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Discover the Magic : 25 Exciting Things to do in Petoskey

The U.S. state of northwestern Michigan includes the city of Petoskey. Due to its location on Little Traverse Bay’s shore, it is a well-known vacation town in the Midwest. In Petoskey, there are several accommodations to choose from. You will likely find a location in Petoskey that matches your style, whether you’d rather have a lavish getaway or a rustic experience.

You may get a quick overview of things to do in Petoskey from this article.

Best Things to do in Petoskey

1. Lake Michigan

lake michigan
by Adam Bouse/ Unsplash Copyrights 2021

One of the largest freshwater lakes on the globe is Lake Michigan, and a beautiful location to visit in this state. International trade is handled via this lake since it is a component of the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence Seaway.

Numerous leisure options offered by Lake Michigan support the Great Lakes states’ booming tourist sector. Visitors to Lake Michigan can engage in a variety of recreational pursuits, such as swimming at one of the lake’s stunning beaches, sport fishing, boating for fun out of one of the lake’s numerous marinas, and hiking and camping in one of the many states and national parks situated along the shoreline.

Lake Michigan and Indiana Lighthouse
by Daniel / Pexels Copyrights 2022

2. Petoskey State Park

One mile of stunning beach along Lake Michigan, two modern campsites, and trails can all be found in Petoskey State Park, on Little Traverse Bay. Being approximately 3 miles northeast of Petoskey and 6 miles south of Harbor Springs makes the Petoskey State Park a popular spot for tourists trying to find Petoskey Stones.

Petoskey State Park has two hiking trails: a mile-long Petoskey-Portage Trail and the half-mile-long Petoskey-Old Baldy Trail. Old Baldy has a set of stairs and ends at the summit of a dune. Most of the Portage Trail is level and convenient for walking.

State boat launches, state trail parking lots, state forest campsites, and state parks and recreation zones all require the Recreation Passport for vehicle access.

Petoskey State Park
by Aaron Burden / Unsplash Copyrights 2018

3. Bayfront Park

Bayfront Park is a linear park with 7800 feet of public coastline on picturesque Little Traverse Bay. It was created from this former industrial site. The park is regarded as one of the “treasures” of Emmet County and the Petoskey Park system. Through a pedestrian tunnel, Bayfront Park is conveniently accessible from and to downtown.

Its main attractions include the Central Promenade & Clocktower, Resource Center, Fred Freidli Children’s Playground, Little Traverse Historical Society Museum, a fishing pond, Pavilion, and Cooking Area, Petoskey City, Marina, Stair Tower to Sunset Park, Ed White Baseball Field, Midway Commons – that provides access to Downtown, and Waterfall Area.

4. Avalanche Mountain Preserve

For outdoor adventures, the Avalanche Mountain Preserve is bliss. This city-run facility includes disc golf and riding throughout the warmer months.

Here, hiking is a popular activity, and the 462-step trek to the hill’s summit is well worth seeing Lake Charlevoix. The complexity of trails varies from flat ground to severe inclines. Walking and mountain biking are permitted.

5. Maple Moon

Maple Moon Sugarbush and Winery are family-owned, and the maple trees are accessible for visits. It is the nation’s first maple winery. The proprietors are kind. Their own 100% pure maple syrup is featured at the on-site store where they sell their goods. In addition to jam, salsa, homemade maple granola, and other delicacies, they make all their syrup in various grades.

Do visit Maple Moon on your next visit to Petoskey.

6. Kilwins Chocolate Kitchen

On your upcoming journey to Petoskey, Kilwins Chocolate Kitchen is a “must-visit” location. In addition to making excellent chocolates and other confections, Kilwins Chocolate Kitchen also produces the greatest original recipe ice cream. They began creating Original Recipe Ice Cream in each store in 1985, using their knowledge of candy manufacture and creating the original formulas they still use today.

