What would you say if I told you that one of my all time favorite vacation spots is the UP?
“Huh?” “Where?” “Is that a place?” “What state is that in?”
Yep, I’ve heard it all. And, to be honest, it wasn’t all that long ago when my response was the exact same. So I’m going to share with you the story behind how I ended up going to the UP and why you should go.
What and Where?
The UP is Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Its primary land border is the northern portion of Wisconsin, but it’s mostly surrounded by water. The UP touches 3 of the Great Lakes: Lake Michigan, Lake Huron and Lake Superior.
Our family happened to stumble on this gem during our quest to take our children to all 50 states. We wanted to cross Michigan off our list (incidentally it was state #17 and 22 for my kiddos!) Our original trip was just going to be for a day. However, we loved it so much we decided to stay.
Unfortunately, we’d left all our stuff in our hotel room in Green Bay, WI- so guess what? We wore the same clothes 2 days in a row (I’m TOTALLY serious!) Though it’s a somewhat embarrassing memory to share, I hope it genuinely conveys just how much we love it in the UP!
Interestingly, although by square footage it’s actually quite large (accounting for 29% of the total land), the population is quite small (only 3% of the population of the state.) For this reason you will find much of the landscape untouched and very natural.
Read: GORGEOUS and CHARMING
Which makes a good segue into…
Why You Should Go There
Let me preface this by saying- you should go there. But you should be VERY selective on your travel dates. To be safe, July and August are your best bets. Possibly you could get away with June. September, if you’re interested in seeing the fall foliage!
There is truly nothing like exploring the beautiful landscape, dipping your toes in the chilly Great Lake waters, and eating your way through the UP. There are so many things you won’t want to miss that I made a quick list of my favorites:
- Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore
- Mackinac Island
- Glass Bottom Boat Tour of Lake Superior Shipwrecks
- Tahquamenon Falls
- Great Lakes Shipwreck Museum
- Jack Pine Lumberjack Show
- Paul Bunyon Statues (there are several to choose from!)
- Quincy Mine
- Echo Lake
- Alder Falls
Two additional tips before you visit:
- Do your homework before you eat. There are SO many options. I’m a big fan of researching on Yelp! I also found this post by Movoto Blog to be helpful: 14 Restaurants in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.
- Make sure you order your Passport To Your National Parks before you go! I’ve written about this a bunch, but only because its one of our favorite travel products!
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