If you are excited about the launch of online poker in Michigan, you’ll be delighted to learn that the Great Lakes state has even more on offer than epic online casino games. Bursting with hidden places, Michigan is the perfect place for secret getaways and picture-perfect adventures.
Escape the crowds and enjoy a remote section of the Lake Michigan shoreline when you visit Arcadia Dunes. This 15-mile stretch of trails features golden sand dunes, pristine forests and a number of other picturesque landscapes – perfect for hiking, mountain biking, photography and bird watching.
Wander through the forests on the Baldy Trails, enjoy exquisite views of Lake Michigan on the Overlook Trail, start your mountain biking journey along the beginner-friendly Camp Trail, or frolic in fields of wildflowers on the Pete Wood’s trail.
Find this Michigan gem along West Michigan’s M-22, just south of Crystal Lake in the C.S. Mott Nature Preserve.
Chapel Rock and Beach Trail
Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore can be found along the shore of Lake Superior in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Chapel Rock and the Beach Trail, in particular, reward those willing to drive the gravel access road with pristine, untouched beauty. While most people can be found at the more easily accessed Miners Castle, Chapel Rock features miles of sandstone gorges and ends at a secluded beach. While Lake Superior is the coldest of the Great Lakes, a swim in this hidden gem will prove irresistible.
Detroit’s “Little Venice”
Detroit is probably the last place you’d expect to enjoy a peaceful canal ride, and yet, the eastern neighborhoods offer just that – along with the promise of rich culture and history. These meandering canals provide the chance to explore an era of Michigan where bootleggers and gangs moved shipments of illegal booze from Canada through to the US. The canals display lesser-known parts of the Motor City. Bring your own kayak, rent one on-site, or join a 2.5-hour guided tour. Bring your camera to photograph the historic Fisher Mansion, and be sure to stop at Coriander Kitchen – a farm-to-table eatery that offers canalside views and fresh delights.
Speaking of history and good food, Donckers, a landmark cafe on Washington Street, has been providing delectable goods for over a century to the people and visitors of Marquette. This downtown gem is one of the best places in Michigan for breakfast and lunch. They also have an exquisite selection of artisan chocolates and handcrafted caramels, as well as ice cream and candy made from scratch. Local favorites include Donkers’ iconic mac and cheese selection, classic burgers, and just about everything on the extensive breakfast menu – we’re talking flapjacks, waffles, french toast, scrambles, burritos and more! There are a number of vegetarian options too, not to mention their signature soda fountain – perfect for foodies passing through.
Another Detroit treasure, this time for art enthusiasts, the Guardian Building is an architectural wonder that earned its place on the list of National Historic Landmarks. This Downtown Detroit skyscraper is a “timeless depiction of creativity” and features an explosion of color and craftsmanship. Built in 1928, the Guardian Building is known as the “Cathedral of Finance” and the unique roaring twenties art deco style is both extravagant and unconventional. Enjoy a visit or host a truly unforgettable event here.
Discover Kitch-iti-kipi, or “The Big Spring,” off the beaten track in Palms Book State Park, Upper Peninsula. This freshwater spring is an incredible 200 feet wide and 40 feet deep, with over 10,000 gallons of water emitted by underwater fissures per minute, making it Michigan’s largest natural spring. With a crystalline surface, a diverse range of fish, and ancient felled trees, it’s no wonder Native Americans dubbed it “the mirror of heaven.” An observation raft will allow you to enjoy the pristine sights and sounds of this natural wonder.
For a day trip of culture and exploration, visit Lansing’s original Grand River settlement in Old Town. This mid-19th-century town is bursting with a collection of art galleries, independent restaurants, antique shops and live music. An eclectic town ideal for on-foot visits, with must-see spots including Great Lakes Art and Gifts, Grace Boutique and Elderly Instruments. With plenty of foodie spots, you’ll need to decide what you’re in the mood for – MEAT Southern BBQ for some traditional grub, The Cosmos for wood-fired pizza or Pablos for authentic Mexican fair.
Ocqueoc Falls State Forest Campgrounds
Take a Northern Michigan getaway and head to Ocqueoc Falls, 40 miles down the Lake Huron shore. Spend the day hiking, biking, swimming and exploring the largest falls in the Lower Peninsula before enjoying the serene wilderness around a campfire come night. With only 15 camping sites available, this site is rustic and remote. The ideal trip for family – furry friends are welcome, too!
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