Rob and I took our first trip away since having L. It was really hard for us to leave her, but it was really nice to get away just the two of us (we had forgotten what life was like with no schedule 😂). We didn’t want to go too far away so Lake Erie was the perfect choice.
Lake Erie is anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour and a half away, depending on which part of the lake you want to visit. Once there, you can stroll along the quaint streets of Marblehead, island hop to Catawba Island, Kelly’s Island, Johnson’s Island, Put in Bay, or South Bass Island, enjoy the many local wineries, or simply relax at some of the many state parks and beaches. We did a little bit of everything and I’m sharing some of the highlights below!
Marblehead State Park
The first stop on our trip was to Marblehead State Park. Marblehead is home to one of the oldest lighthouses on the Great Lakes. In use since 1822, the lighthouse is one of my favorite landmarks on Lake Erie.
The Lighthouse property offers breathtaking views of Kelley’s Island, South Bass Island and Cedar Point. The last time we visited we climbed the 77 stairs to the top of the lighthouse and I highly suggest doing it at least once for some incredible waterfront views.
In addition to the Lighthouse, visitors can enjoy the Keeper’s House Museum and the Lifesaving Station. The Keeper’s House includes a history of the Lighthouse and Marblehead area.
The Lifesaving Station offers an exhibit about boating safety, history of the U.S. Lifesaving Service and its formation into the U.S. Coast Guard in 1915, and information about shipping on the Great Lakes.
East Harbor State Park
If you are looking for a smaller, tucked away beach, East Harbor State Park is a hidden gem. Visitors can enjoy boating, camping, fishing, and swimming.
The 1500 foot sand beach offers swimming and magnificent views of the lake. Pack a picnic lunch, bring a book, and plan on camping out on this beach for a nice relaxing day.
South Beach Resort
Tucked away on a quiet part of the lake, The South Beach Resort offers gorgeous waterfront views. With a private beach and marina, it was the perfect place for us to relax and enjoy some time away.
The resort includes a four story inn and 18 cottages spread over eight acres along Sandusky Bay. It also includes three swimming pools, kayak and jet ski rentals, sand volleyball, tennis courts, and other recreation amenities that are family friendly.
The boardwalk around the marina offers quaint gazebos where guests can sit and enjoy the calming sounds of the lake. Rob and I sat in one of these gazebos for several hours and watched the sunset. It was incredible! This is exactly what we needed for a quiet weekend away.
Mon Ami Winery
Our first stop for lunch was Mon Ami Winery. Mon Ami Winery is probably the most popular attraction on Lake Erie. Located on Catawba Island, the sprawling historic winery is the second oldest winery in Ohio and one of the largest on Lake Erie.
Located along the southeast shore of the peninsula, the winery boasts a charming setting for delicious food and homegrown wine.
Rob and I were able to snag a table on the outdoor patio where we enjoyed a delightful meal featuring local perch and walleye, a glass of Mon Ami Pinot Grigio, and a wheat beer from a local brewery. I had never eaten at the restaurant and I was pleasantly surprised by the magical atmosphere and top notch cuisine.
After our lunch, we wondered along the grounds to the gift shop, which includes a wine tasting room and finished our lunch with a flight of dry reds from the winery.
Mon Ami is definitely a must if you are looking for local fish and Ohio wine!
Red Fern Inn and Rocky Point Winery
The last time we visited Marblehead we stumbled upon the Rocky Point Winery and fell in love. Located in downtown Marblehead in the old historic schoolhouse, the Rocky Point Winery and Red Fern Inn offers a perfect setting for a weekend away.
The winery offers more than a dozen delicious wines available for tasting (our favorite is the Pinot Noir). Enjoy a glass on their back patio with live music from local musicians and a fresh breeze blowing off the lake.
Twin Oast Brewing
This was probably the hidden gem of our trip. Twin Oast Brewing was recommended to us by a few people and it did not disappoint! Located on Catawba Island, the 60-acre farm estate offers incredible views of rolling hills, terraced fruit trees, and natural caves.
Pair the incredible views with one of their amazingly delicious craft beers, and you won’t ever want to leave. They also offer a small menu of seasonal food, with many of the items grown on the farm. It was hands down our favorite meal and favorite atmosphere. It’s the perfect place for families too . They have a sprawling lawn with corn hole, yard games, and a stage for live music.
And to top it off, they have a small road side stand where they sell their delicious homegrown produce. We bought some peaches for the ride home and they were the best peaches I’ve ever tasted! It’s seriously an amazing experience and we are already planning our next trip back!
We actually didn’t do a whole lot of shopping, but we did stop in the Pink Perch, Ferguson Art and Glass Gallery, and the Marblehead Mercantile.
The Pink Perch is everything preppy, nautical and girly. I could have bought everything in the shop, but I was good and shied away from purchasing anything I didn’t need. The Marblehead Mercantile is a fun collection of antiques and all things nautical. Definitely a must if you enjoy unique finds. Our favorite though was the Ferguson Art Gallery. Beautiful glass pieces and original artwork of Lake Erie, the gallery surprised us with all the cool finds and we definitely plan on going back.
I know this was a long post, but this is only a glimpse into the different aspects of Lake Erie living. I feel so fortunate to live so close to one of the Great Lakes. I’ve made so many friends and brands with ties to the lake and I hope I can play a part in helping to save our lakes!