If you're looking for a small town full of culture, history, architecture, art, and entertainment, go no farther than Westlake, Ohio.
Westlake city is in Cuyahoga County and is a suburb of Cleveland, which means it's small enough to have a quiet and quaint feel but large enough to have lots of things going on.
It was founded in 1850 and incorporated as a village in 1953—that's more than 150 years of history.
It was initially called Dover Village.
In the early 1960s, the post office was renamed Westlake to avoid confusion with Dover in Tuscarawas County.
Do you need to leave the house but don't want to watch movies, go to the mall, or anywhere else?
There's a market every Sunday with tons of stuff for sale.
Westlake is an excellent place for anyone who wants easy access to great places.
Here are the 15 best things to do in Westlake, OH:
Explore the Beauty of the Rocky River Reservation
Head to the Rocky River Reservation for your dose of nature.
This reservation is known for its long-winding rocky river highlighting high-rise cliffs towering above sycamores, willows, and cottonwood trees.
One of the best things to enjoy at the Rocky River Reservation is hiking through its charming forested areas, wetlands, and meadows.
As you hike, you'll come across native wildlife in Ohio, including white-tailed deers, birds, and small mammals, making it a perfect destination for wildlife photography.
In addition, the Rocky River Reservation has a nature center, stables, a marina, and three golf courses surrounding it.
Lastly, it's also a well-known fishing spot in the area.
So, bring your fishing gear with you when visiting the Rocky River Reservation and have an excellent afternoon fishing session.
Relax at Hilliard Flower Boxes
The Westlake Community Foundation's Flower Box Program has been an active part of the City since its start in 2004 at the behest of the Mayor and Council.
In 2011, local businesses and other civic organizations cooperated in transferring approximately 80 flower boxes to homes on Hilliard Boulevard.
Westlake residents financed and planted more than 220 flower boxes in the area.
There are also seed packs distributed to residents who "adopt" a flower box on their street.
These neighborhood beautification efforts highlight how Westlake is an excellent environment for families to live, work, and play!
Get Everything at Once at Crocker Park
Crocker Park is a vast outdoor mall in the middle of Westlake, Ohio.
It's got everything you could enjoy: tons of stores, great food, and entertainment.
The mall is home to many well-known stores like Hollister, J Crew, Victoria's Secret, and more!
There are also a lot of specialty retailers that you can't find anywhere else.
The mall becomes a mini food truck festival in the parking lot on Tuesdays.
It also has excellent seating outside to relax with friends and family or enjoy your favorite book or music. And there are tons of special events every year.
Plus, there is metered and valet parking right on site!
Celebrate Your Special Day at Market Square
Have your next event at Westlake’s Market Square.
From corporate events to weddings and everything, Market Square provides the perfect setting for any size event.
If you're looking for a place to celebrate your next party or event, go beyond this 8,500-square-foot, six-garage garage with over 1,000 capacity.
The versatile space allows you to customize your event around the modern, open interior while taking advantage of the expansive outdoor area.
It is complete with green space, trees, and a gorgeous fire pit with ample seating.
Have Extreme Fun at the Skyzone Trampoline Park
Skyzone Trampoline Park's Westlake location is another exciting place for family fun.
It's one of the best-known indoor trampoline and obstacle parks in the country, offering kids and adults an exhilarating experience through their themed sections.
If you've got what it takes, head to the warrior course, where you need to conquer its obstacle course.
Then, try its ninja course, which gives a new meaning to the word challenge.
Skyzone Trampoline Park offers a lot of fun, especially for the kids.
Don't miss visiting this place at Viking Parkway in Westlake and spending quality time with your family.
Eat Authentic at Dave and Buster's
Bring your friends and family to Dave and Buster's for an experience that is all about fun!
Everything is under one roof, whether you are dining, drinking, playing games, or watching sports.
Dave & Buster's, a family-friendly chain featuring American cuisine and arcade games, is a sports bar with a different twist.
This game-play emporium combines the ambiance of your favorite watering hole with the high-energy atmosphere of popular sports bars.
Dave & Buster's features over 100,000 square feet of play space, eight themed bars, a diverse menu, and over 200 high-tech games from the latest manufacturers such as Sega and Namco.
