Fabulous Day Trips
Headquarter Your Northern Michigan Trip in Cheboygan!
Not only is Cheboygan centrally located for taking in all the great things The Great Up North has to offer, Cheboygan is very affordable, too. So pack your bags with everything you’ll need and head for The Gateway to the Waterways in northern Michigan!
Mackinaw City and the Mackinac Bridge
Mackinac State Historic Parks — Mackinac State Historic Parks is a family of living history museums and nature parks in northern Michigan’s Straits of Mackinac and is an agency within the Michigan Department of Natural Resources and Environment. Its sites—which are accredited by the American Association of Museums—include Fort Mackinac, Mackinac Island State Park, Historic Downtown Mackinac, and The Richard and Jane Manoogian Mackinac Art Museum on Mackinac Island, and Michilimackinac State Park, Colonial Michilimackinac, Historic Mill Creek Discovery Park, and Old Mackinac Point Lighthouse in Mackinaw City. Combined attendance is 1.2 million people each year. The living history sites are open daily from early May to early October.
Mackinaw City is a charming and historic city just 13 miles along the Lake Huron Coast from the harbor at Cheboygan with great day trip opportunities and ferry service during the season to Mackinac Island. Stop at the Cheboygan Area Chamber of Chamber for information about the historic parks or visit (link).
The Mackinac Bridge— The Mackinac Bridge, known as the “Might Mac,”spanning the five miles between the Lower and Upper Peninsulas of Michigan, is just 15 miles from Cheboygan itself and is one of the great engineering feats of the last century. It’s the third longest suspension bridge in the world and the longest in North America. The roadway of the bridge majestically rises to 200 feet above the Straits of Mackinac, and bridge itself is one of the great landmarks in the Great Lakes. Everyone should see it at least once in their lives.
Contact the Cheboygan Area Chamber of Commerce for more information on the Mackinac Bridge.
Mackinac Island— What can you say about Mackinac Island that hasn’t been already said? It’s a truly magical trip back to the Victorian era. Take horse drawn carriages, ride your bike, visit Ft. Mackinac, take in all you can! It’s a wondrous place to visit from Cheboygan.
Be sure to stop at the Cheboygan Chamber of Commerce office in beautiful Washington Park in downtown Cheboygan and pick up all the information you need for your ferry trip to Mackinac Island.
We’ll be glad to help you out!
International Dark Sky Park — Just west of Mackinaw City lies a truly unforgettable experience for those who love the night sky and the wonders of the stars above.
In early May 2011, Emmett County, Cheboygan’s neighbor, was awarded International Dark Sky Park designation for the Headlands property along the Straits of Mackinac. It’s only the sixth such park in the United States and the ninth in the world.
Stars, constellations, galaxies, and all the splendor of the heavens are uniquely viewable at the Headlands, and Emmett County continues to put together more monthly programming, brochures, and detailed information about dark-sky viewing opportunities over the Headlands.
Ask about it at the Cheboygan Area Chamber of Commerce and we’ll provide information and directions for you or go to (link). What a fabulous experience for individuals and families visiting Cheboygan.
Black Mountain Recreation Area
Black Mountain Recreation Area is located just southeast of Cheboygan and is one of Northern Michigan’s perfect getaway locations for the entire family. There’s something for everyone. From the traditional pursuits of hunting and fishing, to camping, cross country skiing, hiking, horseback riding, ORV/ATV, and snowmobiling, nearly all outdoor recreationists will find what they’re looking for at Black Mountain.
The Cheboygan Area Chamber of Commerce will gladly give you details and send you on your way to one of the most thrilling ORV/ATV wonderlands in the United States.
Click here to see our ATV options.
The Only Great Wild Elk Herd East of the Mississippi
Just 30 minutes south of Cheboygan is Michigan’s great elk herd. It must be seen to be believed. Although limited to roughly a 700-square-mile area in the north central Lower Peninsula, the size of the herd this fall should number around 1,000 elk. Adoption of the Elk Management Plan by the Natural Resources Commission more than 20 years ago has allowed the Department of Natural Resources to successfully control elk numbers through recreational hunting while preserving a sizable herd for tourist and viewing opportunities.
September and October are prime months to see elk which are about four times the size of a white-tailed deer. In early September, the bull elk (an adult weighs as much as 1,000 pounds or more) begin to gather their harems for the annual breeding season. The bulls will round up a group of between five and 20 cows, although the usual harem size is about 10. The bull then defends this harem from any potential rival by breaking brush with their well-polished antlers and by making a low wheezing, almost asthmatic-sounding whistle that ends in a series of evil-sounding grunts: a-a-a-eeee-uuuuuh! e-ugh! e-ugh! e-ugh!
Elk bugling reaches a crescendo around Sept. 15-20, and when several large bulls are bugling in unison, the concert is truly unforgettable. Ask us for information and directions at the Cheboygan Area Chamber of Commerce.
