The Cleveland Metropolitan Area includes many charming suburbs that are perfect for a day trip or a weekend visit. These suburbs contain many hidden gems of the Lake Erie region, from top-rated restaurants to art museums and outdoor adventures.
Lakewood Ohio is one of Cleveland’s closest suburbs. This comparatively quiet town still features plenty of attractions, making it the perfect place to visit on your next Erie vacation.
About Lakewood Ohio
Lakewood is a historical suburb of Cleveland, lying on the banks of Lake Erie. It was established in 1889 and shaped by the development of the streetcar. Today, the suburb still has many of the historic structures that were part of its early growth.
Lakewood Ohio is also home to several stunning parks, including a lakefront park and the Rocky River Reservation. This beautiful suburb is a wonderful combination of lake and metropolitan living. Its lakeside promenade, completed in 2006, offers views of both Lake Erie and the Cleveland skyline.
As a tourist destination, Lakewood is ideal because it offers plenty of things to do in a quieter, more peaceful setting than Cleveland itself. Lakewood is known for its dining scene, historic sites, museums, public parks, and nature preserves, all within a short drive of the Cleveland tourist scene.
Things to Do in Lakewood Ohio
When you ask locals where to go in Lakewood, one of the first things they’ll say is Lakewood Park. This 31-acre lakefront park rests on the coast of Lake Erie and has countless activities.
Here, you’ll find visitors swimming in Foster Pool, splashing in the wading pool, or playing on the tennis courts or sand volleyball courts. Families enjoy playing at Kids Cove Playground and watching free movies for children in the Lakewood Park Bandstand during the summer months.
The Lakewood Skatepark offers 9,500 square feet of smooth concrete surfaces and obstacles for all skill levels with bleachers for others to watch.
There are also softball fields, an outdoor event space, and the famous Lakefront Promenade, where you can stroll down the brick pavers and admire the sights, including a skyline of downtown Cleveland.
Looking for another swimming option in Lakewood? Becks Pool in Madison Park offers open swim times too.
Whether you’re interested in art, religion, or history, the Sanctuary Museum in Lakewood is a must-visit. This unique-interest museum features exhibits of sacred statues and church artifacts from all around the world.
Particular attention is given to art pieces that were made or that played a vital role in the history of sacred art in Cleveland.
This one-of-a-kind antique and novelty shop is located in Lakewood, and it’s fun enough to be a popular tourist attraction!
The store features items classified as “oddities,” which has earned it fame throughout Northern Ohio. There’s no telling what you might find when you visit this unique shop, but one thing is certain — There’s always something new!
If you love all things theater, you need to put Beck Center for the Arts on your travel itinerary. This nonprofit organization isn’t just about putting on shows — It’s about creating artistic experiences and educating communities about the purpose of artistic endeavors.
You never know what might be going on at Beck Center, from student dance performances to painting exhibits, poetry readings, and much more.
Rocky River Reservation is undoubtedly one of Lakewood’s most well-known attractions. This huge metropark offers hiking trails galore, where you can spot waterfalls and shady groves, as well as plenty of Ohio wildlife.
While you’re here, stop into the reservation nature center to learn about the history and geology of the area.
More Things to Do Near Lakewood Ohio
Anyone with a sweet tooth will want to visit to Campbell’s Sweets Factory. This candy factory is one of the most famous in the Midwest.
It’s best known for its variety of gourmet popcorn flavors, but you can tour the candy-making facilities to learn all about how Campbell’s produces all its sweets and treats.
Lakewood is known as a great place for parks, and the parks aren’t just for humans! The suburb is also home to Lakewood Dog Park, which was voted the best dog park in the wider Cleveland region. This extra-large park welcomes dogs both on and off a leash, with plenty of fun attractions for your furry friends.
It’s no secret that the Lake Erie region is a great place for watersports, and Lakewood is no exception. If you’re looking for a great place nearby to go boating, check out 41 North Coastal Kayak Adventures.
Here, you’ll find kayak rentals and lessons, so you can have a great lake experience no matter how confident you are on a boat.
Where to Eat Near Lakewood Ohio
Lake Erie is one of the best places in the country to get fresh, gourmet seafood dishes, and Pier W is one of the best places to find it. This award-winning restaurant lies off the coast and serves high-end, contemporary American food. It’s recognizable by its ship’s hull design, a part of the skyline since 1965.
There’s no better place to get delicious, authentic Columbian food in the Lake Erie area than Barroco Arepa Bar. This vibrant eatery serves a wide menu of arepas, tacos, salads, and dinner bowls, as well as drinks, such as signature mimosas and cocktails.
This award-winning eatery is all about delicious food and an atmosphere of celebration.
If you’re looking for a place to get local foods from the Lake Erie region, Forage Public House should be at the top of your list. This Greener Fields Certified Restaurant features a menu that’s all about fresh, sustainable ingredients. It also has a large menu of craft beer, cocktails, and mead.
Salt+ is a gourmet Spanish eatery that serves small plates, house wines, and signature cocktails. The much-decorated restaurant has earned countless awards but still offers a uniquely local experience despite the fame. You’ll enjoy Spanish-inspired small entrees that you can’t find anywhere else.
In case the name didn’t clue you in, Buckeye Beer Engine serves a quintessentially Ohio experience. The combination brewery and burger bar is a regular contributor at annual Cleveland Beer Week events, featuring craft beers on tap, signature burgers, and plenty of other unique edibles and potables.
Where to Stay Near Lakewood Ohio
Stone Gables Inn is a stunning historic inn that has been renovated as a modern, luxury hotel. Once a family home in the 1880s, the inn retains many of the original fixtures and decor. Despite the vintage setting, you’ll enjoy modern amenities, such as whirlpool tubs, Wi-Fi, queen beds, and smart TVs.
Emerald Necklace Inn is a historic bed and breakfast and tearoom dating from the American Civil War. While it welcomes everyone, it’s a popular spot for honeymooning couples who get a traditional gift during their stay. There are three luxury suites available, each featuring unique and authentic decor.
If you prefer camping over booking a hotel room, Lakewood is a great place to visit. There are many campsites in the Cleveland Metroparks system, each offering a peaceful but fun and safe stay within view of Lake Erie.
River Road Park features designated places to pitch a tent and build a fire. Each campsite is different but has a grill and a picnic table too. The sites are set away from the park’s developed areas, giving you a quiet, intimate, and rustic experience.
If you’re looking for a comfortable vacation rental in Lakewood, this Nordic cabin loft is the perfect choice. With a single room and a queen bed, it’s made for honeymooning couples or significant others on a romantic weekend trip.
The Nordic-inspired furnishings offer a peaceful, beautiful place to stay, with an outdoor patio where you can enjoy views of the lake.
Looking for a vacation rental that’s big enough for the whole family? This enormous Lakewood home has six bedrooms and can sleep as many as 15 guests.
When you stay, you’ll have access to the entire property, including a laundry room and outdoor grilling space. Pets are also welcome at this vacation rental, which is only a few minutes from some of Cleveland’s biggest attractions.
Explore More of What Cleveland & Northeast Ohio Offer
Cleveland is a great place to visit, but the city itself is far from the only place to explore. Many of its suburbs contain unique experiences, from peaceful beaches to one-of-a-kind art offerings, forest hiking trails, and delicious meals.
Lakewood Ohio might just be a Cleveland suburb, but once you start exploring, you’ll learn that it’s so much more. And, it’s just a day trip from Columbus!
Depending on when you visit, you can enjoy unique activities elsewhere too. For instance, spring in Northeast Ohio brings maple syrup festivals, while winter in Northeast Ohio offers frozen waterfalls and holiday celebrations.