This Westlake food hub also offers the most up-to-date video simulators, crazy golf, traditional pool tables, new games such as NASCAR machines, and exciting action-themed games.
Get Entertained at the Clague Playhouse
Clague Playhouse, along Clague Road, is one of Northeast Ohio's oldest and longest-running community theaters.
If you're a fan of theater plays, this is the best place you need to visit in Westlake.
It features quality entertainment while providing its audience educational environment through arts.
Clague Playhouse features various stage plays and theatrical performances from top-notch local actors from September to June.
Watching a show there is an exciting and entertaining experience you won't expect to find in a community theater.
If you're yearning for a one-of-a-kind experience during your trip to Westlake, head to the Clague Playhouse.
Buy Fresh Local Produce at the Crocker Park Market
The Crocker Park Market is Westlake's farmers' market.
It is in the vast and upscale development of Crocker Park.
Every Saturday, Crocker Park Market offers visitors and locals a vast choice of fresh vegetables, fruits, dairy, meat, artisanal food, and baked treats.
Suppose you want to try local produce and taste locally-made artisanal food or baked goodies.
In that case, you should head to Crocker Park Market.
In addition, many locals spend their Saturday morning at the market not just buying local products but also communing with everyone.
Are you looking for a unique souvenir before heading home?
Crocker Park Market might have something for you there.
Make Your Perfect Swing at Lakewood Country Club
The Lakewood Country Club is known for its rich golf heritage and top-notch PGA-standard course in Westlake.
A.W. Tillinghast, the founder of the PGA of America, designed the course.
This scenic golf course offers visitors a tranquil and challenging experience.
If you have time to spare during your trip to Westlake, check out Lakewood Country Club's 18-hole course that spans 7,022 yards across scenic greeneries.
In addition, golfers can access its practice range, putting greens, and adult driving range.
Although it's a membership country club, visitors can still tour the course and get mesmerized by its beauty.
This famous Westlake golf course is located along Bradley Road.
Create Memories at Sky Zone Trampoline Park
Create new memories with your friends at Sky Zone, an authentic bucket-list experience!
Sky Zone offers customers a chance to enjoy the thrill of free-bouncing in a safe and well-supervised environment.
Sky Zone is a safe place to have fun.
They separate guests by age and size so that no one gets hurt.
Team members may ask you to move to a different court or section of a court for safety.
The fantastic trampoline park in Westlake, OH, offers open jump, dodgeball, and fitness programs after school & on the weekends.
The birthday party packages are great for kids & teenagers of all ages.
Come experience the fun with your family and friends!
Get to Know More about Westlake at Clague House Museum
The Westlake Historical Society Clague House Museum will take you back in time to relive the history of Westlake.
Open year-round, the museum features exhibits, programs, and artifacts that chronicle Westlake's colorful past hundreds of years.
Step inside to learn more about Westlake's fascinating history!
The Clague House Museum is a good stop on your visit to Westlake and makes for an excellent field trip destination for local schools.
The nonprofit Westlake Historical Society preserves and shares the history of Westlake.
The historical society owns and operates the Clague House Museum and has exhibits, genealogical information, local books, a reading area, and children's activities.
Clear Your Shopping List at West Bay Plaza
Need to scratch a few things off that shopping list? Or do you need to get out of the house for a while?
West Bay Plaza is a retail center located in Westlake, Ohio.
It offers visitors a unique opportunity to shop in various stores, including national brands, alongside locally-owned and emerging businesses.
The center is located on over seven acres across from the successful and growing Crocker Park lifestyle center.
This has proven to draw consumers from a wide regional area.
Hit the Ball at Meadowood Golf Course
Located on Crocker Road in Westlake, the Meadowood Golf Course is open to the public.
The course offers executive golf on 18 holes and regulation golf on five holes when the grounds are playable.
It's open year-round to the public when weather and course conditions are right for you to enjoy.
The place offers a wide selection of clubs and accessories, from gloves and tees to custom-fit clubs by Titleist.
Golf lessons are available on-site from PGA Teaching Pros.
There's also a snack bar serving cold drinks, hot dogs, and other delicious treats during all hours that Meadowood is open to the public.
