There’s nothing like the beach and the feel of soft sand. Although a destination trip to the oceanside may not be happening for you this summer, we have found some nearby sandy beaches within a one- to three-hour drive of Cincinnati and Dayton, Ohio; Northern Kentucky; or Southeastern Indiana.
These public beaches offer a relaxing lakefront experience. (Just be sure to check they are open before heading out.)
College Corner, Ohio (near Oxford)
Acton Lake in Hueston Woods has a public beach full of sand. A shower house, restrooms, sand volleyball court as well as a concession stand are available. Pack a picnic and you can grill out at a picnic table in the nearby woods.
Delaware, Ohio (North Columbus)
With a 3,000-foot beachfront, Alum Creek in Alum Creek State Park is the largest inland Ohio park beach. You will find volleyball courts, picnic tables and snack vendors along with a bathhouse featuring showers and changing areas.
Buck Creek (aka Lagonda Creek)
The 2,400-foot beach is found in Buck Creek State Park along a 2,120-acre lake. Picnic spots available. There are shower houses and restrooms available.
Caesar Creek State Park
The 1,300-foot beach is along the lake. Changing booths are available. (There’s also a small beach for registered campers at the campgrounds.)
The 700-acre lake at Cowan Lake State Park has a 1,000-foot public beach to enjoy. A bathhouse offers showers and a snack bar. There are six picnic areas with tables and grills.
Located in Strouds Run State Park, you can go swimming in the lake and enjoy the 900-foot beach. Changing booths, water and restrooms available.
East Fork Lake
Batavia Township, Ohio
East Fork Lake offers a 1200-foot beach. There are changing booths, showers, restrooms and a vending area. The park has eight picnic areas with tables and grills.
There are two beaches at Indian Lake State Park (Old Field and Fox Island).
This lake is located in Zaleski State Forest. The beach is near the dam. A bathhouse, restrooms and concession area are available.
Logan, Ohio (southeastern Hocking Hills Valley)
The 527-foot public beach is along the 400-acre lake in Lake Logan State Park. There is a concession area, drinking water, restrooms and changing booths.
Mineral Springs Lake Resort
Peebles (Adams County), Ohio
The lake is fed by a natural spring and has 5.5 miles of shoreline.
Baylor Beach Park
Navarre, Ohio (3.25 hour drive)
The two-acre water park and all kinds of water “toys”. There are five picnic shelters as well as a concession stand.
Old Field Beach and Fox Island Beach
Lakeview, Ohio (northeast of Sidney, Ohio)
There are two beaches located in Indian Lake State Park. The lake is 5,800 acres. There are restrooms as well as picnic areas available with tables and grills.
Rocky Fork Lake
Rocky For State Park has 2,080-acre lake. Enjoy the beach there!
Salt Fork Lake
Lore City, Ohio (west of Columbus)
Salt Fork State Park has a 2,500-foot inland beach. A bathhouse with restrooms, showers and lockers are available. There is also a snack bar. Picnic tables and grills are located within the park.
Stonelick State Park
Pleasant Plain, Ohio (south of Lebanon and Wilmington)
The lake at Stonelick Lake State Park has a 500-foot beach. There are picnic areas with tables and grills around the park.
Turkey Creek Lake and Roosevelt Lake
Portsmouth, Ohio (southern Ohio)
The beaches are located within Shawnee State Park. Changing booths are available along with picnic tables and grills.