Welcome to Mackinac Island

The most important date on this 3.8-sq-mile island was 1898 – the year cars were banned in order to encourage tourism. Today all travel is by horse or bicycle; even the police use bikes to patrol the town. The crowds of tourists – called Fudgies by the islanders – can be crushing at times, particularly during summer weekends. But when the last ferry leaves in the evening and clears out the day-trippers, Mackinac's real charm emerges and you drift back into another, slower era.

Eighty percent of the island is state parkland. Not much stays open between November and April.

Top experiences in Mackinac Island

Mackinac Island activities

$24 Cruises, Sailing & Water Tours

Mackinaw City Sunset One-Hour Cruise on Lake Michigan

Join this cruise to take in the sunset over Lake Michigan onboard Ugly Anne while cruising under the Mackinac Bridge. Listen to music and enjoy an alcoholic beverage and some refreshments (at your own expense). You will be greeted at the dock with a warm welcome and quick introduction of the friendly staff. While on the cruise between Michigan's 2 peninsulas you will see historic lighthouses, a 300+ year old fort and Mackinac Island while having the one of the best seats in North America to watch a beautiful sunset. The sunset cruise is a personalized cruise with local residents that are able to answer questions about the area. The Captain has been a resident of Mackinac Island and Mackinaw Ciy for the past 18 years. Join in for the highlight of your vacation.

$2865 Cultural & Theme Tours

Great Lakes Explorer Music Malt & Magical Mackinac

DAY 1: This evening, mingle with other group members at a meet and greet reception hosted by our Tour Manager, a destination specialist.DAY 2: Board an exclusive Chicago Architecture Foundation’s photography river cruise, designed for the photographer, or photographer at heart. This afternoon, choose between a walking tour and learn the basics of Chicago’s sinful history, all the way from the city’s first vice district, to Capone, Prohibition and the mob. Explore the basics of different beer styles and beer’s influence on criminal enterprises, especially during Prohibition. Or choose to glide along the Lakefront on your very own Segway, through the fragrant floral paths and rose gardens of Grant Park to the Museum Campus. Tonight, visit Kingston Mines. Kingston Mines is the largest and oldest continuously operating blues club in Chicago. Its two stages have been graced by the likes of Junior Wells and scores of other musical greats.DAY 3: Travel to Holland, on the shore of Lake Michigan. The Dutch heritage is plain to see in the traditional Dutch architecture and ambiance. Stroll the quaint downtown and enjoy its galleries, shops and eateries. Continue north to the Leelanau Peninsula. Here we visit some of the peninsulas noted wineries. The evening is spent in Traverse City.DAY 4: Board the ferry to Mackinac Island. The entire island is listed as a National Historic Landmark and is well known for its wide variety of architectural styles, including the Victorian Grand Hotel and its ban on all motor vehicles.Day 5: You can explore Mackinac Island your way. Bicycles and horse-drawn carriages are the only modes of transportation here. You can pick up a bicycle and gear, along with trail maps guiding you on various routes throughout the island. Or relax on a guided horse-drawn carriage instead.Day 6: Michigan ranks fifth in the nation in the number of breweries, microbreweries and brewpubs. Late afternoon we make the ferry crossing across Lake Michigan to Wisconsin. Tonight, visit Milwaukee's most unique downtown food destination, the Milwaukee Public Market.Day 7: Visit the Milwaukee Riverwalk and Milwaukee Art Museum. Tour past the elegant mansions along Lake Michigan with numerous photo opportunities at the city’s most unique landmarks. Take in City Hall, the Milwaukee Art Museum, North Point Light-house, Miller Park, the Historic Third Ward and more. This afternoon visit the Harley Davidson Museum. Enjoy a final night dinner together at a Bavarian Bierhaus. Day 8: Arrive in Oak Park, once the home of Frank Lloyd Wright where he designed and built some of his earliest buildings. Tour the Wright home and see the birth-place of Ernest Hemingway before time for lunch in the village.

Mackinac Island in detail