Lake Erie Shores & Islands Travel Guide

Explore Lake Erie Shores & Islands

Discover miles and miles of Lake Erie coastline as you travel through four states. Spring, Summer, Fall, or Winter, a Lake Erie getaway awaits you. Chase away the winter blues by taking the family for a weekend to an indoor water park resort or go for romantic autumn stay at a bed and breakfast for just the two of you. Tour the area wineries while vineyards are at their most colorful. A springtime fishing and camping trip with just the boys is an adventure they won’t forget. And of course a summer vacation on a Lake Erie beach with a day trip to the roller coaster capital and ice cream all around.

The North Coast of Lake Erie is the perfect destination for all ages. Sandy beaches, waterfront dining, and exciting adventure as well as quaint shopping, fabulous fishing, and live island music only begin to tell the story of vacationing or living on the North Coast. Join us for a weekend getaway, family vacation, or Lake Erie day trip…where do you want to go? With so many places to go along the Lake Erie coast, how do you choose one? We select some of the top Lake Erie destinations and give a short overview of the area.

The Michigan Shoreline

By boat or car, however you get here, just get here. The Michigan shoreline of Lake Erie along with the Detroit River is a feast for the senses at every turn. From grand casinos and famous riverboat cruises to revitalized and restored downtown historical districts, theaters, restaurants, and shopping blocks there is entertainment available around the clock and around every block.

Transient dockage on the Detroit River offers Lake Erie boaters access to downtown events, casinos, art museums & galleries, dining and professional sporting events; Detroit Tigers Baseball, Detroit Lions Football, and Detroit Red Wings Hockey.

Spend a night, spend a weekend, take a vacation. The Michigan shoreline will relax you. The Detroit River area will entertain you!

Ohio’s Coast & Islands

The Lake Erie Islands, Cedar Point Amusement Park, The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and the best freshwater fishing in North America are must-see and do Lake Erie vacation activities. Offering everything from antique shopping to indoor water parks and festivals to sandy beaches, the Lake Erie coastline is jam-packed with fun and entertainment.

A midwest boaters dream come true, Ohio offers a coastline of marinas, restaurants with dockage and quick day trips to the Lake Erie islands. Charter fishing is on the list of most popular activities with Port Clinton, OH. being well known for its title of “Walleye Capital of the World” while Put-in-Bay Island offers live entertainment around every corner in downtown restaurants and nightclubs. Visit the Marblehead Peninsula for a walking tour of the Marblehead Lighthouse or enjoy a taste of the region with a fresh Lake Erie perch dinner. State parks offer sandy Lake Erie beaches for a day of swimming and picnicking along with transient dockage and scenic camping.

Home to Cedar Point Amusement Park which has earned the title of “The Roller Coaster Capitol of the World”, the Sandusky area puts you right next to the roller coaster action while the Rye Beach vacation community nestled between Sandusky and Huron offers beautiful beaches and parks along with rental cottages just minutes from Cedar Point.

Sandusky, Ohio

The largest city on Lake Erie and home to Cedar Point Amusement Park, Sandusky earns the title of “The Roller Coaster Capitol of the World”. Cedar Point maintains a reputation for the biggest, the fastest, the tallest, and the most in their never-ending quest to satisfy the most discerning of roller coaster enthusiasts. If you want to be close to roller-coaster action, bring your boat to a Sandusky marina, your camper to a Sandusky campground or stay in one of the many Sandusky hotels and resorts.

Sandusky, Ohio is where you’ll find to the most choices for fast food, modern shopping and real estate. With a population of 27,844 according to the 2000 census, the city of Sandusky has over 20,000 more residents than Port Clinton, the second-largest city on Lake Erie.

A variety of attractions from amusement parks to spas and water parks make a day in Sandusky, Ohio a “must do” on any Lake Erie Vacation plan and the easy access to restaurants and shopping make Sandusky, Ohio the perfect home for the person who wants to live in the Lake Erie vacationland while maintaining some of the conveniences of a larger city.

Port Clinton, Ohio

Port Clinton Ohio offers fun, relaxation, and adventure for every member of your family. A town that’s known for its boating and fishing, you’ll find your Lake Erie water sports are covered with full-service marinas, transient dockage, fishing charter boats, and all of the fishing and boating supplies you’ll want to stock up with. The gentleman will enjoy scenic golf courses or a Lake Erie fishing trip while the ladies get in some shopping, sunbathing, dining, or a tour of Port Clinton.

Kids will love a trip to a Port Clinton waterpark with rides and slides, a round of mini-golf that glows or getting to pet and feed the animals on an African safari adventure. Everyone in your family will enjoy a sweet snack at a gourmet popcorn shop or ice cream stand while no visit to Port Clinton would be complete without a trip to the beach and a walk along the pier. Couples and families alike will love an excursion to Put-In-Bay aboard the Jet Express or to Middle Bass Island aboard the Miller Ferry and day at Cedar Point Amusement Park in Sandusky is a must-do for everyone.

