Mackinac Island with Kids: What to Do and Where to Stay on Michigan’s Idyllic Car-Free Island
With its Victorian homes and horse-drawn carriages, Mackinac Island has been a favorite family vacation spot for more than a century. This idyllic car-free island located in Michigan offers plenty of activities and attractions to keep kids entertained. From bike rides and exploring historic forts to tasting delicious fudge and immersing in the island’s rich history, there is something for everyone. Here’s a breakdown of what to do and where to stay when visiting Mackinac Island with kids.
Things to Do on Mackinac Island:
- Bike Around the Island: One of the best ways to explore Mackinac Island is by bicycle. The island is known for its scenic bike trails that take you along the shoreline and through lush forests. There are several rental shops on the island where you can rent bikes for the whole family.
- Visit Historic Fort Mackinac: Take a step back in time and visit Fort Mackinac, a historic military outpost that offers a glimpse into the island’s past. Kids will enjoy learning about the soldiers’ lives and exploring the exhibits and artifacts.
- Take a Carriage Ride: Since there are no cars allowed on the island, horse-drawn carriage rides are a popular mode of transportation. Hop on a carriage and enjoy a leisurely ride around the island while taking in the breathtaking views.
- Try Old-Fashioned Fudge: Mackinac Island is famous for its delicious fudge, and no trip to the island is complete without indulging in this sweet treat. Visit one of the many fudge shops on Main Street and watch as the fudge is made right in front of you.
- Explore Arch Rock: Located on the eastern shore of the island, Arch Rock is a natural limestone formation that offers stunning views of Lake Huron. Kids will love climbing the steps to the observation platform and taking in the panoramic views.
- Go on a Butterfly House Adventure: Mackinac Island is home to the Wings of Mackinac Butterfly Conservatory, where you can walk among hundreds of beautiful butterflies. Kids will be fascinated by the colorful creatures and the opportunity to learn about their life cycle.
Where to Stay on Mackinac Island:
- The Grand Hotel: One of the most iconic landmarks on Mackinac Island, The Grand Hotel is a luxurious hotel that offers a wide range of amenities for families. From indoor and outdoor pools to a kids’ club and daily activities, there is always something to do for kids of all ages. The Grand Hotel also has several dining options, including a kids’ menu.
- Lilac Tree Suites and Spa: Located on Main Street, Lilac Tree Suites and Spa is a family-friendly hotel that offers spacious suites with kitchenettes and separate living areas. Kids will love the rooftop hot tub and the proximity to shops and restaurants.
- Lake View Hotel: Situated on the waterfront, Lake View Hotel offers stunning views of Lake Huron. The hotel has a heated indoor pool, a garden patio, and an arcade room, making it a great choice for families. They also offer complimentary breakfast for guests.
- Somewhere in Time Bed and Breakfast: If you’re looking for a cozy and intimate accommodation option, Somewhere in Time Bed and Breakfast is the perfect choice. This historic property offers comfortable rooms and a warm and inviting atmosphere.
Whether you’re biking around the island, exploring historic sites, or indulging in delicious fudge, Mackinac Island offers a wide range of activities for families with kids. With its beautiful Victorian charm and car-free atmosphere, it’s an idyllic destination for a memorable vacation. Choose from a variety of family-friendly accommodations and create lasting memories on this Michigan gem.
Mackinac Island is a perfect destination for a family vacation, with its car-free environment, historic attractions, and beautiful scenery. From biking around the island to visiting Fort Mackinac, there are plenty of activities to keep kids entertained. With a variety of family-friendly hotels to choose from, you can enjoy a comfortable stay while exploring all that the island has to offer. Don’t forget to try the famous fudge and take in the breathtaking views of Lake Huron. A trip to Mackinac Island with kids is sure to create unforgettable memories for the whole family.