Downtown Mackinac Island: Something for Every Visitor

You’ve arrived on the ferry boat in downtown Mackinac Island. Yay! Now what?

While Mackinac Island has nearly 5 square-miles of incredible natural beauty to explore, many visitors spend their entire time downtown because there’s so much to see and do right there. From dining and drinking to shopping and sightseeing, downtown Mackinac Island has something for everyone.

Here are just some of the ways to experience the charming vibe of Mackinac Island and have fun downtown:

A group of young adults sits around a table in a Mackinac Island restaurant overlooking the water near one of the ferry docks

For the foodie on Mackinac Island

Whether you’re in the mood for succulent Great Lakes whitefish or your sweet tooth is craving some world-famous Mackinac Island fudge, your culinary wish is our command. Mackinac Island boasts nearly 50 restaurants of all kinds, offering everything from kid-friendly fare such as pizza and burgers to a variety of multicultural cuisine and fine dining, too.

Colorful kites cover the ceiling of a toy store in downtown Mackinac Island

For the shopper on Mackinac Island

While there are several areas where you can shop, the downtown Mackinac Island shopping district includes many unique, specialty boutiques. Whether you’re looking for clothing, jewelry, toys, souvenirs or art, you can find it and more in downtown Mackinac Island. Plus, there are lots of fudge shops!

A guitarist plays and sings in the Pink Pony bar and restaurant in downtown Mackinac Island

For the nightlife lover on Mackinac Island

Just because the last ferry of the day has left Mackinac Island, it doesn’t mean it’s time to wind down for the night. Whether it’s the sound of big band, folk, rock, country, jazz or blues, many of the restaurants and pubs on the island host live music. Or maybe the sound of waves, foghorns and the clip clop of horse hooves is more your speed. Whatever your style, there’s plenty to do after the sun sets.

A young couple rides a tandem bicycle on Mackinac Island with a cruise ship in the background

For the adventurer on Mackinac Island

Downtown is the perfect place to start an adventure that goes out into the beautiful state park that occupies more than 80% of Mackinac Island. Hop on a horse-drawn carriage tour, rent a bike for a ride all the way around the island, saddle up on a horse or head off on foot to beautiful spots like Arch Rock, East Bluff or Fort Mackinac.

A historical interpreter wearing early 19th-century clothes sits in the kitchen of Mackinac Island's Biddle House Native American Museum

For the historian on Mackinac Island

Mackinac Island has a rich cultural history and downtown is full of must-see attractions. You can see Fort Mackinac high on the bluff as you approach in the ferry boat. But there are several other historic sites, too. A ticket to Fort Mackinac also gets you into the McGulpin House, the Biddle House Mackinac Island Native American Museum, the Richard & Jane Manoogian Mackinac Art Museum and the Mackinac Island Fur Co. and William Beaumont Museum.

A woman relaxes in a chair with a book on a quiet Mackinac Island porch

For the visitor who loves to relax on Mackinac Island

Maybe you need a vacation just to unwind. Well, Mackinac Island is the right spot! Take a book and head to Windermere Point or Marquette Park to soak in the gorgeous views and get some peace and quiet. There also are several spas on the Mackinac Island where you can enjoy a massage, facial and other relaxing treatments.

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