Within a 2 1/2 hour drive to Lake Erie from the Urbana/Indian Lake area, you can board a luxurious fast ship called the Jet Express and cruise the Lake Erie seas. Go island hopping to many exotic islands, some even Caribbean themed. Believe it or not, an island hopping road trip can be done on single tank of gas right here in Ohio!
Take a weekend “mini cruise” on the Jet Express out of Port Clinton to the Lake Erie Islands and experience a whole lot a fun without spending a whole lot on gas. You can even take your car with you if you choose to use the Miller Ferry boat line, out of Catawba Peninsula, which accommodates vehicles.
Many Ohioans who have traveled to the Bahamas and Cayman Islands say the Ohio Islands have many similarities and are just as fun to explore.
Experience the “Crown Jewels” of all of Ohio’s travel destinations.
Here’s a little taste of the various island fare you’ll encounter if you venture out into the Lake Erie Seas.
SOUTH BASS ISLAND (Put-In-Bay)
This is the third largest of the Lake Erie Islands and is commonly referred to as Put-in-Bay. Put-in-Bay Village is the most popular tourist stop of all the islands with over 2 million visitors a year and is often referred to as the Key West of the North.
On a typical summer day you will see thousands of tourists, happily exploring this one-of-a-kind island paradise on golf carts, bicycles and scooters. During the evening hours the island offers a very festive and bustling nightlife for which they have become quite famous.
This island is very touristy with gift shops, wineries, caves, arcades, boardwalks, historic tours, restaurants, nightclubs, parades, and many other tourist attractions.
There are Caribbean, family and island themed resorts, numerous bed and breakfast accommodations and many home and condo rentals are available on the island.
Fishing, sailing, yachting, para-sailing, paddleboard and kayak charters are also available. See beautiful views of Canada from atop Perry’s Monument, the third tallest monument in America.
For the ultimate luxurious resort vacation experience on the island, stay at the Bayshore Resort, the island’s only lake-front resort complete with heated pools, spa, swim-up tiki bar and restaurant.
Discover the lush greenery of this enchanted island. The largest of the American Lake Erie Islands at 4 square miles, this island offers a little something for everyone such as museums, shopping, dining, historic buildings, nature trails, camping, beaches, and of course, their famous glacial grooves. Truly an island paradise and a great island to explore.
MIDDLE BASS ISLAND
This smaller and secluded island getaway is located within eyesight of Put-in-Bay and offers peaceful surroundings along with a bit of entertainment. Enjoy a Caribbean themed vacation at St. Hazards Caribbean Village Resort on the beach.
There are many other islands on Lake Erie in Ohio, including Sugar Island, Rattlesnake Island, Ballast Island, North Bass Island, West Sister Island (known as Vomit Island), Mouse Island, Pelee Island (Canada) and several more. Most of these islands are privately owned and undeveloped, but many are accessible though private and publicly organized tours and offer various historical and natural sites to visit.
Explore the Ohio Lake Erie islands, they are intriguing, fascinating and provide endless vacation and weekend getaway opportunities.
You will never feel so far away and yet be so close to home when visiting one of the Lake Erie Ohio Islands. So, leave your car and cares behind at the dock, hop on a ferry and put an island in your life, on less than a tank of gas that is.