Erie was more urban and historic than I expected. The downtown reminded me of Flint, Michigan, although was more historic (and it certainly doesn't have the crime Flint has). The great thing about Erie is that all of the core city neighborhoods seem easily walkable to downtown. It's flat and on a grid, and Lake Erie and its beaches are right there. There is a fabulous historic district on W. 6th Street, which I did not have time to photograph. All I'm going to say about it is "Millionaire's Row." This is condensed down from 133 photos to what I feel is essential. Look for the rest on my blog when I get around to posting them (I feel lazy).
I definitely recommend a trip to Erie. The beaches were beautiful, the water was just warm enough for swimming (barely, though), and the downtown and its neighborhoods are nice to walk around and explore. The city has a welcoming, comfortable vibe.
One of many mansions in the 6th Street Historic District
The "Cashier's House," circa 1830s.
Early and mid-19th century homes are scattered around downtown.
"Pufferbelly Restaurant" in downtown Erie. Great food and atmosphere.
Circa 1862 Mansion in downtown Erie