Plan Your Visit

Plan Your Visit

Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge provides valuable habitat for a diversity of waterfowl and other migratory birds, resident wildlife, and endangered and threatened species. It provides a place for people to enjoy wildlife-dependent activities and learn about the complexities of the natural world through education and interpretive programming.


Directions, Address & Contact Info

Ottawa Refuge is located in northwest Ohio. The entrance is located 15 miles east of Toledo, Ohio or 16 miles west of Port Clinton, Ohio on State Route 2. The entrance road is located on the north side of State Route 2. The address is Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge, 14000 West State Route 2, Oak Harbor, OH 43449. Phone is 419-898-0014, and e-mail is ottawa@fws.gov.

When using GPS to navigate to the refuge some will direct you to Krause Road on the west end of the refuge. This is 3 miles west of the refuge entrance. Continue east on State Route 2 past the intersections with SR 579 and SR 590 to the main entrance.

Points of Interest

Visitors should stop at the visitor center at 14000 West State Route 2, Oak Harbor, OH 43449. The visitor center opened in 2007.  This beautiful lodge style building welcomes you and tells the refuge story. The building is currently closed. 

There are ten miles of hiking trails. These trails travel through a variety of habitats and start behind the visitor center or from the trailhead parking lot.

 

Wildlife Drive

The refuge wildlife drive is not open every day, please check the home page to see if the wildlife drive is scheduled to be open before you travel.  On the days that it is open the wildlife drive travels through areas of the refuge not otherwise open. 

 

 RULES OF THE OTTAWA WILDLIFE DRIVE:
• Drive slowly.
• No foot traffic or bicycles. Vehicle length is limited to 25 feet or less.
• You may pull over anywhere along the drive unless it is marked with no parking signs but must stay in your vehicle (Do not impede traffic.)
• You can park and exit your vehicle in designated parking areas only. Please stay by your car; wandering from your vehicle is prohibited. Hiking along the drive is prohibited.
• No Parking signs are posted in areas where you must keep moving (wildlife, narrow road, etc.)
• This route is one-way. Once you enter, travel the entire route and exit at designated exits.
• All areas other than the wildlife drive are closed. Please follow the designated route;
do not turn or hike down roads other than the designated route. .
• Entrance gate closes approximately 1 hour before sunset and exit gate will be closed at sunset

Know Before You Go

When planning a trip to the refuge, it is important to be aware that our weather conditions are often affected by Lake Erie. It can be much colder and windier here than 10 miles inland. Consider dressing in layers, even in the summer. Also consider bringing water, food, binoculars, field guides, a hat, sunscreen, insect repellent, and anything else that might make the outdoor experience more enjoyable.