Hello Cleveland! Need some trip advice.
May 15, 2017 1:02 PM   Subscribe

Next weekend, my wife and I are visiting Cleveland for a family college graduation. On Monday, after the festivities, we'll have a day to ourselves before a late evening flight home. I'm looking for activity suggestions for the day. We haven't really been there before, so even the obvious is welcome. We like museums, and fine dining, not so much shopping, though a small amount is OK, if there's something not-to-be-missed unique. We will use Uber, most likely, and are staying at the downtown Marriott in the Key Center.
posted by cameradv to Travel & Transportation around Cleveland, OH (10 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I really enjoyed the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame & Museum.
posted by girlmightlive at 1:04 PM on May 15, 2017 [1 favorite]

If you like beer, Great Lakes Brewing Company is pretty well-known, and they have a restaurant that's pretty tasty at their brewery.

If you have time, the Cleveland Symphony is one of the best in the nation.
posted by kevinbelt at 2:03 PM on May 15, 2017

Unfortunately the art museum and science center are closed that day, they are quite good. There's a limited-time exhibit on Superman at the main branch of the Cleveland Public Library, though. It's out of season, but you can also visit the house from A Christmas Story. The Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland has a money exhibit, 9:30-2:30 M-Th, a 5-minute walk from your hotel. The West Side Market is highly recommended even if you're not planning to cook, there is also a decent restaurant with various Eastern European dishes on site. The casino in Tower City is nice and a couple blocks from your hotel, if you wanted to gamble. The restaurant Lola is nearby as well, and has good reviews, though I haven't been.
posted by wnissen at 2:06 PM on May 15, 2017 [2 favorites]

Yeah, unfortunately the Museum of Art would be the single most "don't miss" thing I would recommend, but . . . closed Mondays.

I'll second the West Side Market as a very "Cleveland" thing, and it's literally across the street from the aforementioned Great Lakes Brewing Company restaurant and just down the street from Mitchell's Ice Cream. The small stretch of W. 25th from Lorain Ave north for several blocks is one of the city's hot spots, with several good restaurants and bars. Most notable for food would be, I think, Crop Bistro, well-reviewed by Zagat and almost (if not entirely) locally-sourced.

There's also the stretch of E 4th, within walking distance of the hotel, which has Michael Symon's Lola and Mabel's BBQ. If you head that way, make sure to pass through the Cleveland Arcade, simply for architectural/historical reasons.

You're so close to the Rock Hall it almost seems a shame NOT to go, and while there might not be much touristy stuff to do on a random Monday, if you just wander around like a 10-block radius of your hotel you'll see all sorts of iconic Cleveland architecture and history, like the newly redone Public Square, Terminal Tower, the Soldiers and Sailors monument, the Free Stamp, the above-mentioned Arcade, so on and so forth. I think you could definitely say you'd "done" Cleveland just by doing that, if you're into relatively aimless walking and looking around.
posted by soundguy99 at 4:26 PM on May 15, 2017 [2 favorites]

Thirding Rock Hall.
posted by Conrad Cornelius o'Donald o'Dell at 7:51 PM on May 15, 2017 [1 favorite]

The new(ish) Hilton Downtown Cleveland has a top floor bar with a great view out across the lake and the drinks satisfied my craft cocktail loving heart. It's called Bar 32.

Greenhouse Tavern is on the same street, East 4th, as Lola. They focus on local ingredients and it's more casual than Lola.

If you can get out to it the drinks at the Velvet Tango Room really are spectacular.
posted by Miss Matheson at 8:31 PM on May 15, 2017

The Great Lakes Science Center next to the Rock Hall on the lake is open Mondays and also includes NASA exhibits that they moved from the research facility by the airport. Unfortunately the steamship Mather parked outside the museum is only open weekends this time of year. It's a good choice on a rainy day. If it's nice, you can walk around the area of the pier. It's pretty close to the hotel.
posted by greatalleycat at 11:09 PM on May 15, 2017

So many great suggestions! I love my hometown so much.

Some of the options not yet mentioned include the aquarium and the natural history museum. Also downtown is the USS Cod, which is a WWII submarine that you can tour, which is pretty unique and interesting.

If you have time to drive a little further out, the Metroparks Zoo is lovely.

If you're heading to the West Side Market and Great Lakes brewing, as recommended above, you should also stop in to Penzeys Spices, in the same area.

I you want even more options, Cleveland actually has a really good visitors website that you can browse.

ENJOY! You're going to have fun, no matter what you decide. Cleveland is awesome.
posted by merriment at 2:24 PM on May 16, 2017

I'll nth the section of West 25th that soundguy99 and merriment mentioned, and add that there's an awesome little tabletop game cafe a block up and across from Mitchell's.
posted by zebra at 2:46 PM on May 16, 2017

having moved all over the country and world (and sadly away from my hometown of cleveland) i can say with certainty that the following cleveland things are essentially unparalleled. much of this Nthing above sentiments. i just want to put a fine point on these things:

1. cleveland orchestra
2. art museum
3. metroparks zoo
4. cedar point (not in cleveland per se, but claimed by clevelanders, and about 90 minutes or less away)
5. the west side market
6. edgewater park and beach. great place to spend a day hiking and walking if that's more your speed.
7. the food. so so so much the food. there have been some great mefi questions on the cleveland food scene... but seriously y'all the food.
8. rock n roll hall of fame. it's really great
9. science center. one of the very best!

for dinner, if you like fine dining, go just west of downtown to lakewood and have dinner at Pier W. the food is fantastic and the view of cleveland is superb.

tell Cleveland i said hi. miss that place so much!
posted by chasles at 11:48 AM on May 17, 2017 [1 favorite]

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