15 Best Things to Do in Port Clinton, Ohio

15 Best Things to Do in Port Clinton, Ohio

Jeff Warneck / shutterstock.com

Port Clinton in the Ottawa County is also known as the Walleye Capital of the world. It is located at the bank of the Portage River at the Lake Erie area.

With a population of about 6000 approximately, Port Clinton, as stated in the name is a port city and hence filled with the amalgamation of different ethnicities and mixes as well as some of the coolest touring locations and spots both naturally and socially.

The lakefront location also yields to a number of activities you can perform while at Port Clinton from boating to water sports to fishing to paddling and much more. In fact recreational tourism makes for one of the biggest economically contributing factors in the city, which shows how popular and loved it is with the tourists.

For a matter of fact, the entire Port Clinton area surrounded by the Ottawa County and Erie County make up to be called the “vacationland’ which speaks for itself.  Many events are held throughout the year like the National Rifles Matches and the world famous spring time migration of birds in Ottawa.

The lavish and out of the world boat or cruise tours and cozy ferry rides, the endless fishing areas and markets, the lighthouses by the sea, the beautifully beaches and ports.

The ethnic museums, the wildlife safaris, adventurous water parks and island visits and beautifully blue lagoons by the rich vegetation of the area, a perfect combination of a business town and a water wonder world are sure to make for Port Clinton to be a fine example and memory of what a true vacation should actually feel like.


Catch the Miller Boatline Ferries

Miller Boatline Ferries
Kevin Payravi, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons


This is located at the Water Street and provides a ride at the waters in the form of ferries. There are many types of locations you can go to, for example there is the Put-in-Bay which takes about 20 minutes.

There is also the ride to the Middle Bass in Ohio which is about a 45 minute ride. The fares are arguably the lowest and they give a detailed idea of coupons, landmarks, the best restaurants.

These trips are pretty frequent hence you will find them running at any time of the day and passing through these waters is magical.


Go on The Amazing Jet Express Tour

Jet Express
User: (WT-shared) 2old at wts wikivoyage, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons


The ultimate gem of Port Clinton, the Jet Express is the main area if interest with the vast section of activities performed here. This is a major mode of transportation in the Ottawa County.

It is also the most active tourism spot, an extremely important fishing harbor, works for exports imports, holds an array of outdoor activities. The cruise practically looks out of the world with its white exterior and golden shining lights, speaking of luxury transportation.

These too provide a wide range of trips to different places like the Put-in-Bay or Ohio and others. The trip through the Erie Lake is exceptionally scenic with ultramarine waters and pink setting skies.

The passenger lounges are super classy, clean and spacious, the seats are well cushioned and the decks decorated. To top things on top of it there are late night adventures to the island which includes various thrilling activities. All these make it top the list of rides and boating or ferry tours place in Port Clinton.


A Trip to The Famous African Wildlife Safari


This once in a lifetime experience is located at the Lightner Road. You can guess by the name that level of interaction you are going to have with the wildlife here is simply not comparable to a common zoo. It is thoroughly more and beyond that.

The park recently celebrated its 52nd WILD season. Take some snacks with you, no not for yourself but the camel you are about to feed! You caught that right, there are endless here that you will get the chance to feed with your own hands!

Hence be prepared for an adorable alpaca to get at your feet or a huge camel to dig in its neck through your car window. Giraffes are another famous animal here along with hundreds of other species like zebra, yaks and boas.


Visit the Vivid Liberty Aviation Museum


Located at the E. State Road this is multi-specialty museum and also a military museum for display to the visitors. Because of the aviation part it is located at the Erie Ottawa International Airport. The collection of items and memorabilia here is straight outstanding.

There are ford tri-motors, one after the other war equipment like the World War 2 bomber Georgie’s gal which was created in 1945. There is an entire World War Section.

Plenty of ground vehicles are there like the 1941 Dodge Ambulance, Tiger tank replicas. World War 2 boast are available along with Hollywood memorabilia on display.


A Fulfilling Day at The Monsoon Lagoon Water Park


This water park is also a zoo hence the fun just gets doubled. There are so many rides to choose from equally for the toddlers and adults. There is a huge water slide with larger than life pipes to slide down into the pool from.

There is a cozy warm zoo with animals like giraffes, zebras, kangaroos and cows to watch and pet from. There is food court and bar to never get tired while all the fun and games go on without a pause. You can also go for activities like miniature golf, arcades, safari, bumper and many more.


Get the View from The Port Clinton Lighthouse

Port Clinton Lighthouse
Wirestock Creators / Shutterstock.com


This landmark holds immense importance both to the natives of Port Clinton and the visitors from far off land. Being a port city a lighthouse becomes kind of a must visit location here.

This lighthouse however is a major historical monument and speaks of the heritage of Port Clinton with its fresh and tall white walls. This is one of the oldest lighthouses in the area of Lake Erie and was built in 1833!  

