Beaches in Ohio


When you think of Ohio, I’d imagine BEACHES aren’t something that come to mind. BUT…there are actually some great beaches in Ohio. It’s nice to find a place to get in the water and cool off. Check out these options!

Beaches in Ohio

Some General Information

*Most of these beaches are free, but some do require admission.

*In many cases, lifeguards aren’t on duty so swim at your own risk.

*It’s always a good idea to check the water quality if you want to swim. Here’s one place that monitors the water and posts findings: Ohio EPA

*This information is subject to change, so be sure to use the links and check directly with each beach to ensure accuracy.

If we missed a beach or if you have a favorite, please leave a comment for others to see.

Salt Fork State Park

Last summer I discovered this gem and I wished I knew about this place sooner. It was a gorgeous day and we’d been in the car from a trip to Pittsburgh. I saw a sign on the side of the road for Salt Fork State Park and decided to take a detour and explore. I’m sure glad I did. The beach was wider than expected and the water was very warm.

social distancing in OhioWebsite: Salt Fork State Park

More Information: The 2,500 foot beach is one of the largest inland beaches in Ohio.There is a bathhouse with showers, lockers, toilets and a snack bar. At this state park, you’ll also find a golf course, lodging (camping, cottages and Salt Fork Lodge), boating, and more.

Nearby Attractions: Walk the streets of downtown Cambridge, dine at one of the restaurants or visit The National Museum of Cambridge Glass.

Making a stop at The Wilds would be a great activity to pair with a visit to Salt Fork State Park.

Alum Creek State Park

This beach is very close to Columbus. It is Ohio’s largest inland beach.

beaches in OhioWebsite: Alum Creek State Park

More Information: The sand is mixed with gravel pieces so it isn’t the kind for building sandcastles. There are bathrooms off the beach.

Rentals such as boats, jet skis and paddle boards are available from Alum Creek Marina.

If you want to explore, there are hiking trails. Kids will enjoy the Storybook Trail.

Nearby Attractions: Polaris Fashion Place

Indian Lake

About an hour away from Dublin you’ll find Indian Lake.

Websites: Indian Lake, Indian Lake State Park Campground, Parks and Beaches

More Information: Some people live here year-round and others just use the lake seasonally. It is bustling with people on the weekends and holidays. In addition to lake activities (swimming, boating, paddle boarding, fishing, etc.) there are many restaurants and ice cream shops off the shore. Some restaurants (ex. Tilton Hilton) even allow boats to dock there.

Popular Restaurants: Froggy’s (has a pool with a swim-up bar), Cassano’s and Tilton Hilton.

Nearby Attractions: Armstrong Air & Space Museum in Wapakoneta.

Buckeye Lake

This is a pretty short drive from Columbus.

Website: Buckeye Lake State Park

Popular Restaurants: Buckeye Lake Winery and Papa Boo’s

Nearby Attractions: Dawes Arboretum and The Works.

Deer Creek State Park

This beach is in Mt. Sterling, Ohio so it is approximately 40 minutes from downtown Columbus.

Website: Deer Creek State Park

Lake Logan State Park

Lake Logan is a popular fishing spot in Hocking Hills but there’s also a beach. Use the link below and scroll down to the map to see where the beach is located.

Website: Lake Logan State Park

Nearby Attractions: There are SO many activities in Hocking Hills such as hiking, horseback riding, ziplining, etc.

Dillon State Park

The swimming beach is located near the park office. There’s a snack bar, playground and game area.

Website: Dillon State Park

Cedar Point Beach

Staying at Hotel Breakers means you are right on property for this beach. It’s a wonderful hotel and having beach access is a great way to relax after a day at the park. This beach is open to Cedar Point Amusement Park, Cedar Point Shores Water Park, Cedar Point Resorts guests and Season and Platinum Passholders.

Ohio beachesWebsite: Cedar Point Beach

Huntington Beach

I grew up going to this beach on the shores of Lake Erie when I was little and have taken my children here. It’s located in the suburb of Bay Village, which is on the West side of Cleveland.

Lake Erie beach in OhioWebsite: Huntington Beach

More Information: Lifeguards are on duty during certain parts of the season. Only US Coast Guard life jackets are approved, no flotation devices. A concession stand is open from noon – 7 pm daily, weather permitting.

Nearby: Malley’s Chocolate Shoppe & Ice Cream Parlor (the North Olmstead location) was another favorite spot as a kid. Inside is a carousel of seats that slowly spins around. It’s such a unique touch to an ice cream parlor. Plus, the hot fudge is amazing!!

Headlands Beach State Park

Located in Mentor, Ohio (a suburb of Cleveland) is Headlands Beach. There’s a concession area, restrooms and changing booths.

Website: Headlands Beach State Park


During the summer season, there are lots of family-friendly activities to do in this area.

Websites: Geneva State Park and Geneva-on-the-Lake Area Information

More Information: The old-school strip has arcade games, amusement rides, restaurants, live music and more. There are many wineries and places to mini-golf. This is a fun getaway!

Where to Stay: The Lodge at Geneva-on-the-Lake or The Lake House Inn

Maumee Bay State Park

There are two sand beaches- one on the shore of Lake Erie (near Toledo) and the other inland around a lake.

Website: Maumee Bay State Park

More Information: The Troutman Nature Center is a state-of-the-art center staffed by a naturalist.

Nickle Plate Beach

Enjoy the scenic views of Lake Erie and the Huron lighthouse.

Website: Nickel Plate Beach

Apple Valley Lake

There are three private beaches so you need to be an owner, renter or guest to access this area. Find out more information about the beaches and the TONS of other things to do in the area: Apple Valley Lake Information

Another related water activity is creeking. Check out Best Parks to get Down & Dirty.

Have fun soaking up the sunshine and splashing in the water at the beaches in Ohio!

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Amy Onifer
Amy is an "on the go momma" to two spunky and fun loving kids (ages 9 & 8). She came to Columbus to pursue a career in elementary education and decided this was home. She’s an avid traveler, yet can’t master the art of packing. Her philosophy is bring it all because you don’t know if you’re going to need it. If you ever decide to take a trip with her, don’t worry about bringing a camera because she’ll take enough photos of the experience that it will likely crash your hard drive. Before kids, you could find everything neatly organized and straight vacuum lines in her carpet, but these days she's not bothered with worrying about the small stuff. You can catch her belting out her favorite song, “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun” and using her two left feet to bust a move with her family during their frequent impromptu dance parties. She loves living in such a family-friendly city!