7 Reasons to Get Outside During Michigan Summers
What are some things you can to do get out and enjoy the summers in Michigan?
Michigan is a wonderful place to spend time outdoors. The varied geography of Michigan provides outdoor experiences galore from the many sandy beaches, great lakes and inland lakes, and rivers and waterfalls. Among these natural features are endless destinations for spending time in nature, including hiking, biking, paddling, swimming, and sailing, with more than enough outdoor destination spots scattered across both peninsulas.
Here are Seven ways to get out and enjoy this beautiful State of Michigan.
Number one. Water is everywhere. Apart from the iconic Great Lakes, Michigan has over eleven thousand inland lakes to enjoy! From popular Torch Lake in the northern Lower Peninsula to smaller, private lakes scattered throughout the state. When you are in the beautiful State of Michigan you are “never further than six miles from a body of water and no more than 85 miles from one of the Great Lakes.” Along the thirty two hundred miles of shorelines and seventy six thousand miles of rivers and streams in our great state, there are countless paddle shops and liveries to help you safely take a trip down a river or around a lake.
Among the lakes of Michigan, islands abound with lots of vacation opportunities. Mackinac Island sits in Lake Huron, between Michigan’s Upper and Lower peninsulas. It’s an iland and resort area that’s about 5 square miles. No cars are allowed, just bicycles and horses. The only way to get there is by ferry and plane. The Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island underwent a $10 million dollar renovation so I’m excited to check that out this year. It’s one of my favorite places to visit.
North and South Manitou Islands are in Lake Michigan near Leland and are part of Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore where you can rent dune buggies for the day. Beaver Island, Isle Royale, and Drummond Island are some of the top islands for visitors. These islands are a short ferry ride away and most of them offer accommodations on the island including rural camping or comfortable stays in award winning hotels!
If you’re looking for a short drive to an island, you can visit Belle Isle near Detroit – it’s a 982 acre island on the Detroit River offering views of both Michigan and Canada. Belle Isle is home to Belle Isle beach, a golf range, Sunset Point, Belle Isle Aquarium, Anna Scripps Whitcomb Conservatory and the James Scott Memorial Fountain.
There’s always a festival going on in most towns throughout the state.
Most towns host hometown festivals, and many occur during warm weather. Music festivals, festivals themed around food or drink, art shows, flower festivals, and cultural festivals are just a few of the highlights that take center stage. Holland has it’s Tulip Festival in early May, there’s the Venetian Festival in Charlevoix In July, the Detroit’s International Jazz Fest is in August, and the Blueberry Festival in South Haven in August, just to name a few. Many of the Festivals can be found on PureMichigan.org website.
4. Great Golfing
Michigan is full of opportunities for a great golf getaway. Resorts and courses throughout the region breathtaking views and exciting challenges. Some of the greatest course architects have awarded Michigan the privilege of their top ranking work. My favorite courses are Dunmaglas in Charlevoix, Crooked Tree in Petoskey, The Jewel on Mackinaw Island is super cool because you have to take a horse and carriage ride to get to the course. Tree Tops and Michaywe in Gaylord, Eastern in Kalamazoo, Whether you are a seasoned golfer, or pick up your clubs once in a while, Michigan has opportunities for all at over 650 public courses.
5. Hunt for Treasures
No matter where you are, you’re likely near a beach or hiking trail through the woods. Michigan is a wonderful state to hunt for treasures. In the spring and summer months in particular, mushroom hunting is a common pastime and locals are reluctant to share the best spots for mushroom picking, but a bit of research will point you in the right direction. Other items to seek are various rocks and minerals. Beaches are a great place to collect quartz and beach glass.
A sunset on Lake Michigan is a beautiful sight to see and oftentimes a magnificent red or orange. Even if it’s a bit cloudy, the sun illuminates the entire sky with a beautiful array of shapes and colors. Growing up in Southwest Michigan, some of my favorite places to catch a sunset are South Haven, Ludington and Mackinaw Island.
7. Michigan Skies at Night
Michigan, and the Upper Peninsula in particular, offers perfect stargazing conditions because the Great Lakes surround the state in near total darkness. The result is an unrivaled viewing experience. Plan a late night road trip, or extended your camping adventure to areas away from city lights.
Whether you are looking for action packed adventures, unique shopping opportunities, luxury getaways, or a leisurely camping trip, there are endless examples of why summertime is best spent in Michigan. To stay up-to-date on great ways to explore West Michigan cities, subscribe to our Jaqua monthly calendar by visiting my website at MichiganHomeGirl.com and click the Contact Us tab.
Let me know in the comments below what’s are some of your favorite places to spend your time outdoors in Michigan!