Top 5 Things To Do For Kids At Put-in-Bay

Traveling with kids has never been easier. Put-in-Bay is a place for everyone, young or old. Here is a list of the top 5 places to visit with kids during your trip to Put-in-Bay compiled by our readers.

WAR OF 18 HOLES #1 On Our List Of Things To Do For Kids 

First on our list is War of 18 Holes. This miniature golf course offers a history lesson while you have fun playing putt-putt. You can learn many historical facts about the War of 1812 and Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry’s efforts in the victory of the Battle of Lake Erie. This course is great for all ages and provides a fun experience. Large trees provide ample shade for hot summer days. Bountiful gardens surround the course full of azaleas, rhododendrons, hostas, and other flowers.

Kids can explore the covered bridge, waterfall cave, and winding paths. You can test your skills here and see who is the best in your group. This fun mini-golf course is fun as the holes are not too challenging but by no means are easy! There are tricky water holes that provide a challenge. It is open late during the summer until dark. This entire complex is  full of Things To Do For Kids.

Children ages 6 to 12: $4.50

Children age five and under: FREE

Open May to September: Monday – Sunday, 10:00 am. to 8:00 pm

Open October: Weekends only, 11:00 am to 6:00 pm (Weather permitting)

AQUATIC VISITORS CENTER #2 On Our List Of Things To Do For Kids 

The Aquatic Visitor Center on Lake Erie’s South Bass Island near Put-in-Bay is the second on our list to visit. You and your kids can learn about Lake Erie’s history and science up close at the center.  The center provides the tools to learn about the lake’s complex ecosystem through hands-on lessons. There are microscopes where you can identify the lake’s tiniest inhabitants. You can also look at live fish, discover current research to protect Lake Erie, and examine how a fish hatchery is operated. Questions are always encouraged at the center.

Children under 16 can fish for free, and you can borrow fishing gear and grab some bait that is proved by the ODNR Division of Wildlife. Kids can reel in some bluegill, pumpkinseed, bass, or yellow perch, but you never know what might bite. Outside of fishing, you can learn about the food web. The freshly caught round gobies, an invasive species, are fed to the hungry fish that live in the aquaria. At 2 pm on the dock, the center hosts a program for children.

The topics vary from week to week, but previous programs have been: Lake Erie Watershed Animals, Lake Erie Islands Birds, Water Bugs. Fish Fun, Live Snake Show, Our Friends the Spiders, Taking Care of Lake Erie’s Fish, Underwater Exploration and What is Plankton.

Aquatic Visitors Center tours are free of charge and are open to the public from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Wednesdays through Saturdays June 21 – September 9. Group tour reservations are available from mid-May through October at the cost of $4 per person.


Put-in-Bay is home to a delicious chocolate museum where more than 100 kinds of fine chocolate are on sale. They also feature coffees that are roasted right on the island. It is more of a shop than a museum, but you can still learn the history of chocolate making. Stop by to see where cocoa grows and how it is made. There are sweet exhibits, a short movie about chocolate, and antique chocolate collectibles. Willy Wonka plays non-stop so you can watch the whole movie over and over again if you want to.

Coffee Roasting – They may be roasting coffee at any time. They are always happy to answer any questions you may have. Try their exceptional roasted house blend: Island Roast.

Ice Cream – Choose from their 32 flavors of locally produced Toft’s Ice Cream. We would suggest a Buckeye Sundae? Hand scooped milkshakes are out of this world!

Breakfast & Pastries – Choose from fresh-baked muffins and bagels or have one of their Jumbo Breakfast Sandwiches made fresh while you wait

The Chocolate Museum is open daily from May through September and weekends through October. Hours vary. Admission is free.

CRYSTAL CAVE #4 On The List!

In 1897, workers preparing a well for the Heineman Winery found the world’s largest geode. This is about 40 feet below, and the inner lining of the geode is strontium sulfate. It is a bluish mineral that’s classified as celestite. These crystals range in size from 8 to 18 inches long and have been harvested for firework production, so it has grown since its discovery. Discovered by winery operator Gustav Heineman, it is found to be a “vug” or a large cavity within a single rock.

Owned and operated by Heineman Winery, the Crystal Cave helped save the family-run winery from demise during Prohibition. Fees from the tours of the cave helped pay the bills, while other wineries had to close. Tour prices are Adults: $8 Children ages 6 to 11: $4 Children age five and under: FREE

The Crystal Cave is open daily May thru September: Monday – Saturday, 11 am to 5 pm Open daily May thru September: Sunday, 12 pm to 5 pm

KIMBERLY’S CAROUSEL #5 On Our List Of Things To Do For Kids

Located in Put-in-Bay’s downtown area, you can hear the carnival music from one of the last running 1917 Herschel carousels. Kimberly’s Carousel is a merry-go-round, and South Bass Island is proud to be its home. You can take a ride on a chicken, pig, rooster, cow, or the island favorite- Petey the Perch.

Kimberly’s Carousel is one of the oldest being built in 1917 with original wooden horses and Petey. Kids of every age love the island’s Carousel. It is one of the only 100 carousels in the United States with all wooden carved horses. It is like candy for kids like music, and bright colors attract them. Tickets can are available inside The Carriage House Gift Shop for $3.00 (prices may vary). Operating Hours vary according to the season and weather.

Do you think we need a different Top 5 Put-in-Bay Attractions for Kids on the list? Let us know! Be sure to check out our GREAT Put-in-Bay Hotels and Put-in-Bay Golf Cart Rentals

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