Michigan Inns Offer Bed, Breakfast and Boating Get-Aways

Who wants to just look at a lake or a river when they can be on it? Michigan bed and breakfast inns can do more than give you a luxurious bed and a scrumptious breakfast: they can put on on a boat — nearby or in their own backyards.

Last week, we shared some great bed, breakfast and boating get-aways. This week, let’s share some more on-the-water fantasies.

Grand Lady Riverboat, Grandville MIWhen you stay at Prairieside Suites Luxury B&B in Grandville, you’re not just experiencing a piece of paradise. You are also just three minutes away from the Grand Lady Riverboat. On Sunday afternoons, bring a picnic lunch and enjoy a relaxing two-hour cruise down the Grand River. Come as you are: you don’t even need a reservation — just $15 bucks per person. Or enjoy a two-hour Happy Hour Cruise every Thursday at 6 p.m. With  a cash bar, food off the grill and live music. it’s a steal at $10 each.

Explore the Kalamazoo River at your own pace in a canoe or a kayak. Stop along the way to enjoy your picnic lunch, then return to the Park House Inn in the heart of Saugatuck — Michigan’s own version of “Cape Cod” —  for a soothing in-room massage to complete your day. For short-time rentals in the village and among the marinas, visit Big Lake Outfitters. For longer trips through miles of woods and  river delta, visit Old Allegan Canoe.

Dowagiac RiverJust 15 miles from Dove Nest B&B in Saint Joseph, a charming Lake Michigan port town, canoe the beautiful and historic Dowagiac River. You can choose from treks of up to 16 miles. Trip 1 takes you down a quiet river where the sounds of nature are the only sounds you’ll hear. Trip 2 steers you through the Dowagiac Woods, a virgin forest featuring wildlife and endangered species. Trip 3 ends at Arthur Dodd Memorial Park with restrooms, hiking trrails and a picnic area. Plan your canoe trip here. Get $20 cash back on your boat rental from the Dove Nest’s innkeepers.

Dewey Lake MichiganDewey Lake Manor B&B is in Brooklyn, between Jackson and Ann Arbor in south central Michigan. True to its name, the B&B sits atop a hill overlooking tranquil Dewey Lake. Just stroll down the hill to enjoy two paddle boats and a canoe. They are there just for guests’ enjoyment, complete with life jackets.

Torch Lake’s crystal clear, turquoise water is world renowned and central to one of Michigan’s famous “chain of lakes” — comprised of more than 100 miles of lakes connected by navigable rivers.

Torch Lake B&B overlooking lakeIt’s nice to look across the lake from the dining room of the Torch Lake B&B, but even nicer to enjoy it in one of the inn’s paddle boats or kayaks, provided free for guests during their stay. The innkeepers can help arrange jet ski or pontoon rentals or windsurfing or sailing lessons. For those who’d like to bring their own boat and stay, mooring packages are available. The B&B even moors seaplanes!

These first two blogs in a series of four extending through June have barely ruffled the surface of bed, breakfasts and boating. Stay tuned for Part 3 next Monday.