Michigan Off The Beaten Path

  • Take in the beauty - Stop often!
    Take in the beauty - Stop often!
    by ciaobellamici
  • Brys Estate Boutique VineYard & Winery
    Brys Estate Boutique VineYard & Winery
    by deecat
  • Methodist Church
    Methodist Church
    by LoriPori

Michigan Off The Beaten Path

  • Heidelberg Project

    Detroit Off The Beaten Path

    This is one surreal place. The area is not to far from downtown and pretty rundown. OK, VERY rundown if you aren’t from Detroit. In the midst of it all you come onto this street where the houses have been modified by a local street artist. Years ago the city tried to clear it all out but it came back again. Now it is run by a non-profit that is...

  • The Henry Ford

    Detroit Off The Beaten Path

    Henry Ford's obsession was to create a showroom of American manufacture. The main entrance is built in homage to Philadelphia's Georgian-style Independence Hall. Pictured here is the front staircase and entrance to the chandelier galleries. Inside, acres of displays pay tribute to all things 'Made in the USA', from rolling pins to wash machines....

  • Windsor, Ontario

    Detroit Off The Beaten Path

    Consider popping over to Windsor so you can set foot in Canada. You can take the Detroit-Windsor tunnel or the Ambassador Bridge. Completed in 1930, the tunnel is still the world's only international automobile tunnel and the bridge was the world's longest suspension bridge when it was built in 1929. Even now it is the busiest international border...

  • Henry Ford Estate

    Detroit Off The Beaten Path

    Automotive pioneer Henry Ford employed nearly 500 workers (carpenters, woodcarvers and stonemasons) to create his 'castle in the Midwest' in record time. Constructed of Ohio limestone, with rooms panelled in domestic and exotic hardwoods, Fair Lane evokes an Olde World feeling of comfort and ease. At the same time, American ingenuity is...

  • Cranbrook

    Detroit Off The Beaten Path

    CRANBROOK is a concept and a state of mind. Located in the tony northern suburb of Bloomfield Hills, the progressive pre-K to 12 grade college prep academy+art museum+grounds was created on excess acreage of the George Booth ( Detroit News publisher's) estate. In 2004 it celebrates a century of providing arts and education to the children of the...

  • Pewabic Pottery

    Detroit Off The Beaten Path

    This is where Mary Chase Perry started the whole Pewabic tile movement over a century ago. These ceramic tiles now decorate buildings and walls all over the world. The gallery/museum is a National Historic Landmark and is still dedicated to the ceramic arts. If you're wealthy, you can have your entire kitchen or bathroom decorated with their...

  • Ford Homes Historic District

    Detroit Off The Beaten Path

    Detroit may be the Motor City but Henry Ford's home town is DEARBORN, Michigan. The Henry Ford farmstead and his birthplace were here (subsequently removed to the confines of Greenfield Village). His estate home of Fair Lane is a short distance west of Ford Motor Company's World Headquarters, which stands proudly at Michigan Ave. near Greenfield...

  • Belle Isle

    Detroit Off The Beaten Path

    Just a short distance up Jefferson Avenue from the RenCen is Belle Isle, a large (700 acre) city park and island in the Detroit River. (It's an island but accessible by road.) It contains many recreational options including: - golf driving range and 9-hole course - swimming beach (if swimming in the Detroit River doesn't sound appealing to you,...

  • Kirtland's Warbler Tours

    I am a birdwatcher, and any serious birdwatcher who lives in North America must eventually go to Michigan to participate in the Kirtland's warbler tours that are operated by the United States Forest Service. This rare and endangered bird, numbering only 200 pairs, nests solely in a small area in central Michigan dominated by jack pines. The United...

  • Little Sable Lighthouse

    One of the oldest brick lighhouses on the Great Lakes, and one of the prettiest, this lonely tower stands 107 feet tall on the shore of Lake Michigan. On the afternoon of our visit a storm was brewing over Lake Michigan which made for a particularly dramatic picture. Little Sable has the advantage of being part of Silver Lake State Park and is...

  • Ramble along a river in Wolverine

    I am ashamed to admit that I have no idea what the name of this river is that runs along just outside of Wolverine. The most unexpected, besides the glorious beauty of nature, a couple of local people took me around. I went for a drive off the beaten path looking for wildlife which I never got to see. There are bear, elk, turkeys and all in the...

  • St. Julian's Winery in Paw Paw

    Having been to a lot of these country wineries over the years, you start to see that some are more than just run of the mill and St. Julian's is one of them. Perhaps because this is a true commercial winery whose wines are readily available in the region as far away as Chicago, they run a very nice tasting room and also offer tours of the facility....

  • Grosse Ile

    The Detroit River, connecting Lake St. Clair and Lake Erie, marks the boundary with neighboring Canada and is home to a bunch of islands. Most of these are part of the US territory, Grosse Ile being the largest as its French name suggests. Two bridges connect the island to the US mainland, the one to the north can be crossed from Riverview for a...

