Traverse City Travel Guide
Thank you to Grand Traverse Resort for sponsoring this post and our stay. All opinions and recommendations remain my own.
Summer is finally here and with it, I’m starting a new blog series called America’s Fresh Coast, where I’ll be featuring Michigan’s best beach towns and travel guides to each destination. I’ll show you where to stay, what to do, and where to eat in each destination! Those who have been here know there is nothing quite like a Michigan summer. I can’t wait to show you around my home state’s best kept secrets! From favorite weekend getaways, romantic weekends, and family destinations sure to turn into tradition, there’s truly something for everyone!
Michigan is home to the longest freshwater coastline in the United States, so grab a Faygo and your friends, and let’s head “Up North” to one of my favorite weekend getaway destinations: Traverse City!
Traverse City Travel Guide
Traverse City is arguably one of the best and biggest getaways along the water, and sunsets along Grand Traverse Bay are hard to beat. There’s a lively downtown area with tons of cute shops, restaurants, and breweries. It’s a bustling area for hiking, biking, birding, and water sports, and also a great place for wine and beer tasting, trips to the casino, and more. Today I’m sharing my Traverse City travel guide as a Michigan native.
What to Do in Traverse City:
1. Take a walk along the beach and playground of Grand Traverse Bay. Easily walkable just a block away from downtown.
2. Explore State Theatre on main street. Great for rainy days!
3. Go Wine Tasting!
I’ve previously written a guide to my favorite wineries up north, but this time we tried a few new ones to add to the list! We tried out Chateau Chantal, which has an incredible outdoor patio and views of both bays! Chateau Grand Traverse is one of the oldest wineries on Old Mission Peninsula and we loved the pinot noir rose. We also stopped in to Black Star Farms for a private tasting, history of the property, and loved the dry riesling that recently won best wine of the year in Canberra, Australia! Wine tasting is very approachable in Traverse City and you’ll find that each winery is not only incredible passionate, but also eager to answer questions and teach you more. Many of the wineries have wine clubs, dinners, and wine events making any time of year a great time to visit and taste!
4. If you’re more into Beer or Cider tastings, Traverse City has that covered too! Rare Bird, Taproot, Monkey Fist, 7Monks, North Peak, and The Filling Station are all located right downtown.
5. Shopping downtown
6. Explore the Village at Grand Traverse Commons– the old asylum hospital has been renovated into unique shops and restaurants.
7. Take a Hike
8. Bike the nearby M-22 trail.
What to Eat in Traverse City
TC is home to some amazing restaurants!
1. Little Fleet-we love it here! This food truck park is casual and cool, complete with indian cuisine, tacos, barbecue, sandwiches, smoothies, and a full bar. If you’re coming during the week, get here by 11:30 a.m. to beat the business crowd lunch break(especially for the taco truck). On nights and weekends, enjoy the fire and live music. Pets welcome!
2. For a fancy dinner and the perfect view of the sunset, you can’t beat Aerie at Grand Traverse Resort. It’s the perfect place for a romantic dinner or celebration and the charcuterie board is one of my favorites!
3. Apache Grill. This one is great for dinner but get here early or get ready to wait, because it gets packed! Its right on the water, but you can enjoy a drink outside along with yard games while you wait. This is a great option for groups or families.
4. Patisserie Amie. If you’re going to breakfast, this is the place to come! For savory, the chorizo crepe.
5. Low Bar. If you’re looking for a fun option for late night drinks after dinner or the breweries/wineries, head to low bar. They have a killer happy hour with amazing prices, but are also a great option for fancy late night cocktails on a romantic weekend or bachelorette party.
Where to Stay in Traverse City:
When you’re ready to head in for the night, there is no better place to stay than Grand Traverse Resort & Spa! We had an amazing view of the property’s pool and golf courses from our room as well as sweeping views of the bay from a bird’s eye view. It was incredible! I can imagine how gorgeous it is in the fall while the leaves are changing as well.
We loved watching the sunset over the bay from the top floor as we enjoyed an amazing dinner from Aerie.
Grand Traverse Resort Amenities
Unlike any other property in Traverse City, the resort is perfect for families, a girls weekend, or a romantic getaway. There are tons of fun shops to check out off the lobby like North Face, Dylan’s Candy Bar, and MudPie.
There’s also a large indoor pool, outdoor hot tub, and outdoor seasonal pool.
You can indulge in a relaxing treatment at the spa after a round of golf at any of the three courses on the property as well! Canan played the Bear one morning and played one of the best rounds of his life!
Have you been to Traverse City? I’d love to hear about your favorite places to eat and do while Up North and what you would add to this Traverse City travel guide.
Leave a comment to nominate where we should head next in our series of America’s Fresh Coast!