Welcome to Lake Erie Islands
The Lake Erie Islands, including Kelleys Island and the three
Bass Islands further north, are popular holiday destinations during
summer, each offering their own attractions with a diverse range of
recreational activities such as boating, fishing, swimming and
camping. Limestone cliffs, historic sites, wineries and sculpted
caverns can be found on the different island retreats, and the warm
waters of the shallow Lake Erie are a perfect resting ground for
migrating birds making the islands one of the best bird watching
areas in the country.
Formed during the glacial period, the islands consist of
limestone bedrock that has much evidence of glacial scouring on the
rock surfaces. The Glacial Grooves State Memorial on Kelleys Island
is an enormous piece of limestone rock containing the most
spectacular example of deep glacial grooves in the world, carved by
the advancement of the great glacier that carved out the Great
Lakes. South Bass Island is home to Crystal Cave, which is the
world's largest geode in the world, large enough to stand up in and
containing crystals up to 18 inches (46cm) long.
The Lake Erie Island region was once inhabited by the Ottawa and
Huron Native American tribes before being ousted by European
settlers in 1812, and evidence of these hunting grounds remain in
over 70 archaeological sites found around the islands. Inscription
Rock State Memorial, also on Kelleys Island, is a limestone boulder
carved with ancient characters and images of men, animals and birds
from about 500 years ago.
The naval Battle of Lake Erie was fought in Put-In Bay on South
Bass Island, an American victory over the British that ensured
control of Lake Erie and the Great Lakes, and is commemorated by
Perry's Victory and International Peace Memorial on the island.
South Bass Island, named for the excellent bass fishing in the
surrounding waters, is the most visited of the American Lake Erie
Islands and its Victorian-style village filled with gift shops,
fine restaurants and lively pubs has been famous as a summer resort
for over a century. In the 1860's grape production became extremely
profitable and wine making has had a strong influence on the island
culture, with several wineries still offering tasting and tours to
Information & Facts
English is the most common language but Spanish is often
spoken in south-western states.
The US Dollar (USD) is the unit of currency and is divided into
100 cents. Only major banks exchange foreign currency. ATMs are
widespread and credit cards and travellers cheques are widely
accepted. Travellers cheques should be taken in US Dollars to avoid
hassles. Banking hours are Monday to Friday 9am to 3pm.