After a day of shopping in Hudson or Stow, Ohio, you decide to take a relaxing drive down Route 303 to take in the beauty of the Cuyahoga Valley National Park. After driving for a while at a comfortable 55mph, you come upon a sigh that says: 'Reduced Speed Ahead. 25mph. Radar Enfored Area'. Welcome to Peninsula!
Peninsula is located roughly halfway between Cleveland and Akron, in the middle of the Cuyahoga Valley National Park. Although it is a small town of few more than 600 people, it is very hard to miss. When heading north (from Akron) or south (from Cleveland) on Route 81 or Interstate 271 you will come across an exit sign that says 'Route 303: Peninsula'. Exit here and head east (Interstate 271) or west (Route 8).
Despite being small, there is plenty to do in Peninsula. Many of these activities are described on this website. You can:
Ride a train along the historic Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Rail Road if you visit between April and November.
Ride a llama at Peninsula Llama Rides, located on Main Street.
Visit the library, which is located on an overlook above the Cuyahoga River and which doubles as the historical centre.
Peruse through the selection of fine arts and crafts at one of Peninsula's many art galleries, located on the main road.
Ski in the winter at either of the two resorts. Admission to one is admission to both and there is a shuttle between the two.
Rent a bike, or walk, and enjoy the full splendour of plants and animals in the Cuyahoga Valley. You can also take a hike on the Towpath Trail, which follows the Ohio-Erie Canal.
Go fishing along the Cuyahoga River, but, unless you throw everything you catch back into the river, you'll need to get a license.
Play golf at the public Country Club.
When driving in Peninsula, remember that it is a walking community with a low 25mph speed limit. The police won't mind telling you that you are not going that slowly.
When near Peninsula, why not stop in to have a bite to eat? You have two main choices, both conveniently located opposite each other in the centre of the town.
Fisher's Cafe and Pub
The only place in town to get breakfast, it is renowned around the village for its desserts, especially its crumb cake. It is owned by a local person, run by locals and students from nearby universities and has plenty of parking.
Winking Lizard Tavern
The place to go for beer and a burger, this small chain is known for its selection of European and American beers. Parking, however, is limited here so you might have to settle for the street or the National Park Lot at the back.
Where to Stay
The main place to stay near Peninsula is a bed and breakfast on Riverside Road. From there, it is quite a long, but scenic, walk along the Towpath Trail to the town. Often it's best to stay further away - there is plenty of lodging in the Akron and Cleveland areas.
Remember to stop in if you're cruising down a road in Northeast Ohio and see a sign that says 'Reduced Speed Ahead. 25mph. Radar Enforced Area' - really, what it's trying to say is 'Welcome'!