Summer UP 11 Best Summer Things to Do in the Upper Peninsula | 2021 Upper Peninsula Summer Bucket List #MIAwesomeList
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11 Best Summer Things to Do in the Upper Peninsula | 2021 Upper Peninsula Summer Bucket List #MIAwesomeList

There are so many great summer things to do in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Whether you’re a Yooper, a Troll, or coming from out-of-state to explore, we invite you to enjoy all of the beauty and wonder of the Upper Peninsula in summer with us!

Here are just a few of the best things we’ve included on our Upper Peninsula Summer Bucket List

FumeeFalls alohafromwisconsin 11 Best Summer Things to Do in the Upper Peninsula | 2021 Upper Peninsula Summer Bucket List #MIAwesomeList
photo courtesy of @alohafromwisconsin

Add Fumee Falls to Your Upper Peninsula Summer Bucket List

One of the most popular summer things to do in the Upper Peninsula is taking waterfall tours, but for some people, these waterfalls are too difficult to reach. Luckily, Fumee Falls is a roadside waterfall that is only a few steps away from the roadside, but no less magnificent than the falls that are more challenging to access.

This powerful waterfall can often be heard before it is seen, but when it does come into view, it is a breathtaking sight. After you have spent some time reflecting at Fumee Falls, you can head to nearby Iron Mountain for more Michigan summer fun.

Road to Mount Arvon - Michigan's Highest Point

Visiting the State’s Highest Point is One of the Best Summer Things to Do in the Upper Peninsula

Many people know that Michigan is surrounded by the Great Lakes and that the state is full of natural wonders, such as towering white pine trees, sweeping sand dunes, and cascading waterfalls. But did you realize that the Upper Peninsula boasts a mountain range as well? When you head to Baraga County, you can hike to the summit of Mount Arvon and see Michigan from one of its highest points.

To access the summit, you will need to drive up a winding road that can be treacherous at times, so it’s important to stay vigilant. Eventually, you will come across a short hiking trail that will take you to the top of the mountain, where you can experience those panoramic views for yourself.

LesCheneaux camera jesus 11 Best Summer Things to Do in the Upper Peninsula | 2021 Upper Peninsula Summer Bucket List #MIAwesomeList
photo courtesy of @camera_jesus

Don’t Miss Visiting the Les Cheneaux Islands this Summer

It may come as a surprise to find out that Michigan is a state that boasts dozens of islands. The Les Cheneaux Islands are a chain of islands located off the coast of the Upper Peninsula and these island destinations are filled with plenty of fun things to do.

Many visitors opt to spend their days kayaking along the rugged shores of the islands, while others prefer to learn more about Michigan’s history at the Les Cheneaux Historical Museum.

chapel falls munising

Add a Pictured Rocks Waterfall Tour to Your Upper Peninsula Summer Bucket List

You have likely included the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore on your Upper Michigan itinerary, and for good reason. These colorful stone cliffs are iconic and are practically a necessity on any tour of the U.P. However, you would be remiss if your visit only included a cruise along the water’s edge to see the lakeshore for yourself.

Make sure to take time to tour the dozens of waterfalls that are located inside the park near the famous “Log Cabin Retreat”. If you give yourself the entire day, you can visit Miners Falls, Elliot Falls, and Munising Falls.

AppleBlossomTrail beccajean84 11 Best Summer Things to Do in the Upper Peninsula | 2021 Upper Peninsula Summer Bucket List #MIAwesomeList
photo courtesy of @beccajean84

Biking the Apple Blossom Trail is a Perfect UP Summer Bucket List Idea

The Apple Blossom Trail stretches for more than two miles, connecting the communities of Caspian and Iron River together. It winds along a former railway path and gives hikers, bikers, and walkers an opportunity to surround themselves in the sights and sounds of the Upper Peninsula.

In addition to being surrounded by natural beauty at all times during your journey, you also will come across sites and attractions that tell the story of the miners who lived in the region decades ago. Abandoned equipment and historic cabins are located along the trail, and each experience on the trail feels a bit like an Upper Peninsula treasure hunt.

puicuker mpp0217 isle royale national park 11 Best Summer Things to Do in the Upper Peninsula | 2021 Upper Peninsula Summer Bucket List #MIAwesomeList
photo courtesy of @puicuker_npp0217

Discover Isle Royale National Park this Summer in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula

Off the northwest coast of the Upper Peninsula lies one of the most beautiful National Parks in the country — and perhaps the best-kept secret in Michigan. Isle Royale National Park is a wilderness preserve that is situated on an archipelago almost entirely surrounded by Lake Superior.

