The 15 Best Things to Do in Cleveland, Ohio

Cleveland, Ohio, a city bursting with vibrant culture, natural beauty, and a burgeoning culinary scene, beckons urban explorers with a compelling mix of attractions. This guide curates 15 must-visit spots, offering a rich exploration of Cleveland’s offerings. From iconic landmarks to culinary delights, prepare for an immersive journey into this dynamic city’s heart.

Rock & Roll Hall of Fame

Situated on the shores of Lake Erie, the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame stands as a monument to the rebels and pioneers of rock music. Inside, visitors are greeted with a plethora of memorabilia, interactive exhibits, and multimedia presentations that span the decades of rock history. It’s a pilgrimage site for music lovers, offering an immersive experience into the lives and legacies of rock’s greatest icons. The Rock Hall belongs on any list of things to do in Ohio, not just Cleveland!

Address: 1100 E 9th St. Cleveland, OH 44114

Cleveland Museum of Art

The Cleveland Museum of Art is one of the most prestigious art institutions in the country, offering an expansive collection that ranges from ancient artifacts to contemporary masterpieces. With its commitment to accessibility, the museum provides free admission to its permanent collection, inviting visitors to explore its vast halls and intimate galleries. Educational programs and special exhibitions add depth to the visitor experience, making it a hub of cultural enrichment.

Address: 11150 East Blvd. Cleveland, OH 44106

Mitchell’s Ice Cream

Quite possibly my favorite ice cream in Ohio, Mitchell’s Ice Cream is more than just an ice cream shop; it’s a Cleveland institution that prides itself on using local, organic ingredients to create a wide array of unique flavors. The transparent kitchen concept allows guests to witness the ice cream-making process, from pasteurizing to the final scoop. The welcoming atmosphere, combined with the delight of choosing among dozens of flavors, makes every visit memorable.

Address: 1867 W 25th St. Cleveland, OH 44113

Cleveland Metroparks

The Cleveland Metroparks, known as the “Emerald Necklace,” encircles the city with over 23,000 acres of green space. This network of parks offers a multitude of recreational activities, including hiking, biking, golfing, and bird watching, amidst picturesque landscapes. It serves as an urban oasis, providing residents and visitors alike with a peaceful escape into nature. The Hinckley Reservation holds a special place in my heart. That is where my wife and I got engaged!

West Side Market

The West Side Market is Cleveland’s oldest public market and a testament to the city’s rich culinary diversity. With over 100 vendors selling everything from fresh meats and vegetables to artisanal cheese and baked goods, the market is a bustling hub of flavors and cultures. Shopping here is as much about the experience as it is about the high-quality products, offering a taste of local life and tradition. Pairing West Side Market with a trip to Mitchell’s is a fun way to enjoy West Cleveland!

Address: 1979 W 25th St, Cleveland, OH 44113

Lake Erie Shores

Lake Erie’s shores offer a refreshing blend of natural beauty and recreational fun, with miles of sandy beaches, parks, and waterfront paths. Whether it’s enjoying a serene sunset, engaging in water sports, or exploring the coastal lighthouses, Lake Erie provides a picturesque backdrop for outdoor activities. The area’s vineyards and restaurants nearby add to the allure, making it a perfect day trip destination.


Barrio is celebrated for its creative approach to tacos and tequila, offering a customizable menu that caters to all taste preferences. The lively atmosphere is enhanced by vibrant décor. With its friendly service and innovative dishes, Barrio stands out as a culinary hotspot in Cleveland’s dining scene.

Great Lakes Brewing Company

Great Lakes Brewing Company is a pioneer of the craft beer movement in Ohio, known for its commitment to sustainability and quality. Visitors can tour the brewery to learn about the brewing process and the company’s eco-friendly practices and then sample a range of beers in the adjacent pub. The menu features locally sourced ingredients perfectly paired with their signature brews, making it a must-visit for beer enthusiasts.

Address: 2516 Market Ave. Cleveland, OH 44113

Cuyahoga Valley National Park

Cuyahoga Valley National Park offers a peaceful retreat into nature’s beauty, with over 33,000 acres of land crisscrossed by hiking trails, waterfalls, and historic sites. The park’s scenic railway provides a unique way to explore the landscape, offering educational rides through this preserved natural area. It’s a haven for outdoor enthusiasts and a reminder of the natural beauty that lies just beyond the urban sprawl.

Cleveland History Center

The Cleveland History Center houses a vast collection that narrates the city’s past, from its founding to its current status as a cultural hub. Highlights include the Crawford Auto-Aviation Museum, which showcases vintage cars and aircraft, and the Euclid Beach Park Grand Carousel, a fully restored piece of Cleveland’s amusement park history. The center’s interactive exhibits and historical artifacts offer a comprehensive look into the region’s heritage.

Address: 10825 East Blvd. Cleveland, OH 44106

Punch Bowl Social

Punch Bowl Social combines gourmet dining with entertainment, creating a dynamic venue where guests can enjoy everything from bowling and karaoke to vintage arcade games. The expansive space is designed with an eye for detail, offering a stylish backdrop for social gatherings. With a menu that includes upscale comfort food and craft cocktails, it’s the perfect spot for a night out with friends.

Address: 1086 W 11th St. Cleveland, OH 44113

Cleveland Script Signs

The Cleveland Script Signs have become iconic landmarks, offering picturesque views of the city’s skyline and natural beauty. Strategically placed at various scenic vantage points, these signs are popular photo spots for both locals and visitors. Each location provides a unique perspective of Cleveland, making the signs a must-visit for capturing memories of your trip.

Cleveland Metroparks Zoo

The Cleveland Metroparks Zoo is home to thousands of animals from around the globe, offering educational programs and conservation efforts that highlight the importance of wildlife preservation. The zoo’s diverse habitats and exhibits, such as the African Elephant Crossing and the RainForest, provide an up-close look at exotic animals in settings that mimic their natural environments. It’s a family-friendly destination that delights visitors of all ages.

Address: 3900 Wildlife Way, Cleveland, OH 44109

Great Lakes Science Center

The Great Lakes Science Center makes science accessible and engaging through hundreds of hands-on exhibits, the NASA Glenn Visitor Center, and the giant screen OMNIMAX Theater. Focused on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) education, the center encourages curiosity and discovery in visitors of all ages. Its lakeside location also offers stunning views of Lake Erie and downtown Cleveland.

Address: 601 Erieside Ave. Cleveland, OH 44114

Playhouse Square

Playhouse Square is the heart of Cleveland’s performing arts scene, boasting the country’s second-largest theater complex. With a lineup that includes Broadway shows, concerts, ballet, and opera, the square is a beacon of cultural entertainment. The district’s beautifully restored theaters, combined with its vibrant atmosphere, make it an essential part of any Cleveland visit.

Address: 1501 Euclid Ave #200, Cleveland, OH 44115


This list of Cleveland’s top 15 attractions and eateries offers a deeper look into the city’s dynamic blend of culture, nature, and cuisine. Each destination provides a unique experience, showcasing the best of what Cleveland has to offer and making every visit a memorable adventure. Whether you’re drawn to the arts, the great outdoors, or delicious food and drink, Cleveland welcomes you with open arms and countless opportunities for exploration.

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