Although Michigan‘s Upper Peninsula accounts for about a third of the state’s land mass, only about 3% of the population of Michigan live here, which means the majority of the area has been left untouched. This has allowed the raw beauty of the Upper Peninsula to really thrive, and a visit here will reward you with everything from glittering waterfalls and glacial lakes to dense forests and snow-topped mountains, showcasing some of the finest of Michigan’s natural beauty.
Hundreds of Waterfalls
Michigan is home to over 300 waterfalls, and all but one of them can be found in the Upper Peninsula. From scenic five foot falls to roaring 50 foot vertical drops, just about every type of waterfall that you can imagine can be found in the Upper Peninsula. Some of these may take a challenging hike to reach, but many offer easily accessible viewing platforms, enabling you to really enjoy their beauty. In the winter months, these waterfalls are transformed into icefalls, which then become popular spots for the winter sport of ice climbing.
The State Forest system in Michigan is the largest in the eastern United States, with over 3.8 million acres of forest to be found. The Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park is definitely a must-visit, as this 60,000 acre park is located on the edge of Lake Superior, and boasts everything from cliff-top vistas to over 90 miles of hiking trails, as well as cross country ski trails in the winter. Other stunning state parks in the Upper Peninsula include the Laughing Whitefish Falls Scenic Site, which is home to a gorgeous waterfall with three observation decks, the Indian Lake State Park, which boasts a mile of sandy beach making it perfect for swimmers, and the J.W Wells State Park, which is located by Lake Michigan and offers up beautiful waterfront campsites.
The Best Views
While there are many breathtaking vantage points scattered throughout the Upper Peninsula, there are certain spots that are unbeatable when it comes to taking in a view and really appreciating the beauty of your surroundings. Sugarloaf Mountain boasts multiple viewing platforms and sweeping views across Lake Superior, while the top of Bare Bluff, although it may be considered an off-the-beaten-track spot, is arguably one of the best views in all of Keneenaw. The top of the lighthouse at Whitefish Point also offers some of the best views in the area, and, on a clear day, you will even be able to see all the way to Canada. Of course, the highest point in Michigan is not to be forgotten, and this is at the top of Mount Arvon, which, as you would expect, has views that cannot be beaten, and definitely requires you to bring your camera along.
Anyone that has been to the Upper Peninsula would agree that there really is no place like it anywhere else. Not only does its incredible natural beauty have a captivating pull, but there are so many untravelled paths here just begging to be explored, making this the perfect destination for those seeking some adventure.