7. Mackinaw Trail Winery and Brewery

Petoskey has a family-run winery called Mackinaw Trail Winery and Brewery. Since 2004, it has produced wines and beers using locally grown and processed ingredients. It also provides a separate area for special events like wedding receptions.

8. Odawa Casino Resort

In Northern Michigan, there is a resort called Odawa Casino Resort. The casino started operating in 2007 in Resort Township, close to Petoskey, Michigan.

It has a variety of eateries and shops, a concert hall, a nightclub, and a circular lounge bar in the center of the gaming floor, among other amenities. The resort also has a AAA Diamond-rated hotel. Do visit Odawa Casino Resort on your next visit to Petoskey.

9. Mushroom Houses

The unique residences created by master builder Earl Young are sometimes referred to asMushroom Houses. He was a mysterious designer since he didn’t utilize blueprints. Rather than pushing the environment to meet the architecture, he built dwellings that suited the location.

The charming titles of the historic buildings do not lessen their enduring influence, and Charlevoix is proud of its architectural gems. Considering that these homes are privately owned, please be informed that interior tours are not permitted. You may observe and take pictures, but do not bother the occupants or attempt to enter.

10. Walloon Lake

Located in Charlevoix and Emmet counties, about southwest of the northernmost point of the Lower Peninsula of Michigan, Walloon Lake is a glacier-formed lake. There are currently a lot of cottages and holiday houses there. Do not forget to explore Walloon Lake while visiting Petoskey.

11. Mackinac Island

Mackinac Island
by Aaron Burden / Unsplash Copyrights 2019

On Lake Huron, close to the Straits of Mackinac, sits the island of Mackinac.

Renting a bike is a great way to get around and explore the island. It’s fascinating and educational to look into the island’s history.

There are many trails on this island. Some are paved, while others are not. Some are suitable for trekking, while horses, bicycles, and pedestrians share others. The park has more than 50 interpretive panels highlighting the region’s natural features and historical sites.

Mackinac Island
by Christopher Delcamp / Pexels Copyrights 2016

12. Horton Bay General Store

The Horton Bay General Store was constructed in 1875 and has since functioned as the village’s commercial and social hub, a shop, a post office, and more. Hemingway’s Michigan self-guided tour also includes a trip here in northern Michigan.

The Horton Bay General Shop is now a fully operational general store with a wide assortment of gourmet foods, beer, wine, spirits, charcuterie, cheese, and coffee.

A young Ernest Hemingway, who visited the shop often in the early 20th century and spent his summers at Walloon Lake with his family, would later include the store and other Horton Bay sites in his works. Many of the store’s current customers visit because of the link to the well-known author, and they may see a wall lined with images of him.

13. Lavender Hill Farm

Lavender Hill Farm is situated in Boyne City. Lavender Hill Farm gives its guests the enchanting feeling of being surrounded by the majestic beauty and aromas of purple and green waves of lavender.

Visit the gift shop, tour, or participate in one of the farm’s various activities. Lavender Hill Farm has a lot to offer, including Lunch & Lavender, Movie Nights, Lavender Fest Fridays, The Series Concerts, and special parties.

14. Bear River Valley Recreation Area

Right in the center of Petoskey, the Bear River Valley Recreation Area is one of the top whitewater recreation places in the Midwest.

The local history and plant species are abundant in natural forests and open space locations. The park is utilized mostly for activities like hiking, cross-country skiing, fishing, rafting, and environmental education.

Numerous spacious open grassy areas and shelters are available to host gatherings. The Bear River Valley Recreation Area has significant ecological importance for the City because of its natural setting and great water quality.

15. Magnus Park

For tents, motorhomes, and towable recreational vehicles, Magnus Park Campground has 76 sites. The campsite is situated along the shores of Little Traverse Bay at the end of West Lake Street. Northern Michigan Regional Hospital, Bayfront Park, Little Traverse Wheelway, and Downtown Petoskey are all conveniently close to the park.

