Detroit September 29, 2020
9 Of The Greatest Hiking Trails On Earth Are Right Here In Metro Detroit
When you think about Detroit and its surrounding areas, you might not immediately consider its natural attractions. After all, most folks know the Motor City solely as a hotspot for automobile production and other manufacturing industries. True locals, though, understand that Detroit is home to plenty of outdoor splendor – including all sorts of stunning hiking trails. Here are nine such world-class spots.
We’re aware that these uncertain times are limiting many aspects of life. While we continue to feature destinations that make our state wonderful, please take proper precautions or add them to your bucket list to see at a later date. If you know of a local business that could use some extra support during these times, please nominate them here:
1. Stony Creek Metropark (4300 Main Park Drive, Shelby Charter Township)
This isn’t so much an individual trail as it is a collection of trails within one gorgeous park. Stony Creek boasts a whopping 27 miles of trails throughout its system, each offering its own unique scenery and terrain. Whether you’re strolling along the waterfront, searching for beautiful birds, or immersing yourself in forested wonder, a visit to Stony Creek Metropark will make you feel like you’ve entered a new world.
2. Nichols Arboretum (1610 Washington Heights, Ann Arbor)
If you’ve ever visited this Ann Arbor gem, you’ll understand why it’s truly world-class. This 123-acre wonderland takes visitors through trailways along the peaceful Huron River and features brilliant scenery in all seasons. Despite its proximity to one of Michigan’s most iconic and bustling college towns, the Arb’s hiking spaces make it feel like an oasis away from the stress of everyday life.
3. River Bends Mountain Bike Trail (45400 Park Road, Shelby Charter Township)
This four-mile loop trail is abundant with greenery during the warmer months and equally as magnificent when you stop by in the fall or winter. With everything from wooden stairways to lovely treetop coverage, there’s a sense of natural wonder here that will keep you returning time and time again - whether you’re on a mountain bike or on foot.
4. Blue Heron Lagoon Trail (198 Lakeside Drive, Detroit)
If you’re looking for a hiking opportunity that won’t take you too far from downtown, check out the Blue Heron Lagoon Trail on Belle Isle. Our city’s beloved island park is always worth exploring, but it’s particularly magical when you take to the trailway for a stroll. This 2.2-mile gem features plenty of fresh air and unbeatable views of the Detroit River - along with Blue Heron Lagoon itself.
5. Crosswinds Marsh (27600 Haggerty Road, New Boston)
We firmly believe that everyone, whether or not they hail from Detroit, should explore Crosswinds Marsh at least once. There are a variety of hiking options throughout this pretty locale, including sprawling boardwalks and forested wonder. If its trail elements weren’t enough, the park’s history is equally fascinating: the marsh itself is manmade and bald eagles have been spotted making their home here.
6. Macomb Orchard Trail
This 23-mile trail is nothing short of amazing, offering plenty of wide-open space for those who need to stretch their legs or spend time appreciating the great outdoors. Whether you’re jogging, walking, or rollerblading with pals, this incredible trail near the Motor City will capture your heart. Its paved pathway and variety of habitats make it a wonderful option for those who wish to explore Metro Detroit on foot.
7. Paint Creek Trail (Oakland County)
This exceptional trail extends for just under nine miles and follows the path of a former Michigan railroad line. Paint Creek Trail is anything but an ordinary hiking spot: in fact, the pathway features everything from historical markers for a former sawmill to fishing options along the water. Along the way, you’ll even find a variety of rest areas where you can rejuvenate before continuing your trek.
8. Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge (Grosse Ile Township)
Jointly managed by both the U.S. and Canada, this amazing spot is North America’s only international wildlife refuge. If that alone isn’t enough to make you want to stop by, the area’s beauty is equally amazing, featuring some 6,000 acres of wetlands, forests, and waterfront. While access to the refuge is currently limited, you’ll want to add this spot to your bucket list.
9. Dequindre Cut (Detroit)
There’s nothing more wonderful than spending a day along this greenway, which extends for two miles through the Motor City and offers great views of the Detroit River, all sorts of public art, and some of the metropolis’ most unique neighborhoods. Whether you’re on a bike or on foot, you’ll find a way to appreciate this one-of-a-kind urban pathway.
Are there any other amazing hikes or trailways in and around Detroit that we should be aware of? Share your favorite outdoor experiences with us by leaving a Facebook comment or make an official recommendation by filling out our nomination form
For another great place to hike, check out the
Thomas Edison Parkway near Detroit. Address: Detroit, MI, USA