The staff is always ready to help you have fun at Meadowood Golf Course!
Watch Your Favorite Movie at Regal Crocker Park & Imax
When shopping for a movie theater in Westlake, you want to make sure you get the best experience.
You can see your favorite new release movies on many screens with plush seating and all the treats you expect from a movie night!
It doesn't matter if you like action-packed blockbusters or suspenseful dramas—there's something for everyone at West Bay Plaza.
There's never any extra cost for 3D or IMAX; it's already part of your ticket price.
If you want to snack on some popcorn while watching your film, there are plenty of options for that, too.
They even have healthy options so that when you come to the theater with family or friends, everyone will be happy and well-fed!
Get Fit at Westlake Recreation Center
If you like to stay active and keep going, you'll be happy to hear that Westlake has many amenities.
And if you're not, this will help you see why so many people live here instead of in other neighborhoods.
It offers a state-of-the-art recreation center with everything you could ever want to do on a day off from work or school.
You can try your hand at yoga, rock climbing, or even ice skating on the rink.
They have everything you need for workouts, like free weights and exercise equipment.
Commune with the Nature at Bradley Nature Park
If you've ever wanted to go sledding with your kids but were too scared because they don't seem to listen very well, come to Bradley Nature Park.
They've got a hill for sledding right here, and it's perfect for kids of all ages.
They even have a little elf-sized sled for the littlest ones!
You'll also find plenty of things to do at the park for adults.
The newest addition in Westlake? A tot playground is sure to be a hit with the little ones.
They also got picnic tables, grills, restrooms—all the basics to enjoy yourself while you're out getting some fresh air.
There is a nature trail open for exploring!
Did you know that the nature trail is home to one of the most endangered species in Ohio?
The red-bellied woodpecker has made its nest in several old trees in the park.
Take Stunning Photos at the Huntington Reservation
The Huntington Reservation along the shores of Lake Erie in neighboring Bay Village is another incredible attraction in Westlake that should be on your list.
It's widely known in the region for its picturesque picnic areas along Huntington Beach in Lake Erie.
Visiting this place offers people an excellent place for a picnic and an ideal area for nature photography.
In addition, the Huntington Reservation is also where you can access the BAYarts and the Lake Erie Nature & Science Center.
Many outdoor activities await those who visit Huntington Reservation aside from nature photography and picnic.
Visitors can also stroll through the extended beach area, camp, or fish at Huntington Reservation.
Enjoy Family Time at Tri-City Park
Tri-City Park is a hidden gem!
Tri-City Park is located on Westwood Road, between the three bordering cities of Westlake, Fairview Park, and Rocky River.
A small pavilion with picnic tables, an eight-court tennis complex, two softball fields, and a children's playground are all available within the park.
Westlake shares the park with its neighboring cities.
The three cities have agreed to share finance and maintenance of the park grounds as part of a cooperative arrangement.
Except for big holidays like Thanksgiving and Christmas Day, the park is open every day of the week.
Alcohol is prohibited on park grounds.
Learn Fascinating Stuff at the Lake Erie Nature & Science Center
Visit the Lake Erie Nature & Science Center at Wolf Road in Bay Village to discover the beauty and history of this region's wildlife and nature.
This place is an excellent destination to bring your family or travel buddies and grab the opportunity to create a lasting connection to nature.
Check out its wildlife rehabilitation center, interactive educational programs about nature, planetarium, and vast parkland.
Dr. Elberta Fleming founded the center in 1945, using a few displays of animals in her house.
Today, it's a massive facility that tends to various wildlife.
Many love to visit this place because of its educational programs that teach the younger generation to connect with nature.
Visitors can hike through its vast parkland, browse its animal exhibit, or get mesmerized by its planetarium.
The Lake Erie Nature & Science Center is truly a fascinating place near Westlake that you should not miss visiting.
Relax at the Clague Park
Clague Park is one of Westlake's community parks, perfect for outdoor activities and relaxation.
This park in Westlake is at the corner of Hilliard Boulevard and Clague Road.
It features a picturesque landscape with the usual park amenities like a playground, picnic areas, gardens, ponds, and a popular deck for taking beautiful photos.
If you're into sports, you can visit one of its seven baseball diamonds or play at one of its tennis courts.
