Midwest Living Review
The largest U.S. island in Lake Erie, Kelleys Island is also less developed than its cousins. The main attraction is the opportunity to explore natural areas, such as Kelleys Island State Park, the Glacial Grooves and, of course, Lake Erie. The island is eminently bikeable, and hiking trails offer another way to enjoy the natural areas. As a migratory stopping point, the island also offers excellent birding. Kelleys Island State Park features one of the best beaches we have visited -- ultraclear water; fine, soft, walkable sand; and a gentle slope that lets you wade out an amazing distance before the water hits thigh-high. And check out the park yurts, available for rental. Referred to locally as the Walleye Capital of the World, Kelleys Island also caters to fishing enthusiasts, offering two marinas for those arriving by boat, as well as charter and cruise outfitters. The touristy things to do on Kelleys Island are not a reason to visit, they are things you might as well do while you're here. There's a small downtown with a smattering of independently owned shops. Our visit found them mostly of the dusty-musty variety, offering a plethora of hemp jewelry and souvenirs. Vi's Island Treasures (on Division Street) was the most charming and thoughtfully curated. A surprising number of good restaurants serve the island. And the number of lodgings --cottages, condos, rental homes -- testifies to this island's attraction as a quiet destination. A string of quaint restored Victorian homes along the southern shoreline includes several bed-and-breakfasts. For a true hotel experience, try the new Kelleys Island Venture Resort. Located about 4 miles north of Marblehead, Ohio, and about 12 miles from Sandusky, Kelleys Island is most easily reached by ferry.