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Unique Fun in Northern Michigan

We've shared our visits to historic Petoskey, Michigan and amazing bucket list Mackinac Island MI. But that's not all there is to do in the area! Northern Michigan has a long list of unique, interesting and fun places to explore. It's a popular destination, especially amongst summer travelers.

Over the years, we've heard a ton of folks talking about Michigan's Upper Peninsula being a must-visit travel destination. But, there's a whole lot to see and do in Michigan's Lower Peninsula as well. During this visit, we were based in Petoskey and spent 8 days exploring as much of the Northern region of the Lower Peninsula as we could. Even though our visit was during the shoulder season, and not everything was open, we still had a great time!

In this video, we take you along as we cross the World's Longest Timber Towered Suspension Bridge, drive the famous Tower of Trees (the M-119 Scenic Heritage Drive) in the Spring, explore places to eat in Harbor Springs, Alanson and Moose Jaw, and stop in for ice cream at an original 1950s Dairy Queen!

All of the fun things to do that we feature in this video are easy day trips (25 miles or less away) from Petoskey, making it an excellent basecamp for exploring the region.

During our stay in Northern Michigan we found a seemingly unending list of hidden gems and unique places with rich history, but we just barely scratched the surface on all of the things to see and do. We can't wait to go back!


Mentioned In This Episode

Places We Enjoyed in the Northern Region of the Michigan Lower Peninsula
SkyBridge Michigan
SkyBridge Michigan

This is the third of our 3-part video series documenting this visit to Northern Michigan. We also documented our visit to historic Petoskey, Michigan and amazingly unique Mackinac Island, Michigan.

Hearthside Grove

FREE Things to Do in Northern Michigan

The "Top of the Mitten" offers a number of free, unique things to do.

The iconic Tunnel of Trees is a 20-mile scenic drive between Harbor Springs and Crossville. Locals suggest allowing several hours for the full experience including exploring the towns.

For more scenery, drive The Breezeway Scenic Drive along County Road 48 between Atwood and Boyne Falls.

Learn the history of the building of the Mackinac Bridge in the Original Mackinaw Bridge Museum.

Some local museums such as the Harbor Springs History Museum operate on donations instead of charging admission.

Take a guided tour of the Oden State Fish Hatchery.

Explore the many small towns and lighthouse views in the region.

Add to your World's Largest list with a visit to the World's Largest Cherry Pie Tin in Charlevoix.

Take a stroll through history on the 3-mile Mackinaw City Historical Pathway.

One of our favorite outdoor activities along the shoreline of Little Traverse Bay is searching for Petoskey Stones.

Tips for Visiting Northern Michigan

SkyBridge Michigan on Boyne Mountain is the World's Longest Timber Towered Suspension Bridge! It was built by the same company that built the SkyBridge in Gatlinburg, Tennessee. Like in Gatlinburg, the center of this pedestrian bridge is clear allowing you to see the valley floor below!

The grounds of the Old Mackinac Point Lighthouse in Mackinaw City are also home to the Straits of Mackinac Shipwreck Museum.

While the Tunnel of Trees scenic drive was pretty during the Spring, the prime viewing times are Summer and Fall for vibrant green thick canopies and Autumn leaf peeping of stunning Fall colors.

Many of the towns in this region have natural beauty and an interesting main street with beautiful historic buildings, local restaurants, coffee shops, breweries, wineries, art galleries and shops.

There are several state parks in the area that offer hiking trails.

Just a short drive from the Traverse City area is Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore and yet another scenic drive: the Pierce Stocking Scenic Drive.

Don't just rush up to the UP (Upper Peninsula)! Plan to spend some time exploring the Michigan's Lower Peninsula before you head north or on your way down. It's definitely worth your time on a road trip.

Our Basecamp for This Visit

πŸ“ Hearthside Grove Luxury Motorcoach Resort in Petoskey, Michigan

Our friends at Hearthside Grove are offering a Buy One Night, Get One Night Free Special (up to 5 nights FREE) for our community.

Northern Michigan Fun Facts


the Top of the Mitten

Great Lakes

Lake Michigan and Lake Huron

Also Known As

Northern Lower Michigan

Number of Counties


Approximate Population


Most Popular Tourist Season


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A Few Photos from Our Visit to Northern Michigan

Our Campsite at Hearthside Grove
Our Campsite at Hearthside Grove in Petoskey
Bob's Place
Try the Bloody Mary at Bob's Place in Alanson
Finding Wings in Harbor Springs
Finding Wings in Harbor Springs
Mackinaw City Historical Pathway
Historical Pathway in Mackinaw City
Riding the Chair Lift Up Boyne Mountain
Riding the Chair Lift Up Boyne Mountain
Original Dairy Queen
Original Dairy Queen

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Tom and Stacie

Tom and Stacie Langland
"RV America Y'all"

Hey y'all! We are Native Texans and (since 2018) Full-Time RVers sharing the adventures, challenges, and joys of RV life as we travel. We love camping and hiking in State and National Parks, discovering history, visiting interesting and quirky places, and exploring small towns. We're on a mission to experience life, not just live it with our dog, Star, and our cat, Astro. You can also find us on our original RV travel website, Thanks for joining us as we RV America Y'all!

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