The Pennsylvania Coast

Presque Isle State Park on the Pennsylvania Coast of Lake Erie with its 11 sandy beaches and abundance of outdoor activities is only the beginning! The Pennsylvania coastline is home to amusement parks, waterparks, Lake Erie cruises, shopping for unique gifts & collectibles, fishing and boating.

Erie, Pennsylvania offers up a wide variety of entertainment through the performing arts. Opportunities to see a ballet, comedian at a comedy club or an orchestra performance are minutes from Erie hotels and restaurants.

Travel the Pennsylvania coast for a weekend getaway or a family vacation, the Lake Erie coast of Pennsylvania offers miles of relaxation and fun.

Chautauqua & Niagara

All four seasons on Lake Erie are alive with activities, entertainment, and recreation in the resort area of Chautauqua. Weekend festivals throughout the calendar year are a celebration of Winter, Spring, Summer, and Fall alike. Ski resorts offering lessons for the beginners and action for the experienced are at the top of the list of things to do in the winter while Lake cruises, sandy Lake Erie beaches, and festivals provide for lots of summer fun.

Niagara Falls Visitors Guide
Niagara Falls

The character and charm of the individual villages and towns throughout Chautauqua County provide a variety of accommodations, Lake Erie marinas, shopping, and dining. A Lake Erie vacation to New York isn’t complete without a trip to the Niagara River where Lake Erie dumps into Lake Ontario.

Niagara Falls

Niagara Falls is a top tourist destination for people from around the world. Enjoy the sights and sounds of American Falls up close or from a room with a view and visit some of the hundreds of attractions around Niagara Falls that offer hundreds of reasons to take a Winter, Spring, Summer or Fall vacation in New York.

Lake Erie Attractions & Entertainment

Sandusky, Cedar Point Area, Huron, Rye Beach, Kelleys Island, Vermilion, Lorain, Bay View, Crystal Rock, Bayshore

Arts & Theater

Take in an opera, view modern art at a gallery show, see the ballet. Seek out a small community production or visit a renovated theater in the big city. A local symphony, a touring show…watch…listen…be entertained!

Beaches & Parks

Bask in the sunlight on the Lake Erie shoreline, build a sandcastle on the beach, follow the paths in a state park and get your feet wet in the warm Lake Erie water. A trip to Lake Erie always includes the beach.

Casinos & Gaming

Get a good hand, bet on the horses at the Downs, blow on the dice, test your skills! Go all day or go all night. The casinos, races and games will keep you entertained at any hour on Lake Erie.

Dining & Nightlife

Fresh Lake Erie Perch, broiled or fried; the best of Lake Erie. Spirits in the evening on a waterfront patio as you enjoy live music on acoustic guitar. The waves washing the shore, your appetite satisfied. Ah, a taste of Lake Erie.

Family Attractions

Scream! All the way up and all the way down. Take a tour, pet wildlife, find the mystery…so much to see, so much to do…how will you ever choose how to spend the day on Lake Erie?
Pictured: The Mantis at Cedar Point Amusement Park.

Ferries & Cruises

From the mainland to the Lake Erie Islands and back or for dinner right on the water. Enjoy a Lake Erie ferry boat trip, a dinner cruise or sailboat charter as part of your Lake Erie vacation.

Fishing Charters

Perch, Walleye and Smallmouth Bass from the waters of Lake Erie. There’s nothing like the taste and nothing like the adventure of catching your limit in a day on Lake Erie.

Marinas & Docks

A dock for the night or a marina for the season, Lake Erie offers a variety of choices with as much variety in amenities. Come into a Lake Erie harbor and enjoy your stay.

Museums & History

Visit the past, learn something new, explore unique museums, explore Lake Erie. Maritime history to merry-go-rounds of yesterday…find the treasures of the past on today’s Lake Erie vacation.


Finally, that unique treasure you have been searching for at a Lake Erie antique shop. Bargains galore at outlets and flea markets. Main street window shopping in coastal Lake Erie towns. One of a kind gifts in the window. Be sure to bring the SUV!

Sports & Adventure

Sports, adventure, or leisure? A relaxing day on the golf course, the excitement of parasailing or just sitting back and watching your favorite team play…make the day your own on Lake Erie.

Treats & Sweets

Treats to tickle the taste buds. Sweet things to eat from gourmet popcorn and candy to homemade ice cream. Yummy for your tummy with no guilt. After all, you’re on vacation!


Splish, splash, slide, swim, float, and spray! Indoors or outdoors, a waterpark vacation is fun at any time of the year for kids of all ages.

Wineries & Breweries

Sweet or dry, a taste of its own. Visit a Lake Erie winery for one of a kind tastings or a Lake Erie brewery for a beer only available on the coast of Lake Erie. Tour the vineyard then dine in an adjoining restaurant. The house wine it is.

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