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Sandusky, Lake Erie Shores and Islands

For a fun-filled family getaway, there’s no place quite like Sandusky. Home to one of the world’s premier amusement parks, the northern Ohio town sits on Lake Erie, with plenty of swimming, fishing and boating on offer. Toss in a unique maritime history and easy island-hopping adventures, and you’ll soon see why this unassuming waterfront destination is among the best of the Buckeye State.

A large roller coaster

Ride Cool Coasters

Sandusky earns its nickname as “America’s Roller Coast” at Cedar Point, one of the country’s largest and most popular amusement parks. More than 3 million visitors head to the park each year to enjoy over 71 rides, including 18 roller coasters, as well as marinas, sports complexes and a mile-long beach. The Top Thrill Dragster, the second-tallest coaster in the world, is a white-knuckle ride that thrills even the most jaded coaster buffs. Other wildly popular attractions include Kalahari, one of the world’s largest indoor water parks, and the Ghostly Manor Thrill Center, which boasts a haunted house, escape room and a virtual reality feature.

Reel in the Big Ones

With Lake Erie spreading out before you, the possibilities for boating and fishing are endless. Hop on the 20-minute Jet Express ferry to Kelleys Island to enjoy laid-back vibes and long stretches of public beaches. From there, you can kayak, swim and fish the bountiful waters just offshore where catfish, perch, bass and walleye regularly bite. Put-in-Bay, the southernmost of the Bass Islands, is another must-see Erie Island and the perfect destination for those looking to fish, swim and enjoy a surprisingly bustling social scene that includes music festivals, wine tastings and more.

An angler shows off a big catch on Lake Erie.

Lake Erie Shores and Islands

Guiding Light

At the tip of a rocky peninsula jutting into Sandusky Bay, Marblehead Lighthouse State Park is home to the oldest continuously operated lighthouse on the Great Lakes. Picturesque and popular, the park is a perfect destination for picnics, nature hikes or a guided tour that climbs the 77 steps to the top of the beacon. Take the ferry to the north for 7 miles to visit Kelleys Island State Park. Wander 6 miles of nature trails and marvel at the famed “glacial grooves,” one of the largest examples of glacier tracks in the world. Try the North Shore Loop Trail to hike or bike both the island’s woodland and beachfront habitats in one route. In the town of Huron, just east of Sandusky, budding naturalists will love Old Woman Creek State Nature Preserve & National Estuarine Research Reserve.

Museums and More

The secret to Sandusky’s outsized success can be found in the many historical museums interspersed throughout the downtown area. The Merry-Go Round Museum features vintage carousels and exhibits, while the Follett House Museum is a living tribute to life in the era between the War of 1812 and the Civil War. Another visitor favorite is the Maritime Museum, which offers interactive exhibits and educational programs covering regional nautical history.

For More Information

Sandusky County Convention and Visitors Bureau

800-255-8070

www.sanduskycounty.org

Ohio Tourism Division

800-282-5393

www.discoverohio.com