What better way to celebrate warmer weather, longer days and sunnier skies than by seeking out the best places to watch sunsets? In and around Downtown Cleveland, there’s no shortage of scenic cityscapes and wonderful waterfronts to serve as their backdrops. There are so many amazing parks and public spaces in which to seek sunsets, and here are the best spots to enjoy them this spring and summer.
1. The Mall
Right in the heart of Downtown, the Mall is a long, expansive green space designed in the early 1900s to reflect the grand “City Beautiful” movement of the time. Not only is it notable for its historic urban planning significance, but it is the perfect place to let your dog run around, play Frisbee, enjoy a picnic or go for a walk. Even better, it provides some of the best sunset vistas in the city. Look one way, and you see the colorful sky behind FirstEnergy Stadium and Lake Erie. Look in the other direction, and the Downtown skyline reflects the golden evening light. It’s also fun to slowly watch the city lights come to life as the sunset sky fades away.
2. Voinovich Park
Nothing beats panoramic lakefront sunsets, and Voinovich Park at NorthCoast Harbor is the perfect place to enjoy them. Located at the northernmost end of East 9th Street in Downtown, this bustling park features sand volleyball, bocce, grassy lawns, benches, and a waterfront promenade. Just like at the Mall, you get the best of both worlds with a unique view across the harbor toward the skyline and an open vista of Lake Erie. If you want to see a breathtaking lakefront sunset, be sure to watch one (or more) here.
3. Flats East Bank
Stroll along the East Bank of the Flats and soak up the lively patios, scenic riverfront boardwalk and multitude of boats and paddlers floating by. This energetic Downtown district offers plenty of dining and nightlife options in addition to stunning sunsets over the Cuyahoga. Be sure to continue walking south from the main stretch of restaurants until you reach Settler’s Landing – a riverfront park with a peaceful setting and gorgeous views.
4. Superior Viaduct
Head across the river to the West Bank of the Flats and venture out along the Superior Viaduct. This historic structure originally opened in 1878 as Cleveland’s first high-level bridge. The cool stone arches and elevated public space make for an absolutely stunning view of Downtown and the sunset. Be sure to check out this underrated Cleveland gem.
Who doesn’t love getting a new perspective of the city from high above with a cocktail or appetizer in hand? Head up to one of Downtown’s stellar rooftops to see how cool it is for yourself. If you’re lucky enough to know someone who lives in a building with a rooftop deck (or if you do yourself) then you know just how cool it is, but if not, there are plenty of rooftop bars and restaurants for you to enjoy a publically-accessibly high-up view of Downtown. A personal favorite is Azure (The 9’s rooftop lounge), and the Hilton’s Bar 32 provides equally stellar views, perfect for watching sunsets over the lake.
6. East 55th Street Marina
While not directly Downtown, the East 55th Street Marina is just a quick trip nearby (you can easily ride a bike there along the Lakefront Bikeway) and provides truly spectacular sunset views. The panoramic lakefront setting is second to none. If you continue east along the waterfront trail, don’t miss out on Gordon Park and the Cleveland Lakefront Nature Preserve – both of which are fantastic urban oases.
7. Edgewater Park
Last but certainly not least, it would be impossible to leave Edgewater Park off this list. This iconic destination provides a sandy beach, winding trails, scenic pier and epic overlooks of both Downtown and Lake Erie. This place is full of energy and beauty. Things can’t get much better than ending the day with a sunset at Edgewater.