It’s no secret that Michigan is simply overflowing with gorgeous places to explore. From coast to coast, our state is one of the most naturally delightful spots on earth — and we’re proud of it! While it would simply be impossible to list out each and every stunning locale in the Great Lakes State, we’re happy to provide you with a starting point. Here are 12 of the most gorgeous destinations in Michigan.
During these uncertain times, please keep safety in mind and consider adding destinations to your bucket list to visit at a later date.
1. Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore
Sparkling blue waters, sandy bluffs, and vistas that never seem to end… sound like paradise? Check it out for yourself with a visit to Sleeping Bear Dunes, which is full of never-ending delight. Whether you’ve visited a thousand times or are exploring this Lake Michigan destination for the first time, we promise you’ll be captivated.
Venture to Manistique for the outdoor excursion of a lifetime at these gorgeous natural springs. The water is strikingly clear with a marvelous turquoise hue, and the forested beauty surrounding the springs adds a whole new layer of beauty. Once you arrive, you might never want to leave.
3. Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore
Whether you’re interested in hiking, swimming, waterfall-chasing, or simply seeing the sights, there’s something to charm you and engage the senses at Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore. See these stunning rock formations up-close and personal during a boat tour, hike along various overlooks, or dip your toes in Lake Superior — what’s not to love?
4. Nichols Arboretum
This natural oasis in Ann Arbor is the perfect place to unwind and spend some time reconnecting with nature. Located just minutes from downtown, this large park offers hiking trails, direct access to the Huron River, and plenty of scenic beauty that will rejuvenate your body and spirit. It’s an absolute must-visit for Michiganders of all ages.
5. Grand Haven State Park
There are countless gorgeous beaches along the shores of Lake Michigan, and we wish we could include all of them — but Grand Haven State Park offers a unique charm. With beachfront access, a lovely pier, and some of the most breathtaking sunset views imaginable, there’s nothing not to love during an excursion to this wonderful West Michigan locale.
6. Fisherman’s Island
This delightful state park in Charlevoix will make you wonder if you’ve stepped into another time, one where simplicity and natural beauty abound. Take a stroll along the beachfront at this quiet lakefront destination, which offers a unique ambiance that everyone should experience at least once. No matter how many times you visit, Fisherman’s Island never disappoints.
7. Porcupine Mountains
Many people aren’t aware that Michigan is home to its very own mountainous region — but they're pleasantly surprised to discover the beauty of the Porcupine Mountains! If you find yourself in the Upper Peninsula, you absolutely must explore this gorgeous area. Hike along the Escarpment Trail, marvel at Lake of the Clouds, or simply settle in for a few nights of camping. This is Mother Nature at her very best and brightest!
8. Isle Royale
If you love getting back to basics and reconnecting with nature, Isle Royale is a wonderland that you’ll absolutely adore. There are no cars to be found throughout this magical island park, and you’ll find everything from moose to wolves roaming freely about the land. If there’s one word to accurately describe Isle Royale, it’s "unspoiled," and you’ll absolutely fall in love with its beauty and charm.
9. Tawas Point State Park
Tawas Point is sometimes referred to as "the Cape Cod of Michigan," and it’s easy to see why. In fact, the Sunrise Coast of Lake Huron is charming as a whole — whether you’re looking for lighthouses, sunrise views, or opportunities to camp along the stunning lakeshore, you’ll find it here. Don't forget your camera when you venture to Tawas Point State Park: the photo-ops are ample!
10. Mackinac Island
Every Michigander knows that Mackinac Island is an undeniably wonderful destination, but that won’t stop us from recommending it! Hop on a bicycle and make your way along this iconic island, which offers stunning waterfront views, friendly faces, and all sorts of historic spots to explore. Finish out your day of exploration with a hearty helping of fudge — sounds like heaven to us!
11. Lavender Labyrinth at Cherry Point Farm
This seasonal attraction might not be as famous as some of the others on our list, but it’s well worth the journey. Venture to the town of Shelby and check out Cherry Point Farm & Market, which houses an incredible labyrinth made entirely of aromatic lavender — this is one maze you won’t mind getting lost in. Each summer, countless visitors are stunned by the beauty of the labyrinth, and it’s not difficult to understand why. For more info, click
12. Tahquamenon Falls
Michigan’s most famous waterfalls are a true sight to behold, complete with rushing water, surrounding hiking trails, and plenty of access to the raw beauty of nature. There’s something completely mesmerizing about Tahquamenon Falls, and every member of the family will be in awe of the views that await.
This list only scratches the surface of Michigan’s most stunning natural attractions. We know there are countless other gorgeous places to visit throughout the state. Tell us about your favorite destinations in the comment section below, and happy exploring!