Who would have thought that there would be so much to see and do around Ohio’s Lake Erie Shores & Islands region? I certainly didn’t. The only place I’ve ever visited in the region is Cedar Point so exploring and discovering the area was a nice surprise.
We spent 2 nights at Castaway Bay, a waterpark hotel, located right outside of Cedar Points gates. Castaway Bay is a fun hotel that families with young children will love. There is a great water park, an arcade, and on-site restaurants. There is also a Spa onsite for weary parents to treat themselves to a nice massage. The rooms are comfy with two double beds, private balcony, microwave and mini-fridge.
In addition to visiting Cedar Point we also spent a day visiting the islands of Put-In-Bay and Kelleys. We started by driving to downtown Sandusky and taking a comfortable Jet-Express ferry ride across the lake to Put-In-Bay. The ride was smooth and offered great scenery during the 40 minute crossing.
Put-in-Bay, a Victorian era village that offers family fun, outdoor recreation, and special events. I think the best thing about Put-in-Bay is the main means of transportation—-golf carts!!!
We spent the first part of our visit wandering around the shopping district and then rented a golf cart and drove around Put-in-Bay to see what there was to discover.
One of the main attractions at Put-in-Bay is the Perry Victory and International Peace Memorial operated by the National Park Service. “The memorial was established to honor those who fought in the Battle of Lake Erie, during the War of 1812, and to celebrate the long-lasting peace between Britain, Canada and the U.S.”(http://www.nps.gov/pevi/index.htm)
After exploring the island it was time to move on to Kelleys Island. We boarded the ferry for Kelleys Island as the skies were turning dark and threatened rain. We decided to take a chance and got off the ferry at Kelleys. As soon as the ferry pulled away from the dock big fat drops started falling from the sky. Just our luck. The only thing we could do was make a mad dash for the nearest awning and watched while the skies opened up and drenched the island in rain. I quickly checked my Around Me app for a nearby coffee shop and it looked like there was a place right around the corner from where we were trying to stay dry. As soon as the rain let up a bit we dashed to where we thought the coffee shop should be and only found a pizza shop/bar combo. Since it was raining we weren’t able to rent a golf cart to explore the island. The only thing we could do was hole up in the pizza shop and wait for the next ferry—2 hours later. It all worked out. We had tasty pizza and the time passed by quickly. We’ll have to get back to Kelleys Island when its not raining.
The ferry back to Sandusky was comfortable even though the weather was inclement. It stopped raining long enough for us to run to our car and jump in before the skies opened back up again. Good times
The next day we made the drive to Port Clinton and visited the Safari Wildlife Park and then drove over to Marblehead Lighthouse, the oldest lighthouse in continuous operation on the Great Lakes. The lighthouse is open during the week for tours. I love how it is built right on the rock. I highly recommend visiting both places.
There were so many other places that we didn’t have time to visit that I still want to see. Sandusky has a Merry-Go-Round Museum that I would love to explore. In the greater Sandusky area there is the Schoepfle Gardens, Seneca Caverns, numerous wineries and outdoor entertainment centers. Festivals and events are also happening all the time.
As always, so much to see and do….so little time. Be sure to add a visit to Lake Erie Shores & Islands the next time you are in Ohio.