Visitors to Cleveland enjoy one-of-a-kind experiences like a jam session at the world’s only Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, a visit to the iconic A Christmas Story House, and an exploration of the 100-plus-year-old West Side Market. In The Land, travelers can catch a baseball game, bike the lakefront, and admire 45,000 masterpieces at the Cleveland Museum of Art—all in the same day.
A midsized lakefront city, Cleveland is large enough to generate big city excitement for travelers, yet small enough to quickly navigate and explore. Plus, the city is located within 500 miles of nearly half the country, so it is an easy-to-reach and convenient stopover destination.
The city’s lakefront setting means waterside dining, sightseeing boat tours, and kayaking excursions are easy to arrange. Groups can cruise along the Cuyahoga River or on Lake Erie to get a truly unique view of the city. The Nautica Queen offers luxury dining aboard a ship with two enclosed decks, open-air observation decks, and musical entertainment. The Goodtime III is a quadruple-deck, 1,000-passenger luxury ship that offers sightseeing tours, dinner events, and live entertainment.
Cleveland’s University Circle neighborhood is the most concentrated square mile of arts and culture institutions in the nation; it was recently voted the country’s Best Arts District by USA Today 10Best readers. Arts aficionados can view masterpieces at the Cleveland Museum of Art or attend a performance by the world-renowned Cleveland Orchestra. History buffs can journey through the region’s past at the Cleveland History Center, go back to when dinosaurs roamed the earth at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History, and discover the neighborhood’s ties to the abolitionist movement at the new Cozad-Bates House Underground Railroad Interpretive Center.
Music fans can spend a day pouring over rock ’n’ roll memorabilia and learning about rock’s roots at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. Guests can take a front-row seat for previous induction ceremonies in the Power of Rock Experience, create their own inductee class in “Voice Your Choice,” and immerse themselves in exhibits throughout the seven-floor museum. Visitors can also bring their dream of being a rock star to life in The Garage, an interactive exhibit occupying the museum’s second floor. The hands-on area allows guests to play, mix, and record their own hits on more than 15 drums, bass, guitars, keyboards, and mixing boards.
At Playhouse Square—the largest performing arts center outside of New York City—visitors can experience a variety of performances, including the KeyBank Broadway Series, which includes a pre-show “Broadway Buzz” session to learn about the production. Backstage tours are also offered throughout the year. And sure to dazzle visitors as they approach the theater is North America’s largest outdoor chandelier. Numerous community theaters, including Near West, Dobama, and Karamu House—the nation’s oldest Black producing theater—also fill the stage with creative and thought-provoking performances.
A series of standout events and new experiences in 2022 make it the perfect time to visit. The city will host the NBA All-Star game in February as the league celebrates 75 years, and it will welcome the Tall Ships Festival to the Lake Erie coast in the summer. FRONT International: Cleveland Triennial for Contemporary Art also returns in the summer, featuring months of exhibits, performances, and installations at multiple museums and public spaces around the region. Playhouse Square will feature the spectacular lineup of “Ain’t Too Proud – The Life and Times of The Temptations,” “Pretty Woman: The Musical,” and Academy Award® winner Aaron Sorkin’s adaptation of Harper Lee’s “To Kill a Mockingbird.”
Cleveland’s accommodations, dining, and attractions also offer top-notch experiences that won’t break the bank. Plus, more than 1,000 hospitality businesses are committed to cleanliness and employing safe practices through Destination Cleveland’s CLEAN COMMITTED program.
Multi-city tours and pick-up day trips are also convenient to plan in Northern Ohio. Nearby, visitors can size up their favorite quarterback at the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, ride the world’s tallest and fastest roller coasters at Cedar Point, or explore Ohio’s wine regions and Amish country.
Destination Cleveland offers an assortment of resources to plan a stress-free visit or group tour. A team of tourism experts can provide personalized assistance to create a trip that will boost attendance and follow budget parameters. Planners can review a collection of example itineraries for groups that highlight arts and culture, rock ’n’ roll, and other uniquely Cleveland experiences. Destination Cleveland also shares directories of group-friendly attractions and dining and several helpful maps, including motorcoach parking.
Top photo by Wil Lindsey