The Ultimate Summer Experiences in Michigan: 30+ Places to Visit

Michigan, with its ever-changing seasons, truly shines during the summer months. If you plan a trip to the Great Lakes State this season, add some of these captivating experiences to your Bucket List! Michigan has something for everyone, from July 4th celebrations to outdoor adventures to cultural experiences. Follow along as we highlight our Top 30+- #MichBnB Summer Experiences:

Fireworks seen from House on the Hill B&B.
The local July 4 fireworks in Ellsworth can be viewed from the porch and front yard of House on the Hill B&B.

Attend a 4th of July Fireworks Display

  • Field of Flight Airshow and Balloon FestivalBattle Creek, Michigan, hosts one of the largest fireworks displays in the state of Michigan every year. The Field of Flight Airshow and Balloon Festival lasts all weekend and includes fun activities such as carnival, entertainment, and specialty acts. 

#MichBnB Member close-byKalamazoo House B&B

  •  Boyne City 4th of July Festival– Get ready for a dazzling display of patriotism at the Boyne City 4th of July Festival, a nationally acclaimed event that promises unforgettable memories. As the sun sets, gather along the shores of Lake Charlevoix and prepare to be mesmerized. At precisely 10:30 pm, the night sky erupts with brilliance.  The festivities span three days, ensuring nonstop excitement. There’s something for everyone, from the grand parade winding through downtown Boyne to thrilling activities like corn hole tournaments, water slides, and delectable food trucks.

#MichBnB Member close-by House on the Hill B&B & Torch Lake B&B

#MichBnB Member close-by- The Looking Glass Beachfront Inn & Washington Street Inn

  • 4th of July at the National Cherry Festival If you are in Traverse City, Michigan, for the National Cherry Festival, plan on staying for the spectacular fireworks display. The National Cherry Festival draws in tens of thousands of visitors for its weeklong festivities, and the fireworks display on the fourth of July can be viewed from many great viewing spots on the south end of West Grand Traverse Bay.

#MichBnB Member close-by Country Hermitage B&B iWilliamsburg and Wellington Inn&  Grey Hare Inn in Traverse City

  • Summer Magic in Detroit: Fireworks, Festivals, and Fun Visit Detroit to experience all the summertime magic in the motor city. From late June to mid-July, Metro Detroit hosts a lineup of festivals and exhibits, culminating in a breathtaking fireworks show. If you miss the early summer displays, catch the Friday Night Tigers home game for a post-game fireworks extravaganza.

#MichBnB Member close-by- The Frederick Stearns House Historic Inn & The Cochrane House

  • Many of the small quaint towns of Michigan have their unique celebrations.
Horse drawn carriage in Frankenmuth
Horse-drawn carriage in Frankenmuth

Enjoy an Old-Fashion Carriage Ride in Frankenmuth

Frankenmuth, Michigan’s Little Bavaria, offers a delightful blend of German-inspired charm and Midwest hospitality. Enjoy a romantic carriage ride around this quaint town and savor the world-famous chicken dinners at Zehnder’s of Frankenmuth and the Bavarian Inn Restaurant. These iconic eateries pay homage to German heritage and serve authentic delights like Schnitzel and Sauerbraten. For more details about this delightful town, check out this past article.

#MichBnB Members close-byFrankenmuth Country B& B &  the Historic Webster House in Bay City

Woman biking on green grass
Bike to the beach from Goldberry Woods.

Hop on a Bike

Michigan is filled with bike trails and picturesque country roads. Many of our members provide bikes for you to use during your stay. Check out this article for staying at Michigan bike trails and member inns.

Young woman at a farmers market

Savor Fresh Flavors at Local Farmer’s Markets

With its abundant farms, orchards, and vineyards, Michigan beckons food enthusiasts to explore its culinary treasures. As one of the most agriculturally diverse states in the nation, Michigan proudly produces a bounty that ranges from crisp apples and tart cherries to juicy blueberries, asparagus, and cucumbers.

