Michigan’s Upper Peninsula for First-Timers

Photo by Wayne Silver

Lighthouses, lakeshores, museums and more

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Stop along the Upper Peninsula’s Great Lakes coast to climb a lighthouse, see sunken ships or listen to the roar of some of the most popular waterfalls.

Michigan’s Upper Peninsula: Lighthouses

Along the U.P.’s Great Lakes coasts you will find more than 40 lighthouses, most built in the mid 1800s. Many continue to guide ships and boats safely into harbors and around dangerous shoals. A dozen of them are open for public tours. You can also volunteer to be a lighthouse keeper at several stations and others offer memorable bed and breakfast stays. Some require hiking to reach by land, but a boat guarantees you’ll get a view.


Time doesn’t stop in the U.P. But you’ll easily see how our cultures, work and love of the Great Lakes and the wilderness have shaped (and continue to make us) who we are. More than a hundred museums, historic sites and homes throughout the U.P. tell our centuries of fascinating stories and give inspiration for the future.

In the U.P. you can take a ferry to Mackinac Island and step back to pre-Revolutionary War days. Explore from county to county the lives of the people who traded furs. Learn how our trees turned into Henry Ford’s “Woodies” or mountains of paper or lumber. See sunken ships. Rappel into the depths of copper mines. Hear the stories of America’s greatest skiers. Ramble through ghost towns. These museums and historic sites will spark the imaginations and hearts of toddlers to teens to grandparents.

Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore

Extending 37 miles on the south shoreline of Lake Superior from Munising to Grand Marais, the national lakeshore features 15 miles of multicolored sandstone cliffs, 12 miles of sand beach and 5 square miles of sand dunes. Hiking, camping, backpacking, sightseeing, boating, picnicking, hunting, fishing, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing and snowmobiling are area popular activities. The Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore is a National Park Service (NPS) unit.

This itinerary is compliments of Travel Michigan.

More Michigan Itineraries:

Detroit Historical … Discover Motor City’s African American stories
Michigan M-22: A Spectacular Coastal Highway … A scenic drive on Lake Michigan’s northern coast

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