Great Lakes Air

Island Hopping With Great Lakes Air

When was the last time you took a private flight? Never? Well, in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula you can book a seat on a small aircraft and take an incredible ride to one of Michigan’s many islands. Great Lakes Air in St. Ignace has been providing services for almost thirty years. They offer a variety flight services from Mackinac Island and the surrounding areas. Their flights also go to other airports, such as Detroit to catch commercial flights. If you want to do something out of the ordinary, you need to do some island hopping and take a flight with Great Lakes Air!

Island Hopping With Great Lake Air - The Awesome Mitten
Photo Courtesy of Kaitlin Ryan

Mackinac Island

Great Lakes Air has daily tours of Mackinac Island and St. Ignace offering a bird’s eye view of the Straits of Mackinac. This is a great place to start if you are squeamish about flying in a small plane and want a quick trip. The flight to Mackinac is short (under fifteen minutes). Their planes seat only a handful of people. It is likely that your flight will only carry your party and the pilot. The sights are breathtaking as you soar over the turquoise waters and the lush forestry of Michigan. It is an experience you have to try. For only $32 per person from St. Ignace to Mackinac Island (each way), it is only a little more expensive than a ferry ride.

Take a quick flight and spend the day enjoying the Island. The hiking trails, Fort Mackinac, horse-drawn carriage rides, the food, the wine, and of course, the fudge are just a few of the major attractions that make for a wonderful day.

Island Hopping With Great Lake Air - The Awesome Mitten
Photo Courtesy of C Hanchey via Flickr

Bois Blanc Island

If you have done Mackinac Island too many times, why not take a flight to Bois Blanc? This quiet Island oasis offers a lot of nature and beautiful views. The Insel Haus is a quaint bed and breakfast on the island. It provides accommodations for a romantic getaway. They also have family suites available. It is a quiet oasis island. There are few vehicles traveling down the unpaved country roads and even fewer stores or city amenities.

This is the place to come when you want to completely unplug and enjoy the unspoiled serenity. You can see deer and turkeys ambling around, hike through the woods, or visit the two lighthouses still standing on the island. Walk along the glittering shoreline and take a quick swim. Bois Blanc is a totally different kind of vacation and one of the destinations that captures the wild beauty of Michigan.

Island Hopping With Great Lake Air - The Awesome Mitten
Photo Courtesy of Charles Dawley via Flickr

Drummond Island

Complete solitude isn’t everyone’s idea of a good time. Drummond Island has more to offer if you need a little civilization. There is much more to offer in the way of recreation with ATV rentals, hiking, fishing, golfing, kayaking, and museums. They even host events like the Jeep Jamboree and Fall Festival. There is something to do on the Island year-round. Drummond offers camping and resorts for lodging with more amenities than some of Michigan’s other smaller islands. A flight to Drummond is an experience with amazing aerial views.

Island Hopping With Great Lake Air - The Awesome Mitten
Photo Courtesy of Kaitlin Ryan

Beaver Island

On the opposite side of the mitten, Beaver Island sits in Lake Michigan not far from the coast of Charlevoix.  Great Lakes Air provides flights to this island destination. There is a small town with a few stores, restaurants, and lodging. The majority of the island is forest and gorgeous shoreline. Aside from the recreation, every summer the Beaver Island Music Festival draws musicians and music lovers. People come for a weekend of camping, great homemade food, and live music. Camping is free when you buy a ticket to the festival. It is a unique event that showcases local music and Michigan companies.

The festival welcomes everyone, including families, and features a play area for kids. There is a fish fry with fresh fish caught from the Lake and an easy, peaceful atmosphere. If you have never been to Beaver Island, the Music Festival is a great weekend to go and experience such an awesome place.

Island Hopping With Great Lake Air - The Awesome Mitten
Photo Courtesy of Kaitlin Ryan

These are only a few of the Islands Michigan has to offer. You can visit the Great Lakes Air site or call for more information on flight pricing. While there are ferries to reach the islands, a small flight from Great Lakes Air offers a whole new perspective and an amazing experience. Whether you are taking a quick trip to Mackinac or vacationing on an Island you have never visited, flying offers breathtaking sights you just won’t see from land or water. If you want to take a new adventure this summer, see where Great Lakes Air can take you.

Have you ever flown with Great Lakes Air? Which Michigan Island would you like to explore this summer?

One Comment

  1. Not sure if this is the same Great Lakes Air I flew 20+ years ago from Chicago to Menominee. Had my luggage and myself weighed at O’Hare, so they could “balance the plane”.

    Criss-crossed Lake Michigan (first stop Michigan then Wisconsin back to Michigan and so on). Pilot on each segment looked like they had just graduated 6th grade! Before each stop, they radioed the next airport to see if there were any passengers to pick up. If not, they continued to the next stop.

    On the way back from Menominee to Chicago, I was the only passeneger the entire time, which was a bit unsettling. Flew straight down the middle of Lake Michigan to Chicago. People in the huge jet aircraft waiting in line at O’Hare must have thought I was a celebrity or something, since it was just myself on the plane.

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