Summer is one of the only times that you can visit this park, as it is open seasonally from April through October. While you can plan on a day of hiking and adventure while you are in the park, it’s important to expect the unexpected. The weather can change drastically and at a moment’s notice, and it’s best to always have your rain gear on hand.

EagleHarborLighthouse knudsenjm 11 Best Summer Things to Do in the Upper Peninsula | 2021 Upper Peninsula Summer Bucket List #MIAwesomeList
photo courtesy of @knudsenjm

Explore the Beauty of the Keweenaw’s Western Shore

Eagle Harbor, Michigan, on the western shores of the Keweenaw Peninsula, has a rough coastline and is a beautiful area to explore. There are so many great things to do in Eagle Harbor, Michigan – from beaches and hiking trails to museums and mine tours. 

Whether you’re looking to enjoy the natural beauty of Lake Superior or you want to dig into the history behind this small port town, we recommend adding a day (or two!) in Eagle Harbor to your summer Upper Peninsula bucket list!

canal Famous Soo Locks 11 Best Summer Things to Do in the Upper Peninsula | 2021 Upper Peninsula Summer Bucket List #MIAwesomeList

Add a Soo Locks Boat Cruise to Your Upper Peninsula Bucket List This Summer

The Soo Locks changed the way of life in Michigan during the 19th century, and they continue to play an important role in today’s interconnected world. More than 7,000 freighters traverse through these locks each year, which expedites the shipping times of goods that need to get to other parts of the Midwest.

In order to get the best vantage point of the locks, you should consider taking a Soo Locks boat cruise. This tour is both relaxing and informative and is the perfect option for travelers of all ages.

republic island living room 11 Best Summer Things to Do in the Upper Peninsula | 2021 Upper Peninsula Summer Bucket List #MIAwesomeList

Unplug and Escape to a Rustic Cabin on a Private Island

A classic 1800s cedar log cabin can provide a welcome respite from the humdrum or the hustle and bustle. Republic Island is a 2-acre private island on the Michigamme River near Marquette in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula where you can stay.

If you enjoy rustic retreats, this is the perfect summer getaway destination in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula!

QuincyMine yoopy 11 Best Summer Things to Do in the Upper Peninsula | 2021 Upper Peninsula Summer Bucket List #MIAwesomeList
photo courtesy of @_yoopy_

A Quincy Mine Tour is One of the Best Summer Things to Do in the Upper Peninsula

Copper mining was the way of life in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, and the Quincy Mine operated in Hancock for nearly 100 years from 1846 to 1945. Today, the mine serves as an educational tourist attraction.

You can take a trip to the mine and enjoy a two-and-a-half-hour personalized walking tour that takes you into the mine. Given the nature of the tour and the condition of the mine, it is often recommended for adults only.

PickleBarrelHouse zerbipedia 1 11 Best Summer Things to Do in the Upper Peninsula | 2021 Upper Peninsula Summer Bucket List #MIAwesomeList
photo courtesy of @zerbipedia

Don’t Miss Exploring the Pickle Barrel House Museum in the Upper Peninsula This Summer

No trip to the Upper Peninsula is complete without a stop at a roadside attraction. The Pickle Barrel House Museum is perhaps the most interesting and iconic roadside attraction in the region.

If you drive through Grand Marais, you won’t be able to miss this museum, and you won’t want to pass up the opportunity to tour this summer cottage that has been lovingly restored.

Ultimate Guide to Roadtripping the UP

More Things to Do in the Upper Peninsula this Summer

If you’re planning to spend time in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula this summer, there are more things to do than you can possibly accomplish in a single season. Our Michigan summer bucket list ideas only scratch the surface of all the amazing things to do, see, and experience north of the Mackinac Bridge in the UP.

We recommend taking your time and enjoying the areas you choose to explore, and making plans to explore more soon!

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