Ludington State Park is one of Michigan’s most popular state parks. It’s comprised of nearly 5,300 acres of scenic sand dunes, ponds, marshlands and forests. Situated between Hamlin Lake and Lake Michigan, it has several miles of shoreline and beaches.

The park opened on August 15, 1936, and celebrated its 75th birthday in 2011. This wonderful area of land offers everything from camping to hiking, fishing, biking, tubing and paddling. Ludington State Park is also home to sand dunes with jaw-dropping views, hardwood forests, marshlands and nearly seven miles of gorgeous Lake Michigan shoreline.

Within Ludington State Park there are three modern campgrounds: Pines, Cedar and Beechwood. The campgrounds have a combined total of 355 campsites including three mini-cabins. The sites have electricity and modern shower and bathroom facilities in each campground. Cedar Campground also has an area of eight tent-only sites separated from the modern site area. The tent sites do not have electricity.

Visitors also enjoy the park’s eight marked trails covering 18 miles. Information kiosks providing fascinating historical and natural facts about the state park. To learn more about the individual trails, and each hike’s estimated walking time, check out the detailed Trail Map. From this page, you can print a PDF of the map to carry along.

In addition to adventuring on land, explore the park’s many rivers and streams. Ludington State Park is well known for its picturesque marked canoe pathway. You begin by launching your canoe at the Hamlin Lake Beach and then meander along the eastern shore of Hamlin Lake. The time required to travel the pathway can take about one to three hours, depending upon your skill level and preferred pace.

Ludington State Park is often hailed as a fisherman’s paradise with an abundance of Hamlin Lake walleye, bass, northern pike, perch and bluegill. During the fall salmon run, fish attempt to jump over the dam on their way upstream, and spectators and fishermen often line the Sable River Boardwalk to capture the thrill.

Finally, Ludington State Park is well known for its breathtaking views. This includes the Big Sable Point Lighthouse, which is a black-and-white striped, 112-foot lighthouse standing proudly on the shores of Lake Michigan. It’s a short hike to get to the lighthouse from the campground, but the views are something you’ll never forget. 

Photo(s) by Taylor Brown

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