Want to experience the fun of a long summer vacation during a short weekend, or day trip? There are plenty of destinations perfect for family fun near Toledo that only take a tank (or less) of gas. We’re counting down our top five:
Since the early 1900s, families have flocked to this Lake Erie shore-side town in Ashtabula County (near Cleveland) for summertime fun. Enjoy old school diners, the beach, Wild WaterWorks Waterslides, a Victorian farmhouse-turned-museum, and Adventure Zone, a center with carnival-style entertainment.
We all know Sandusky as the home to Cedar Point and Kalahari resorts— but there’s more. Use the ferry to island hop to Put-In-Bay, and other islands, and visit other family friendly attractions, like the Sandusky Maritime Museum and the Pipe Creek Wildlife Area.
3. Findlay and Fremont
The Children’s Museum of Findlay offers activities for all ages and The Mazza Museum celebrates artwork from children’s books. Nearby, visit Fremont’s Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Center, an expansive complex featuring the 19th president’s 31-room mansion, a museum, and the beautiful Spiegel Grove grounds. Find more at findlayfamily.com.
2. Ann Arbor
Another great day trip, Ann Arbor offers plenty of family fun. Visit the creative and curious Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum, explore the 69-acres of Gallup Park, which includes playgrounds and canoe rentals, and see plants from all around the world at the 123-acre Matthaei Botanical Gardens and Nichols Arboretum. Find more at annarborfamily.com.
1. Fort Wayne, Indiana
In the summer, downtown Fort Wayne’s Headwater Park comes alive with music, food and fun every weekend. Families will also enjoy The Fort Wayne Children’s Zoo, a children’s museum with Science on a Sphere, trails with rentable bikes, segways and kayaks, the Fort Wayne TinCaps baseball stadium— where seats are only $5— and dozens of water play areas called splash pads.