Great Bay Escapes

Take your pick of places to see this summer — each is a unique attraction in itself.
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Suttons Bay
Suttons Bay // Photography Courtesy of Ken Scott

From Hemingway’s Horton in Charleviox County to Beaver Island’s scenic Donegal, nearly 400 bays of all sizes are listed as Michigan features at michigan.hometownlocator.com. Visit the site, then take your pick of places to see this summer — each is a unique attraction in itself.

Whitefish Bay

Go: West out of Sault Ste. Marie toward Paradise, then 10 miles north to Whitefish Point (uptravel.com).

See: The oldest active lighthouse on Lake Superior’s Shipwreck Coast and engaging nautical exhibits at The Great Lakes Shipwreck Museum (shipwreckmuseum.com).

Stay: At the restored 1923 Coast Guard Lifeboat Station Crews Quarters in one of five themed rooms with private baths (shipwreckmuseum.com).

Play: On the bay by taking a shallow water kayak shipwreck tour (woodswaterecotours.com).

Whitefish Point Lighthouse
Whitefish Point Lighthouse // Photography courtesy of Great Lakes Shipwreck Historical Society/Chris Winters

Suttons Bay

Go: Midway up the eastern shore of the Leelanau Peninsula to this picturesque coastal village (suttonsbayarea.com).

See: A wide range of specialty shops and galleries, including creative science and nature store Enerdyne (enerdynet.com) and The Painted Bird gallery (painted-bird.com).

Stay: In a modern guestroom with spa tub, fireplace and rolling vineyard views at Black Star Farms Inn (blackstarfarms.com).

Play: On the bay at Marina Park’s sandy beach and the Suttons Bay Floatilla 2 on Aug. 31 (sbfloatilla.com).

Saginaw Bay
Saginaw Bay // Photography Courtesy of Lars Jensen

Saginaw Bay

Go: Up to the tip of Michigan’s Thumb June 16 and 17 for the Thumb Artists Studio Tour and watch the magic happen at creative stops dotted along Lake Huron and Saginaw Bay (thumbstudiotour.com).

See: Scenic bay views from the newly paved Pedestrian and Bicycle Path stretching some 10 miles along the shore to Tawas Point State Park and Michigan’s sole Victorian-era lighthouse (tawasbay.com).

Stay: At top-ranked Bavarian Inn Lodge in Frankenmuth (bavarianinn.com).

Play: On the bay during the family-friendly, inventive Cheeseburger in Caseville festival Aug. 9-18 (cheeseburgerincasevillefest.com).

Caseville Hamburgers
Caseville Hamburgers // Photography Courtesy of Mike Schreiber

Little Traverse Bay

Go: To Bay Harbor, situated on a scenic five-mile stretch between the vibrant resort communities of Charlevoix (visitcharlevoix.com) and Petoskey (petoskey.com).

See: What treasures can be found at Bay Harbor’s Vintage Car and Boat Festival on June 22, the Bay Harbor Foundation Yard Sale on July 26 and the Bay Harbor Arts Festival on July 27 and 28 (bayharbor.com).

Little Traverse Bay
Little Traverse Bay // Photography Courtesy of Bay Harbor

Stay: In luxe accommodations at the romantic Inn at Bay Harbor, featuring an in-house Spa, or Bay Harbor Village Hotel above the community’s boutique shops and eateries (bayharbor.com).

Play: The Links, an Irish seaside-styled championship course that winds along a 150-foot bluff with sweeping views of blue (bayharbor.com/golfclub).

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