Conneaut Lake is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Crawford County, northwest Pennsylvania. The borough bearing the name sits on its southern end and is best known for Conneaut Lake Park, a historic amusement park that includes one of the nation’s oldest wooden roller coasters. The area also hosts a summer arts festival and winter ice sculptures, plus traditional holiday celebrations like flagpole decorations. The mix of local traditions, from a haunted house to an old-fashioned strudel, makes this region the perfect vacation spot for visitors and families.
The most popular activity in Conneaut Lake is fishing, which is available all year round. With a lake spanning over 900 acres, the opportunities for catching panfish, Northern Pike, white bass, and smallmouth and largemouth bass are endless. The local marinas and resorts offer boat rentals and guided tours.
Visitors can also enjoy the outdoors at Conneaut Lake Park’s lakefront beach and boardwalk, where they can spend time swimming and soaking up the sun. The area is dotted with picnic shelters and tables, so there’s no shortage of places to relax or eat.
If the kids need to cool down, the Water Park at the lakefront offers splashes and floats for the entire family. In the winter, the park’s annual Ice House Park Festival tops off the season with ice sculptures and delicious treats. The area is also home to the famous Ghost Lake 13 Years of Fear, a haunted house that’s been scaring locals for over a decade.
To learn more about the history of the region, a stop at the Conneaut Lake Historical Society Museum is a must. The museum’s eighty-by-thirty-six foot mural of prehistoric mammals, including mammoths and saber-tooth tigers, tells the story of the region.
The Baldwin-Reynolds House Museum in Meadville is also worth a visit to learn more about Crawford County and Meadville’s history. The museum features a southern-style Greek Revival mansion built in 1843 and hosts various art-related, cultural, and educational events throughout the year. The nearby Pymatuning Deer Park is a great destination for family-friendly activities, such as picnicking and train and pony rides.
Wine lovers can head to the Conneaut Lake Cellars Winery & Distillery on Conneaut Lake Road, which has been in operation since 1982. Guests can try its wines and spirits made with locally-sourced grapes, grains, and other ingredients. The winery is also an official member of the Pennsylvania Route 6 Artisan Trail and has a live music series and outdoor wine tasting. Those seeking a more relaxing experience can join the Barbara J Cruises, a 56-feet paddlewheel or sternwheeler that takes tourists on scenic lake tours. The cruises operate from May to October and are a fun way to see the lake’s shorelines without worrying about driving or parking. Guests can also book private parties onboard the cruiser. conneaut lake activities