Mackinac Island Events: Beautiful. Historical. Elegant. We honestly can't think of a better place to spend Memorial Day Weekend than Mackinac Island. To help all the lucky travelers headed up there, we've compiled a list of ten must-do activites on the Island!
Take a Trip to the Butterfly Conservatories
Any visitor to either of Mackinac Island's two live butterfly displays cannot help but feel awed by butterflies of every imaginable color and size flitting through glassed-in tropical gardens. Walk through Wings of Mackinac Butterfly Conservatory at Surrey Hill or the Original Mackinac Island Butterfly House and Insect World located downtown- if you sit quietly, you may even become a landing spot.
More information at: wingsofmackinac.com and originalbutterflyhouse.com/
Stay at the Metivier Inn Bed and Breakfast
In 1877, Louis Joseph Metivier bought a Victorian-style home on Mackinac Island for 700 dollars. The property was handed down through the Metivier descendants until it became an inn some 105 years later. Today, the Metivier honors it's heritage with quaint rooms appointed French and English country style (they also have the modern luxuries of air conditioning, private bathrooms and jacuzzi tubs, as well as wi-fi!). A hot breakfast buffet is offered every day, as well as afternoon tea. Take your cup into the Inn's extensive gardens for an afternoon stroll.
More information about the Metivier's history, as well as online booking at metivierinn.com
Get Spooked at The Devils Kitchen
Bike or walk to this cave that was created from erosion and overlooks the Mackinac Bridge. It is a perfect spot to take a break from your hike or bike ride and take in a great view while enjoying a snack!
Take a Ride into the Past at Surrey Hills Carriage Museum
Explore this museum that highlights antique carriages and allows you to learn about the history of this unique transportation! While there, make sure to check out the working blacksmith shop. If you're hungry check out the Feedbag, located at Surrey Hills. Enjoy a hot dog or bratwurst on the hill while watching the horses run around in their pasture!
Brush Up on your History by Visiting the Fort
This is a Mackinac Island must-do activity! The Fort was originally built during the American Revolution and it was the first building to be captured in the War of 1812 (this July 17th marks that day). Dripping with history, 14 of the original buildings are inside the fort and you can stop by for a re-enactment or to check out the many historical displays around.
An Afternoon "Somewhere in Time:" Rent a Carriage before Tea at the Grand Hotel
Spend an afternoon in the past! Start your day off with a horse-drawn carriage ride at Mackinac Island Carriage Tours. See Mackinac Island in the most authentic way, either on the company's tours of the most iconic Mackinac spots, or in a private tour customized to your group's interests. Then, head up to the Grand Hotel for traditional afternoon tea. Served each day in the Parlor from 3:30 to 5:00 p.m., tea includes sherry and champagne, scones, finger sandwiches (crusts cut off obviously!) and pastries, accompanied by a live chamber music performance.
Plan your afternoon at: mict.com/index.aspx and grandhotel.com/dining/afternoon-tea
Get a Look into a Millionaire's Life: Explore the Robert Stuart House
Visit the headquarters of America's first millionaire, John Jacob Astor. The two story Stuart House was named for the American agent who negotiated with local Native Americans. Visitors learn the history of the fur trade, and Mackinac Island's transformation from sacred Native American land to the center of the American fur trade. One of 14 historic buildings on the island, the Stuart House is located next to the Biddle House on Market Street.
Dine at Woods
The magic of Woods, part of the Grand Hotel, begins before you even get to the restaurant. Diners take a short horse-drawn carriage ride into the deep woods of Mackinac Island, to a Tudor mansion done in the rustic charm of a Bavarian hunting lodge. As you're taking in the exquisite scenery, enjoy before-dinner drinks at Bobby's Bar, or try your hand at America's oldest duckpin bowling alley. As with any of the Grand Hotel's extensions, elegance and excellence are the key words at Woods, as you will see on the extensive gourmet menu.
Go on a Haunted History Tour
Heard rumors that Mackinac Island is haunted and want to learn more? Then this walking tour is a must! The tour was inspired by the book "Haunts of Mackinac" by Todd Clements. Even if you haven't read it you'll still enjoy this ghostly jaunt through Mackinac.
Want to learn more? Purchase tickets: hauntsofmackinac.com/
Enjoy an Evening Drink on the Pink Pony Patio
Voted the "Number One Patio in Michigan" by the Detroit News, the Pink Pony Patio is a Mackinac Island entertainment staple. Enjoy a drink while watching the sun set over the Straits and the last ferry boats take off, then order some food and mix with Mackinac locals and visitors in the ever-crowded bar.
More information at: chippewahotel.com/pink-pony-patio.cfm
For more informatin about Mackinac Island, visit: mackinacisland.org/