There’s something magical when springtime comes around, especially in Michigan. Spring brings with it a sense of optimism, the blooming of flowers, and a chance to get out of the house after a long winter. If you’re ready to enjoy the thaw, start with a list of spring things to do in Northern Michigan.
Here, you’ll find plenty of fun spring activities and opportunities to get in touch with nature. Whether you’re looking for Michigan spring break destinations or are just looking to enjoy some of the best things to do in Michigan spring, Northern Michigan has something for you!
Go Hunting for Morel Mushrooms in Northern Michigan
After a long and cold winter, there’s nothing better than getting outside, and there’s no better springtime outdoor activity than hunting for morel mushrooms. You can find them all over Northern Michigan, but locals aren’t likely to give away their favorite mushroom hunting spots.
If you’re unfamiliar with morels, try to go hunting with an experienced hunter, and keep your eyes peeled. They can be found in wooded areas, backyards, and lots of other random paces.
Hunting with an experienced hunter is a good idea because you’ll get a sense of what to look for and avoid picking false morels, which can be poisonous.
Go to a Spring Flower Festival
Nothing brightens the springtime like blooming flowers. If you love the sight and smell of flowers, there are several flower festivals in springtime worth attending.
Many of the wineries in Traverse City and Old Mission Peninsula celebrate Blossom Day. You can explore the different wineries and experience the breathtaking beauty of Northern Michigan’s cherry trees while you sip.
If you can’t get to a festival, hiking among wildflowers is still a great spring activity. The Loda Lake National Wildlife Sanctuary in White Cloud offers a great chance to see spring colors, but you can also visit state parks in Northern Michigan.
Wildflowers add color and surprise to a run-of-the-mill hike. You may just find a new favorite hidden gem as you explore more of Michigan.
Head to a Northern Michigan Beach This Spring
Nothing says goodbye to winter more than blue skies, sunshine, and hearing waves crashing into or lapping against the lakeshore. Even if it’s not warm enough to sunbathe or swim, you can still head to the beach in the off-season for a walk or to help your dog burn off some energy.
Where you go depends on your preference. Traverse City’s beaches at East Bay Park and Bryant Park are great Lake Michigan beaches for beachcombing. But, Tawas City Shoreline Park and Oscoda’s Beach Park are great Lake Huron beaches to visit on the Sunrise Side.
Spring Onto a Golf Course in Northern Michigan
Did you know that there are nearly 800 golf courses throughout the Mitten State? You can find great golf just about anywhere you look, but Northern Michigan offers some truly unique golf courses in the state.
If you want to experience British-style links golfing, head to Oscoda and Lakewood Shores Resort to play the Blackshire — a course that will make you feel like you’re in the British Isles. Not to be outdone, you can head to Roscommon and Forest Dunes Golf Club to play a reversible loop.
Go Spring Kayaking or Take a Cruise
Spring is the perfect time to pull out the life jackets and paddles for kayaking. With more than 11,000 inland lakes and 120 major rivers, you’re never far from a kayaking spot.
Kayaking is a great way to get outside, get some exercise, and enjoy the water. There are plenty of spots to put in, but the Manistee River is a good spot to start. It’s great whether you’re a beginner or planning a guided trip.
If you don’t want to kayak, you could take a trip down the Au Sable River, which starts in Grayling and runs east through Mio before flowing into Oscoda and Lake Huron. One of the most fun ways to explore the Au Sable is to take a ride on the Au Sable River Queen.
This is the only paddlewheel riverboat of its kind and offers interested folks a variety of tours on a two-hour round trip. It opens in late spring (Memorial Day through mid-October) and provides live music on weekends.
Go to a Northern Michigan Water Park
There’s no shortage of fun outdoor activities in Michigan to enjoy in spring, but the Mitten State also has some fun indoor water parks in Northern Michigan. This is a great way to have some water-based family fun and give the kids a chance to burn off some energy while splashing around.
Enjoy Springtime Fishing in Northern Michigan
With so many inland lakes and rivers close by, fishing is a favorite pastime of many Michiganders. In Northern Michigan waters, you can cast your line for a variety of species — salmon, walleye, bass, and bluegill. Just make sure that what you’re fishing for is in-season and that you have a valid license.
If you’re looking to get away from the big lakes for a more peaceful experience, the Au Sable River is a great place to experience trout fishing. Higgins Lake near Roscommon and Crystal Lake near Scottville are fantastic inland lakes for fishing too.
Go Skiing Before Spring Melts All the Snow
Make no mistake that springtime is all about warmer temperatures and saying goodbye to winter. But, different parts of the Mitten State warm up at different times in the spring. Northern Michigan generally stays cold long enough for outdoor enthusiasts to get in some skiing in March and April.
A spring skiing adventure often results in fewer crowds and warmer temperatures. In Petoskey Michigan, you can visit Nubs Nob, Boyne Mountain Resort, and Boyne Highlands to ski until your heart’s content. You can enjoy other Michigan ski resorts as well.
Grab a Beer at Northern Michigan Breweries
In recent years, Michigan has gained a reputation as the home of some really amazing breweries. It seems like you can find great Michigan beer just about anywhere you go. But if you’re in Northern Michigan, there are lots of good spots to go for a brew after a day of exploring.
The Petoskey area is home to several breweries worth checking out. Or, visit some of the microbreweries and breweries in Traverse City.
You can find some great IPAs and truly unique flavors that will satisfy every taste bud. You can pair a delicious local beer with a burger, a sandwich, or a pizza. Is there any better way to spend a spring day than with food and beer?
Watch the Stars in the Spring Sky
In Mackinaw City, you’ll find Headlands International Dark Sky Park. Here, there’s little or no light pollution, making it the perfect place to go stargazing. The park is open 24 hours a day and offers lots of events and programs to teach visitors about stargazing.
While camping isn’t permitted in the park, you can bring sleeping bags, chairs, food, beverages, and just about anything else to make the most of your trip. Keep in mind that, since you’re by the lakeshore, the spring weather is likely to be chilly, so make sure to bundle up.
Discover More Spring Things to Do in Northern Michigan
You can go anywhere in Michigan in spring and have a great time. But if you’re looking for more wilderness or water-based adventures, Northern Michigan is the place to be.
With its scenic hiking trails, peaceful lakes, beaches and rivers, and top-notch golf courses, there are no limits on how much fun you can have in spring!