Port Clinton (Ohio)

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Port Clinton

Port Clinton, [1] "The Walleye Capital of the World", is a fishing village and vacation spot on the north shore of Ohio. Most visitors to Port Clinton are parking and boarding boats and ferries to enjoy Lake Erie and Lake Erie Islands. It is a very clean and friendly place with plenty of places to sleep, eat and drink. The waterfront is downtown and the activity surrounds the marinas. Ferries leave to the islands frequently. It is the only City in Ottawa County. Locals refer to Port Clinton as one of Ohio's quaint drinking villages, with an occasional fishing problem.

Walleye Capital of the World

Get in[edit]

By boat[edit]

Boat launch[edit]

  • Little Portgage Access, Darr Hopfinger Rd.
  • Portgage River Fishing Access, SR 163


  • Brands Marina, 451 W. Lakeshore Dr., 1+ 877-585-1733, [2].
  • Coastal Marine II, 537 W. Lakeshore Dr., GPS 41-31-22/82-56-12, 1+ 419-732-2165 [3].
  • Lakefront Marina, 1805 W Lakeshore Dr., 1+ 800-745-3625, [4].

By car[edit]

From Columbus, head north on US 23 to Ohio State Route 4. At Ohio 2 head West. Exit OH 2 at the first OH 163 exit.

From Cleveland, head west on OH 2, exiting at OH 163.

From Toledo, head East on OH 2. For a scenic route, follow Lakeshore Drive (just past the Red Horse National Guard base), or else exit at the OH 163 exit.

By plane[edit]

Get around[edit]

  • Jet Express, located downtown, 1+ 800-245-1538, [5]. Trips to Kellys Island and Put-in-Bay.
  • Miller Ferry, 5174 E. Water St. (Catawba), 1+ 800-500-2421, [6]. Trips to Put-in-Bay and Middle Bass Island.

See[edit][add listing]

  • Port Clinton Lighthouse, at Water Works Park, E. Perry St. (SR 163) The restored lighthouse is Port Clinton's second, built in 1896 and placed at the entrance of the Portage River where it remained active for more than thirty years. The light was decommissioned in the late 1920s but remained a welcome sight to locals and visitors alike until it was moved in 1952. For more than 60 years, this lighthouse stood quietly on private property alongside the bank of the Portage River, largely forgotten until 2010 when the owner decided the aging light deserved a home along the Lake Erie shore once again. On August 15, 2016, the lighthouse was moved to its permanent location at Water Works Park. No entry inside. Grounds open year-round dawn-dusk.

Do[edit][add listing]

Head Boats - Port Clinton, OH

Plenty to do here. Fishing charters, head boats, ferries, marina's all located downtown on the waterfront. Nice public beaches, parks.

  • Annual Main Street Port Clinton Walleye Festival [7], Kick-off summer with vendors, rides, food, live entertainment, and more each Memorial Day weekend.
  • Annual New Years Eve Walleye Drop [8], Down Town Port Clinton, December 31 of each year.
  • Island Adventures Family Fun Center, 280 SE Catawba Rd. (SR 53) 1+ 419-732-2020 18 hole mini-golf, go-carts, bumper boats, arcade, pizza. Open Memorial Day/Labor Day. 7 days. 11AM-10PM
  • African Safari Wildlife Park, 267 Lightner Rd. (off SR 163)1+ 419-732-3606 [9] Drive-thru safari with exotic animals, camel and pony rides, entertaining and educational animal shows, pig races, gift shop, snack bar, cafe and grill. Picnic facilities available. Visit website for hours of operation. Year-round.
  • Civilian Marksmanship Program at Camp Perry Training Site, 1000 N. Lawrence Rd. (off SR 2) 1+ 419-635.2141 Welcomes anyone interested in learning about firearm safety and competitive and recreational marksmanship. The CMP also sells surplus military rifles and accessories. Olympic-quality air gun range open to the public.
  • Liberty Aviation Museum, 3515 E. State Rd. 1+ 732-0234 [10] Showcasing operational, historical aircraft and vehicles, including "Georgie's Gal," a WWII B-25 Mitchell Bomber. U.S. Navy WWII TBM Avenger, PT-boat, and more. Witness the restoration of a 1929 Ford Tri-Motor and dine in the 1950s-era Tin Goose Diner. Visit website for hours of operation. Year-round.
  • Ottawa County Museum, 126 E. Third St. 1+ 419-732-2237 Small museum with exhibits including the Battle of Lake Erie, boat-building, agriculture, nature, commercial fishing, early settlers, Native Americans, early clothing, and children's toys. Memorial Day-Labor Day, Tues-Thurs 12-3 pm; Labor Day-Memorial Day, Wed 12-3 pm. Other times by appointment.


  • Catawba Island State Park, 4049 E. Moores Dock Rd.
  • Port Clinton City Beach, Perry St. (SR 163)
  • Camp Perry Beach, 1000 Lawrence Dr. (off SR 2)

Fishing charters[edit]

  • FishinFul/Myrmidon Charters, 1124 Lee Ave. 1+ 419-734-9711 Apr 1-Oct 31
  • Lake Erie Fishing Charters, Lakefront Marina 1+ 800-576-4606
  • Lakeland Charters, Brands West Dock, 1+ 419-734-0440
  • Sassy Sal Charters, 40 Jefferson St. (SR 163). 1+ 419-732-7755
  • Shore-Nuf Charters, 247 Lakeshore Drive, [11]. Head-boats - $30-35.00 per head. 1+ 419-734-9999.

Welcome Center[edit]

  • Lake Erie Shores & Islands Welcome Center, 770 E. Catawba Rd. (SR 53). [12] 1+ 419-734-4386. Discount tickets for ferry boats and attractions, maps, restrooms. Open year around.

Buy[edit][add listing]

  • Cheese Haven, 2920 E. Harbor Rd. (SR 163, east of Port Clinton) 1+ 419-734-2611, [13]. The Largest Cheese Shop In Ohio, located at Providing, cheese, smoked meat and fish, BBQ ribs, wine, beer, candy since 1949. Some free samples for tasting. It is one of those places, you just want to visit. Unique.
  • Jims Taxidermy, 2133 E. Harbor Rd. 1+ 419-734-4224 [14]

Eat[edit][add listing]

  • Jolly Roger Seafood House, 1737 E Perry St, +1 419-732-3382. Dine inside, outside or carry-out. Fresh Lake Erie fish, shrimp, soups. Great food! Closed part of winter.
Yellow Perch
  • Mon Ami Restaurant, 3845 E Wine Cellar Rd., +1 419-797-4445, [15]. Actually located on Catawba Island which can be accessed by two roads off of SR 163 going east out of Port Clinton. It is in the Mon Ami Winery at the same location. Great Dining room and Sunday Buffet.

Drink[edit][add listing]

  • Catawba Island Brewing Company, 2330 E. Harbor Rd. (SR 163), +1 419-960-7764. Family-owned, craft microbrewery with outdoor seating and live entertainment. Experience new flavors with each visit. Year-round.

Sleep[edit][add listing]




Bed & Breakfast[edit]

  • The Five Bells Inn, 2766 Sand Rd., 1+ 888-734-1555 [16]


Get out[edit]

Jet Express

Routes through Port Clinton
ToledoOregon  W noframe E  SanduskyCleveland

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