Discount travel deals are not easy to come by mid-summer in tony Harbor Springs, so when we saw this come through we felt the urge to spread the word. Birchwood Farms, just outside Harbor Springs, is offering two separate deals for 2009 vacationers.

The First Time Guest Special. Birchwood will let first timers stay for $79 a night during the week and $99 a night during weekends, and the deal is running till the end of summer. So basically, a chain hotel price for a boutique hotel experience. Nice.

Stay 4 nights and pay for 3 nights. Again, remarkable to see deals being cut height of summer around Harbor Springs, so best take advantage of it. The deal is as straightforward as the name implies. When you sign on for a 4-night stay, you only pay for 3 nights.

If you end up with the 4-day option, take these MyNorth editor suggestions for how to use that time around Harbor Springs.

Day 1: Just wander around Harbor Springs. Shop, eat at the restaurants, lie around on the lakefront down by the docks. Take it easy and try not to drive. Really, don’t do anything strenuous.

Day 2: Drive up to Wilderness State Park by following the highway known as the Tunnel of Trees (M-119). Stop wherever you feel like it along the way. The key is to go slow. Some intriguing shops on the intimate byway, including a new handmade-rug store in Cross Village.

Day 3: If you are up for it, head over to Mackinaw City and hop the ferry to Mackinac Island. The boat ride is refreshing. The horses and bikes on the island are a time transport. The history is fascinating. It’s all enchanting.

Day 4: If you are driving home today, pull into Petoskey on your way south. Inventive boutiques, good restaurants, lovely park on the bay so you can stretch your legs before the long drive.

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