Living in the Midwest provides some great summer travel options. Sunny days with great temperatures, access to Lake Erie, theme parks and sporting events are numerous, allowing you great one to two day travel options. Toss in great food and a summer calendar filled with concerts, ethnic and outdoor events and you have the best way to spend May through September in NW Ohio and SE Michigan.
Staying close to home
Locally, there are a multitude of local parks and recreation spots available for all manner of enjoyment. Add to that, local parks in every suburb and you can spend a leisurely day in different outdoor environs with your friends several times a week.
The Toledo Museum of Art is always a favorite and taking in a Mud Hens or Tigers game is a must. If money is a problem, there are little league games galore and, who knows, you might see a future major league star pitching now in Perrysburg or Sylvania.
Golf Courses abound in NW Ohio and most have senior rates. Kayaking, pickle ball and senior sports leagues allow for inexpensive fun.
The Toledo Zoo, Cedar Point, Sauder Village, Kalahari Resorts, Greenfield Village and Schedel Gardens are great day trips. Many have activities and points of interests for seniors and grandparents traveling with children.
Around the state
Have you thought about visiting Columbus and the center of our Ohio government, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland or the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton – all are just a short drive away. In fact there many day trips to museums and Ohio villages and homes across the state. A good way to navigate travel is through the website www.ohiotraveler.com – it provides a wealth of knowledge to all of the attractions throughout Ohio.
How about a wine trip? There are several wineries in NW Ohio and throughout the state that feature tastings and overnight accommodations. If driving is an issue, there are also bus trips available for mature travelers. Greyhound – www.greyhound.com, Blue Lake Tours www.bluelake.com and Lakefront Lines www.lakefrontlines.com have inexpensive tour packages for trips around Michigan and Ohio, as well as Chicago and other Midwest cities.
Once in a lifetime
According to Marcia Staber from Central Travel www.centraltravel.com, people over 50 are enjoying multigenerational trips. Many grandparents are taking their children and grandchildren with them to experience Alaskan cruises, all-inclusive resorts in the Caribbean and Mexico, and other adventure travel.
Additionally, European river cruises are very popular and a great way to see Europe! Shore Excursions cater to active travelers as well as travelers who prefer a motor coach tour. AMA Waterways, one of Central Travel’s preferred river cruise companies, categorizes their tours as either gentle, regular, or active, which is important for a mature traveler with special needs.
Many people are now able to experience their bucket list trips, People over 50 are booking their “dream list” trips: Hawaii, South Pacific, or to a special place in their personal history. According to Marcia “I had a couple book Croatia last year to find their family roots and I have a couple going this year to Italy to find her grandfather’s grave site.”
There are so many options for you to travel. Whether it is a day trip to Catawba to enjoy the lake or a trip to France, the important thing to do is create your bucket list for the year, identify what trips you want to take and then make your plans to travel.
800-254-8090 | shipshewana.com
This town in the heart of Northern Indiana Amish Country makes for an eventful day trip or weekend. There’s plenty of attractions to visit that will keep your itinerary full. Tour the city in a pedicab, carriage or buggy ride and witness the beauty of the land. Gain a history lesson at either museums–Hostetler Hudson Auto Museum holds the largest collection of Hudson automobile products in the world, and Menno-Hof offers a look into the life of the Amish and Mennonites through presentations. Keep the entertainment rolling by checking out other attractions such as the Blue Gate Theatre featuring musicals and big name artists, the Dutch Creek Farm Animal Park that offers safari-style rides, allowing you to feed and pet the animals, and then shop until you drop at the Shipshewana Trading Place Auction and Flea Market.
10426 S Jackson Rd, Jerome, MI
517-688-9223 | michigan.org/property/mccourtie-park
Go on a true exploration at this 42-acre historic estate with 17 different concrete bridges, two ponds, a winding river, and other structures to discover like the underground apartments and garages. Enjoy a relaxing picnic in the park and keep your eyes open for the handcrafted bridges which look like wooden logs, but in reality, they’re made of concrete, carved meticulously to resemble a wooden formation. The “tree” chimneys attached to the apartment rathskeller were constructed to blend in with the nature of the property. Keep your eyes peeled for the birdhouses around the park.
Maumee Bay State Park
1400 State Park Rd, Oregon
419-836-7758 | parks.ohiodnr.gov/maumeebay
Visit the beach without traveling far from home. This picturesque park has two sand beaches on the shores of Lake Erie for you to dip your toes in the waters. Take in the view of the Maumee Bay while golfing on the18-hole “Scottish Links” course, or picnicking at the area tables or shelterhouses. If fishing is more up your alley, they have designated spots for that, too! Make a great catch in Lake Erie known as the “walleye capital of the world.”
236 Walnut Ave, Lakeside
419-798-4461 | lakesideohio.com
Feel refreshed and rejuvenated this summer at this popular family destination. Here, the nurturing and growing of family ties and interpersonal relationships is the main focus, all while having a fun and relaxing time. Fill the day with live entertainment, worship services, and inspiring lectures. There are plenty more activities to enjoy with the whole family. Check out their calendar of events when you plan your trip.
419-746-2360 | kelleysislandchamber.com
Shop, stroll, eat, bike, kayak and golf on Ohio’s biggest island. There’s so many attractions here, you’ll be cutting close time trying to fit it all in one day. One of the island’s natural wonders, the Glacial Grooves, were caused by the ice masses that created the Great Lakes and Lake Erie Islands. A short walking distance from the grooves is the North Shore Loop Trail, North Pond Boardwalk and East Quarry Trails. Stay fueled during your adventure at the island’s many award-winning restaurants and bars.
Ballreich Potato Chip Co
186 Ohio Ave, Tiffin
419-447-1814 | ballreich.com
Ever wonder how one of your favorite snacks is made? Take a tour of Ballreich’s, a family-owned business since its founding in 1920. Learn about the company and its tasty products during a journey through their facility. As an added bonus, groups who take a tour receive discounts on store purchases. Be sure to reserve your group tour at least one month in advance.
Marblehead Lighthouse State Park
110 Lighthouse Dr, Marblehead
419-734-4424 | marbleheadlighthouseohio.org
Breathtaking views and historic landmarks make up this accredited day-trip spot. Marblehead is home to the oldest continuously operating lighthouse on the Great Lakes, open for tours every day from Memorial Day through Labor Day. In addition to lighthouse tours, the Keepers House, historic stone home of the first lighthouse keeper, Benejah Wolcott, is also open for touring at no charge. Survey the views of Kelleys Island, Lake Erie and Sandusky Bay, and get a breath of fresh air.
Yankee Air Museum
47884 D St, Belleville, MI (at Willow Run Airport)
734-483-4030 | yankeeairmuseum.org
For a unique and educational experience on aircraft history, drive up to this famous museum. Located outside of Detroit at the Willow Run Airport, you’ll learn about aviation, aerospace, and the science of flight with hands-on exhibits and displays. You can even book a flight in a restored World War II Bomber or Waco Biplane.
Mon Ami Restaurant & Historic Winery
3845 W Wine Cellar Rd, Port Clinton
419-797-4445 | monamiwinery.com
If you’re a wine enthusiast or even a casual sipper, visiting one of the oldest wineries in the Lake Erie Islands region is a must. Get a taste of history, trying any of their 26 varieties. The cellar, just beneath the restaurant, has been home to the fermentation of sparkling wines since 1872. Check it out before or after enjoying an exquisite dining experience on the patio or inside the bar or lounge.
Make sure not to miss the best events. Find your favorites and plenty of other fun things to do, by visiting our online calendar or toledocitypaper.com.