Downhill Skiing and Snowboarding
Just 30 minutes west, Nub’s Nob and Boyne Highlands offer some of the finest slopes anywhere in the Midwest. So come to northern Michigan, stay in Cheboygan, save a little money, and go skiing. Many say these hills and mountains reflect the perfect and pure nature of Northern Michigan. Come to the Great Up North and experience the exhilaration.
Stop by the Cheboygan Area Chamber of Commerce for details.
Sturgeon River, Indian River and the Wild Pigeon River Country
Just south of Cheboygan lies an array of magical rivers, lake country, towering hills, forests, trails, and villages that make for a perfect day trip from Cheboygan. By car you’ll follow the shoreline of one Michigan’s great inland lakes, Mullett Lake, the fourth largest in Michigan. You can stop in the village of Topinabee or Indian River for lunch or shopping, take a river rafting trip or go fly fishing on the Sturgeon River.
Headquarter your summer boating day trip in Cheboygan! You’ll travel through Mullett Lake to Indian River and on into Burt Lake, along the great Inland Waterway. It’s one of the most popular recreational pursuits in the Great Up North because the journey is so breathtaking and unique. There are restaurants and shops along the way, as well as the natural beauty of the waterway and its wildife.
Like all of northern Michigan, there are four season opportunities galore in this neck of the woods including hunting, fishing, snowmobiling and cross country skiing, hiking, biking, and off roading. There’s almost anything you can imagine, just a short day trip when you headquarter your stay in Cheboygan.
And here you’re not far from Michigan’s Great Elk Herd near Wolverine and the renowned wild Pigeon River Country!
Stop at the Cheboygan Chamber office in downtown for more information. When you’re in Cheboygan, you’re in The Great Up North!
Northern Lake Huron Coastal Wonders
Heritage Route 23 — 200 miles of spectacular scenic views of Lake Huron, an astounding array of large public forest and recreational properties await travelers on the Huron Shores Heritage Route. Start your exploration of this wonderful travel experience in Cheboygan.
The route starts in Mackinaw City and winds along the majestic and breathtaking coastline of Lake Huron. It offers some of the most extensive and significant recreational, ecological, historical and cultural sites in Michigan’s Lower Peninsula. The northern Lake Huron shoreline boasts beaches, forests, wetlands, lighthouses, parks, trails, museums, small towns, culture, attractions, golf, dining, and many other hidden treasures. Discover US 23….your pathway to the Sunrise Coast.
Ask us all about it at the Cheboygan Chamber of Commerce. We have the details!
Bois Blanc Island — Bois Blanc Island is a jewel of wild and wonderful northern Michigan. Sometimes known as ‘The Other Island” Bois Blanc is located in the Straits of Mackinac in Lake Huron just south of its more well known neighbor, Mackinac Island. It’s famous for its remote and natural beauty, undisturbed woodlands, wildlife, birds, and quaint bed and breakfasts during the season.
The island features cottages scattered in the woods, lodges, pristine shorelines, and the small village of Pointe aux Pins with a tavern, store, and post office. There are several secluded inland lakes for visitors to enjoy as well.
Bois Blanc can be reached by ferry from Cheboygan during all seasons with the exception being the heart of winter when ice covers the Straits of Mackinac.
Ask us all about Bois Blanc Island at the Cheboygan Chamber of Commerce. It an incredible day trip from our port harbor!
The Undiscovered Places
University of Michigan Biological Station — Just west of Cheboygan in pristine woodlands is the University of Michigan Biological Station. The students at UMBS use the northern Great Lakes as their classroom. Because classes are field based, students spend each day visiting habitats, collecting samples, and observing nature, facing challenges a lab can’t begin to replicate.
And they do it side by side with friends and faculty in a highly interactive community. Students and researchers spend each day talking, dining, and relaxing with each other. Ideas are exchanged over ice cream. These relationships are as important to advancing scientific knowledge as our research.
Through these interactions, participants become flexible thinkers and creative analysts – just the kind of people the world needs to address our most pressing global problems.
Ask us at the Cheboygan Chamber about opportunities for attending mini-courses, summer lecture series, and more at UMBS or contact them directly via (link).
Grass Bay Preserve — Cheboygan’s Grass Bay Preserve contains a rare find in the Great Lakes—one of the finest examples of an original interdunal wetland habitat, characterized by beach pools, marshes, flats, and wetlands, all separated by low dunes.
Owned by the Nature Conservancy, this delicate ecosystem comprises a great diversity of plants, including more than 25 species of orchids and 11 types of conifers. Four of the species—dwarf lake iris, Lake Huron tansy, Pitcher’s thistle, and Houghton’s goldenrod—grow only on the Lake Huron and Lake Michigan shores.
The Nature Conservancy considers Grass Bay its best property in Michigan. The preserve’s original 80 acres have grown to more than 400, including a one-mile stretch of Lake Huron shore. From May to September, Grass Bay is noted for its carpet of wildflowers, including lady’s slipper, Indian paintbrush, blue harebell, and sundews.
Take care of the environment when you visit Grass Bay! Ask us about this incredible place at the Cheboygan Area Chamber of Commerce and we’ll point you in the right direction.