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15 Best Things to Do in Michigan




Find inspiration in your travels – from the scenic parks to rugged trails. Whether you are an outdoor lover, an art enthusiast, or an aspiring engineer – all are welcome here. Here are the best things to do in Michigan:

1. Visit the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore

Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore

Source: Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore | Instagram/austrian_world_traveler

Many visitors keep flocking to America’s first National Lakeshore because of the pristine beaches, challenging and fun trails, and amazing views of the sandstone cliffs. The dramatic multicolored Pictured Rocks cliffs are too breathtaking for words. The Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore is open year-round 24 hours a day, with no entrance fee! It may be tough to get here during winter because many roads are closed due to heavy snow.


  • Backcountry Camping
  • Boating
  • Hunting
  • Swimming & Diving
  • Guided Tours
  • Day Hiking

2. Have an Enjoyable Experience at Rainbow Ranch

Rainbow Ranch

Source: Rainbow Ranch

Visiting Western Michigan? Try this family-friendly horseback riding activity. The place is home to gentle and well-trained horses, and their wranglers are experienced to make sure you get the best fun! Travel along the beautiful shaded trails and see wildlife up close while on a horseback ride. Surely, you’d get the Old West experience when you come to Rainbow Ranch.

3. Discover Global Works at the Detroit Institute of Art

Detroit Institute of Art in Michigan

Source: Detroit Institute of Art

Exploring what the Detroit Institute of Art has to offer is indeed one of the best things to do in Michigan. Here, you’ll see more than 100 galleries of more than 65,000 works. There is also an art reference library and a state-of-the-art conservation services laboratory. On the other hand, the auditorium and lecture or recital hall are used during special events. Visit now to see what exhibitions are on view.

4. Embrace Art and Nature at the Frederik Meijer Gardens

Art and nature is always a good combination.

Explore the wonderful masterpieces at Frederik Meijer Gardens, the nation’s premier horticultural display gardens and sculpture parks in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

The Must-Sees:

  • Acclaimed Orchid Wall
  • Cabin Creek
  • Tropical Birds
  • The American Horse
  • Working Model for Divided Oval: Butterfly
  • Equal Intervals, Equal Elevations
  • Neuron
  • Acclaimed Orchid Wall
  • The Wardian Case

Aside from these beautiful spots, the Frederik Meijer Gardens also conducts classes and camps, as well as interactive sculpture activities for families!

5. Explore Mackinac Island

Mackinac Island

Source: Mackinac Island | Visit the USA

Looking for the best summer destination in Michigan? Mackinac Island is a place where you can find the most unforgettable sunsets and awe-inspiring sunrises! You’ll love the Jewel of the Great Lakes’ historic sites, shopping spots, and diverse dining offerings. Plus, this national landmark has no cars and no chain hotels, so you will be encouraged to connect with the place and its people.

6. Eat, Stay, and Play at Greektown Casino

Greektown Casino

Source: Greektown Casino | Getty Images/Wolfgang Kaehler

No matter what your tastes are, you’ll get the perfect night out at Greektown Casino! The fun never stops because you can play at the slot machines, table games, video poker, and more. Or if you’re looking for a different fun, you can head straight to the fitness center or the nightclub at Hotel Greektown Casino.

7. Get the Greatest Manufacturing Experience by Joining a Ford Rouge Factory Tour

This place is a must-visit for all car enthusiasts. The Ford Rouge Factory Tour will give you an inside look at the making of Ford F-150, America’s most iconic truck. You can also immerse yourself in the progressive concepts of modern manufacturing, and rev up your inner engineer! Joining this tour will surely give you an awe-inspiring encounter with America’s manufacturing past, present, and future.


  • Open Monday – Saturday
  • 9:30 am – 5 pm (the last tour leaves at 3:00 pm)
  • All tours begin with a bus ride (approximately 15 to 20 minutes) from The Henry Ford to the Ford Rouge Factory Tour Visitor Center.

