We all know that carving out time for your friendships or partners can be tough in life’s hustle and bustle. Sometimes, it takes a little inspiration or plans laid out for you.
I hope you can use these three different Michigan day trips taken to three cities for inspiration for your next outing.
While each of these cities has a plethora of options available for eating, seeing, and doing, what I loved about each of these trips was the proximity of each location to each other.
Hike, Dine & Create in Lansing, Michigan
Hike at Woldumar Nature Center
You’ll first start your adventure in Lansing, Michigan. At Woldumar Nature Center, you’ll find access to five miles of trails that have varying landscapes, such as woodlands, wetlands, prairies, and more. There is a suggested donation of $2 for non-members using the trails.
My favorite trek is the White Pine Forest; something about those towering pines is magical. These are all easy hikes to do no matter which one you choose.
If there is enough snowfall, you can enjoy cross-country skiing or snowshoeing as well, making this the perfect spot to stop with a friend and enjoy the great outdoors and some good conversation.
A Lunch at Horrocks
After your hike at Woldmaur, I suggest heading just ten minutes to Horrocks Farm Market. If you’ve never made your way to Horrocks, this ultimate guide to Horrocks can help you plan your trip to the market. We first headed into the market on the pizzeria side and put in an order for pizza. If you don’t want a full pie, they often have pizza by the slice available.
While waiting for our pizza to be ready, we used this time to explore the rest of the store. We made our way to the soup and salad bar to round out our meal. After our pizza was ready, we headed to the beer garden to enjoy our meal together. This oasis in the heart of Lansing is a perfect way to break up a gloomy day or enjoy the good weather.
No matter what season, you can enjoy the garden as in the winter, they bring the bar into the greenhouse, and during the warmer months, you’ll enjoy a meal outside.
Create at Board and Brush Lansing
After having your fill at Horrocks, you can travel less than five minutes away for a workshop at Board and Brush, Lansing. At Board and Brush, you can choose between different types of sessions to create a DIY project.
This is such a great way to enjoy time together and walk away with something tangible. Projects range from front door welcome mats, signs, trays, and more.
Appreciate Fine Arts, Eats & Shops in Detroit
Take in the Arts at Detroit Institue of Arts
For your trip to Detroit, you’ll start your day at the Detroit Institute of Arts. You can easily spend a whole day here, but for this trip, you’ll want to plan for a couple of hours.
We parked in the John R. parking lot behind the DIA building. This parking lot is convenient for me when I am planning on spending more time in the museum district, but there are lots of different parking options.
The Detroit Institute of Arts building itself is a work of art. It was designed by architect Paul Cret, and the museum’s architecture is worth the visit alone. The Detroit Institute of Arts is a world-renowned art museum, and you will find tons of opportunities to immerse yourself in many different art forms.
The museum’s collection includes pieces by artists such as Van Gogh, Rembrandt, Diego Rivera, and many others.
Lunch at Detroit Shipping Company
After spending the morning taking in the arts, you will have worked up an appetite. Just over a five-minute drive from the museum district, you’ll find the Detroit Shipping Company. This food hall and beer garden are sure to have something for everyone.
I had heard of amazing things about the Motor Burger, and the rumors were not wrong. If you are a burger fan, this is a burger you will not want to miss. With music and open hall seating, the vibe in the hall was upbeat and lively and was the perfect spot for our lunch.
Shop in Midtown
After a great meal, it was time to continue our adventure. A fifteen-minute walk or three-minute car ride is Canfield St. While Woodward Ave is often considered a hub of shopping in downtown Detroit, I really love exploring this little spot for unique gifts or after-dinner drinks.
A sample of what you will find:
- City Bird, where you can purchase Detroit-themed gifts and unique housewares
- Upscale watches at Shinola (make sure to try their coffee!)
- Third Man Records, where you can even sign up for a tour on select Fridays for a small fee
Relax and Explore in Grand Rapids
Spa Day at Woodhouse Spa
Sometimes, I find it hard to take time out for some self-care. Whether it’s a massage or a pedicure, nothing says relaxing like a morning at the spa.
For this trip to Grand Rapids you are going to grab your friend and make and finally get on the books for some you time! Services range from massages, nails, facials, and more.
Why not take some time for yourself on your next trip?
Lunch at Hopcat Brewery
After a relaxing morning at the spa, you will head just across the Beltline to Hopcat for lunch. HopCat is famous for its Cosmick Fries, which are seasoned beer-battered fries served with a side of warm cheese sauce for dipping.
This signature dish has become a favorite among visitors and is often highlighted as a must-try item on the menu for good reason. We loved ours. Pair it with the Supper Club Wrap for the perfect midday meal.
An Afternoon at the Gardens
After lunch, you’ll continue down the Beltline to visit the Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park. The gardens and sculpture park are worth visiting in any season, with seasonal and temporary exhibits available in the colder months.
Guided walks and tours, special events, and the conservatory are available all season long. We spent our time inside checking out the temporary art exhibit and the conservatory before working our way outside to view the sculptures.
Break Up the Routine with a Michigan Day Trip
Heading out on a day trip provides not only a temporary escape from the routine but also an opportunity to discover hidden gems and create some memories with loved ones.
Whether it’s exploring a nearby park, indulging in a meal at a new-to-you restaurant, or immersing yourself in art at a museum, a Michigan day trip offers a brief yet fulfilling adventure.