Michigan Nature January 14, 2017
Most People Don’t Realize How Many Islands Michigan Actually Has And They’re Amazing
The word “island” typically conjures images of tropical scenes and faraway vacations. With so many gorgeous destination islands garnering attention from around the world, it can be difficult to remember that some of these natural gems are located in entirely unique climates. Michigan, for example, boasts plenty of islands that are full to the brim with charm and beauty. Here are ten islands in the Great Lakes State that you simply have to see to believe.
1. Beaver Island
As the largest island in Lake Michigan, Beaver Island holds a unique and beloved charm for Michiganders and visitors alike. With 55 square miles of stunning nature, beautiful shorelines, and plenty of lodging options, your trip to Beaver Island won’t soon be forgotten.
2. North and South Manitou Islands
These breathtaking islands off the coast of the Sleeping Bear Dunes will absolutely steal your heart. Whether you’re hoping to do some serious hiking, spend a few days camping in the untouched wilderness, or simply explore the area’s early settlements, you will fall in love with the Manitou Islands.
3. Isle Royale
Venture far north for a getaway on this incredible natural gem in Northwest Lake Superior. The main island exists as part of Isle Royale National Park, which actually houses over 450 smaller islands. Adventurous Michiganders and tourists will be delighted by its flora, fauna, and abundance of outdoor activities.
4. Charity Island
If you’d like to experience this gorgeous island in the Saginaw Bay, sign up for a boat tour or dinner cruise from one of several privately-operated companies based out of the town of Au Gres. You’ll even catch a glimpse of the island’s famous Gravelly Shoal Light.
5. Belle Isle
Detroiters are well aware of the magic that Belle Isle holds, and this delightful combination of history and beauty truly never gets old. Visit the island’s historic aquarium, walk through its stunning plant conservatory, or simply sit on the shores and enjoy breathtaking views of the Detroit skyline.
6. Fox Island
These islands form an archipelago near the tip of the Leelenau Peninsula and are typically uninhabited. That said, the islands house a private airport that allows a handful of chartered planes to visit the gorgeous natural area each year. Lucky visitors to the island can check out the historic South Fox Island Light.
7. Mackinac Island
This one is a no-brainer. Most Michiganders have made at least one trip to the state’s most famous island, and it never disappoints. Hop off the ferry and take a bicycle tour around the island’s 3.7 square miles — you’ll build up just enough appetite to indulge in some delectable Mackinac Island fudge.
8. Round Island
This small, uninhabited island sits in the Straits of Mackinac. The island houses just one building: a beautiful red and white lighthouse that visitors to Mackinac Island often catch glimpses of on their ferry ride across the Straits.
9. Garden Island
Located near the Beaver Island archipelago in northern Lake Michigan, Garden Island occupies 7.8 square miles. It is notable for its Native American cemetery, which is listed on the National Registry of Historic Places. Today, the island is accessible only by private boat — but its history is fascinating.
10. Bois Blanc Island
This 35 square mile island in Lake Huron is an absolute must-visit location in the Great Lakes State. While commercial and private vehicles are allowed on the island, there are no official paved roads — but Bois Blanc houses a year-round population of 71 people. Hop on a ferry and make your way over to explore this one-of-a-kind Michigan location.
We know this list doesn’t include each and every beautiful island in the state of Michigan. So, tell us in the comment section below: which islands should we add to our list of must-see destinations?