The Best Small Towns in Northern Michigan

August 26, 2020

From the Upper Peninsula to the Lower Peninsula, here are the best small towns in Michigan.

Michigan is one of those states where you can travel north, east, south, or west and find a small town you’ll absolutely adore. The cities are each unique in their own way. From natural beauties to unique restaurants, beautiful beaches, and more.

Mackinac Island: Mackinac Island is a well-known area in Michigan. A small island located off the coast of Michigan’s Upper and Lower peninsulas. Mackinac Island is home to Mackinac Island State Park. The island offers 8.2 miles of bike path that surround the island’s outer edge, and it’s a great place to enjoy endless amounts of fudge and shop at the many of the unique gift shops.

10 Things To Do On Mackinac Island from Grandpa Shorter's Gifts blog in Petoskey, MI
Mackinac Island, MI

Petoskey: Located on Little Traverse Bay in between Harbor Springs and Charlevoix. This beautiful town is a popular vacation destination during both summer and winter. In the summer Petoskey is known for its beautiful beaches, quaint downtown with a unique gift shop called Grandpa Shorter’s Gifts, and world-class golf courses. During the winter, you can ski/snowboard at one of the many ski resorts, snowshoe, snowmobile, ice-skate, and more.

Petoskey, MI

Charlevoix: Located on the shores of Lake Michigan, Lake Charlevoix, and Round Lake, this beautiful town makes for a great place to vacation. You can boat, fish, sail, hike, and even pick your own apples at Friske’s Orchards.

Charlevoix, MI

Harbor Springs: Also located on Little Traverse Bay, this quaint small town has lots to offer from restaurants overlooking the bay, art galleries, beautiful beaches, and a wonderful downtown with lots to offer, including one of the most popular cookie shops, Tom’s Mom’s Cookies.

Glen Arbor: Glen Arbor, is a beautiful town 10 miles North of the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. Take a day trip or come for the weekend and explore everything the area has to offer. It’s within miles of The Sleeping Bear Dunes, Sleeping Bear Bay, Glen Lake, and The Heritage Trail. Stop by many of the local restaurants, kayak down The River Glen Arbor, stop into Cherry Republic for a cherry soda or grab a sweatshirt at the M-22 gift store for great memorabilia.

Northern Michigan Bucket list from Grandpa Shorter's Gifts Blog.
Glen Arbor, MI

Wherever you choose to visit, take a vacation or staycation, these small towns do not dissapoint.

You might also enjoy:

Outdoor Dining in Petoskey: Outdoor dining has been a hit this summer and we understand why, social distancing, fresh air, and good food. Check out the outdoor dining options in Petoskey.

Little Traverse Bay Ferry Co.: Little Traverse Bay Ferry Co. is a new public water transportation ferry. The ferry unites Petoskey, Harbor Springs, and Bay Harbor, MI.

Paddleboarding – A Northern Michigan Adventure: Paddleboarding or SUP has become the new thing in Northern Michigan over the past few years. There are many local stores that sell them, you can rent them, join clubs, and even have a tour guide. It’s a great way to enjoy the many beautiful lakes around Petoskey and Harbor Springs.