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Upper Peninsula - July 4th

Madison, Wisconsin
9 posts
1 review
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Upper Peninsula - July 4th

My mother in law, husband and I are planning a trip to the Upper Peninsula during the independence day weekend. We are planning to drive from Madison and stay for three nights. This will be our first trip to Michigan and we would like to have some suggestions on restaurants (we are vegetarians) and where to stay. I understand that this is a very short time to have planned such a trip but we have tried to squeeze this trip between my MIL's US travel schedule. I have shortlisted places that we might like to visit but I am not sure if we have to stay at one location and drive to see all the places or stay at different places each night. I am not sure if we would be able to cover the places listed in 3 days. We like to hike, watch scenery, wildlife (if any), cruises. We would appreciate any help.

St. Ignace - Castle Rock

Sault Ste, Marie - Soo Locks

Whitefish Point Light station and Great lakes shipwreck museum

Tahquamenon falls


Fayetter State Park


Iron Mountain

Isle Royale

Thanks so much!!

Ann Arbor, MI
Destination Expert
for Michigan, Ann Arbor
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2,158 posts
176 reviews
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1. Re: Upper Peninsula - July 4th

Hi! Your weekend in the U.P. will whet your appetite to come back and see more!

The destinations you've listed are all over the U.P. and way too spread out to see in one long weekend (and Isle Royale is a 6 or 8 hour ferry crossing each way). To give you some perspective--the U.P. is roughly 370 miles across east-to-west and there isn't any freeway except from the bridge to Sault Ste. Marie.

My suggestion would be that you can get to either Porcupine State Park (hiking, gorgeous scenery, wildlife) or the town of Munising (Pictured Rocks boat cruise, waterfalls, hiking, gorgeous scenery) in 5.5 hours from Madison. I would say look at what's around those two destinations and choose one as your base of operations. Otherwise you are going to spend your entire weekend in a car watching trees go by.

The Porkies area is much less developed than Munising, but it has lodging and restaurants. The Porkies are great for enjoying some very undeveloped natural beauty along the Lake Superior shoreline and the closest we have to actual mountains. Munising is a reasonably sized town. Munising would be the more typical visit for first time visitors to the U.P. because you can see a few of the sights the U.P. is known for using it as a base (Pictured Rocks are right there as are several waterfalls; a day trip to Tahquamenon Falls and Seney National Wildlife Refuge would have you driving about 1.5-2 hours each way).

Lodging availability might dictate where you go. Fourth of July is the absolute height of tourist season so check that out as you hone your ideas.

Have fun and let us know where you go, what you did, and what you thought of it.

Madison, Wisconsin
9 posts
1 review
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2. Re: Upper Peninsula - July 4th

Thank you so much.,.

Marquette, Michigan
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1,101 posts
39 reviews
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3. Re: Upper Peninsula - July 4th

I'd spend it all at Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore and the Munising area. So much to see and do. Lots of waterfalls, day hikes and stunning rock formations along the coast. Take the Pictured Rocks Boat Cruise one day, you will never forget it.

4. Re: Upper Peninsula - July 4th

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