Understandably, most people don’t consider Ohio a popular island destination, but that just makes it an even bigger secret for those in the know. The Great Lakes region, especially around Lake Erie, is packed full of islands, both big and small. One stands out from the pack though. By late April South Bass Island's modest population of 150 multiples tenfold and it becomes the Midwest's go-to party spot. Located just west of Sandusky in the Lake Erie Shores and Islands region, consider this your next beach getaway.

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All About that Bass

South Bass Island is petite at just three miles long and one mile across. There's not a whole lot of room for cars or trucks in the busy summer season. As a result, visitors are asked to leave their vehicles on the mainland and board the ferry. Once they’re on the island, folks embrace the preferred modes of transportation: bicycle or golf cart. The main drag is full of folks zipping up and down between the restaurants, bars, and attractions, giving the entire island a relaxed country club feel.

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Party on, Garth

Pegged Party Island by locals, Put-in-Bay is popular choice for girlfriend getaways, bachelor parties, and spring break trips. Most restaurants and bars have a distinctly tropical motif, while hotels encourage guests to check out their poolside tiki bars. Umbrella drinks aside, visitors don’t have to get caught up in the chaos to appreciate the island's offerings. Put-in-Bay is home to several breweries and wineries, one of which is the oldest in Ohio. Most importantly, no matter your drink of choice, all beverages pair nicely with perch — the local fresh catch from Lake Erie.

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Go with the Flow

Put-in-Bay may come off as a party spot, but it’s family-oriented at heart. Some of the more popular attractions include riding the wooden carousel, taking an underground cave tour, and renting kayaks to explore the coast. If you find yourself too close to the crowds, it’s pretty easy to bike away from the main strip and find your own oasis on the rocky shores or green parks.