Mackinaw Manor Haunted Mansion is a fully automated haunted house, using the latest in animatronics, special effects and state of the art sound technology creating a frighteningly haunting experience for you and your friends.
The state of Michigan is cut into two pieces by the Straits of Mackinac, which join Lake Michigan to Lake Huron, allowing onward ship traffic to the other Great Lakes, canals and locks which lead into the Atlantic Ocean through eastern Canada. The northern portion of the state (the 'Upper Peninsula') was always quite an isolated spot at the best of times, so enough support was finally mustered to build a bridge across the Straits (completed in 1957) to allow easy access to the southern parts of Michigan where most of the population resides.
Mackinaw City is located at the southern end of this 4-lane (two each way) suspension bridge, which is just over 5-miles (8-km) long with the central span of 3,800 ft (1158 m) being the longest individual section. Part of the road surface consists of steel grating that relieves wind pressure which could otherwise result in a galloping failure of the structure. Because of the large bulk carriers that use the Straits to service Chicago and other ports along Lake Michigan, the bridge has a clearance of 155-ft above the water. We paid the $3.50 toll for cars and made our way across at the 45-mph speed limit without any problems.
Before the bridge was built, there were many ferries keeping the people and traffic moving. Nowadays, there are still quite a few of them taking tourists to attractions in the area, including the very popular Mackinac Island. We did not have much time to explore the area and, in fact, we spent the previous night 192-miles south in Saginaw, MI after another long day of driving. Luckily, Interstate 75 heading north to Mackinaw is an excellent highway through a sparsely populated forested area with a posted speed limit of 75-mph. However, once across the bridge, our progress dropped sharply as we drove many hours of secondary highways at 50-mph as we turned west and onward into Wisconsin.
Our most recent visit to Mackinaw City was appropriately during the 4th of July weekend. This time of year brings additional activities such as fireworks, parades and town festivals. It also brings an increase in the number of tourists. It is certainly not the time to visit if you’re looking to have the town to yourself, but if you’re looking for the typical summer vacation experience it doesn’t get much better. Mackinaw City displays a number of world-famous attractions from the bridge to fudge; however, the historic attractions clearly take the cake. Colonial Michilimackinac is a must see for every family. Plan on roughly ½ day to tour the fort. Daily activities include cannon firing and muzzleloader exhibitions. Historic Mill Creek can be found just down the road from Mackinaw City. A short drive into the wilderness and you run across a small, unassuming plot that holds one of very few working water-powered sawmills. This attraction features several exhibitions each day and miles of hiking trails. The Old Mackinac Point Lighthouse is also worth a visit. With just a short wait you can climb a staircase and see what it would have been like to man a lighthouse in the late 1800’s.
When you’ve had your fill of viewing these historic landmarks, it’s time to visit downtown Mackinaw City; this is where you’ll find a multitude of world-famous fudge shops and various local diners. Local favorites include whitefish and pasties. Although not world-famous like their fudge, both of these foods should be tried to fully understand the local history and culture.
For more information on Mackinaw City and Mackinaw Island including hundreds of pictures, please visit http://www.traveltheories.com
Walk it, drive it, bike it... but whatever you do - take pictures of it! The Mackinac Bridge is the main reason to visit Mackinaw City, and so beautiful you won't ever want to look away. It is the third longest suspension bridge in the world, and just turned 50 years old in 2007. Don't miss it! (You can't really!) :)
Be sure to visit Mackinac Island while you're in the area! You'll need to spend at least a day there, and you'll have to take the ferry to get there (see my Transportation tips). There is so much to do and it's such a beautiful, peaceful place! Don't miss out! Check out my Mackinac Island travel page - coming soon!
One of my favorite mini golf places! I think it's kind of old, but it's still so much fun. Neat design/decorations and the course isn't overly challenging (just fun!). It's usually less crowded than Animal Tracks because it's not right downtown. However, it's not open as many months as Animal Tracks is, so if you visit early/late in the season, you'll miss it.
Beautiful lighthouse - is a great subject for those into photography. You can also tour the lighthouse if you wish. The park area around the lighthouse is lovely, and we usually spend hours there taking pictures of the bridge and the lighthouse, having a picnic, walking along the beach, maybe even wading in the water a bit (if it's warm enough!). This spot is definitely the best place for photo opportunities.
A must-see in Mackinaw City. Especially interesting to history buffs, but even if you're not, it offers breathtaking views of the bridge and the lake. It is a reconstructed fort and fur-trading post that takes you back to Colonial times. There are interesting buildings to explore and many facts to learn. There are always activities going on like musket demonstrations and even a Colonial-style wedding in the church! There is also a barnyard in the back with horses and sheep. Probably a fun place to take the kids, but even as an adult, I enjoy it!
Animal Tracks is in a convenient spot downtown and is pretty fun, although I prefer the other mini golf place better (Trappers Creek). This one has beautiful landscaping, an interesting design, and there is a wildlife game you can play while at each hole (match up the prints/tracks to the correct animal). The only downsides are that it's a little expensive, almost always busy, and it's a little bit tougher course than Trappers Creek.
There are several places that you can reach the sandy beaches of Lake Huron, right in town. Some of the hotels along the east side of town are right on the water (note, this used to be the area where the ferries came and went, covered parking lots. Today, it's among the nicers hotels. If you're not staying over here, you can head to the north side where the public parks are. There is a small area, near the Old Mackinac Lighthouse (a 2 for 1 visit). Public parking, grassy lawns, limited beach space.
The other option is to head for the food of the Mackinac Bridge. Here you'll find the entrance to Historic Fort Michilimackinac. There's a fee to the park, but once your in, there is a large beach. I don't know that they encourage beach going, but the sand is there, the water's warmish (gets warm only late summer days). The park includes the fort, the bridge, and many other exhibits of old Mackinac.
Founded by the French in the 1600's. Occupied by the British after 1763 and finally transferred to the United States after 1790. Michilimackinac (pronounced Mich-il-i-mack-i-naw) watched the straits of Mackinac for decades.
Named for the straits, which are named for the island, which rose on the near horizon like a 'Great Turtle', i.e., Mich - great; mackinac-turtle, in Odawa (Ottawa). This is the same for Lake Michigan, upon which it sits, which is the Great-Michi, Water/Lake-gumi, gani)
You can't miss it, it stands above all else when you're in Mackinaw City, St. Ignace or on the Island. It's the Mighty Mac. Spanning the 5 miles of water between the peninsula's of Michigan the Might Mac connects the residents of the U.P. with those down south. As it was explained to me, by a resident of the Upper Peninsula, it is the bridge that provides the UP's reference to all those born in the lower peninsula as 'trolls'. You see, like in the nursery rhymes, it is the trolls who live 'below the bridge'.
Built in the late 50's. The bridge closed down the state ferry system and left only the railroad ferry's operating. Since that time, the bridge has become the symbol of Michigan role in transportation as much as the 'Motor City' is the place where most of the influence actually happens. So, while you're up here take a ride across the Mighty Mac. You'll love the view from the other side.
Well-preserved lighthouse, well-tended park which makes a good place for a picnic stop. I like to stop here if I'm heading south on I-75. I always feel that I've accomplished something when I've crossed the bridge!
You need at least two days to see the Island and thats moving real quick!Take a cariage tour with a local guide around the Island you will learn all the history first hand.See the Fort And othe great museums with a day rate family pass,this saves some money!Shop-eat the fudge! only 15 fudge shops last count!
NO cars means no cars,They do have a fire truck&ambulance and a power street sweeper to clean up after the horses!But they are out of site till your in bed,or a emergency!