Photo of the Put-in-Bay Parks

Put-in-Bay parks provide wonderful opportunities to uncover the natural wonder of the Lake Erie Islands. Also, there are numerous activities that can be enjoyed on Put-in-Bay including fishing, watersports, bird watching, and kayaking. All across the Island, there are preserved lands that are designed to protect and educate about the wildlife and vegetation on Put-in-Bay. Explore the parks on PIB and find the natural wonders of the Lake Erie Islands.

South Bass Island State Park

is located at the end of Catawba Rd., near Meechen Rd. There are 10 full service and 125 non-electric  Put-in-Bay Camping sites available at the park. Some campsites are pet-friendly, for those who don’t want to leave their friends at home. Bathhouses provide restroom facilities and showers for guests at the park. A fishing pier provides a great location to try your chances for some Lake Erie Walleye. Anglers can also catch catfish, yellow perch, and smallmouth bass seasonally from this dock. For a more in-depth look at Lake Erie, there are watercrafts available for rent. Aboard a jet-ski, riders can take in panoramic views of Put-in-Bay and Kelley’s Island with the fresh Island breezes blowing about. Put-in-Bay is primarily composed of limestone, and thus the beach at the park is rocky. Still, visitors can swim here and cool off on a hot day. The grounds at South Bass Island State Park are naturally stunning, with excellent habitats for birds and wildlife. There is ample Lake Erie frontage with limestone cliffs around the perimeter. The Put-in-Bay bird watching at the park is some of the best to be found on Put-in-Bay or any of the Lake Erie Islands. Oak Point State Park is also part of Ohio’s Put-in-Bay Parks and provides transient docking. Tent sites are available at this park located on Bayview Ave., near the Ohio State research laboratory.

DeRivera Park

is located in downtown Put-in-Bay. There are over 5 acres of waterfront property that affords some of the best Lake Erie views to be found on the Island. There is a public Put-in-Bay bathhouse by the docks and restroom, a playground, and numerous sitting areas. Additionally, there are charcoal grills scattered around the park, and provide for a great Put-in-Bay picnic. A lovely gazebo provides the perfect setting for a special event and can be rented for Put-in-Bay weddings. This area is another great pet-friendly Put-in-Bay parks location, and pets can enjoy a treat from the B Dockmaster’s Office. The park is named after the “Father of Put in Bay,” Joseph DeRivera St. Jergo. He purchased South Bass Island, along with several other nearby Lake Erie Islands in the 1800s. This land was set aside in the early plotting of Put-in-Bay and remains today as a relaxing retreat. The park is located near the Put-in-Bay Jet Express terminal. Many visitors to the Island can recall their stroll through the quaint park en route to the downtown area.

Put-in-Bay has immense natural beauty and is home to much wildlife and fauna.

The Black Swamp Conservancy is a non-profit organization that strives to gain lands to protect the natural lands we enjoy. On Put-in-Bay Rd. near the “S” curve is the Ladd Carr Wildlife Woods and the Jane Coates Wildflower trail. Here there are 5 acres of untouched wilderness. Blue Ash, Sugar Maple, Basswood, Black Cherry and Common Hackberry trees are present in this protected wilderness area. The wildflower varieties include Jack in the Pulpit and Dutchman’s Breezes. The newest addition to Put-in-Bay’s protected areas is a prime habitat for the endangered Lake Erie Watersnake. At the end of Rt. 357 is the Scheef East Point Nature Preserve. Here there are 9 acres of land that has lake frontage on three sides. The rocky shoreline and shallow waters are very hospitable to the protected snake. Also, migratory birds can utilize the untouched shoreline land for feeding. There are wonderful bird watching opportunities and a great way to experience the tranquility of Put-in-Bay and the Lake Erie Islands. There were great efforts for the purchase of this land, and generous contributions to this worthy cause. These areas are a wonderful way to discover Put-in-Bay Parks in a way that many have not.

Put-in-Bay parks have many activities for everyone in the family.

Whether seeking out a rare migratory bird or swinging in the playground, you will surely enjoy your time spent. Fresh Lake Erie breezes and sunny summer days make for wonderful memories. Renting a Put-in-Bay Golf Cart is perhaps the best was to tour the island and see the various Put-in-Bay Parks. Some do not permit the entry of Golf Carts and are designed to be seen walking however ample parking is available. Explore a Put-in-Bay park on your next visit and love nature “island style”!