Growing up on the shores of Lake Michigan, I will always have an allegiance to those waters. When I first moved back to the mitten state, I only planned our adventures around the sandy beaches I had grown up by as I wanted to show my children what life on the big lake was really like.
Our move had relocated us to Mid-Michigan. Now being located in the middle of the state gave way to new opportunities to explore, and I found myself with a bucket list of new shores and places I wanted to explore, and to my surprise, many of them dotted the Lake Huron shoreline.
As we explored more, I found ourselves gravitating more and more to these Lake Huron beach locations on the east side of Michigan.
What was this wonder of a lake? Why hadn’t I truly given it more of a chance before?
If you want sandy beaches, you can find them. If rocky beaches are more your speed, you have plenty to choose from.
If you haven’t ventured out to Lake Huron, I am here to tell you five reasons Lake Huron is arguably the best Great Lake.
The Sunrise Coast
As I previously mentioned, I grew up on the shores of Lake Michigan. I spent my teen years watching the sunset over the waters near a bonfire with friends or walking the pier. In my opinion, nothing can beat a Lake Michigan sunset. But this post isn’t about Lake Michigan, is it?
I had spent many mornings with my father perch fishing on a Great Lake, but it wasn’t until I traveled east to the Lake Huron shoreline that I got to appreciate the true wonder of the sunrise of a Great Lake.
My first experience was watching the water sparkle at Rockport State Recreation Area on a trip to Alpena. We continued our sunrise chase to Besser Natural Area.
Pack your water shoes, stay in your pajamas, and don’t miss this wonder. It’s an incredible way to start your day.
If you haven’t experienced a Lake Huron sunrise, you need to put it on your Michigan bucket list. If you’re looking for more ideas to add to your Michigan bucket list, check out The Ultimate Michigan Bucket List.
Rock hunting, beach combing, whatever you choose to call it, Lake Huron is the place to be.
While Lake Huron may not be the largest Great Lake, it does boast the longest shoreline of the Great Lakes, which makes the opportunities for searching for your next treasure almost endless.
Growing up on the primarily sandy beaches of Lake Michigan, I am sure you can imagine my surprise when I first visited the shores of Lake Huron. Luckily, I had packed our water shoes and we could enjoy our visit thoroughly.
With two children who find the magic of even a piece of broken concrete in the grocery store parking lot, you can envision the absolute slice of heaven my kids had found themselves in. With our pockets full and hearts happy, we discovered the magic of rock hunting on the Lake Huron shores.
I am well aware of the treasures that are found on the west side of the state, but I have actually found my best finds on the Lake Huron beaches. I always end up with more beach glass, and maybe the tables will turn, but currently, I have had the best luck finding Petoskey stones on the Lake Huron shoreline.
Or should I say the lack of crowds?
I am not saying others don’t enjoy the shoreline of Lake Huron. On a beautiful Michigan day, you will still find the best beaches on Lake Huron full, but in my experience, it is nowhere near as packed or busy as the most popular beaches on the west side shoreline.
I have arrived midday at a Lake Huron beach expecting not to be able to find a place to land my towel and have been pleasantly surprised by the space still available for my family and me.
Each Great Lake is home to many stunning lighthouses. I won’t sit here and type that some of my favorites aren’t on the west side or northern shorelines, but I can confidently write that the ones we want to keep returning to are on the Lake Huron side.
What we love about our favorites on the Lake Huron side is how you can get up close and explore these fantastic pieces of Michigan history. Many Lake Huron lighthouses offer not only a walking trip to the top for a small fee but also an up close and personal look at how light keepers of the time spent their days.
Namely, a couple of family favorites would be Tawas Point Lighthouse (closed for 2023 for restoration but keep it on your must-visit list) and Sturgeon Point Lighthouse (make sure to check for the Old Bailey Schoolhouse hours, too if you head here!)
With one stop to Port Huron, you can check off visiting the first lighthouse in the state of Michigan by exploring the Fort Gratiot Lighthouse as well as the Huron Lightship Museum.
Whether it’s a new hike, visiting a ghost town, going on a shipwreck tour, exploring the blue ice while viewing the Mackinac Bridge, or kayaking to Turnip Rock.
There is no shortage of amazing adventures to experience along the Lake Huron shores. Often people think of going up north to go on a true Michigan adventure, but it all awaits you on Lake Huron as well.
While I am just beginning my journey on the east side of the state, exploring all that Lake Huron has to offer; I was amazed at how quickly it won me over with its versatile beaches, the invitation to explore Michigan more deeply, and its beauty and I am sure if you gave it a chance you might find it up higher on your favorite Great Lake list than you ever expected.
And if you are already a Lake Huron fan, please let me know in the comments your favorite place to explore along the Lake Huron shoreline.