Named after the Native American people who once inhabited the area, Erie is a lively city on the shores of Lake Erie. It’s known as the “Flagship City” as home to the USS Niagara, a wooden brig that served as the flagship for Oliver Hazard Perry during the 1813 Battle of Lake Erie.
Things to do in Erie
One of the city’s most popular attractions is the Erie Maritime Museum, which occupies a former railway station overlooking Presque Isle Bay. Admire the immense “Battle of Lake Erie” painting by Julian Oliver Davidson and learn about Erie’s role in the War of 1812. Deck tours are offered of the USS Niagara, a modern recreation of the iconic 19th-century brig.
Art enthusiasts shouldn’t miss a visit to the Erie Art Museum, which has a rich history dating back to 1898. Its current collection numbers more than 8,000 objects and ranges from paintings to ceramics, photography and comic books. Coincide your visit with one of the touring exhibitions, attend the museum’s lecture series or participate in a hands-on art class.
Sprawling across a sandy peninsula that juts into Lake Erie is Presque Isle State Park, where you can swim, hike, bike and birdwatch. Begin your visit at the Tom Ridge Environmental Center to learn about the park’s ecology, then head out to explore the inland trails and lagoons. In the summer, you can go fishing, scuba diving and water skiing before the park transforms into a wintery wonderland for ice fishing and cross-country skiing.
Getting around Erie
Erie International Airport is 15 minutes’ drive from the city centre and has flights to destinations across the United States. The much larger Cleveland Hopkins International Airport is just under two hours away. Trains connect to Erie’s Union Station and buses travel throughout the city.