Here in Ohio, we love our Great Lake. It’s a special kind of ocean to us, and some of the state’s best attractions can be found along its shore or within its waters. From stunning parks to brilliant beaches, the following are 10 of our favorite places to explore in the Lake Erie area (listed in no particular order.)
1. Headlands Beach State Park
While Lake Erie is home to more than 30 beautiful beaches, Headlands Beach State Park in Mentor stands out among the rest. It is the largest natural sand beach in Ohio, and it features the Fairport Harbor West Breakwater Lighthouse, a beloved local landmark. No summer in Ohio is complete without a day on this beach.
2. Edgewater Park
This beloved metro-park features a seasonal beach, grills, picnic shelters, a playground, a snack bar and fishing pier. (Not to mention beautiful views of downtown Cleveland.)
3. Whiskey Island
At the mouth of the Cuyahoga River you'll find this small Cleveland island, which features a 22-acre public park (known as Wendy Park) sand volleyball courts, a public marina and a bar/restaurant. It's a great way to spend a day away from the hustle of the city.
4. Marblehead Lighthouse
Picnic at Marblehead Lighthouse, which is the oldest lighthouse in continuous operation on the U.S. side of the Great Lakes, and visit the lighthouse’s museum in the Keeper’s House. Tour the actual lighthouse for just $2.
South Bass Island, often called the “Secret Midwest Playground” is home to the small town of Put-In-Bay—which has plenty to do and see. Popular locations and attractions to check out are The Butterfly House, Adventure Bay Amusement Park, the Antique Car Museum, the Chocolate Museum, Put-In-Bay Winery, Kimberly’s Carousel, Perry's Cave and Perry’s Victory and International Peace Memorial.
6. Gibraltar Island
This small island is located just offshore of South Bass Island. Science and History Tours of this island show you what kind of research goes on at Ohio State University’s Stone Laboratory and the outside of Cooke Castle, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. (pictured.)
7. Cedar Point
You'd be surprised how many people don't know about Cedar Point Beach in Sandusky. After a day (or two) of roller coaster mania, relax on the shores of Lake Erie at this beautiful beach.
8. East Sandusky Bay Water Trail
Bring your own kayak, canoe or rowboat and tour the scenic views, cultural history and recreational opportunities of the Sandusky Bay area from a unique view along this 15-mile eco-tourist water trail.
9. Kelleys Island
Ohio's largest island is home to Glacial Grooves State Memorial, Inscription Rock, Kelleys Island State Park and other attractions. Few people are aware that the largest accessible glacial grooves in the world are located on Kelleys Island (pictured.)
10. Maumee Bay State Park
This popular state park features a half-a-mile-long beach in Oregon, an amphitheater for special entertainment, an inland lake for smoother swimming, a large inflatable water slide, beach volleyball and boat rentals.
Have you explored any of these places before? Let us know what your favorite Lake Erie attraction is, and for more summer entertainment, be sure to check out our previous article;
These 8 Beachfront Restaurants In Ohio Are Out Of This World.