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Michigan Lakes & Trails Bike Tour

  • Sunset at Sleeping Bear Dunes
  • Lake Michigan with wave
  • Biking along Lake Michigan
  • Lake Michigan with rocks
  • Lake beachfront
  • Bikers viewed through stone arch
  • Vineyard near Traverse City
  • Stones found near Petoskey
  • Horse-drawn carriages Mackinac Island
DURATION
6 Day(s)
DAILY BIKING
8 to 63 miles
TRIP DIFFICULTY
2-Easier to Intermediate
STARTING FROM
$2895
SINGLES ADD FROM
$700

Trip Overview

Sandwiched between two of the Great Lakes — Lake Michigan and Lake Huron — northern Michigan’s Lower Peninsula is one of the most attractive destinations in the Midwest. With lakes and trails galore, this gorgeous area is famous for cycling. Our 6-day bike tour there showcases the very best of the region. You have minimal shuttle time and make the most of riding options and an enviable selection of the best sights. In fact, this tour offers more than just riding on idyllic trails along pristine waters … it offers a visit to Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, a sampling of the area’s well-known vineyards, a visit to the Old Mission Lighthouse, a stay on Mackinac Island, a ride along a premier biking trail, a pedal through the famous Tunnel of Trees, a visit to locales made famous by Ernest Hemingway (whose popularity was recently revived by Ken Burns’ three-episode Hemingway documentary), and a riding tour of Charlevoix’s unique Mushroom Houses. Join us for the Michigan Lakes & Trails bike tour, and marvel at all this incredible area has to offer.

Itinerary

From start to finish, check out the route.

DAY 1 - Arrival Day: Sleeping Bear Dunes
Arrival Day | Distance: 33 | Terrain: Easier or Intermediate | Hotel Indigo
Our shuttle picks you up at 8:30 a.m. at Hotel Indigo in Traverse City. Be ready to ride. After brief introductions, shuttle one hour to the start of today’s route. After your bike fitting, take off on your first ride.

Pedal along Crystal Lake, the first of many lakes on the tour. Stop in Empire for a tasty lunch and visit the Philip A. Hart Visitor Center to learn about your upcoming visit to the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. After lunch, cycle along the Sleeping Bear Dunes Heritage Trail. Either pedal or shuttle the gorgeous 8-mile loop around Pierce Stocking Drive. Crossing forests and dunes, this roadway is well-known for its scenic vistas, gentle curves and fascinating landscapes. In your last few miles of the ride, consider climbing “The Dune,” a challenging hike up a steep and sandy hill with rewarding water views up top. Visit the Glen Haven Historic Village and the Cannery Boathouse Museum before a shuttle back to Hotel Indigo.
DAY 2 - Grand Traverse Bay
Distance: 22 or 44 miles | Terrain: Easier or Intermediate | Hotel Indigo
Today you explore the Old Mission Peninsula via a picturesque ride through vineyards and cherry orchards. At the tip of the peninsula is the scenic Mission Point Lighthouse, where you enjoy a picnic lunch. Though the lighthouse has been decommissioned for nearly 90 years, it offers a historical view into the lives of lighthouse keepers at the turn of the century. After visiting the lighthouse, pedal south along the peninsula back to Traverse City. Those opting for extended mileage begin and end their day at the hotel and pass a number of wineries along the route. Enjoy the afternoon exploring the town or relaxing at the hotel’s rooftop bar. You’re on your own for dinner tonight.
DAY 3 - Charlevoix & land of Hemingway
Distance: 31 miles | Terrain: Easier | Stafford's Crooked River Lodge & Suites
After a morning shuttle to Charlevoix, you cycle along the Little Traverse Wheelway. Early in the ride you will tour Charlevoix’s famous “Mushroom Houses,” also known as “Gnome Homes” or “Hobbit Houses.” Built by Earl Young, the more than two dozen homes are made mostly of stone found throughout northern Michigan and were built to blend in with the surroundings. Then you head north into Petoskey, with a beautiful overlook of Lake Michigan where you’ll have your choice of spots for lunch. After lunch, you’ll cycle the remaining miles to Stafford's Crooked River Lodge & Suites.
DAY 4 - Petoskey & Tunnel of Trees
Distance: 23 or 44 miles | Terrain: Easier or Advanced | Stafford's Crooked River Lodge & Suites
Today you pedal along the Little Traverse Wheelway North from Petoskey to Harbor Springs. Along the way, enjoy views of Little Traverse Bay off to the west. There are three riding options today, which provide a variety of ways to pedal the bike path and to visit the famous Tunnel of Trees. Also known as M119, this iconic road was given its name for the trees whose branches intertwine to create a ceiling above the roadway. Spend the afternoon making sure you’ve seen every corner of Petoskey.
DAY 5 - North Central State Trail and Mackinac Island
Distance: 24 miles | Terrain: Easier | Harbour View Inn
Today you explore a quiet inland rail trail on the way to Mackinaw City and the ferry to the ever-popular Mackinac Island. As you gather your belongings before breakfast, make sure to pack a change of clothes and your toiletries in an overnight bag that you can carry with you as you cycle onto the ferry, as vehicles are not permitted on the island.
Located on the eastern end of the Straits of Mackinac, the island is in the narrow body of water that separates the upper and lower peninsulas of Michigan. The entire island is recognized as a National Historic Landmark and is famous for being car-free. Instead of motorized vehicles, guests are propelled by feet, bicycles (though e-bikes are not allowed unless you have mobility issues), and horse carriages. You’ll enjoy the lovely, flat, 8-mile bike route that circumnavigates the island. Spend the afternoon taking in the sights, visiting the historic buildings, and searching the island for the best fudge. Enjoy the final night with a celebratory dinner on the island!
DAY 6 - Mackinac Island
Departure Day | Distance: 9 miles | Terrain: Easier or Advanced
Spend the morning exploring Mackinac Island by bike and by foot. Enjoy the sunrise over Lake Huron and take in a leisurely breakfast at the Inn after your morning ride, then catch an 11am ferry back to Mackinaw City and shuttle back to the starting hotel in Traverse City by about 2 p.m. where we say our goodbyes.

