Hell To Paradise Mi
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From Hell to Paradise in a Day | A Michigan Road Trip Itinerary

Did you know that it’s possible to go from Hell to Paradise in a single day? Well, in Michigan, only 338 miles lay between the two towns, and it’s an easy drive from one to the other. But don’t just drive the distance — make a few stops along the way to make it a true Michigan road trip!

Here’s our suggested itinerary for a one-day road trip from Hell to Paradise:

Eat Breakfast in Hell

8:00 a.m.

While the indoor attraction won’t be open while you’re there, start your day at Go To Hell for the sake of the adventure, but be ready to hit the road after a quick photo op with the Gates of Hell.

As the song says, “They don’t serve breakfast in Hell,” so you’ll need to make a quick pit stop in nearby Pinckney before you hit the road. We recommend grabbing a bite to eat at Mimi’s Diner. The biscuits and gravy are sure to fuel you up for the road trip ahead.

P.S. We recommend starting your road trip first thing in the morning, so be sure to book a room nearby if you’re not local. This will also give you the option of visiting the Hell Saloon the night before since you’ll be hitting the road before it opens for the day.

State Capitol
State Capitol | photo via living_large_and_hard

See the State Capitol in Lansing

10:00 a.m.

If you can time it right, visit the Michigan State Capitol in Lansing and take a guided tour to learn about the state’s history and government. The building is a National Historic Landmark and houses the offices of the Michigan Legislature and the Governor’s Office.

Visitors can take a guided tour of the building to learn about the state’s history and government. The tour includes visits to the House and Senate chambers, the rotunda, and the governor’s ceremonial office. The building also features stunning architecture and artwork, including a grand staircase and murals depicting Michigan’s history.

NOTE: Spend an hour or so exploring, but then jump back on the road… we’ve got a lot to see before we reach Paradise at the end of the day!

Take a Lunch Break at Cops & Doughnuts in Clare

12:30 p.m.

Is it even possible to drive through Clare without stopping at the iconic Cops & Doughnuts headquarters?!? We certainly wouldn’t want to have to do so!

Cops & Doughnuts is a bakery located in Clare Michigan that is owned and operated by a group of police officers. The bakery offers a variety of delicious doughnuts, pastries, and other baked goods that are made fresh daily.

The business was started by the police officers in an effort to save the historic Clare City Bakery from closing. Today, Cops & Doughnuts has become a popular destination for locals and tourists alike, and the bakery has even expanded to include additional locations in nearby Mt. Pleasant, Gaylord, and Bay City.

While not your typical lunch destination, we encourage grabbing a dozen doughnuts to munch on while you drive.

NOTE: It might be tempting to sit and linger, but you should grab a quick lunch and get back on the road… Paradise is calling!

Call Of The Wild-Gaylord
Call of the Wild | photo via thefeems

Explore the Call of the Wild in Gaylord

2:30 p.m.

The Call of the Wild Museum is a unique museum located in Gaylord Michigan that showcases the natural history of The Mitten’s wildlife. The museum features over 60 full-size mounts of animals native to Michigan, including bears, wolves, deer, and more.

Visitors can learn about the animals and their habitats through interactive exhibits and educational displays. Also, the museum has a gift shop where visitors can purchase souvenirs and other wildlife-related items.

The Call of the Wild Museum is a must-see destination for nature lovers and anyone interested in Michigan’s wildlife. Give yourself an hour or two to stretch your legs as you explore this fascinating museum.

Cross the Mackinac Bridge

5:00 p.m.

Anyone who travels in Michigan knows the thrill of crossing the Mighty Mac. Whether it’s your first time or one-thousandth (if you’re so well-traveled from the Lower Peninsula to the Upper Peninsula, we’re jealous!), it never fails to leave you giddy as the first glimpse of the bridge comes into view.

Crossing the Mackinac Bridge is a breathtaking experience. The bridge spans 5 miles across the Straits of Mackinac, connecting Michigan’s Upper and Lower Peninsulas. As you cross the bridge, you’ll enjoy stunning views of Lake Michigan and Lake Huron, as well as the picturesque Mackinac Island.

NOTE: If you’re looking for a photo op with the bridge, exit the highway just before or after it. There are great parks on either end with stunning views.

Castle Rock-St Ignace
Castle Rock | photo via jes_vanhusen

Climb to the Top of Castle Rock in St Ignace

5:30 p.m.

And while we’re on the subject of stunning views, don’t miss climbing to the top of Castle Rock just across the bridge in the Upper Peninsula for panoramic views of the entire Straits.

Castle Rock is a unique natural landmark located in St. Ignace Michigan. This rock formation stands 195 feet tall and offers stunning panoramic views of Lake Huron and the surrounding area.

Visitors can climb to the top of the rock via a staircase and observation deck, or take an elevator for an easier ascent. The site also features a gift shop and snack bar, making it a great destination for a family outing or a quick stop on a road trip.

NOTE: Spend a few minutes taking it all in, but don’t linger too long as your bellies are likely getting hungry, and dinner in Paradise is next on our itinerary.

Enjoy Dinner & Drinks in Paradise

7:00 p.m.

Whether the kids are kicking each other in the backseat or you’re just ready to get out of the car after a day full of adventuring, we’ve got good news… you’ve made it! Our next stop along this road trip from Hell to Paradise is Tahquamenon Falls Brewery & Pub.

The Tahquamenon Falls Brewery and Pub is a popular restaurant and brewery located in Paradise Michigan near Tahquamenon Falls State Park. The brewery offers a variety of delicious craft beers, including a signature Root Beer Stout, as well as a menu of pub-style food made with locally sourced ingredients.

The restaurant features a cozy atmosphere and outdoor seating with beautiful views of the surrounding forest. The Tahquamenon Falls Brewery & Pub is a must-visit destination for beer lovers and foodies alike.

Star Gazing Tahquamenon Falls
Tahquamenon Falls | photo via michiganskymedia

Stargaze Over the Tahquamenon Falls

9:00 p.m.

It’s the end of another day in Paradise. And nothing is better than staring up at the night sky while listening to the sound of rushing water fall over a sandstone cliff.

Stargazing at the Upper Tahquamenon Falls is a unique and unforgettable experience. The Tahquamenon Falls State Park is located in one of the darkest regions of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, making it an ideal destination for stargazing.

Visitors can witness the stunning night sky, including the Milky Way and shooting stars, from the observation deck overlooking the falls.

Additionally, the park offers guided stargazing tours and other astronomy-related events throughout the year. Stargazing at the Upper Tahquamenon Falls is a must-do activity for astronomy enthusiasts and anyone looking for a magical nighttime adventure.

Hell To Paradise Mi
Hell | photo via marence – Tahquamenon Falls | photo via michiganskymedia

From Hell to Paradise in a Day

This day trip itinerary from Hell to Paradise allows for a realistic travel time between destinations, but keep in mind that actual travel times may vary depending on traffic and other factors.

Also, the amount of time you spend at each stop along the way may alter your arrival times to subsequent destinations.

And, if you’re like us, we won’t be ready to turn south and head home for the night. So we’ll be booking a room in Paradise for a night or two (there’s so much more to explore in the Eastern Upper Peninsula!).

A couple of suggestions of places to stay near Tahquamenon Falls include Tahquamenon Suites Lodging & Magnuson Grand Lakefront Paradise.

Are you ready to hit the road? Add a road trip from Hell to Paradise to your Michigan summer bucket list this year!

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