Michigan Nature June 09, 2022
7 Natural Wonders Unique To The Great Lakes State That Should Be On Everyone’s Michigan Bucket List
It’s no secret that Michigan is a beautiful place. There’s a reason our state is beloved among residents and out-of-state visitors alike – in fact, many of the attractions that set the Great Lakes State apart are decidedly world-class, drawing in tourists from across the globe. If you’re especially keen on the great outdoors, there are a handful of natural wonders in Michigan that undoubtedly belong on your bucket list. Round up a few adventurous loved ones, hop in the car, and start exploring these seven spectacular sites.
Kitch-iti-kipi, Sawmill Rd, Manistique, MI 49854, USA
You’ve never seen anything quite like Kitch-iti-kipi before. This brilliantly blue natural spring sits within Palms Book State Park in Manistique and boasts a long, fascinating history among the indigenous communities who first called this area home. Today, visitors can journey to the center of the water atop a floating observation deck and immerse themselves in the otherworldly atmosphere that makes this spring so unique. No matter the weather or season, this enchanting spot will capture your imagination.
2. Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore
Sleeping Bear Dunes, Glen Arbor Township, MI 49636, USA
Whether you prefer to experience nature along a scenic drive or up-close and personal, Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore will surely deliver. This collection of sprawling dunes, hiking trails, and beaches sits along Lake Michigan and consists of over 70,000 incredible acres. Some of the most popular activities within Sleeping Bear Dunes are Pierce Stocking Scenic Drive, the amazing Empire Bluff Trail, and the iconic overlook alongside a “dune climb” area. Don’t forget your camera when you check out this spot.
3. Turnip Rock
Turnip Rock Tours LLC, 115 E Spring St Box 507, Port Austin, MI 48467, USA
You’ll have to take to the water to fully appreciate Turnip Rock, but this should be no problem for most adventurous Michiganders! The rock itself, which sits a few yards off the shore of Pointe Aux Barques at the very tip of Michigan’s Thumb region, is a fascinating geological formation within Lake Huron. As you might have guessed, the formation gets its name from its turnip-like shape, caused by generations of erosion. While the adjacent land is private property, guests can rent kayaks or canoes from nearby Port Austin and paddle out to see the Turnip Rock up close.
4. Tahquamenon Falls
Tahquamenon Falls, McMillan Township, MI 49768, USA
There’s nothing more enchanting than a powerful waterfall, and Tahquamenon Falls certainly fits the bill. Situated within the aptly named Tahquamenon Falls State Park, Michigan’s largest waterfall absolutely commands attention from all who stop by – and with good reason. There are actually two separate cascades here (Upper and Lower Falls), which combine to create some of the most spectacular views imaginable for visitors who make the short trek from the parking area. In every season, Tahquamenon Falls will take your breath away.
5. Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore
Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, N8391 Sand Point Rd, Munising, MI 49862, USA
Venture to the shores of Lake Superior for an adventure within Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, a Michigan treasure that can be accessed via the town of Munising. The lakeshore is named for its expansive and colorful cliffs, which mingle beautifully with the impossibly blue waters of Lake Superior. Many guests opt to see the rock formations by way of tour boats, while others enjoy hiking to waterfalls and through forested areas to fully appreciate the rugged beauty of this region.
6. Porcupine Mountains
Porcupine Mountains, Carp Lake Township, MI 49953, USA
You might not immediately associate Michigan with mountains, but true Michiganders know that our state is home to a marvelous mountain range known as the Porcupine Mountains – or, more affectionately, “the Porkies.” The broader Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park is nothing short of massive, covering a whopping 60,000 acres and offering everything from rustic campsites to sprawling hiking trails to old-growth forestland. One of the most popular places within the park is Lake of the Clouds, a serene body of water that sits among the rolling hills and mountains and can be appreciated from a spectacular viewing area.
7. Silver Lake Sand Dunes
Silver Lake Sand Dunes, 1765 N Lakeview Dr, Mears, MI 49436, USA
Searching for a dose of otherworldly charm and beauty right here in Michigan? Silver Lake Sand Dunes certainly fits the bill, as this collection of sandy formations looks like something from another planet. Situated along the shores of Silver Lake (an inland treasure) and Lake Michigan near the community of Hart, the dunes are best explored by way of dune buggy rides and ORVs along the lakeshore. Whether you’re in the mood for a beach day or hoping to snap some unique photos of the endless sand, you’ll quickly fall in love with Silver Lake Sand Dunes and the ample opportunities they offer for adventure.
Have you and your loved ones checked out any of these natural wonders in Michigan during previous adventures throughout the state? Which of our selections were your favorites? If you think there are other natural attractions in the Great Lakes State that should have been included, share your thoughts by leaving us a Facebook comment or filling out our
official nomination form.
Can’t get enough of the great outdoors? You’ll want to read about this
scenic waterfront drive in Michigan. Address: Turnip Rock Tours LLC, 115 E Spring St Box 507, Port Austin, MI 48467, USA Address: Silver Lake Sand Dunes, 1765 N Lakeview Dr, Mears, MI 49436, USA Address: Tahquamenon Falls, McMillan Township, MI 49768, USA Address: Porcupine Mountains, Carp Lake Township, MI 49953, USA Address: Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, N8391 Sand Point Rd, Munising, MI 49862, USA Address: Sleeping Bear Dunes, Glen Arbor Township, MI 49636, USA Address: Kitch-iti-kipi, Sawmill Rd, Manistique, MI 49854, USA