This is a no brainer. Pick one of the spots mentioned. Find a place to park (legally.... they do give out tickets for illegal parking). Walk along the shore and take pictures.
Good exercise and good for the heart and soul.
Try these areas:
Park Drive. From route 5 connect to Lighthouse Point Road and take that to Park Drive.
Central Avenue. right off route 5 and right next to the piers.
Lake Front Blvd. From route 5 connect to Roberts Road and take Roberts Road north to Lake Front Drive
$5 will get you a pass into the Veteran's Park in Dunkirk where the Dunkirk Lighthouse is situated. You can self-tour the grounds which has war memorials and some war equipment. You can enter the lighthouse and go upto the observation deck. You can walk through the light-keepers house. You can browse around the museum and gift shop.
The land that the lighthouse is on is called Point Gratiot. The lighthouse is on the registry for historical places in the U.S. It is 61 feet high and played minor parts in the Civil War and WWII.
The land is where some skirmishes in the War of 1812 took place.
We roamed around the place for well over an hour then went down the street for a bite to eat.
The Lighthouse Preservation Society that maintains the lighthouse also sponsors special events like a fair and a crafts exhibit to draw people to the area. See the website below for specific scheduled events.
Go to the website below and click the PHOTOS option on that page to see some great shots of the grounds and lighthouse.
Exhibits of clothing, toys and housegoods and Civil War military ware and railroad memoribilia.
If you are into local history then this is a great place, otherwise it looks like every other hometown museum run by the local historical society.
They have a genealogy room where you can browse and photograph old records.
We were in and out of there in probably a half-hour, maybe a little more.
We then headed over to the Dunkirk Lighthouse.
Picture is a Grape Picker Demonstration at the Fair. Dunkirk, and the Northern Part of Chautauqua County are the Concord Grape Capitol of the World. Welch's Grape plant is just about 15 miles to the West of Dunkirk and all around Dunkirk is Grape Vineyards and More Vineyards. They dont get all the snow right on Lake Erie as we get just a few miles inward from the Lake.
The Chautauqua County Fair. This Fair hasnt changed much since I was a kid. Picture is my Son riding a rocking animal. This is in a big tent with farm things for the youger generation. They have milking a pretent Cow, Stick Horse ride through a maze and tractors to sit on and Grape Juice.
Dunkirk NY and the surrounding areas are a large producer of Concord Grapes. This is a phot of a grape Vineyard near The Chautauqua County Fair. Welch's Grape Juices plant is about 15-20 miles West of Dunkirk in Westfield New York.
The Alco-Brooks Railroad Display at the Chautauqua County Fairgrounds. From the Brochure. This Display is a tribute to the Men and Women of the Brroks Locomotive Works,the railroads, and the agriculture and industrial commerce that made Chautauqua County someplace special.