OT: Favorite Lake MIchigan Resort Town

Submitted by blockm97 on March 18th, 2016 at 2:22 PM

Planning family vacation this summer.  Looking to meander from South Haven to St. Ignace and hit multiple resort/touristy towns along the way.  

Make a case for your favorite town along/near that route.



March 18th, 2016 at 2:42 PM ^

Little Traverse Bay is the main theme of Petoskey and Harbor Springs. Enjoy them for a short while, then head north along Lake MI from Harbor Springs to Cross Village. Take M-119 aka as the tunnel of trees to Cross Village. Check out Legs Inn.

More? Wilderness Park, with its beautiful public access beach, is just beyond Cross Village; follow the road next to the lake to find it. Continue on to Mackinaw City, finally boarding a ferry to Mackinac Island.

There's a lot of fun and joy awaiting you in these areas. Enjoy!


March 18th, 2016 at 3:02 PM ^

Legs Inn is awesome.  It is a Polish/Eastern European restaurant that specializes in ethnic food and beer.  The waitstaff is primarily exchange students from Europe that come to Michigan for the Summer.

There is a biking event from Boyne Highlands to Mackinaw Island that has a halfway stop at Legs for lunch.


March 18th, 2016 at 2:30 PM ^

"1," is considerably quieter vs. nearby towns like Frankfort and Leland (these are definitely "resort towns") and Manistee and Ludington (these are more "small port cities" vs. "resort towns") ----- but it does have all the same things:

TWO lakes (Michigan and Portage), sand dunes, the beautiful M-22 drive is there, Lake Michigan sunsets, good food, nearby wineries, great golf (Arcadia Bluffs is <10 miles away and underrated Heathlands is right in town).

Anyway, that's my vote.  I go up there every August, and I know there are rentable cabins (typically somewhat cheaper vs. Leland and Frankfort) there as well.

Brady Elliott

March 18th, 2016 at 2:29 PM ^

Frankfort is a small little town on a harbor. Beautiful sunsets and near the sleeping bear dunes. There isn't a lot to do in Frankfort but that might be exactly what you are looking for.

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March 18th, 2016 at 2:32 PM ^

they're really bad, nothing to do, no water, food, booze, restaurants, beaches, boats or bars anywhere.  virtual deserts.   try livona, closer to lake michigan than you think. 


March 18th, 2016 at 2:45 PM ^

Now, now...you forgot to mention the things that used to be on the tour, like the former location of Ladbroke DRC and the former location of both Livonia and Wonderland Malls (all now primarily box store-anchored shopping centers), not to mention the childhood home of Bernie Carbo. There's also the opportunity to explore the old psychiatric hospital (which is actually in neighboring Northville Township, but not terribly far from a Macaroni Grill, if one is so inclined), the land for which Livonia once tried to acquire for a multi-use development, and all this is just for starters. 

Everyone Murders

March 18th, 2016 at 4:22 PM ^

Back in the day it was one of the largest cities in Michigan, but with no real downtown to speak of.  Some good public schools, and nice neighborhoods.

The downside is that it was rich in ugly strip malls and light industry.  And miles of laser-straight roads, so the place had a grid feeling that would have made Thom. Jefferson shudder.  The lack of a downtown, though, is what causes people to downgrade it (or caused people to).

Maybe the best description would be "a nice place to live, but you wouldn't want to visit there".  It did yield us one Lloyd Carr, who taught English there and also coached some sport.


March 18th, 2016 at 2:34 PM ^

Since I live up here, but Traverse City, Charlevoix, Boyne City, Petoskey, Mackinac Island, all great summer vacation spots on the lake.  Lots to do, just a matter of what you're looking for in particular.


March 18th, 2016 at 2:41 PM ^

I love Pentwater for the small town feel. Tons of little shops, and your usual array of outdoor activities.

Ludington is great for what I refer to as "the big city" feel (for a touristy city on the beach). A lot more activities here, more shops, chain stores, etc.

Really can't go wrong with any stop along west Michigan (I guess maybe you'd want to avoid Muskegon, unless you are looking to go to an amusement park). 

Enjoy your vacation!


March 18th, 2016 at 2:43 PM ^

I have a place in Harbor Springs, so I'm biased.  You can't beat Little Traverse Bay.

I also grew up in Manistee so I'm fond of that town too.