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A day’s vacation or a week? You have time to visit these local lakeside resorts.
Lake Erie may serve as our border up north, but if you’re looking for a relaxing beach a little closer to home, Northeastern Ohio has many other lakeside retreats that offer outdoor and lake activities.
Whether you’re looking for fishing, sunbathing, hiking or golf, this area has something to offer everyone.
Atwood Lake Resort’s lobby, Vistas dining room, The View Lounge and downstairs meeting spaces overlook Atwood Lake from atop a hill, as do most of the 103 guest rooms.
“Atwood Lake and the Atwood Lake Resort offer a great place to get away from the hustle and bustle of life,” says Amy Rutledge, director of the Carroll County Convention and Visitors Bureau. “[The resort] is an awesome place to kick back and enjoy a day, weekend or week at the lake. It has most of the amenities a visitor would want for a trip away, and the view alone is worth the trip.”
The resort includes an indoor pool with Jacuzzi, outdoor pool, fitness center, business center, lounge with outdoor patio, driving range and hiking trail. Opening May 15 is a Par 3 golf course, which has been completely redone in the last year.
The resort also just hired a new chef for its restaurant and will be changing its menu, and there are several local restaurants around the lake.
“Dellroy, the village closest to the resort, has a pizza place and a gyro shop. Dellroy Drive is known for its fish and its ice cream cones, and the Atwood Dock-Marina and Grill is opening in mid-May at the east marina,” she says. “All offer good food.”
Rutledge says guests can rent boats, and Atwood Lake Park has camping, cabin and a beach. Al-Bi Winery is located on the lake, as well as Whispering Pines B&B.
Atwood Lake is just a short drive from Carrollton, where there are local retailers and antique stores, three museums and the Carroll Meadows Golf Course.
Mohican State Park Lodge
Mohican State Park Lodge is a stone- and timber-framed building that sits on a hill overlooking Pleasant Hill Lake. Many of the 96 guest rooms, all with private balconies, have a lake view. Visitors can enjoy Bromfields Restaurant in the lodge, with casual fare such as steak, pasta and seafood, and Boxers Lounge with a full-service beverage selection, as well as sandwiches and appetizers.
The lodge also offers a heated indoor and outdoor pool, sauna, tennis and basketball courts, a sand volleyball court, shuffleboard courts and an outdoor patio with fire pits.
Along with daily naturalist programming throughout the summer, the Ohio Bird Sanctuary has a program featuring live birds of prey. Pleasant Hill Marina offers jet skiing, pontoon and fishing boat rentals, or guests can enjoy a sandy beach at Pleasant Hill Park.
“The park also offers some exciting events throughout the summer such as a laser light show on Memorial Day weekend and a fireworks display during our July 19th Christmas in July and on Aug. 30 for Labor Day Weekend,” says Laura Weirick, the lodge’s general manager. “I love the Birds of Prey program, as do many of our guests.”
The beef served in the lodge’s restaurant comes from nearby Malabar Farm State Park, and Weirick says the restaurant buys local produce during the growing season.
“I definitely recommend our Bromfield Burger, made from locally raised grass-fed beef from Malabar Farm,” she says. “I would also recommend the Malabar Inn.”
“The Mohican area has a lot to offer guests of all ages,” she says. “For a walk on the wild side, you could jet ski, spend the afternoon on a zip line canopy tour or race go-carts at a nearby adventure park. You could spend the afternoon shopping in Amish country or hiking the wonders of Mohican State Park, or see some of the park’s natural wonders such as the Clearfork Gorge or Lyons Falls, spend the day canoeing or maybe just a two-hour trip. Nearby Loudonville is the canoeing capital of Ohio. Horseback riding is also available at nearby stables.”
Weirick says the lodge offers the best view, and there are plenty of activities to keep everyone busy or, if they choose, relaxing by the pool.
“It is absolutely beautiful here,” she says.
Seneca Lake Park
You can rent a pontoon boat, fish, camp, hike, picnic, play some basketball or beach volleyball, participate in geocaching, bird watch, kayak, swim and more at Seneca Lake Park.
“The beautiful sunset and sunrises along the lake with the down-home family-friendly atmosphere makes this lake special,” says Shauna Hearing, communications manager for Cambridge/Guernsey County. “There are many unique activities offered.”
Seneca Lake is the third largest inland lake in Ohio with an ample amount of activities scheduled throughout the summer and activities in two campgrounds.
“Dinner out on the deck of the Dockside Restaurant is a wonderful place to wind down for the evening while watching the sunset,” Hearing says.
Another interesting lake fact: The Muskingum Watershed Conservancy District owns more than 7,610 acres of public land containing and surrounding Seneca Lake.
“The MWCD’s mission is to be responsible stewards dedicated to providing the benefits of flood reduction, conservation and recreation in the Muskingum River Watershed,” Hearing says.
Salt Fork Lodge and Conference Center
The 148 rooms and 53 two-bedroom cabins of Salt Fork Lodge and Conference Center have a rustic feel and are set amid 20,000 wooded acres overlooking a 3,000-acre lake, which can be viewed from all the rooms.
The lodge features Timber Restaurant, a lounge and a conference/banquet center. There is also a full-service marina with boat rentals, an 18-hole golf course, 14 hiking trails, paintball, two large pools, fitness room, archery, geocaching, fishing and hunting, as well as an activity center with an on-site naturalist.
Hearing, who also represents Salt Fork, says nearby Cambridge, often called the Crossroads of America, is nestled in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains along I-70 and I-77.
“National attention is gained annually as visitors flock to enjoy the Dickens Victorian Village and the Official Paul Bunyan Show, not to mention numerous other special events - such as Ohio’s only outdoor passion play, the Living Word Outdoor Drama,” Hearing says. “The crown jewel of the county, though, is the abundance of recreational opportunities. Ohio’s largest state park, Salt Fork, is found within Guernsey County. The Wilds, a 9,000-acre one-of-a-kind conservation facility is also located here for seasonal safari tours.”
The Hopalong Cassidy Museum, dedicated to William Boyd, the hometown boy who portrayed the beloved cowboy, is located along Cambridge’s quaint main street. Not far from town lies the John and Annie Glenn Historic Site detailing the life of the famed astronaut, and don’t forget the historic National Road (Route 40) running through Guernsey County that features specialty shops, antiques, museums and glass factories.
Visitors are welcome to participate in the lodge’s promotional offers, including the family-friendly Stay4A’s; for every ‘A’ a child receives on his or her report card, their parents save $10 on the room cost. All Ohio fishing, hunting and trapping license holders can stay at the lodge and take 10 percent off the cost, and Ohio Wildlife Legacy Stamp holders can take 25 percent off.
“The lodge receives excellent customer reviews,” Hearing says. “The park is extremely well-maintained by our experienced grounds- keepers and is only a one- to two-hour drive from four major metropolitan areas.”