2011/214: Summer Roadtrip, Michigan Part 4
You can’t go to Mackinaw City without going to Mackinac Island, so that’s exactly what we did on Sunday, July 10.
I went online the previous evening and researched the ferries that go to the island, and it turned out that they all charged the same for tickets, but one of them offered a coupon. Greg went downstairs to the front desk to ask if he could print it out, and they gave him some coupons that they had already printed. The best deal was a free child’s ticket with purchase of two adult tickets, and Sara got to ride the ferry for free. The hotel also had ferry schedules available, and for most of the day there was one leaving every half hour.
On the way to the ferry, we made a quick stop at Old Mackinac Point Lighthouse, which had a great view of Mackinac Bridge.
The ferry ride takes about 20 minutes, and as you get closer to the island, you can see the Grand Hotel, which played a big part in the 1980 movie “Somewhere in Time”.
There are no cars allowed in Mackinac Island, but you can rent bicycles, horses, or take a carriage tour. We didn’t do any of these, and saved a lot of money by walking. And we did a lot of walking! After all, we needed to do something to burn off some of those vacation calories! 😉
Of course we had to take a closer look at the Grand Hotel, and just as we got there, it started raining a little. Thankfully it didn’t last long, but I put the camera away in my camera bag, and we went inside into the lobby. We just quickly walked through and then went back out to the porch and sat in the rocking chairs until the rain stopped. On the way back down the hill, we saw a sign saying that the hotel charges $10 per person for those entering the hotel without a reservation! Oops! Well, no one stopped us! The hotel is beautiful, like a step back in time, and if we ever win the lottery, I want to go back to Mackinac Island and spend a whole week at the Grand Hotel.
We made our way back into town for lunch, and then to Arch Rock. We took the bike/hiking trail there, which went through town, up a very steep hill past Fort Mackinac (we didn’t go in) and then through the woods. Can you tell how steep this hill is? I raced Sara to the top and won!
We found some steps leading down to the road and took that back into town, bought some famous Mackinac Island fudge, had some ice-cream, picked up a postcard or two, and walked back to the ferry for the 20 min. ride back to Mackinaw City. We had no other plans for that day, except to cross Mackinac Bridge and relax at the hotel we booked in St. Ignace. We got a room on the top floor, with a balcony and a beautiful view of Lake Huron. That’s Mackinac Island in the distance.