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Top Ten Destination Spots in Michigan

Updated on October 10, 2015

10. Air Zoo of Kalamazoo

The Air Zoo of Kalamazoo is a popular aviation attraction where you will learn the story of flight from Neil Armstrong to the Wright Brothers.

Located in this interesting museum are over fifty historical and rare aircraft along with travel exhibits and art work inspired by aviation including murals on the walls. Some of the collections housed here are from World War II.

Rides, attractions and educational activities are all available at the Air Zoo of Kalamazoo and you will also see exhibits on space and discovery.

Women in aviation is another great exhibit to experience.

There are many opportunities for kids including; summer and spring camps, field trips, home school programs and many of the activities are hands on.

Rentals are available for personal events such as birthdays.

An aircraft at The Air Zoo of Kalamazoo


A look at the Air Zoo at Kalamazoo

9. Grand Rapids

Located on the Grand River, Grand Rapids was settled in the beginning of the 19th century and prior was settled by the Hopewell and Ottawa Indians.

Grand Rapids has grown to be known for its furniture due to being a major lumber center.

The Gerald R. Ford Library and Museum is located in Grand Rapids were both he and his wife are buried.

There are burial mounds along the Grand River which were used by the Hopewell tribe.

You will also find a river walk along the river where you can explore the scenery and take in the gorgeous views of the area.

Another historical site in Grand Rapids is the Van Andel Museum Center which was built in 1896.

If you are interested in more historical buildings, heritage Hill is full of houses dating from 1848 and up.

The Voight House Victorian Museum which is one of the oldest history museums in the United States and is one of the historical structures located at Heritage Hill.

While visiting Grand Rapids you will have no trouble finding lodging, places to eat and shops.

The Van Andel Museum Center


The Voight House Victorian Museum


8. Detroit

Founded in 1701 by a French explorer, Detroit is known for its role in the American automobile industry, Berry Gordy and Motown Music and also played part in the French and Indian War in 1760; as well as the War of 1812.

Detroit was also part of the Underground Railroad.

A great attraction in Detroit is the Detroit River which links Lake Huron and Lake Erie and are attractions as well.

One of the historical buildings worth seeing is the David Whitney House which was built between 1890 and 1894. This majestic house has 52 rooms and is known for its Tiffany glass windows.

Said to be haunted, The David Whitney House is now known as The Whitney Restaurant.

Ford Motor Company was founded in 1903 and has given Detroit its title of being the automotive capital of the world.

St. Ann De Detroit is another attraction in Detroit and is the 2nd oldest Roman Catholic Church still operating in the United States.

Another church to see is the St. Joseph Catholic Church which was built in 1873.

The David Whitney House


St Joseph Catholic Church


7. Traverse City

Full of beaches, lakes and lighthouses, Traverse City is home to many boutiques and shops and is known to have great shopping.

Between the sidewalk sales and the shops lining the street, Traverse City offers different shopping experiences for everyone.

Lake Michigan is close by and the shoreline offers recreation activities along with beaches to soak in the sun. Also located on the Lake Michigan shoreline is the Mission Point Lighthouse which is located in Lighthouse Park and built in 1870.

Located On the same grounds as the Mission Point Lighthouse are restored, turn of the century log cabins.

Lighthouse Park offers popular beaches, self-guided tours with access to the tower.

Suttons Bay is a great spot to visit and since it is so close to vineyards, dropping by a winery will bring your visit to a new level.

Also close to Suttons Bay are shops, cafes, bars and lodging. While visiting Traverse City you may want to take in some of the local nature.

Hiking trails and skiing trails are both accessible from Traverse City and are great spots to get a feel for the flora and fauna in the area.

There are also orchards which offer the opportunity to pick your own apples!

Mission Point Lighthouse


Suttons Bay

6. Mt. Bohemia

Mt. Bohemia is a resort located in Upper Peninsula of Michigan and is a popular destination for locals and is a popular spot to ski at .

Part of the attraction to Mt. Bohemia is the white beach sand on the shoreline of Lake Michigan.

Lake Michigan is also a popular spot for Kayaking and there are kayak and equipment rentals available and guides are provided.

For all you fisherman out there, Lac La Belle River is the perfect spot to relax and do some fishing. Mt Bohemia also offers fishing equipment rentals.

There are plenty of biking trails and miles of hiking trails for you to explore more of Mt Bohemia and Lake Michigan.

While visiting Mount Bohemia you won’t have any trouble finding a place to eat or a place to sleep.

Trail-side cabins are available to rent for those of you who want more of an intimate experience.

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Mt. Bohemia

5. Silver Lake Sand Dunes

Nestled between Silver lake and Lake Michigan, Silver Lake Sand Dunes is a great place to spend a weekend.

Bring your dune buggy and fly through the sand dunes or rent a jeep from the rental facility which includes a guided tour.

The Dune Buggy Tour isn't the only attraction at Silver Lake Sand Dunes; with Lake Michigan right there, it’s a popular spot to swim or go out on a boat.

Close by is Silver Lake Village which is full of restaurants and boutiques and there is even a place to play mini golf, ride go karts and bumper cars and more!

Fishing is available at Silver Lake. Silver Lake is home to; Walleye, large-mouth bass, small-mouth bass, bluegill and others.

There are also other lakes in the area that are worth visiting.

Silver Lake Sand Dunes is surrounded by Lake Michigan and rolling sand hills.

This recreational area houses forty campgrounds with picnic tables.

Don’t forget to see a main attraction at Silver lake San Dunes, the Little Sable Point Lighthouse which was built in the late 1870’s.

Little Point Sable Lighthouse


Silver Lake Sand Dunes


4. Ann Arbor

Founded in 1824, Ann Arbor Michigan is home to the University of Michigan which has a number of attractions on its grounds.

