A lot of things may come to your mind when you think of Mackinac Island. Horses. Bikes. No Cars. Fudge. Ice Cream. Forts. Ferry Rides. Arch Rock. These are all great parts of the island, but we are going to be talking about how to have an experience full of adventure on Mackinac Island.
This visit to the island started with planning. We knew we wanted to have our bikes and paddleboards with us. We use inflatable paddleboards that pack into a large backpack so we packed the rest of the gear we needed with our boards, grabbed our bikes and camera gear and headed to Shepler's Ferry. When we arrived at the dock, the team at Shepler's took care of getting our bags over to the island and as we boarded the ferry, they loaded our bikes and off we went. A bonus when taking Shepler's Ferry is that some of the routes go under the Mackinac Bridge, which is awesome if you have never experienced that before. A tip when riding on the ferry, buy one of the Historic Mackinac Island Visitor Guides as the team from Shepler's brings them around. This will be helpful to have during your visit with maps and things to do and see.
We arrived on the island, grabbed our bikes and the rest of our gear was on its way to the hotel. The team at Shepler's made the experience of getting to the island with everything we needed very easy. If you have never brought your own bikes to the island, it is really nice as you are all set to go as soon as you arrive. We hopped on our bikes and off we went, riding through Main Street to get our adventure started.
There are all sorts of roads and trails that weave through the island. We started off by making a stop at one of the iconic spots on Mackinac Island, Arch Rock. There are a variety of ways to view Arch Rock and this stop was from the top looking down through the arch into Lake Huron. We kept our trail maps with us to plan each of our stops while having an amazing time along the way on the trails. Our next stop was at Sugar Loaf Rock then onto Fort Homes and Point Lookout, which is the highest point on Mackinac Island.
After a stop at Skull Cave, we had some great riding on our way to Crack-in-the-island and Cave in the Woods. The biking in between each stop was awesome and the further we got into the middle of the island the more we had it to ourselves!
As we made our way back to downtown, the last ferry was about to leave the island for the evening. If you have never stayed the night on the island it is something you need to do! Everything slows down and it is a very cool experience. We spent the evening getting some delicious whitefish tacos and hitting up a few different restaurants.
The next morning we fueled up with a coffee and watched the island come to life with a new day of visitors. The agenda for this day was to go paddle out on Lake Huron and to take in the views of the island from the water.
We started by paddling to Arch Rock and look up through the arch that we looked down through the day before. We had great conditions for paddling so we decided to keep going to check out more parts of the island while also taking some time to just relax and enjoy the water. It is so clear so make sure to look below! If you want an experience of paddling on the island and don't have your equipment with you, Great Turtle Kayak Tours offers tours by water that are a lot of fun and informative!
When our island adventure was coming to an end, we packed back up and peddled back to the Shepler's dock, dropped off our gear and made our way back to the main land on ferry. We had an amazing time on Mackinac Island and cant wait for our next adventure. If you have anything that you love to do on the island, let us know!
Thank you to Shepler's Ferry for helping make this adventure happen!
Check out our full video from Mackinac Island here!