Mackinac Island is one of Michigan’s most popular vacation destinations and provides fun for the whole family! If you’ve considering a trip, let this article be your guide for what to do with your kids in tow.

Take a “Mighty Mac” Ferry Ride

You’ll have to take a ferry to the island either way, but if you take one of the “Mighty Mac” departures, you’ll be able to enjoy a scenic detour under the Mighty Mackinac Bridge at no extra charge! You can enjoy the views from the comfort of the indoor cabin with the big windows, or head outside to the top deck to see unobstructed views as you pass under the Mackinac Bridge. Both Shepler’s and Star Line ferries offer these “Under the Bridge” experiences daily from Mackinaw City and St. Ignace.

Travel by Horsepower

Learn about the history and charm of Mackinac Island while you enjoy a narrated horse-led carriage tour that starts downtown, takes you up to Surrey Hills Carriage Museum and the Wings of Mackinac Butterfly Conservatory, over to the famous Arch Rock, and historic Fort Mackinac. With cars being banned on the island, this is one of the fun ways you can get around!

Tour Fort Mackinac

Home to Michigan’s oldest building, Fort Mackinac gives you an in-depth history lesson where you can tour the old military outpost, see live cannon and rifle firing demonstrations, explore the old solider barracks, learn about the army surgeons that changed military medicine in the 1880’s or simply enjoy the view at the Fort Mackinac Tea Room restaurant.

Enjoy the Fudge

There is a long-standing tradition and history with fudge on Mackinac Island. There are so many places to choose from and so little time but you can’t go to Mackinac Island without indulging in fudge! Here are some places to try:

Stop by Mackinac Island Public Library

Slow down and step into the quaint public library where there’s an incredible view of the water. The library facilities feature a main reading room, a specialized rare books room as well as a gorgeous porch for reading during the warmer months. They also host an ongoing used book sale if you’re looking for a new-to-you read on your vacation!

More Island Fun:

  • Even if you’re not staying at the Grand Hotel, they have an array of non-guest activities like exploring the hotel grounds, enjoying a treat at Sadie’s Ice Cream Parlor or playing a round of golf.
  • Stop and enjoy a meal or art class at Watercolor Cafe.
  • Explore the island by bike! You can either bring your bike via ferry or rent one (they even have bike trailers so you can bring your littles along for the ride).
  • Pack a lunch or grab some quick bites at Doud’s Market and enjoy a picnic meal on the grassy hill at Marquette Park.

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