Michigan is known for its stunning lakes and beaches, making it the perfect place for a summer getaway. Two of the most popular destinations in Michigan are Grand Haven and Saugatuck, both located on the west side of the state.
The distance between the two towns is only about 30 miles, making it an easy road trip for travelers. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at both Grand Haven and Saugatuck, highlighting the main attractions and providing tips for travelers.
Getting There: Driving from Grand Haven to Saugatuck
The distance between Grand Haven and Saugatuck is only about 30 miles, making it a quick and easy road trip. The drive from Grand Haven to Saugatuck takes about 40 minutes, depending on traffic. The most popular way to travel between the two towns is by car, but there are also taxi and car rental options available.
If you’re driving from downtown Grand Haven, head south on US-31 until you reach Exit 41 for M-89. Turn right onto M-89 and follow the signs for Saugatuck. The drive takes you through Holland and passes by Lake Michigan, offering beautiful views of the water and surrounding dunes.
Grand Haven: A Charming Beach Town
Grand Haven is a charming beach town located on the shores of Lake Michigan. It’s known for its beautiful beaches, lighthouses, and bustling downtown area. If you’re looking for a place to stay in Grand Haven, there are several options, including hotels, motels, and vacation rentals.
Beaches and State Parks
One of the main attractions in Grand Haven is the Grand Haven State Park. The park is located on the beach and offers a variety of activities, including swimming, boating, and fishing. There are also picnic areas and playgrounds for families to enjoy.
Another popular spot in Grand Haven is the Rosy Mound Natural Area. This state park is located just north of Grand Haven and offers hiking trails and stunning views of Lake Michigan. Visitors can climb to the top of the sand dunes for panoramic views of the lake and surrounding area.
Downtown Grand Haven
Downtown Grand Haven is a bustling area filled with shops, restaurants, and entertainment. One of the main attractions is the Musical Fountain, which is a synchronized water and light show set to music. The fountain runs from Memorial Day through Labor Day and is a must-see for visitors.
There are also several dining options in downtown Grand Haven, ranging from casual cafes to fine dining restaurants. The Kirby House is a popular spot for dinner and drinks, with a rooftop deck offering views of the Grand River.
Saugatuck: Art, History, and Beaches
Saugatuck is a small town located on the shores of Lake Michigan, known for its charming downtown area and beautiful beaches. If you’re looking for a place to stay in Saugatuck, there are several options, including hotels, bed and breakfasts, and vacation rentals.
Beaches and State Parks
One of the main attractions in Saugatuck is Oval Beach, which has been named one of the best beaches in the country by TripAdvisor. The beach is located on the shores of Lake Michigan and offers stunning views of the water and surrounding dunes. Visitors can swim, sunbathe, or take a walk along the shore.
Another popular spot in Saugatuck is the Saugatuck Dunes State Park. The park is located just south of town and offers hiking trails and stunning views of the dunes and Lake Michigan. Visitors can climb to the top of the dunes for panoramic views of the area.
Downtown Saugatuck is a charming area filled with art galleries, boutiques, and restaurants. The town is known for its thriving arts scene, with several galleries showcasing local artists. The Saugatuck Center for the Arts is a popular spot for theater productions and concerts.
There are also several dining options in downtown Saugatuck, ranging from casual cafes to fine dining restaurants. The Southerner is a popular spot for Southern cuisine, while the Mermaid Bar and Grill offers seafood dishes and a lively atmosphere.
Saugatuck Boat Cruise
One of the best ways to see Saugatuck is by taking a boat cruise. The Saugatuck Boat Cruise offers a variety of tours, including sunset and wine tasting cruises. Visitors can explore the Kalamazoo River and Lake Michigan, while learning about the history and culture of the area.
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If you’re planning a road trip from Grand Haven to Saugatuck, here are some travel tips to keep in mind:
- Plan your route ahead of time and check for any road closures or construction.
- Pack sunscreen, hats, and sunglasses, as the Michigan sun can be strong in the summer.
- Bring comfortable walking shoes for exploring downtown areas and state parks.
- Check the weather forecast before you go, as Lake Michigan can be unpredictable and the weather can change quickly.
Is Grand Haven or Holland beach better?
Both Grand Haven and Holland have beautiful beaches, but which one is better depends on personal preference. Grand Haven’s beach is larger and has more amenities, such as volleyball nets, a playground, and a boardwalk. Holland’s beach, on the other hand, is known for its iconic red lighthouse and picturesque dunes. Both beaches are worth visiting and offer different experiences.
Is Grand Haven Michigan worth visiting?
Absolutely! Grand Haven is a beautiful town located on Lake Michigan and offers plenty of activities for visitors, from lounging on the beach to exploring the charming downtown area. Grand Haven is also home to several state parks, including the popular Grand Haven State Park, which has a long stretch of beach, dunes, and hiking trails.
What is Saugatuck Michigan known for?
Saugatuck is known for its thriving arts scene, charming downtown area, and beautiful natural surroundings. The town is filled with art galleries showcasing local artists, boutique shops, and delicious restaurants. Saugatuck is also located on the Kalamazoo River and Lake Michigan, offering opportunities for boating, fishing, and other water activities. The area is also known for its scenic dunes and state parks, such as the Saugatuck Dunes State Park.
Is Grand Haven near Saugatuck?
Yes, Grand Haven is located about 30 minutes south of Saugatuck by car. The two towns are popular destinations in Michigan and offer a variety of activities for visitors, including beautiful beaches, state parks, and charming downtown areas. A road trip from Grand Haven to Saugatuck is a great way to explore the best of Michigan’s west coast.
Grand Haven and Saugatuck are two of the most popular destinations in Michigan, offering stunning beaches, charming downtown areas, and plenty of outdoor activities. Whether you’re looking to relax on the beach or explore the art and history of the area, there’s something for everyone. With just a short drive between the two towns, a road trip from Grand Haven to Saugatuck is the perfect way to experience the best of Michigan.