Map

Dates & Pricing

Prices are per person based on double occupancy (2 people in one room). Single supplement for private room is listed at the top of this page. A deposit of $500 holds your reservation for most tours. For weekend tours, the deposit is $300.

Start End Cost Availability
Jul 16, 2023 Jul 21, 2023 $2895.00 Available! Reserve Reserve
Jul 23, 2023 Jul 28, 2023 $2895.00 Hurry! Filling up! Reserve Reserve

What’s Included

5 nights’ lodging, 5 breakfasts, 1 lunch, and 2 dinners (you are on your own for 4 lunches and 3 dinners), park entrance fees, lighthouse tour, and all ferry rides. We also include detailed maps and itineraries, experienced guides, full van support — plus use of a bike and helmet. Airfare is not included.

Dates & Pricing

Prices are per person based on double occupancy (2 people in one room). Single supplement for private room is listed at the top of this page. A deposit of $500 holds your reservation for most tours. For weekend tours, the deposit is $300.

Start: Jul 16, 2023
End: Jul 21, 2023
Cost: $2895.00
Availability: Available!
Reserve
Start: Jul 23, 2023
End: Jul 28, 2023
Cost: $2895.00
Availability: Hurry! Filling up!
Reserve

What’s Included

5 nights’ lodging, 5 breakfasts, 1 lunch, and 2 dinners (you are on your own for 4 lunches and 3 dinners), park entrance fees, lighthouse tour, and all ferry rides. We also include detailed maps and itineraries, experienced guides, full van support — plus use of a bike and helmet. Airfare is not included.

Inns

Where you stay along the way.

Hotel Indigo - Traverse City
Standing among revamped lumberyards, sawmills and canneries, Hotel Indigo® Traverse City reflects the new life and vibrant spirit of the waterfront Warehouse District neighborhood. It also pay homage to its past — with modern guest rooms featuring wood details a 19th-century white-pine lumber baron would love.
Stafford's Crooked River Lodge & Suites
Nestled in Alanson on the picturesque Crooked River on the historic Inland Waterway, Stafford's Crooked River Lodge is a family-friendly hotel featuring an indoor pool and hot tub ... and is within arm's reach of river and recreational activities.
Harbour View Inn - Mackinac Island
Immerse yourself in the historic charm that has made Michigan’s Mackinac Island famous when you stay at the Harbour View Inn – a hotel with a fascinating history of its own. Located on spacious, scenic and beautifully landscaped grounds it's only a short walk from the best Mackinac Island attractions, yet away from the bustling traffic of downtown.

Gallery

Images from this tour. Click each to see it larger.

Sunset at Sleeping Bear Dunes Lake Michigan with wave Biking along Lake Michigan Lake Michigan with rocks Lake beachfront Bikers viewed through stone arch Vineyard near Traverse City Stones found near Petoskey Horse-drawn carriages Mackinac Island