8 Wonderful Travel Adventures in Michigan
Although the air is still brisk in Michigan, the sunlight is brighter and stays around a little longer each day. Spring is coming, and it's the right time to plan a travel adventure! Whether you just need a quick getaway or are planning for an upcoming trip, Michigan has several beautiful destinations to consider.
Our top 8 spots offer getaways for families, outdoor enthusiasts, and adults to have fun, explore, or relax for a few days.
- Culture, History and Arts Tour. We’ll start our Michigan tour in the southeast area of the state. If you’re a history buff, art maven, or scientist, Michigan museums will feed your curiosity.
- The Henry Ford cultural community in Dearborn includes historical Greenfield Village. In the village, you can take a walk back in time to a working farm, tour Thomas Edison’s original lab, and ride in a Model T. The Museum of American Innovation and the Ford Rouge Factory Tour showcase the inventions and can-do attitude of America’s trailblazers.
- In less than one hour, you can travel from The Henry Ford to Rochester, Michigan, home to Meadow Brook Farms. This 1400-acre estate was once owned by American auto manufacturing pioneer, John Dodge. He and his wife Matilda built an 88,000 sq-ft mansion on the property. You can tour this 110-room historic home which still features original artwork and furnishings.
- About 10 miles away from Meadow Brook Farms, you’ll find the Cranbrook Educational Community, an education, research, and public museum complex. Enjoy the gardens and tour Cranbrook House designed by Detroit architect, Albert Kahn. Travel to the stars in the Cranbrook planetarium and learn about the dinosaurs that roamed in Michigan. Be sure to stop by Cranbrook’s Art Museum which features modern and contemporary works.
- Head 30 minutes south to the Detroit Institute of Arts. The DIA, with 100 galleries showcasing more than 65,000 works of art, is free to residents of southeast Michigan. While in the city, stop by the Motown Museum to see where some of the world’s greatest music got its start. The nearby Michigan Science Center has special exhibits and hands-on activities for budding scientists and engineers to explore.
- Frankenmuth. About 90 minutes north of Detroit, you'll find a remarkable city nicknamed "Michigan's Little Bavaria." From its architecture which is reminiscent of German towns to its tasty chicken dinners and German Beer, Frankenmuth delights all your senses. Frankenmuth offers a variety of experiences — romantic B&B getaways, family fun at the indoor waterpark, or outdoor activities such as kayaking, paddleboarding, riverboat cruises, fishing and golfing.
- Grand Rapids. Head west from Frankenmuth and in about 2 hours, you’ll reach Grand Rapids, the second largest city in Michigan. Founded in 1850, this city, dubbed ‘Super Cool’ by Expedia, offers opportunities to experience art, music, history, beer and food. Take a relaxing stroll through the Japanese Garden or Butterflies are Blooming exhibit at Fredrick Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park. Learn about the man who never expected to be president at the Gerald R Ford Presidential Museum. Looking for fishing opportunities? Try the Fish Ladder Park where you can cast a line. Spring at the Fish Ladder features a view of Michigan salmon migrating up the Grand River. On a rainy day, take a ride on the 1928 Spillman Carousel inside the Grand Rapids Public Museum. Adults can take a tour of more than 80 breweries found in Grand Rapids, voted Beer City in a nationwide poll.
- Holland. Less than 40 minutes from Grand Rapids, nestled along the Lake Michigan coastline, you’ll find one of “America’s Prettiest Towns” – Holland. This city and surrounding area are the perfect choices for those looking for a slower-paced travel experience. Plan a hike along the pristine beaches and a visit to The Big Red Lighthouse. The city’s Dutch heritage is evident at the Windmill Island Gardens which feature breathtaking tulip displays in early May. You can also learn about the history and sample the tastes of Holland’s many breweries, wineries, distilleries, and cideries.
- Sleeping Bear Dunes. Travel north from Holland about 3 hours to reach one of the ‘Most Beautiful Places in America.' Sleeping Bear Dunes’ miles of sandy beach and bluffs towering 450’ above Lake Michigan make this National Lakeshore a great place to create family memories. The park has several campgrounds open year-round and offers a Dune Climb experience. In the winter, the Dune Climb transforms into a Dune Sled The 3.5-mile scenic drive through the park is free.
- Traverse City. A short 40-minute drive east from Sleeping Bear Dunes takes you to Traverse City. The diverse features of the Traverse City area let you create a travel adventure that meets your needs. Looking for outdoor excitement? Try some late-winter skiing or snowboarding. Interested in a relaxing spa-like experience? The area is home to several resorts with indoor spas and beachfront views. The Traverse Wine Coast has about 40 wineries open year-round if you’d like to savor the best of Michigan varieties.
- Mackinac Island. This distinctive vacation spot is in Lake Huron between Michigan’s Upper and Lower Peninsulas. A 2-hour car ride and 50-minute ferry ride from Traverse City, Mackinac Island provides a unique escape to a different time and place. The island prohibits vehicles. You can travel around the island by horse and carriage, bicycle, or on foot. Visit historic Fort Mackinac where summertime visitors can fire the cannon! Take a free hike through Mackinac Island State Park to see beautiful vistas and remarkable rock formations. If you choose to stay at the Grand Hotel, which has been hosting guests since 1887, you can enjoy Afternoon Tea and a traditional evening dinner that includes dancing. Leave a little room for the island’s famous, delicious fudge!
- Pictured Rocks National Park. The last stop on our Michigan tour is Pictured Rocks on the south shore of Lake Superior. The name Pictured Rocks refer to the dramatic colors of the sandstone cliffs found throughout the park. Adventure-lovers can take an underwater diving tour or a 25-mile riptide ride courtesy of a Navy Seal jetboat. A Pictured Rock cruise past the parks’ 17 waterfalls or a glass bottom boat Shipwreck Tour might be the right choice if you're looking for calmer views. You'll create fantastic memories of the breathtaking sights and experiences of a trip to Pictured Rocks.
Ready to start planning your Michigan travel adventure? Level One Bank can help you set up a budget or savings account to cover your travel expenses. When you open a checking account with Level One, you'll have free access to every ATM in the nation while traveling so you can have extra dollars to spend on your trip. No wonder Level One Bank ranks among the Top 10 Best Banks in Michigan! Our passion is helping power yours – and if travel is your passion, we can help. Contact our team for more information.
“Travel is the only thing you buy that makes you richer” — Author Unknown
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