  • Wyandotte

    Just a few miles south of Detroit city center lies Wyandotte, a clean and quiet suburb located in the "Downriver" area, that is along the Detroit River in between Lake St. Claire and Lake Erie. Several historical buildings erected in late 1800 sport their elegance on Biddle, the main street, and one of these is the former Alkali Company - now...

  • Upper Peninsula - Pictured Rocks State...

    This was the first established National Lakeshore. Washed by the immense Lake Superior, main features are its colorful sandstone cliffs and sand dunes immersed in a pristine environment.Close to Munising, Castle Rock stands in front of turquois waters and is easily accessible with a short walk. The gently sloping Bridalveil Fall is visible from...

  • UP Cut River Bridge

    So there you are driving along two lane Hwy 2 and watching the bumper of some neo-zone nitwit who thinks 45 is the maximum speed limit. You think you want to stretch your legs and get some fresh air. All of a sudden, the Cut River comes up! What an opportunity! 230 steps to the bottom and then back up! Guaranteed to stretch the legs and lungs of...

  • Visit the Keweenaw Peninsula

    The Keweenaw Peninsula is far northern Michigan in the Upper Peninsula, UP in the vernacular. From Detroit, it's another world and 14 hours of travel by car. It can be more a part of Minnesota or Wisconsin as it's easier to get to the Keweenaw from there. Less traveled than much of the U.S., with northern climate of cool to cold nights and cool...

  • L'Anse

    L'Anse is located in a natural bay in Lake Superior where the largest Indian Reservation is located. Home to the Chippewa-Ojibwa tribe, this quiet corner features the typical beauty of the Upper Peninsula's frozen waters still at the end of April.

  • Copper Harbor

    Keewenaw, the northernmost county in Michigan, is where US Highway 41 ends. The last stretch of it is a wonderful drive through the forest before reaching Copper Harbor and Fort Wilkins State Park, the log-fenced structure of the old fort facing the placid waters of an inland lake.From this point, don't miss the beautiful coastal drive on M26...

  • Lighthouses - Lake Huron

    The Lake Huron lights (travelogue) are more of the classic style. There are fewer ports and more points that stick out into the lake. Shipping traffic is trying to reach Port Huron or the Mackinac Straits. Between, the 'thumb' of Michigan protrudes out and the area called Presque Isle. Presque Isle has a ships graveyard off shore, which divers...

  • Lighthouses - Lake Michigan

    The Lake Michigan Lights (travelogue) are among the easiest to see. That's because the entire coast has been developed into a tourist mecca. Lake Michigan is one of the more indented lakes with harbor potential. While other lakes did not develop some of the potentials, here, there are ports nearly every 20 miles. Each port needed a harbor light to...

  • Lighthouses - Lake St. Clair & Lake Erie

    Believe it or not, there are lights on the Huron River, Lake St. Clair, the Detroit River, and Lake Erie. All most all are to guide ships. Therefore, they are short, not very picturesque and often overlooked. The Lake Eire lights in Ohio, Ontario, Pennsylvania, and New York are more interesting as the Michigan ones are primarily to guide ships in...

  • Lighthouse - Lake Superior

    Lake Superior light (travelogue) are a mix use group. Almost all are warning lights at reefs, including the one that are entrance lights for the harbors of the Upper Peninsula. Many more of these are hard to reach as they are set out on wind sweep points. Even the harbor lights for Copper Harbor and Eagle Harbor are set on bare rock points. But,...

  • Another Reason to Visit Tahquamenon...

    If you haven't already visited the picturesque Tahquamenon Falls near Paradise, Michigan in the Upper Peninsula, you are missing out on a chance to view some of the most beautiful waterfalls around, as well as some great walking trails bordering the river. If you HAVE visited the Falls, then here is a reason to return- swimming in the Lower Falls!...

  • UP Superior Coast Winery

    Coming back up Main St from the locks we stoppd at a little winery in Sault Ste Marie that I thought was pretty cool. Not only do they make their own wine, with tastings and retail sales etc., but they will also make YOUR wine. They will sit down with you and design a recipe to your taste, then import the grape juice and ferment the wine. They also...

  • UP Marquette Memorial

    At first glance this is a tribute to Pere Marquette, the most important of the early French explorers in the region, but by no means the only one. Also detailed on the plaque are a dozen or more names, ranging from the relatively well known Joliet to the almost unknown Le Sueur Cadillac.

  • UP The Wigwam Chapel on Mackinac Island

    As you're walking around the base of the fort and thinking about a second helping of handmade ice cream from one of the shops you might want to drop into the wigwam chapel. The exterior might look like just a bunch of twigs held together with mud, but inside there is a diorama and some information posted about the early missionaries from France. It...

  • UP Castle Rock

    If you like a bird'seye view of the UP, you can stop here, just about two miles north of St. Ignace on I-75, easily visible from the freeway. These kind of rock formations really aren't all that uncommon aroudn the Great Lakes, but finding one you can climb is quite rare.

  • American Indian Pow Wow

    I just attended my first Pow Wow -- a traditional American Indian celebration. (I thought Native American was the correct term these days but they were using 'American Indian' so I will too.) At a Pow Wow, American Indians celebrate their ethnic heritage with dancing and rhythmic song. While you might expect they would be doing this outside around...

