Get ready for prepped pavement, vast views and colorful canopies. These five wheelchair-accessible trails in Northern Michigan bring the beauty.
In 2012, Ocqueoc Falls became the first universally accessible waterfall in the nation. Located 11.5 miles west of Rogers City, the waterfall has several accessible areas, including picnic spots and river access, between the parking lot and viewing platform.
Connecting Traverse City and Suttons Bay, the paved Leelanau Trail runs along beloved cherry orchards and grape vineyards. This former historic railway offers a variety of destinations to visit depending on which trailhead you choose to embark upon. Visitors can experience a free edible forest at Leelanau Conservancy’s DeYoung Farm, or take a 0.2-mile universal access trail leading to lakeside fishing at Cedar Lake—among many more accessible areas on the 17-mile trail.
Enjoy the beautiful sights of the widely loved Mackinac Island Loop on the 8-mile asphalt pathway around the outskirts of the island. Also known as State Highway 185, the Mackinac Island Loop is the only highway in the United States that doesn’t permit motorized vehicles on its route. Keep your eyes peeled for the classic Mackinac attractions to marvel at— hello, Arch Rock!
Little Traverse Wheelway
Bask in the views of Lake Michigan’s shoreline along the Little Traverse Wheelway, stretching 26 miles along Little Traverse Bay. From Charlevoix to Petoskey to Harbor Springs, you’ll find the trek paved with asphalt. Take in the sights of Bayfront Park in Petoskey, old Victorian homes throughout the area, the marina-resort community of Bay Harbor and many more Michigan treasures.
Relish in all the sights of Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore via the wheelchair-accessible Sleeping Bear Heritage Trail. Most of the trail, which runs along the Lake Michigan coastline for 22 miles, is paved. With a variation of flat terrain—hills and inclines included—the grounds have been repurposed from its former railroad days. Vista views, too? Oh, yeah!