16. Gaslight District

Due to the historic gas lights that glow pleasantly over the streets at night, Petoskey’s central business district is also known as the historic Gaslight District. The historic quarter has been a significant shopping destination for over a century, and tourists can still find a fantastic selection of stores offering a wide range of things there. There is also a fantastic range of eateries and pubs.

17. Crooked Tree Arts Center (CTAC)

Crooked Tree Arts Center (CTAC) in Traverse City was established in 1971. It aims to encourage community creativity and assist regional artists. There are many ways to interact with art and engage your imagination, like performing at the theatre, participating in a discussion or workshop, and viewing the regularly changing artwork in a gallery.

Young people in Northern Michigan are trained at the CTAC School of Ballet, founded more than 20 years ago by artistic director Heather Raue, for careers as professional dancers and artists. The School of Ballet provides expert instruction in traditional ballet methods and contemporary dance ideas.

18. Bay Harbor Golf Club

This 27-hole Arthur Hill design features a picturesque Little Traverse Bay and Lake Michigan location. Do not forget to explore the Bay Harbor Golf Club while visiting Petoskey.

19. Petoskey Farms Vineyard and Winery

You may sip wine on a 60-foot covered terrace while watching 22 acres of breathtaking hills and rolling farmland. There is a wine sampling every day. Taste the local grapes and other local fruits in their handcrafted Michigan wines.

Purchase a bottle of regional wine for that special friend to share your experience, or take home a souvenir from a Northern Michigan vineyard.

20. American Spoon

The American Spoon is a family-owned company. The proprietors get their preferred variety of regionally grown fruits and vegetables from foragers and farmers they are familiar with and confident in.

In collaboration with nearby farmers, the business offers fruit preserves, condiments, drink mixes, salsas, relishes, and grilling sauces. Even now, after all these years, the skilled staff still handles fruits by hand and cooks delicately in copper kettles for tiny batches.

21. Little Traverse History Museum

Visit the Little Traverse History Museum if you’re a history geek curious about life in Petoskey in the past. It features collections and exhibitions that preserve the local history and is open during certain times of the year.

The museum is housed in a historic structure built in the late 19th century. It is situated in the former Pere Marquette railroad station, making it a part of local living history.

22. Petoskey Winter Sports Park

The Petoskey Winter Sports Park is a seasonal destination that is only open during December, January, and February, in contrast to the majority of Petoskey’s seasonal attractions, which are open throughout the summer season.

This park is one of the finest places to engage in outdoor sports and breathe in some fresh air during the chilly winter months when snow covers the ground and blustery winds threaten to keep everyone indoors. Both residents and visitors enjoy playing hockey, sledding, skiing, and ice skating.

23. Somebody’s Gallery

Somebody’s Gallery stands out as a unique art experience even though Petoskey’s historic Gaslight District is home to several other art galleries. All of the Michigan native artists who work in this gallery’s recurring exhibitions specialize in various creative genres.

The residents of Petoskey are in charge of and own the gallery. It is one of the finest locations to buy souvenirs since it helps the local economy and other artists from Michigan.

24. Petoskey Cheese

The place to go is Petoskey Cheese if you’re seeking the ideal piece of cheese with a fresh bottle of Michigan wine. After spending the day touring the nearby wineries, stop by this downtown artisanal cheese business, which sells cut-to-order cheese and accouterments.

25. Castle Farms

Built as a dairy farm in 1918, Castle Farms is now a prestigious wedding location where guests may stroll through a century of history. A guided tour is offered throughout the summer, but a self-guided trip may also be easily completed thanks to the thoughtfully placed numbers around the site.

Final Note

Summertime is Petoskey’s busiest travel season, partly due to the town’s abundance of outdoor activities and lovely weather. But this is the type of site you ought to think about going to more than once, and at various seasons of the year.

Last Updated on November 27, 2023 by Sathi Chakraborty

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