Growing up in Michigan I could write about many places around the state to visit, but there’s nothing quite like Mackinac Island in the summer! It’s one of the most beautifully unique places in all the United States. Where else can you take a ferry and cross over back in time to a land of no cars… only bicycles…. and horse and buggies?!?
Michigan has a slogan, Pure Michigan, which focuses on the beauty and tourism of the state, and in my opinion there’s nothing more Pure Michigan than Mackinac. It’s definitely a summer destination that just can’t me missed!
The island, itself, is about 13 km (8 miles) around and known for its bicycle tours around the island. In fact, the only transportation (besides walking) on the island are bicycles and horse and buggies since automobiles have been prohibited since 1898. During the summer months, thousands of tourists can be seen running or riding around the island while taking in the beauty and history of the Upper Peninsula. Stops along the way tell of the historic making of the area.
The Grand Hotel is a Landmark on the Island, with it stunning views and entrance filled with horse and carriage arrivals. Quaint roads are lined with old-fashioned stores for the inner shopper in all of us. The ever-so famous Mackinac Fudge is a delicacy you just can’t leave the island without – completing the package of this incredible destination.
Round out the experience with a camping excursion of views of the Bridge and the islands lakeside. There are many different campgrounds with lodging options from tents, campers, and even cabins. Cook up some smores, play a little badminton and enjoy family time around the campfire.
To get to the island, the only way is by taking the ferry over. If you prefer a day trip to the island, take the ferry over in the morning, returning at night. The short trip includes a tour underneath the Mackinac Bridge with many opportunities for some amazing pics on the water.
Once you’re on the island the only way to get around is by bicycle, horse and buggy, or by foot. Renting a bike once you get to the island is the best (and cheapest) way to get around. I highly suggest renting bikes and taking the trek around the island. It’s not only great excercise, but educational as well. You can learn all about the history of the island with various stops and educational signs and even historical relics along the way. Not to mention the amazing views as well!
You’ll be doing a lot of walking or riding so I suggest you wear a comfy pair of shoes. Flip-flops or tennis shoes – pick your choice of weapon. Either pair, make sure you’re little piggy’s are enjoying your time as much as the rest of your body is.
Mackinac Island…. a PURE MICHIGAN DESTINATION.