You don’t have to travel far for an island getaway when you live in Michigan. Tucked away in the waters of Michigan’s Great Lakes are some of the most beautiful islands you’ll ever see.

If you’re familiar with Michigan or even if you’ve never set foot in the Great Lakes State, chances are you’ve heard of Mackinac Island. This tiny 4.35 square mile paradise is home to around 500 residents, but its annual visitors exceed one million. However, Michigan is not limited to just Mackinac Island. If you’re itching to discover other islands in the state, we’ve got a few recommendations for you to explore.

These islands are simply gorgeous.

People absolutely love the islands in Michigan, and it’s not hard to see why. These islands are simply gorgeous. The natural beauty found there is off the charts. From pristine beaches and lush forests to sparkling waters and stunning views, the scenery is straight out of a postcard. But it’s not just about the looks. These islands offer an escape from the daily grind. You can leave behind the honking horns and crowded streets and embrace a more relaxed pace of life. And some of these islands don’t even allow cars.

Whether you’re into hiking, biking, kayaking, fishing, or even off-roading, you’ll find your fix here. Of course, you can’t forget the amount of history each island holds. They’ve witnessed the passage of time, seen settlers come and go, and have their own unique cultures. You can dive into the past by visiting historical sites, checking out museums, or chatting with the locals.

One of the best things about these islands is the chance to have one-of-a-kind experiences. Where you can take a horse-drawn carriage ride like you’re in a fairytale. Or spot majestic gray wolves in their natural habitat.

In Michigan, there are islands waiting to be discovered. Here are five islands you should check out.

  • Isle Royale

    Isle Royale, one of Michigan’s five national parks, attracts around 17,000 visitors annually. This little island nestled in the heart of Lake Superior offers wildlife and outdoor fun. Despite its national park status, it remains uncrowded. In fact, Isle Royale is one of the least-visited national parks in the entire country according to Michigan.org. But that’s due to its lack of accessibility. Most adventurers reach the island by taking a five-hour boat ride from the Upper Peninsula.

  • Beaver Island

    Beaver Island, the biggest island in Lake Michigan, is a nature lover’s paradise with plenty of activities to enjoy. The year-round population has around 600, and a significant portion of the islanders proudly trace their roots back to Ireland.

  • Les Cheneaux Islands

    Les Cheneaux Islands is a cluster of 36 small islands in Lake Huron, Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. These islands are a perfect blend of relaxation and adventure. The Les Cheneaux Islands are located just a few miles northeast of Michigan’s famed Mackinac Bridge, which connects the state’s Upper and Lower Peninsulas.

  • Drummond Islands

    Drummond Island, the second largest freshwater island in the United States, is home to 1,058 people. This island stands out for its closed-loop trail system, offering off-road adventures. Drummond Island has a diverse range of ecosystems. With over 13 distinct ecosystems, including six forest types, five swamp-marsh types, inland lakes and rivers, and cobble beaches, the island is a haven for nature enthusiasts seeking to explore the richness and variety of its natural landscapes.

  • North & South Manitou Islands

    North and South Manitou Islands are two islands situated within an island chain that stretches northward towards the Straits of Mackinac. South Manitou, located approximately 16 miles west of Leland, covers a land area of 8.277 square miles. On the other hand, North Manitou Island lies to the north, about 12 miles from Leland, and has a larger land area of 22.346 square miles.

  • Belle Isle

    Located in the international waters of the Detroit River, Belle Isle Park is a 982-acre island park known as the “Jewel of Detroit.” With its stunning natural landscapes and historic landmarks like the Belle Isle Aquarium and Anna Scripps Whitcomb Conservatory, it offers a perfect urban oasis and cultural retreat for visitors to enjoy.

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