity and the photos were small, underexposed, low-resolution.

The Doris Duke trailhead is on a small service road, which can be easily mistaken for a trail itself. Further down this lane is the access to the Butternut trail. Everyone was driving down it and parking, and I later found out that is its supposed to be only for emergency vehicles and special events. The correct lot was 1/4 of a mile down from where everyone was parking, located on the main road by the working farm. Very confusing! And hardly anyone, if NOBODY was parked in the correct lot. You wouldn't think you had to walk down the main road for some time just to get to the trailhead.

The starting point for the Butternut Trail is POORLY blazed. There is a sign on the left-hand side, which one would think to continue straight, in the same orientation where the sign is. But that is incorrect. That is actually a connector trail to the 7 mile Bridle Trail. The Bridle Trail was not blazed for some time, and when I turned around after finally seeing the blaze, it was a decent walk back. Two other families also did the same thing when I was there, along with vloggers on Youtube complaining the same. The Butternut Trail is actually a fork on the right at the very beginning.

All in all, Malabar is a beautiful place to visit, hike and explore its rich history. It is a shame that its poor mapping brings a negative experience, especially if you are visiting for the first time. I recommend going with someone else to help navigate – I went alone and it was hard to find my way around.

Please Malabar Farm, make your maps and signage more clear! Sincerely, A Headached Hiker
Written 10 October 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Tag1126
Xenia, OH210 contributions
Unique and Interesting State Park
Dec 2019 • Couples
My husband and I really enjoyed our visit here. We toured during the Christmas candlelight tour one afternoon, so we were able to walk through the "big house" at our own pace. There were guides in each room, and they were both friendly and knowledgeable. The house is beautiful and an interesting look into 1950s history, with the added interest of the celebrity of Bogart and Bacall. I knew little about Bromfield before our visit, but it was fascinating to learn more about his writing and his forward-thinking agricultural practices. There is more to explore here than we had time to do. I highly recommend visiting.
Written 7 January 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

BuckeyeAdventures
Cleveland, OH1,630 contributions
Candlelight Holiday Tour
Dec 2019
I don't know what the rest of Malabar farm looks like, but the Big House all decked out for the Holidays looks absolutely stunning!!!
Written 8 December 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

M199CLmelissah
North Royalton, OH7 contributions
Beautiful Trip
Sep 2019 • Solo
Malabar Farms is a wonderful experience. Beautiful grounds. It is a State Park, so the public is welcome. If you would like to learn about the history of the property, they offer what they call House tours. They will give you a tour through the house and around the grounds. If you choose to just spend a leisurely day walking the grounds on your own, you are welcome to do so. It is incredibly therapeutic. They do have animals on the grounds. Goats, cows and mini horses.
Written 5 November 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

JBH
211 contributions
Lots of opportunities and something for everyone
Oct 2019
We've been to Malabar Farm State Park on different occasions. There is lots to do and really anyone can find something of interest.

One time, we took a house tour. It was interesting and the guide was informative. We went in the summer and it was a pretty large group that toured when we did. We took my 90 year old grandmother and the ranger was very accommodating, driving her to the house from the parking lot. Be warned that some of the information provided about the home/family isn't really for younger ears. Many famous names made stops in the house.

Another tour, we've been on is the farm hay ride. It is a bit bumpy of course. The tour guide talks about the tree from Shawshank Redemption (although it is gone now), the Ceely House, the cemetery, the farm and grounds. Do this when temperatures are comfortable. It was almost too hot the day we went.

Just last month, we went for a hike. While the trails are not well marked, apparently new maps had confused the color codes too, but that is something I'm told the park is working on in the near future. We had a difficult time locating the exact location of the butternut trail, but when we found it all was well worth it. Fern and moss stretch over large boulders. Veering to the left is a cave that you can explore and climb out by going straight back and then to the left and out. Though be cautious there is one place with a drop off. We accidentally happened upon a guide that was wonderful and let us tag along with him through the cave and gave us directions for following the loop of the trail.

We've also gone up to the top of Mount Jeez. Beautiful views of the river and farm. We had a picnic lunch. A rule for driving down...look to see if someone is coming up before you drive back down and wait for them to come up.

There are picnic tables scattered over the farm and a playground that is in great condition for the kids.

They have festivals and events throughout the year to check out and hopefully the restaurant will open back up soon.
Written 5 November 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

James M
Bay Village, OH283 contributions
A Great Visit
Oct 2019
If you are in the area and you are a trivia fan, this is the place to be.
This is where Bogey and Bacall were married.
There are pictures of them and all sorts of celebrities scattered throughout the main house.
Written 27 October 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Chuck & Cathy
Paulding, OH17 contributions
Pleasant Surprise! Excellent Guide!
Oct 2019
We were looking for something different to do & I had heard of Malabar Farms so we chose that. About all I knew about it was that's where Bogie & Lauren Becall were married. But we found the history of the farm & the Louis Bromfield family fascinating. He was quite an interesting person. Between the dogs movie stars the place was usually jumping.
Written 14 October 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Lena H
Avon, OH129 contributions
Amazing legacy
Oct 2019 • Couples
Visited the big house guided tour for our wedding anniversary. We wanted to see where Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Becall were married. We learned so much history and the legacy Louise Bromfield wanted to leave. Very nicely decorated and very well maintained grounds especially in the Fall. Furnishings inside are originals (and look it). Reasonable entry fee, too and nice gift shop.
Written 11 October 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

LisaLeng
23 contributions
Harvest Festival
Oct 2019 • Couples
My husband and I went to Malabar Farm for the Harvest festival. We had a great time. Plenty of parking and they had tractor wagons to take you to the main area. They had the usual vendors for food and arts and crafts. They also had horse drawn trailers to move people around different areas of the park. The “big house” was free to tour and they had very knowledgeable volunteers to give you the history. There was an encampment with people in the period wear showing their cooking, shooting, target practice with a hatchet just to name a few.
We had an awesome day and could see it took many volunteers to make it such a success!
Written 2 October 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

ralphrg
North Royalton, OH159 contributions
Better than I thought it would be.
Aug 2019
My wife and I visited Malabar Farm over the labor day W/E. I went in with low expectations and came out surprised that I learned so much about the farm, the area, and the man that maintained it, Louis Bromfield. We did both the big house and tractor tours. I recommend both and you get a discount if you purchase both tours.

Louis Bromfield is probably the most successful writer I never heard about. He hung out with the likes of Hemmingway and F Scott Fitzgerald. He was raised in the Lucas Ohio area moved away to NY. He also lived in France and came back and bought the farm and became a conservationist for the land. I won’t list all of his accomplishments because the tour guides do a much better job than I would. Many of his books were turned into movies that are now on my must see list. It was interesting to know that many of his Hollywood friends visited the farm and that he would actually put them to work. One famous Hollywood couple actually got married on the farm.

This is a working farm so there are many farms animals that can be viewed up close. There is a petting zoo for the kiddies. There are numerous walking trails and other sites to visit besides the farm. If you’re in the area it should be on your to do list.
Written 3 September 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

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