Five Northern Michigan Fall Activities
The calendar officially turns the page to fall next Thursday. In Northern Michigan, the days are already getting shorter, the air is cooler and trees are starting to show hints of autumn color. Here are five unique ways you can enjoy fall in Northern Michigan:
1. Boyne Highlands Horseback Trail rides – Saddle up and enjoy the fall colors along the beautiful, tree-lined trails at Boyne Highlands Resort. Rides are led by an experienced equestrian guide, so you don’t need to worry if you’re not an experienced rider. Children as young as seven can ride a horse. The whole family can enjoy this activity together. You’ll need to plan ahead and call the resort to make a reservation. Fifteen minute pony rides are also available for children seven and under.
2. Bill’s Farm Market – For more than 100 years, Bill’s Farm Market has provided Petoskey and Northern Michigan with fresh, locally grown fruits, vegetables, flowers and even Christmas trees. In the fall, you’ll find a variety of Michigan apples, pumpkins and squash as well as handmade jams, honey and maple syrup. On Saturdays, your family can enjoy a 30 minute hayride around the farm, complete with doughnuts and apple cider. Nothing puts you in the autumn mood quite like a visit to the farm!
3. Hike the Little Traverse Conservancy Thorne Swift Nature Preserve – The Thorne Swift Nature Preserve is the perfect setting to enjoy a fall hike. Northern Michigan’s unique, freshwater, coastal landscape is on display there. You’ll find a mix of upland dunes and lowland cedar swamps resting on Lake Michigan’s shoreline. Parking at the Elizabeth Kennedy Nature Center provides easy access. Before embarking on the trail, take time to view the nature displays inside. The trail is 1½ miles long with a dune observation platform and pond observation platform. This is an easy hike suited to almost all abilities.
4. Maple Syrup Tasting/Wine Tasting at Maple Moon Sugarbush & Winery – They make their own Maple Syrup from trees right on the property at Maple Moon Sugarbush & Winery in Petoskey. You can stop in and taste the goodness for yourself. You’ll also find a variety of other maple products including candy. Their newest, and most unique product, is their maple wine. They’re the first and only producer of maple wine in America. Come to their tasting room to sample their wines, hard cider and root beer all made with maple. You can also enjoy a cheese and bread plate as well as ice cream from Petoskey businesses.
5. Ride the Little Traverse Wheelway – See fall colors on your bike as you ride along the Lake Michigan shoreline from Charlevoix to Petoskey to Harbor Springs on the Little Traverse Wheelway. The bike trail runs for 28 miles. Along the way, you’ll find scenic views of the lake and plenty of parks to stop and relax. You’ll pass right through Petoskey where you can stop to dine and shop downtown.