While local restaurants incorporate these flavors into their dishes, nothing beats the authenticity of a farmer’s market. Here, you can savor what’s locally fresh and in season directly from the hands of passionate growers. Whether you’re seeking plump berries, crisp veggies, or artisanal treats, farmers’ markets offer a delightful sensory experience. Michigan communities host farmers markets year-round, but a few stand out as true destinations:

  • Eastern Market in Detroit: With over 250 independent vendors, Eastern Market buzzes with energy. It’s a food lover’s paradise, from farm-fresh produce to artisanal cheeses and handcrafted goods.
  • Flint Farmers Market: Open year-round, this market invites you to explore stalls brimming with local delights. Grab a jar of homemade jam, sample Michigan wines, and discover unique snacks for your journey.
  • Ann Arbor’s Farmer’s Market- Ann Arbor has an array of farms, farmers markets, and farm stands. A thriving farm-to-table movement in the community reaches from home kitchens to restaurant dining rooms. The Ann Arbor Farmers Market is open year-round, bringing local farm-fresh produce and more to the community every week.

So, spread the jam, sip the wine, and embrace the flavors of Pure Michigan. Life tastes better when it’s seasoned with local goodness!

Be Captivated at a Botanical Garden

Michigan is home to several beautiful botanical gardens where you can immerse yourself in nature’s splendor. Here are some worth exploring:

  • Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park in Grand Rapids- This 158-acre gem combines spectacular botanical gardens with world-class art. Explore three indoor conservatories featuring carnivorous, tropical, and arid plants. Don’t miss the elegant Japanese garden and outdoor-themed gardens.

#MichBnB Member close-by- Leonard at Logan House, The Parsonage Inn & Prairieside Suites B&B

  •  University of Michigan Matthaei Botanical Gardens in Ann Arbor-  Covering 350 acres, these gardens offer diverse landscapes. Wander through mature hardwood forests, perennial gardens, wetlands, and conservatory displays. The Matthaei Botanical Gardens Trail connects to multi-use trails for hiking and biking across Washtenaw County

#MichBnB Member close-by- The Baxter House B&B,  Burnt Toast B&B & The Newton of Ypsilanti

  • W.J. Beal Botanical Gardens at Michigan State University, East Lansing- Established in 1873, this is the oldest continuously operating university botanical garden in the U.S. Explore over 5,000 plant species, including fruits, vegetables, flowering plants, and rare species.

#MichBnB Member close-by- Knob Hill B&B  in Flint

  •  The Botanic Garden at Historic Barns Park in Traverse City- Set on Traverse City’s western edge, this 25-acre botanical garden showcases native plant life from northwest Michigan. Stroll through hardwood trees and admire wildflowers. Guided tours provide insights into the park’s historic barns

#MichBnB Member close-By- Country Hermitage B&B iWilliamsburg,  Wellington Inn & Grey Hare Inn in Traverse City

Bicyclist rides past a colorful mural
A bicyclist rides past a vibrant mural on the Dequindre Cut in Detroit. When you stay at either Frederick K Stearns House or Cochrane House Luxury Historic Inn, you can pedal from their parking lots to Eastern Market, where the trail starts. (Photo: Jesse David Green)

Check out Michigan’s Art Scene

Michigan’s art scene is a dynamic tapestry that weaves creativity, heritage, and diverse expressions together. Michigan’s art and culture are drawn from the rich heritage of Indigenous tribes and the rise of the automobile industry in Detroit during the early 20th century, which transformed Michigan’s cultural landscape. Immigrants from diverse backgrounds infused their traditions into local art and culture.

  • The Detroit Institute of Arts, founded in 1885, became a cultural icon, acquiring significant works of art.
  • Detroit Institute of Arts (DIA) is a premier museum in the U.S., home to over 60,000 works of art spanning ancient to contemporary.
  • Grand Rapids Art Museum  From Renaissance to modern art, this museum showcases diverse collections, including notable works like Richard Diebenkorn’s “Ingleside
  • Cranbrook Art Museum, Located in Bloomfield Hills, features contemporary art exhibitions and architectural gems on the Cranbrook Educational Community campus.
  • Ann Arbor Film Festival A hub for avant-garde cinema, celebrating experimental and independent filmmakers.
  • Art Coast of Michigan Saugatuck & Douglas has art galleries and the renowned Ox-Bow School of Art.

During the summer, Michigan’s streets and towns come alive with public art. From bustling cities like Flint and Grand Rapids to quaint towns like Elk Rapids and Ypsilanti,  murals, sculptures, and installations captivate passersby.

Fishing Boat on Lake Michigan at sunset

Go Fishing

Michigan, with its abundant freshwater resources, offers an angler’s paradise. Whether you’re a seasoned pro or a novice with a fishing rod.  Michigan boasts over 11,000 inland lakes, each with its own character. From serene small ponds to expansive bodies of water, these lakes harbor various fish species.  Explore the freshwater giants—Lake Superior, Lake Michigan, Lake Huron, and Lake Erie. These vast lakes teem with salmon, trout, walleye, and more. The warm waters of summer mean bass season! Smallmouth bass and largemouth bass thrive in Michigan’s lakes. Additionally, panfish like bluegill and crappie are abundant.