8. Survey the Manicured Gardens at Windmill Island Gardens

This is a frequented tourist attraction that treats its guests to the only authentic Dutch windmill in the US, 36 acres of manicured gardens, dikes, and canals. You can also meet the Dutch-certified miller who will show you the milling process in action. Explore a bit further and you’ll find a hand-painted Dutch carousel, picnic spots, children’s playground, and more.

What you should know:

  • You’ll see more than 100,000 tulips in bloom throughout the Gardens during the spring season.
  • There are only limited food concessions in the gift shop. But visitors can try Tante Nellie’s Kitchen, which serves authentic dutch cuisine during Tulip Time (except Sundays).
  • Pets are allowed inside except at the windmill and gift shop areas due to food processing. Owners should put a leash on their dogs.

9. Enjoy Outdoor Fun at Mount Bohemia Adventure Resort

Mount Bohemia Adventure Resort Michigan

Source: Mount Bohemia Adventure Resort

Partaking in outdoor fun is one of the best things to do in Michigan! The Mount Bohemia Adventure Resort has the highest vertical drop in the Midwest – making it a true treasure for all types of backcountry skiers and riders. If it’s your first time here, try the snowcat skiing. In this activity, you’ll be riding a 20-person cab on the snowcat machine and taken to a remote mountain. In this case, you’ll reach Voodoo Mountain.

There are also plenty of summer adventure activities to choose from: hot tub/sauna, bike, hike, kayak, paddleboard, fish, pontoon boat or a yoga retreat!

10. Check out the Interactive Exhibits at the Gerald Ford Presidential Museum

Gerald Ford Presidential Museum

Source: Gerald Ford Presidential Museum | National Archives

Plan a visit to this historical place. The Gerald Ford Presidential Museum is the presidential museum and burial site of the former U.S. President Gerald R. Ford along with wife Betty Ford. Here, you’ll see exhibits, library and digital collections, as well as museum artifacts that speak about the life and times of Gerald Ford.

11. Explore Local Food Innovation at the Downtown Market

Take your partner out to a local downtown market that will give you the best food experience. The Downtown Market has over 20 indoor market vendors, 2 restaurants, and monthly outdoor market events and activities sure to keep you entertained and full.

Some of the events and classes include:

  • Spicy Saturday (an event wherein fiery flavors are served throughout the market hall on Saturdays)
  • Mediterranean Made Easy (culinary class to help you master the Mediterranean region’s cooking)
  • Cooking with Craft Beer (a culinary class that teaches how you can use the best craft brews in your dishes

12. Make a Splash at Zehnder’s Splash Village Hotel & Waterpark

Explore the Zehnder’s Splash Village Hotel & Waterpark and enjoy over 50,000-square feet of aquatic fun and adventure! This place is said to be one of the few indoor waterpark hotels in the Midwest that offer two distinct aquatic adventures perfect for the whole family. Enjoy the 6-story family raft ride, The Supper Loop (6-story speed slide), water basketball, zero-entry pool with water geysers and more! Or if you want to just float along the Crooked Brook Creek Lazy River, that’s fine too.

13. Grab a Spot in the Sand at Saugatuck Dunes State Park

This well-maintained park makes for a fun hike in the forested woods that will lead to the sand dunes. There’s also a trail that will take you down to Lake Michigan. Grab a spot and just relax. This place is a good place to be.

14. Discover the Shipwrecks of the Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary

Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary Michigan

Source: Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary | National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

The Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary was designated to protect and conserve maritime heritage. Unsurprisingly, many say only a few places on the planet can compete with the diversity of the National Marine Sanctuary System as a travel destination. The wrecks within the sanctuary waters can be explored by inquisitive divers, snorkelers, and paddlers.

15. Treat Your Inner Bibliophilia at John K. King Used & Rare Books

John K. King Used & Rare Books

Source: John K. King Used & Rare Books | Flickr/Daniel Epstein

There are a million books in stock at one of Business Insider’s “World’s Best Bookstores.” John K. King definitely made a reputation among book lovers that speaks for itself. This place has a myriad of books, archives, autographs, etc. including the books and papers of sports stars, celebrities, and other collectors.

Share with us your favorite activity in the comments below!

A writer big on nature, travel, and dogs. If you can't find Errot with her furry pal, then she's probably out exploring.

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