  • Leland

    Picturesque and well preserved fishtown offering nice view of the lake. Possible daytrip to Manitou Island by ferry boat.

  • Birdwatching In Jack Pine Forests

    The endangered Kirtland's Warbler (Dendroica Kirtlandii) is one of the rarest members of the wood warbler (Parulidae) family. It is a bird of unusual interest for many reasons. It nests in just a few counties in Michigan's norothern Lower and Upper peninsulas, in Wisconsin and the province of Onario and, currently, nowhere else on Earth! Its nests...

  • Manistee Nat. Forest Dunes Camping

    Between Manistee and Ludington on US 31 is Manistee National Forest. You can camp 400 ft. away from Lake Michigan in the dunes. The dune valley serves as an effective campsite: hidden from beach walkers, at the edge of the forest (firewood), sand is a great firepit, 2 minute walk to the lake for water.Furthermore, there are extensive hiking trails...

  • Bad Axe, Michigan and Pioneer Log...

    Near the tip of Michigan's thumb, on Hwy. 53, is the town of Bad Axe, Pop. 3,462, county seat of Huron County. In 1861, while surveying a road through here Capt. Rudolph Pabst made camp at an old hunters cabin where he found a worn out axe. The captain used the name on his survey, and later on his county map. The name stuck, although it was changed...

  • Point Iroquois Lighthouse

    Point Iroquois gets its name from an Indian masacre which took place here in 1662. A war party sent westward by the Iroquois Confederation was set upon and slaughtered on this point by an army of Ojibwas. The lighthouse was established in 1855 and the present sixty-five -foot tower and dwelling were built in 1871. This is a strategic point for Lake...

  • Old Presque Isle Lighthouse

    Of the dozens of lighthouses we have explored, this is our favorite. It is not as tall or as important as many other lights, but there is something about the character and charm of this one that we find particularly appealing. Built in 1840, The Old Presque Isle Light only saw service for about 30 years before the much taller New Presque Isle Light...

  • Grand Traverse Lighthouse

    The Grand Traverse Light, built in 1858, rises as a cupola from the top a the 2 1/2 story keepers house. Today the restored light is a museum and gift shop operated as part of a Michigan State Park. The house replicates a keeper's home from the 1920's and 30's. There is also a working fog signal building which is occasionally demonstrated. The...

  • Point Betsie Lighthouse

    Established in 1858, the Point Betsie Lighthouse is still active. The white brick tower, only 37-feet-tall, is attached to the front on the dwelling. When we were there in the summer of 2001, the dwelling was occupied by Coast Guard personel and off limits to the public. It will soon be turned over to Benzie County and opened to the public.To see...

  • Crisp Point Lighthouse

    This 58-foot tower on the shore of Lake Superior, inactive since 1989, is one of the loneliest lighthouses in America - REALLY off the beaten path. To find it, turn north off of MI-123, just a short distance west of Tahquamenon Falls State Park, onto County Road 412. The road is unpaved, winding and narrow with many forks. However, we were able to...

  • Lumberman's Monument

    In the Huron National Forest, west of Au Sable, on River Road Scenic Byway, is the Lumberman's Monument. Dedicated on July 16, 1936, the memorial was "Erected to perpetuate the memory of the pioneer lumbermen of Michigan through whose labors was made possible the development of the prairie states." Beside the monument is an interpretative center...

  • Wheels of History Museum

    This museum of the Bay Mills and Brimley area along Whitefish Bay is housed in a pre-1905 passenger railroad car and caboose. Exhibits include artifacts and photographs of area railroads, early telephones, logging, fishing and the Bay Mills townsite. The museum is open weekends, May 15 - Oct. 15, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.. From Memorial Day through Labor...

  • up by Frankfort, Michigan

    I took a fall color tour with a friend this last fall. This is an enormous barn which I had originally only saw in books and magazines. I got the chance to photograph it myself and it was enormous... When you just start driving around roads in upper Michigan you can easily get lost... but in a good way. Pretty soon you can find yourself driving...

  • Swin in Lake Superior

    A dip in Lake Superior can be a challenging experience. Many years the water is pretty cold, but at times it can be really nice. There are sandy beaches but much or the shoreline is pretty rocky.

  • Isle Royale

    Isle Royale is one of the least visited National parks in the US. Located on Lake Superior it provides a wonderful camping experience.

  • Michigan's inland lakes

    Aside from the Great Lakes there are many small lakes in Michigan. Cabins may be rented or camping can be found on many.

  • Lake Superior

    After spending a year at the University of New Brunswick, in Fredericton, I returned to BC with some classmates. We drove across the country in a Volkswagon van. After checking out the national government buildings in Ottawa, we headed to Sault Ste. Marie, and crossed the line into Michigan. Here we're travelling along Lake Superior on the south...


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Michigan Off The Beaten Path

Reviews and photos of Michigan off the beaten path posted by real travelers and locals. The best tips for Michigan sightseeing.
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