Woman kayaking on the river in a red kayak

Kayaking the AuSable River with Borchers AuSable Canoe & Kayak

Paddle the Inland Waterways

Rent a kayak or canoe and explore Michigan’s serene inland lakes and rivers. Popular choices include the Chain of Lakes near Traverse City and the Au Sable River.

Close-up of a giraffe's head with blue sky in the background

Check out the Detroit Zoo

The Detroit Zoo spans over 125 acres; it houses an impressive collection of 2,400 animals representing 235 species. Established in 1883, the zoo’s exhibits span the globe, featuring creatures from every continent.  Whether exploring the Arctic Ring of Life, encountering the Great Apes of Harambee, or marveling at the Polk Penguin Conservation Center, the Detroit Zoo promises an unforgettable experience for all ages.

Couple tasting wine with a wine barrel behind them

Check out the Michigan Wine Trails

If you’re looking for a new wine country to visit, look no further than Michigan. Michigan’s wine region boasts five American Viticultural Areas (AVAs), six wine trails, and one sub-wine region, all waiting to be explored.

  • Lake Michigan Shore Wine Trail- Located in the southwest corner of Michigan, this trail winds along Lake Michigan’s shores. 
  • Leelanau Peninsula Wine Trail- Nestled in scenic northern Michigan, this trail is part of the Leelanau Peninsula AVA
  • Old Mission Peninsula Wine Trail- Explore this trail on the Old Mission Peninsula, north of downtown Traverse City. Surrounded by water, this area constitutes its own AVA.
  • Petoskey Wine Region Trail- Located in the Tip of the Mitt AVA, this trail boasts 16 unique stops ranging from rustic to trendy.
  • River Raisin Wine Trail-Launched in 2023, this trail unites four wineries in southeastern Michigan:
  • U.P. Wine Trail- Embark on an epic road trip and “uncork the north” on this trail, which connects seven wineries spread throughout Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.

Cheers to discovering Michigan’s wine country! Since these wine trails are throughout Michigan, you can find a #MichBnB member near them all. A special shout out to Vintage Inn at Veritas Estate in South Haven who are growing their own grapes and making their wines. One innkeeper is a chef, and the other a sommelier- making for a very special place to stay.


Man looking out from the top of a Michigan Lighthouse

(Photo: Jay Edward Photography)

Climb a Lighthouse

As you can guess, we love lighthouses in our “Mitten State” and are proud that 129 remain, making Michigan the state with the most lighthouses in the United States! At one point, there were over 250 lighthouses that lined the coastline of Lake Michigan, Lake Superior, and Lake Huron. Check out this previous article for our favorites.

Enjoy a Summer Concert

Michigan’s Summer Music Scene is quite impressive- from large concerts in Detroit to small village concerts on the town’s green, Michigan calls all music lovers. Some of our favorite small-town concerts include Lexington’s Music in the Park series and the Chamber Music Festival in Saugatuck.

Walk the Longest Sky Bridge

Boyne Mountain opened this amazing timber-towered suspension bridge. This bucket list walk is reachable after you ride a chair lift up the mountain. It’s 1,200 feet long and 118 feet high. Click here for ticket prices.

Ride A Dune Buggy on a Michigan Sand Dune

Michigan has over 300,000 acres of sand dunes with amazing water views. A great way to see these icons is by renting a dune buggy.  Our friends at Pure Michigan have compiled this great list.

Hunt for Petoskey Stones

Petoskey State Park, just outside the aptly named city of Petoskey, can be a surprising success in the hunt for Michigan’s state stone.

Roming Roost Yoga in the sunshine

Experience Gentle Yoga in a Farm Pasture

Rōming Roost Bed and Breakfast in Suttons Bay has a magical location between two cherry farmers. One innkeeper is passionate about yoga and offers morning classes in a nearby pasture.



Michigan is beckoning! Choose a summer adventure and check out our #MichBnB website for quality-assured bed and breakfast nearby. Our members include traditional bed and breakfasts and unique boutique inns and hotels. What you will find at each is caring hospitality, delicious breakfasts, and comfortable beds for a good night’s sleep. Book your stay today.