Michigan vacation guide

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Michigan is situated in America’s Midwest, with amazing scenic spots and havens offering a variety of entertaining and sporting activities. From the music of Motown to the skiing in Crystal Mountain to the beaches of Mackinac Island, there is something for every visitor to this wondrous state.

Michigan consists of two peninsulas - The Upper and the Lower, separated by Lake Michigan. It is connected by suspension bridges, across the straits of Mackinac. It shares its borders with three of the Five Great Lakes of America namely, Lake Huron, Lake Michigan and Lake Superior. The state of Michigan offers outdoor activities like no other, from mountain biking, skiing, scuba diving and kayaking to fishing and boating. Naturally occurring fauna around the lakes include white-tailed deer, fox, beaver, bobcat and moose.

Michigan’s Upper Peninsula is the site of 1,700 miles of the shoreline of the three great freshwater lakes of Huron, Superior and Michigan. Hence it is filled with waterfalls, nature parks, miles of beaches and over 400 inland lakes, offering unlimited opportunities for camping and outdoor activities. You can hit the slopes at Gladstone Hill or go fishing at the Great Lakes, enjoy the beach at Brimley State Park. There are also several interesting museums showcasing local history like the rich heritage of American Indian settlements, the cultural mosaic of immigrants and history of mining, logging and fishing. These include the Valley Camp Museum, the Tower of History in Salt St. Marie, the Marquette Maritime Museum in Marquette and the Great Lakes Shipwreck Museum in Paradise.

Northwest Michigan has many recreational possibilities. Beautiful Petoskey is a longtime resort area. Mainistee boasts of the best rainbow colored trout in the world and Cadillac is a typical small town. Grand Traverse Bay is located on the shores of Lake Michigan. Traverse city is another big city of this region. It shares a very long shoreline giving ample chance for hiking and biking. It hosts the very popular annual weeklong Cherry Festival in July. Boyne City is another city of this Bay, nestled in Michigan’s forested hills, a spot for skiing and trekking. There are also facilities for golfing and wine tasting.

Michigan’s West Coast follows the shores of Lake Michigan. Twenty-seven miles of sandy beach line the coast of Muskegon. It has beaches, bike paths and excursion facilities. Grand Rapids is a big city and features attractions like the Frederick Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park and the Gerald R. Ford Museum. It has also preserved its heritage with a model Dutch village. Every July, the Muskegon summer celebrations offer a national get-together of music along the lakefront. In Grand Haven, in late July, there are festivities organized by the coast guard.

Southern Michigan features clear lakes and lots of entertainment. A prominent city is Kalamazoo, a bustling center, which offers cultural attractions, recreation and shopping. The Kalamazoo Nature Center features a three-story tropical rainforest exhibit and an 11-acre arboretum. The Kalamazoo Institute of Arts will attract art lovers. For some outdoor fun there is the Echo Valley Winter Sports Park offering tobogganing, ice-skating and tubing in the winter. The Air Zoo offers a collection of over 80 rare aircraft.

Battle Creek is another fun city with its Leila Arboretum, Full Blast family entertainment center and Binder Park Zoo. Jackson is a golfers paradise with 20 courses. Live music, comedy clubs, and dance bars make up for an exciting nightlife for visitors to South Michigan. It is also famous as Kellog’s cereal city. Benton Harbor celebrates its non-citrus fruit production with its Blossom-time festival, offers hiking trails to hot springs. St. Joseph nearby sells lighthouse collectibles and features the acclaimed Silver Beach.

Central Michigan home to Lansing the capital of the state is steeped in history. It is the site of the Michigan State Capitol Building since 1879. Mount Pleasant is north of Lansing and houses the Ziibwing Center, a museum dedicated to the heritage of the American Indians. There are innumerable opportunities for outdoor activities like horseback riding, hiking, fishing and hunting in places like the Sleepy Hollow State Park, north of Lansing. The area is filled with lakes, forests and streams waiting to be explored.