There is a garden and trailing path around it and the lighthouse is compact in size which visitors are allowed to visit from within and enjoy.


Walk Through the Surreal Catawba Island State Park


This island park is located at the Mooresdock Road and serves as a multi-purpose entertainment area for tourists. There is the smooth and well-maintained park with thick vegetation spread all around with amber shaded trees that give the feel of autumn.

There is also of course the water port with bay boating activities and ferries, a bridge and wooden sitting area with cottages where you can sit and enjoy.

Activities like fishing and kayaking are also practiced here. Picnic tables are arranged for families, there are shorelines to walk by with the view of the lake and playgrounds to enjoy.


The Perfect Sip at The Twin Oast Brewing


So much travelling and touring will call for a perfect sip at a perfect location which might also provide for a proper touring experience. The Twin Oast Brewing located at the Catawba Road is a scenic brewery as well as a restaurant, hence taking your family and kids will not be an issue.

The architecture of this brewery is very interesting giving a rustic vintage feel with an open air restaurant and indoor facilities too. There are endless varieties of beer like the Old Ohio, Helles Yeah, Oast, Toast, Dangerous and others. Enjoy the drink and grab a Bavarian Pretzel.


Pay a Visit to The Ottawa County Visitor’s Bureau


A beautifully designed building, this visiting center is located at the Catawba Road and lit up with the best features like free Wi-Fi, brochures to guide you, restrooms, extremely interactive displays of objects.

Recommendations provided by the friendly staff for things to do around Port Clinton and the Ottawa County are a favorite of travelers. There are audio presentations and videos all around the center to engage you.

They give you information based on the type of journey you are willing to take. Variations include scenic beauty areas like lakes and ports or historically significant areas like museums and monuments.


Spend Some Peaceful Quality Time at The Lakeview Park


The Lakeview Park is truly a refuge from the humdrum of the city. This picturesque park located at the Perry Street is just at the banks of the Lake Erie and therefore provides some of the most magnificent views of the lake and the surrounding area.

There are picnic tables set for visitors with families. There are pavilions for celebrations and events. There are small watch towers for children and a snack bar for everyone. The blue waters of the Lake Erie can be touched from here going down the rocky shore. Benches and lush greenery enhance this park’s beauty.


Get All the Fish You Want at The Fisherman’s Wharf


A perfect area to fulfill all your fishing and fish eating desires. The Fisherman’s Wharf can be called a pier or board walking area with area with lots of things to do. This is around the Downtown Port Clinton and the staff is known to be pretty funny and quick witted.

The entire area is filled with boats, ferries, launches and cruises which the tourists can use as a mode of transportation or entertainment. At evening the entire water reflecting pink with the port lights looks surreal. You can of course grab all the fish you want to from here.


Come to Know About the Catawba Island Historical Society


This landmark and historical site is located at the Porter Street. On different years they choose different topics of local history to be portrayed at the museum like recently the topic was ice harvesting.

Equipment and weapons related to that history, pictures or videos and every other memorabilia is put on display. There is a beautiful Union Chapel too.

The entrance is free for all and the architecture is adorable with quaint paintings and white colored building. The ambiance is usually peaceful and quiet except for event days. This is a perfect spot to spend your free evening or morning.


Go Paddling with The Portage River Paddling Company


While in Ohio, missing out on all the outdoor activity would surely be a loss. To save yourself rom that and have a fabulous time at the waters of Port Clinton, a day of proper river paddling with the Portage River Paddling Company is a must because it is the finest water adventure destination around.

Located by the beautiful Portage River, these people provide lots of trips through the river every day.

Other activities include kayaking, paddle boarding, standing paddling, river paddling, tandem kayaking, canoe, or pedal boating. The views of wildlife, vegetation while you float will be worth remembering.


Get Some Shopping Done at The Cheese Haven


Without carrying souvenirs and items from your holiday spot the trip seems incomplete. What better item to carry off than good food! The Cheese Haven is the one stop location in Port Clinton for all your cravings.

This shopping center has a record making 12 varieties of cheese available with them, mouthwatering indeed! Apart from this they also have a load of other items like different types of fresh meat for you to enjoy while at your stay here.

Other items like various kinds of candies and different types of baked goods make this place a favorite of foodies.


Game Time at The Island Adventures Family Fun Center


Let the Island Adventures Family Fun Center remind you and your family what true entertainment feels like with their huge arena of amazing gaming collections and features. There is a racing zone and track here, for adults and teenagers.

There is even a mini golf course here for all the golf lovers! There is an extremely beautiful rock garden with waterfalls and a mini pool. Tubing games are extremely famous here.

Indoors gaming zones too has a range of activities to choose from like pool, darts, go karts, and a range of video games. There is also a food court.