Despite its name, Mackinaw City is actually a village of around 1,000 inhabitants. Its population increases dramatically, however, in the summer months when visitors come to enjoy historical re-enactments, sample local wine and enjoy water sports such as parasailing, yachting and fishing.
Start your visit with a trip to Historic Mill Creek. Watch as actors dressed in period costumes work a water-powered mill to cut lumber. More history is on offer at Colonial Michilimackinac, a reconstructed 18th-century fort and fur trading village. Step into an old-style fort, meet redcoats and watch as muskets are fired by British soldiers. The Icebreaker Mackinaw Maritime Museum is housed in the ship of the same name, and here visitors can explore the mess deck and engine room.
Mackinaw City also offers plenty of modern entertainment, much of it outdoors. The city is located on the banks of Lake Huron and is an excellent destination for water sports, such as parasailing and yachting. Fishing is another popular pastime. Take your pick from many angling spots, including French Farm Lake and Bois Blanc Island.
Seafood is a specialty of the area and many establishments offer the local produce in buffets and seasonal meals. Wine fans should visit Garden Bay Winery, while those with a sweet tooth will love the town’s range of fudge shops.
Getting around Mackinaw City is easy as most sites in the village can be reached on foot. Because Mackinaw City is quite small, it’s often a good idea to include side excursions with your visit to the village. Mackinac Island is a quick ride away and is common day trip for visitors, although you might want to stay there for a night or two. Ferries operate regularly during the summer. Wilderness rail trips to Agawa Canyon also make a popular one-day excursion.
Shopping, Islands and Beaches