In addition, it also has a cabin, walking trails, and nearby historical spots in Westlake that are equally fascinating to visit.
Flip a Page at Westlake Porter Public Library
The Westlake Porter Public Library has been serving the community since 1899, when it started as a small reading room in a local building.
Today, the library boasts a collection of more than 176,000 volumes and 500 periodical subscriptions.
Over one hundred years ago, the library sponsored debates, meetings, and social functions for its patrons during its early years.
Some of these events included an ice cream saloon held on alternate Saturdays.
In 1920, the library extended its collection and services to the Dover Township schools in the area.
In 1933, the Ohio State Legislature enacted permanent legislation, which allocated proceeds from personal property tax to boards of library trustees.
At that time, Porter Library received $3,096 from this new state funding source.
Go Back in Time at the Rocky River Nature Center
The Rocky River Nature Center along Valley Parkway in North Olmsted is an incredible place you need to visit, especially if you're interested in prehistoric animals.
The nature center is nestled on a 360-million-year-old shale cliff.
While inside, it displays the fossil of a Dunkleosteus, a prehistoric giant fish that once roamed Earth.
Making it more fascinating is the life-size replica of the Dunkleosteus displayed beside the fossil, giving visitors an exact representation of this prehistoric animal.
Aside from the prehistoric giant fish fossil, numerous reptile species are featured in the nature center, including snakes, turtles, and lizards.
On the other hand, the nature center also features a magnificent garden leading you to more than five miles of nature trails.
In addition, you'll come across numerous natural areas such as ponds, wetland forests, hilltops, and ancient earthworks of Native Americans.
Spending your day at the Rocky River Nature Center is truly worthwhile, especially if you bring your loved ones.
Play Baseball at Roman Park
Roman Park is a 13-acre park at 28200 Ranney Parkway in Westlake.
It has three softball fields, a concession stand, a playground, and restroom facilities and is open from dawn to dark.
Whether you want to spend some time on the playground or sit on a seat and watch the kids play, it's the ideal location for your next family outing.
Watch your kids as they get engaged on the swings and slides, or help them improve their pitching skills on the softball diamond.
If you're feeling festive, bring some hot dogs and burgers to cook up at one of the grills!
Either way, there's something for everyone at Roman Park!
This park does not permit the consumption of alcoholic beverages.
Cast Your Line at Bunns Lake
Bunns Lake is a popular fishing spot where local anglers love to cast their lines.
Despite its size, Bunns Lake is a Cleveland Metropark where people can do various outdoor activities aside from fishing.
However, this area has become a famous fishing spot in the Westlake and Cleveland areas for its abundance of various species of fish.
Fish species such as Channel Catfish, Largemouth Bass, Green Sunfish, Bluegill, and more abound in this lake.
In addition, it is a relaxing place to sit down and spend your afternoon with your loved ones while taking a break from exploring Westlake.
If you're an angler, this place has a lot of fish to catch, adding excitement to your visit there.
Other Things to Do Nearby
Westlake is located on Interstate I-90 and I-480. Both roads provide quick and easy access to plenty of fun, so you'll always have somewhere to go when you're bored.
You can find yourself a few hours north at Cedar Point Amusement Park or a few hours south at the beautiful and relaxing Kalahari Resorts.
Put-in-Bay, Kelleys Island, Catawba Island, and Marblehead are all nearby, too—you can visit them for a day trip or take a weekend getaway!
You can visit the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame or check out an Indians game at Progressive Field.
The Quicken Loans Arena will show your team's games when they aren't playing at home.
You could even drop by Jack's Casino in downtown Cleveland—it's one of America's most popular casinos!
Bring your family to Cleveland Metroparks Zoo or one of the many other parks like Brandywine or Serpentini-Winterhurst Arena, where you can ski in winter or skate in summer.
Let your travel goals take off with a visit to these beautiful places.
Whether you're still learning about the world or have it all figured out, these places are worth exploring.
Westlake is one of Cleveland's most beautiful suburbs, and it's also one of the safest.
In fact, it has an A+ rating on Areavibes, which is a website that ranks communities based on their crime rate.
This means that Westlake is where you and your family can feel safe from danger.