11 REASONS TO SPEND THE NIGHT ON MACKINAC ISLAND

A Mackinac Island experience wouldn’t be complete without spending a night (or a few!). Something magical happens when the last Mackinac Island ferry leaves for the night and before the hustle and bustle of the first ferry arriving in the morning.

As the sun goes down over the Straits of Mackinac, it suddenly feels like you have all of Mackinac Island to yourself. Some people live for Mackinac Island nightlife. Others swear nothing beats early morning coffee on Mackinac Island and listening to the horse hooves clip-clopping by as they watch waves lap the edge of the shore. Whatever your preference, you’ll always wish you had just one more night to stay on Mackinac Island.

Here are some things you can only experience if you spend the night on Mackinac Island:

Things You Can Do When Staying Overnight On Mackinac Island

The sun sets on the water beyond the Mackinac Bridge with a Mackinac Island Sip ‘n Sail cruise boat in the foreground

  1. MACKINAC ISLAND SIP N’ SAIL CRUISE

Listen to live music and enjoy an evening of fun as you cruise into a Michigan sunset around Mackinac Island. This hour and a half cruise is a must if you’re spending the night on Mackinac Island. Experience panoramic views from the 81-foot Isle Royale Queen III or the vessel Robin E, each with heated cabins, an open deck, restroom and full-service cash bar.

6 extraordinary boat tours around Mackinac Island

A couple paddles a tandem kayak through the waters off Mackinac Island at sunset

  1. MACKINAC ISLAND SUNSET & SUNRISE KAYAK TOURS

Be right on the water during the most gorgeous times of the day. Sign up for a sunrise or sunset kayak paddle around Mackinac Island with Great Turtle Kayak Tours! This 2-3 mile excursion takes approximately 2 hours and is sure to be a memory for a lifetime.

Mackinac Island kayak tour at sunrise…or sunset?

Families seated on blankets watch a movie on a big screen in Mackinac Island's Marquette Park outside Fort Mackinac

  1. MOVIES AT FORT MACKINAC

How many people can say they’ve watched a movie in a Revolutionary War-era fort? Grab a blanket or chair and your favorite snack and head up to historic Fort Mackinac for an experience you won’t forget. Movies are screened during the annual Mackinac Island Fudge Festival and some other special events.

Check out the Mackinac Island calendar of events

In a scene from 'Somewhere in Time,' filmed on Mackinac Island, Jane Seymour and Christopher Reeve share a kiss on the porch of Grand Hotel

  1. WATCH “SOMEWHERE IN TIME” AT MACKINAC ISLAND’S MISSION POINT RESORT THEATRE

Enjoy the cult classic Somewhere in Time right where it was filmed. Every Tuesday at 7:30 pm, Mackinac Arts Council has a showing of this timeless love story at Mission Point Resort. Somewhere in Time was filmed on Mackinac Island with stars Jane Seymour and Christopher Reeves.

The ‘Somewhere in Time’ Gazebo on Mackinac Island

A couple dances to the music during the Grand Hotel Jazz Festival on Mackinac Island

  1. LIVE MUSIC AT MACKINAC ISLAND’S GRAND HOTEL

Dance the night away at Mackinac Island’s Grand Hotel. Home to the world’s longest porch and a National Historic Landmark, Grand Hotel has a daily and nightly music schedule. Grab your dancing shoes and enjoy a night of fun listening to the Grand Hotel Orchestra.

What is the dress code at Mackinac Island’s Grand Hotel?

A fire lights up a table at Mission Point Resort's Bistro on the Greens as people play putt putt golf at sunset on Mackinac Island

  1. GLOW GOLF AT MACKINAC ISLAND’S MISSION POINT RESORT

Sure, you’ve probably played putt-putt golf before but have you played it at night!? From dusk until midnight you and the family can enjoy a friendly or perhaps competitive game of glow golf at the Greens of Mackinac at Mission Point Resort!

Golf courses on Mackinac Island

Enjoying the beauty of Mackinac Island sunsets and sunrises is one of many reasons to stay overnight during your visit.

  1. EXPLORE MACKINAC ISLAND AT NIGHT

Explore the most magical place on Earth. Just because some shops and businesses close after hours doesn’t mean Mackinac Island does. You might have visited Arch Rock or Fort Holmes during the day but wait until you see them at night! Quiet, peaceful, magical.

5 things to do after dark on Mackinac Island

Mackinac Island’s historic sites and landmarks are fascinating during the day and absolutely magical at night after sunset.

  1. STARGAZING ON MACKINAC ISLAND

With minimal light pollution, surrounded by water, and over 80% state park, Mackinac Island is a stargazing paradise. If you’re lucky, you might even see northern lights sometime! The most likely time to see northern lights is generally from August to April with April, October and November being the most likely times.

Stargazing from Mackinac Island’s Fort Holmes

Left-handed guitarist Myk Rise plays his guitar upside down inside the Pink Pony on Mackinac Island

  1. NIGHTLIFE ON MACKINAC ISLAND

Enjoy a night out with some Mackinac Island nightlife! From live music to piano entertainment, Mackinac Island has something for everyone. Check out these late-night Mackinac Island hotspots and enjoy a night out on the town.

Where to get a drink on Mackinac Island

The sun rises over the Mackinac Island harbor and marina full of boats

  1. EARLY MORNING MOMENTS ON MACKINAC ISLAND

Wake up with the sun and watch Mackinac Island come to life. Grab an early morning coffee and head to the water, hop on a bike or sit on the porch as you watch horses clip-clop by as they begin their daily duties. The nightlife of Mackinac Island is enticing but wait until you experience a slow morning.

Best breakfast spots on Mackinac Island

People sit on the Mackinac Island boardwalk and watch the sun set over the water to the west beyond the Mackinac Bridge

  1. ENJOY A MACKINAC ISLAND SUNRISE AND SUNSET

To say you got to experience a Mackinac Island sunrise or sunset is something special. Some of the best places to watch the sunrise on Mackinac Island are Mission Point Resort’s Great Lawn, the lookout point Robinson’s Folly and Fort Holmes. The best places to see the sunset on Mackinac Island are along the boardwalk from Windermere Point past the Mackinac Island school, the lookout point Sunset Rock, British Landing and Fort Holmes.

Best places on Mackinac Island to watch the sunset

Whichever ways you choose to enjoy Mackinac Island after dark, you’ll find a unique place to stay. Mackinac Island offers hotels, resorts, B&Bs, condos, cottages and homes with more than 1,600 rooms on over 40 distinctive properties.

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