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Monday, July 10, 2017

Part 2 of our Michigan Vacation

As you probably know, we visited Michigan last week, and I shared Part 1 of our vacation here.

Now it's time for Part 2! From Traverse City, we headed northeast to Mackinaw City, Michigan. It's a historic lakefront town, which had a lot of nice little shops and places to eat. We stopped here in the afternoon on our way to our hotel in the Upper Peninsula.

We saw the Old Mackinac Lighthouse, and then walked around and ate lunch at a restaurant called The Historic Depot. We ate outside on the patio, and I had a flatbread pizza there which was really good.

We then crossed the Mackinac Bridge, or the "Mighty Mac", into the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. It's one of the longest suspension bridges in the world.

Our hotel was the Breakers Resort Lakeside in Saint Ignace. It was nice, and we had a balcony with a small beach out front and a view of the lake.

After we were checked into our hotel, we drove up to Canada to spend a few hours there in the evening. Trent had never been to Canada before, so it was his first time crossing the border! We explored the city of Sault Sainte Marie, Ontario.

There was a nice boardwalk there along the St. Mary's River, so we walked down it, all the way past the canal and explored some of the wildlife areas around the river.

We reached St. Mary's Island, which has a fish preservation area, where you can walk over a bridge and are surrounded by wildlife, including tons of ducks, geese, and birds. It's quiet there; all you hear are the sounds of nature, from birds chirping to ducks swimming the water. It was pretty cool. 

We walked back and went to a mall there where we bought a few Canada souvenirs, then we ate dinner outside on a patio at a hotel restaurant on the water called Fluid.

The view was great, and drinks and food were good, but it got chillier as it got later into the evening. We had jackets on, but I was still wearing shorts. It sure got cold at night in northern Michigan and Canada!

The next day was the Fourth of July, and we spent most of the day at Mackinac Island. We took the Star Line ferry there from St. Ignace.

The ferry ride was nice, but very chilly! I was wishing I had brought a jacket or a hoodie with me, but I didn't want to carry one around on the island, so I opted not to. It was an overall nice day, probably upper seventies and sunny. But the wind from the ferry ride got a little intense at times.

We rode under the Mackinac bridge, which takes a little longer, but was kind of interesting. They tell you a little history about the bridge as you are going under it.

When you get onto the island, it's kind of like a whole other world. It's the perfect escape from your normal life, so it was a great way to spend the holiday.

There are no cars on the island, so you have to travel either on foot, horse and carriage, or ride a bicycle. 

They have plenty of places where you can rent a bicycle for the day, or you can pay to take a carriage ride. We chose to walk around the island at our own pace, but if we ever go again, I'd definitely like to try the bike or carriage rides at least once.

The views on the island are absolutely gorgeous. Everything is just so pretty, from the shores of Lake Huron to the beautiful flowers everywhere.

We ate lunch at The Pink Pony, which I definitely recommend. Instead of waiting for a table, we just opted to eat at the bar, which was faster, and we still had a great view of the water. I got a lilac lemonade, which was strong, but really tasty.

One place we walked to was Arch Rock, which was located in the Mackinac Island State Park.

The whole area there was so pretty, that it felt like we were on a tropical island.

Arch Rock is a natural rock formation that was so cool to see in person.

There are so many gift shops, and little fudge and ice cream shops on the island too, so we explored the downtown area and had some ice cream to cool off after walking through the State park area.

We also saw The Grand Hotel, which is a historic and elegant hotel that you can still stay at. We didn't go inside, but just exploring the grounds was pretty cool.

It was decorated with several flags out front, so it seemed like a perfect spot to spend some time on the Fourth, and take a few photos!

We took the ferry back to St. Ignace at the end of the day, but were already missing the island and didn't want to leave! It was probably my favorite part of the entire trip.

We had a great view of the St. Ignace lighthouse when we returned. It's such a pretty area around here. The night of the Fourth, we stayed at our hotel, ordered pizza, and watched some fireworks from our private beach area.

Most of the fireworks we saw were just above the trees, but people also shot off their own, and the finale was pretty cool. It was a nice, low-key end to our Michigan trip!

It was so fun exploring Michigan, but I wish we had more time! I would have loved to spend more time at the beaches and stop at more lighthouses. Maybe in the future we'll come back again.

On the way back down from the Upper Peninsula, we stopped at a couple of other places that I'll blog about soon. We also spent the last couple of days of our vacation in Chicago. I'll have a post about that, too. 

I have a couple of other fun travel-related posts in the works, too which I'll share in the next few days! This week will be ALL about travel, since that's the kind of mood I'm in right now. :) Sound good? 

Hope you all had a great Fourth. We had a great vacation and holiday, but it's back to work for me today. Will share more soon! :)

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