Two of these attractions are Matthaei Botanical Gardens and Nichols Arboretum.

The Matthaei Botanical Gardens houses the visitor center which is where you will go to learn about the educational programs available along with restrooms and a gift shop.

Trails to the gardens are outside of the visitor center where you will see plants from all over the world.

Local birdwatchers come to this area due to the variety of different species of birds.

Nichols Arboretum is also located at The University of Michigan and display different types of trees and plants.

There are a number of Gothic buildings on campus and is worth taking a look around to get close views.

Built in 1853, The Kempf House belonged to musicians Reuben H and Pauline Wilden Mann Kempf and is now a museum open to the public.

Ann Arbor is full of lodging, dining and shopping.

Matthaei Botanical Gardens


The Kempf House


3. Frankenmuth

Settled in 1845, Frankenmuth is a city which was once a village.

Probably what it is most famous for is Bronner’s Christmas Wonderland which is the world’s largest Christmas store. It is open all year round and carries collectibles, Christmas trees, ornaments, garland and anything else you can think of that has to do with Christmas.

Frankenmuth is full of Bavarian theme based shops, restaurants and they also host many events. Some of the events include; The World Expo of Beer, Summer Music Festival, the Bavarian festival and Oktoberfest.

Heritage Hill is where number of events are hosted along with local festivals. There are several pavilions located here as well as volleyball courts, playgrounds, a basketball court and baseball diamonds.

Also located in Frankenmuth is a covered bridge which was complete in 1979 and fits in perfectly with the quaint atmosphere Frankenmuth exceeds.

A great place to stay is at the Bavarian themed; Bavarian Inn Lodge. The Bavarian Inn Lodge houses water slides, mini golf, two lounges, several eateries and even offers entertainment. While staying at the inn why not take a tour on the Bavarian Belle Riverboat.

Bronner's Christmas Wonderland


Bavarian Inn Lodge


2. Sunrise Coast

Located in North East Michigan, Sunrise Coast is on Lake Huron and lined with sites to see, sporting and recreational activities or just a nice place to relax.

Largo Springs is not well known and considered to be an undiscovered gem.

While visiting here, prepare yourself to take the 300 steps up to the spring and keep your eyes open if you want to spot a bald eagle. Largo Springs is located on River Road Scenic Byway.

River Road Scenic Byway rides along the Ausable River, Lake Huron and Huron National Forest.

Rifle River State Recreational Area is located on Sunset Coast and offers skiing, ice fishing and snowmobiling opportunities.

There are many lakes and trails to explore along with campgrounds if you plan on staying the night.

Negwegon State Park is a serene and peaceful area. No vehicles are allowed in this park but there are parking places and you walk into the park. While in Negwegon State Park you will see Lake Huron and four camp sites are available.

On Sunrise Coast you will have no problem finding lodging, food, shops and you might even show up at the right time and interact at one of the festivals.

Sunrise Coast is full of history and beauty. What interests you the most?

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1. Mackinac Island

Mackinac is an Island and a resort which has been a vacation destination for years.

Built in 1887, The Grand Hotel is probably the biggest point of interest at Mackinac Island and was featured in the movie, “Somewhere in Time.

Located in Lake Huron, Mackinac Island is home to Fort Mackinac, though it was never attacked during the war it was established by the British during the Revolutionary War and two battles were fought here during the War of 1812.

Mackinac Island is a National Historic Landmark and is best known for its candy shops which line the streets along with hotels, shops, eateries, bars and, bed and breakfasts.

Due to its popularity with its candy shops, Mackinac Island Fudge has become a hit and is sold outside of Mackinac Island.

Horse drawn carriages are often seen on Mackinac Island and are available for tours.

Mackinac Island is only accessible by small aircraft, private boat or ferry.

The nature is the area is to die for and one of the most popular points of interest is Arch Rock which has trails around it for better viewing of both the arch and the lake.

There are also other interesting sandstone formations in the area. Sailing is a popular pastime at Mackinac Island and there are two sailboat races a year.

Don’t forget to see some of the historical landmarks such as Round Island Lighthouse which was built in 1894 and The Biddle House which was built before the 1800’s as a fur trade shop.

Largo Springs


Negwegon State Park Campsite


Arch Rock


The Grand Hotel


Downtown Mackinac Island


A roadmap to help you get around Michigan

Air Zoo of Kalamazoo:
Air Zoo, 6151 Portage Road, Portage, MI 49002, USA

get directions

Grand Rapids:
Grand Rapids, MI, USA

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Detroit, MI, USA

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Traverse City:
Traverse City, MI, USA

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Mt. Bohemia:
Mount Bohemia, Grant, MI 49950, USA

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Silver Lake :
Silver Lake State Park, MI 49436, USA

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Ann Arbor:
Ann Arbor, MI, USA

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Frankenmuth, MI, USA

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Mackinac Island:
Mackinac Island, Michigan 49757, USA

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    • April Dawn Meyer profile imageAUTHOR

      April Dawn Meyer 

      3 years ago from Belle Fourche, South Dakota

      Have a great trip! :)

    • ChrisCampbell05 profile image


      3 years ago from Tampa, FL

      When going to Ann Arbor be sure to check out a football game at the big house. Go Blue

    • April Dawn Meyer profile imageAUTHOR

      April Dawn Meyer 

      5 years ago from Belle Fourche, South Dakota

      Thanks! :) I notice you are in San Diego. Love love love it there! I lived in Oceanside and San Marcos for 4 years. Miss it :)

    • Mel Carriere profile image

      Mel Carriere 

      5 years ago from San Diego California

      Ssounds like some interesting destinations. I've always wanted to see the Upper Peninsula. Are you a Wolverine? Interesting hub.


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