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Overlooking the waters of Presque Isle Bay, the Lampe Marina Campground is a family-friendly RV park in Erie. It’s an ideal base for water lovers wanting to get active along the shores of Lake Erie, as well as those wanting to discover some of the region’s historical and cultural sites.
RV camping at the Lampe Marina Campground includes access to electric (30/50 amp) and water sites, with some that are accessible to big rigs. There are clean restrooms, showers, and laundry facilities for guests to use, with pets welcome to stay with you, provided they remain on a leash.
Campsites at the Lampe Marina Campground are located directly opposite Presque Isle State Park, which occupies a peninsula that juts into Lake Erie. Aside from a network of hiking and mountain biking trails, the park is also home to the Tom Ridge Environmental Center, where you can learn about the region’s natural history through a series of interactive exhibits. If you’re visiting during the summer months, you can cool off with a swim at one of the beaches or try your luck at luring perch, walleye, and northern pike.
Around 90 minutes’ drive from the Lampe Marina Campground is the Allegheny National Forest, which encompasses more than 500,000 acres in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains. Amid Pennsylvania's oil and gas region, the wilderness contains some of the most extensive tracts of old-growth forest in the state. In addition to hiking, mountain biking, and relaxing on the shores of Allegheny Reservoir, the forest is also dotted with Civilian Conservation Corps recreation facilities that were constructed in the 1930s.
Adjacent to the Allegheny National Forest is the Kinzua Bridge State Park, which is named after a late-19th-century bridge that once spanned Kinzua Creek. It was the highest and longest railway bridge in the world when built. It was designated as a Historic Civil Engineering Landmark in 1977. The original bridge was destroyed by a tornado in 2003, and the site was reinvented as the Kinzua Bridge Skywalk, which allows you to peer down through a glass platform into the Kinzua Gorge and the fallen bridge below. Hunting is permitted in designated areas of the park, with common game species including black bears, white-tailed deer, and eastern gray squirrels.
Erie campers have numerous supermarkets on their doorstep where they can stock up on grocery supplies, as well as gas stations, if you need to fill up your RV rental. The city also boasts a wide choice of eateries, ranging from fast-food restaurants to fine dining and casual cafes.
While you’re in Erie, don’t miss a visit to the Erie Maritime Museum, which is positioned on the waterfront. It serves as the home of the USS Niagara, a modern recreation of an 1813 relief flagship that served during the Battle of Lake Erie. Learn about this storied battle that took place off the coast of Ohio during the War of 1812 and the rich maritime heritage of the region. A short stroll from the museum is the Bicentennial Tower, which was built in 1996 on Dobbins Landing. It features two observation decks that offer panoramic views across the city, Lake Erie, and Presque Isle State Park.
If you’re an art enthusiast, head to the Erie Art Museum, where more than 8,000 works are on display. It’s particularly renowned for its American ceramics collection, as well as featuring Tibetan paintings and Indian bronzes. Coincide your visit with one of the regular lectures and educational programs that take place at the museum, together with art classes designed for both adults and kids.
A highlight for kids in Erie is the expERIEnce Children’s Museum, which houses over 50 exhibits that are designed to encourage hands-on learning. There’s a dedicated Tot Spot for young visitors where you’ll find soft blocks, activity panels, and a sensory wall, as well as rooms devoted to art, math, and science. If you’re visiting in the summer months, they’ll also love the Waldameer Park & Water World, which is one of the oldest amusement parks in Pennsylvania. There are thrilling roller coasters and water slides for older kids to enjoy, as well as gentler rides such as carousels and a funhouse for young children. Enjoy a float down the Endless River and let loose in the Tad Pool children’s complex before refueling at one of the food concessions.
Whether you want to get active on the shores of Lake Erie or discover the family-friendly attractions of the city, book a rental RV in Erie County and start planning your trip.