In Traverse Northern Michigan magazine we took you inside 8 great under-the-radar adventure towns to consider calling home. With one of the wildest housing markets in recent memory, hear from local real estate experts on where buyers can still find relative affordability and a stellar home base for outdoor adventures. Here, we explore Cadillac and its gorgeous lakes and trails. Check out all 8 towns when you order a copy of our May issue.

This article first appeared in Traverse Northern Michigan. Find this story and more when you explore our digital issue library. Want Traverse delivered to your door or inbox monthly? View our print subscription and digital subscription options.

Located in the Huron-Manistee National Forests, Cadillac seems to be Michigan at its finest: the snow comes by the buckets in the winter (even when towns farther north are still doing snow dances), and in the fall, the colors turn early (offering day-trippers both north and south a first autumn before their own hometown cooperates). This little Northern oasis offers big-box convenience but also small-town charm—with biking, hiking, skiing and boating literally a step from town in every direction.

Beach and park in Cadillac

Photo by Cadillac Area Visitors Bureau

Explore Cadillac’s Great Outdoors

The shores of Lake Cadillac (a local fave for sunsets) and Lake Mitchell offer boating, fishing and swimming. Nearby Pine River—quick, tight and not for novice paddlers—is
a destination river for kayaking and canoeing. (Adventure paddlers looking for a challenge? Behold the whitewater rapids on the lower stretches of the Pine after a significant rainfall.) The ever-improving Cadillac Pathway with a brand-new pavilion and outdoor fireplace offers miles of single-track mountain biking, hiking and winter fat biking. And let’s not forget Caberfae Peaks with downhill skiing and snowboarding.

Snowy adventures in Cadillac

Photo by Cadillac Area Visitors Bureau

What’s in Your Pole Barn

This is a year-round playground, so you’ll want it all: skis, snowshoes, kayaks, bikes and paddleboards. Hit up Sun ‘n’ Snow Ski Shop or newcomer bike shop Einstein Cycles on Mitchell Street.

Cadillac Neighborhood Spots to Check Out

Clam Lake Beer Company has 40 brews on tap, brick-fired pizza and a nod to Cadillac’s past—originally known as Clam Lake. Willow Market is a gourmet coffee bar, BBQ spot and deli, with local brews and—surprise—The Greenhouse, a greenhouse-turned-event space with trivia nights on Wednesdays and live entertainment on Fridays.

Downtown Cadillac

Cadillac Real Estate Real Talk

Michelle Maidens | Associate Broker/Manager RealEstate One-Cadillac | Michelle’s Website

Median Home Price in Town: $207,000

What’s Next for Cadillac:  “Cadillac is definitely on the rise. The downtown district has grown substantially in the last several years, offering many more places to shop, eat and enjoy entertainment. It’s not the Cadillac it was even a few years ago.”

Who’s Buying: “Over the last couple of years, we have seen many buyers relocate here because it’s a central location to be closer to family and friends. Cadillac is also a great place for a first-time buyer because prices are not as expensive as in the surrounding counties, offering the chance to get a nicer home on a smaller budget in a gorgeous area.”

Why Live Here: “Cadillac is a wise place to invest because its growth will continue, yet things are still very affordable. It’s a beautiful place to call home.”

Meet Your Dream Cadillac Home

8073 Quarter Rd., Cadillac, 2,170 sq. ft. | $337,000

This three-bedroom home with a garage and pole barn sits on 10 wooded acres just 10 minutes from downtown and half that to the beaches of Lake Cadillac and Lake Mitchell. The home has had an entire makeover, including a new roof and siding.

House for sale in Cadillac

Photo(s) by Cadillac Area Visitors Bureau