The name of the state of Michigan derives from the Chippewa word for “large lake.” This state is really the epicenter for the Great Lakes in the United States. Michigan boasts shorelines from four of the five Great Lakes. When visiting the Great Lakes in Michigan you have your pick when it comes to selecting a lake. Michigan is known as the “Land of the Inland Seas” and the nautical lifestyle comes naturally to its residents.
Ports and marinas are a mainstay here and the horizon is speckled with sailboats, fishing boats and cruise ships. The lakes themselves have a deep impact on Michigan weather and have assisted the state’s farming efforts. Michigan leads the country in blueberries, cherries, and grapes and also has its fair share of vineyards and orchards.
The Great Lakes in Michigan give the state over 3,200 miles of coast including beaches and cliffs. The diversity of the land near the Great Lakes offers visitors everything from sand dunes to beaches to gorgeous waterfalls. Some of the best beaches in Michigan include the Oval Beach in Saugatuck, the beach at Ludington State Park, and Esch Road Beach. Lighthouse lovers can enjoy the over 120 lighthouses that populate the Great Lakes coasts.
Tourists spend over $17 billion a year visiting the Great Lakes in Michigan. Michigan is a global destination for scuba divers because of the Michigan Underwater Preserves that include 11 underwater areas where divers can explore protected shipwrecks. Nature lovers will enjoy the Pictured Rocks of Lake Superior, multicolored sandstone cliffs that go for 15 miles.
While in Michigan take a look at the state’s lone national park, Isle Royale National Park. This national park is actually an island located in Lake Superior. The park includes the Isle Royale and over 400 smaller islands. Other protected areas in Michigan include the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, and the Keweenaw National Historical Park.
For history buffs, a trip to Mackinac Island should be on the to do list. This island was a pivotal place during the Revolutionary War as the British sued it to control the Straits of Mackinac between Lake Michigan and Lake Huron.
The list of attractions and things to do when visiting the Great Lakes in Michigan is endless. You may find yourself needed to take multiple trips to soak it all in. If you truly want a Great Lakes experience, Michigan offers it all.