There’s so much to see along the Straits of Mackinac, and the best way to experience it all is aboard a Star Line or Shepler’s ferry cruise. From romantic sunset cruises to pirate-themed cruises for the whole family, view our list of Northern Michigan cruises.

The Straits of Mackinac is full of gorgeous scenery, historic lighthouses, dreamy islands and so much more. Although the view from land is spectacular on its own, there is no better experience than to see it from the waters themselves. Whatever attraction you’re most excited about, there is a cruise to see it best. Check out these five amazing ways to cruise the Straits.

1. Lighthouse Cruises

With more than 120 lighthouses in Michigan and over two dozen of them in the Straits of Mackinac, there is no shortage of beauties to see on a Shepler’s lighthouse cruise. Your trip around the Straits can include a number of different areas, but the main choices are Eastbound or Westbound with lots to see in each direction. Looking for a new perspective? Try an evening cruise and you’ll see the lights at work as the sun sets and the stars come out.

2. Sunset Cruises & Themed Cruises

Every sunset is spectacular on the Straits of Mackinac. Take time during this nightly sky show to learn more about the Mackinac Bridge and surrounding attractions and experience one of the best sunsets Up North. Additionally, some Star Line tours even serve refreshments and they also host themed cruises like the Good Fortune Pirate Ship Cruise, which is perfect for the whole family.

3. Night Sky Cruises

Throughout the season, 11 Shepler’s cruises will take groups out onto the water to experience the Strawberry Moon, Sturgeon Moon, Harvest Moon and more! Spend a relaxing evening on the Straits of Mackinac and take in all the magnificent scenery the area has to offer.

4. Les Cheneaux Cruise

A unique experience, the Les Cheneaux cruise gives you remarkable views of six Lake Huron lighthouses as well as an inside look at the beautiful 36-island Les Cheneaux archipelago off the southeastern Upper Peninsula. The islands’ sheltered channels and bays offer some of the most dramatic and tranquil scenery in Northern Michigan. 

5. Fireworks Cruises

A seat aboard a ferry is the best place to watch fireworks over the Great Lakes. Whether it’s on the Fourth of July or any Friday or Saturday in July–September, these beautiful displays are spectacular. Many of these cruises include refreshments on board and have many different options for departure.

See more here: Shepler’s Fireworks Cruises & Star Line Fireworks Cruises

Photo(s) by Rachel Haggerty