- Things to Do
- Eat + Drink
- Places to Stay
- Plan Your Trip
Breakfast: Get the lay of the land along Frankenmuth’s Main Street, before buzzing down to South Main to start your day with scratch-made, sustainable food at Honey B’s Eatery. Order the Biscuits & Gravy (vegan, if you prefer) or the Southern Benny (a benedict on warm buttermilk biscuit with braised pork and poached egg).
Choose Your Chariot: Cruise the flower-lined streets and experience Frankenmuth on a Fantasy Carriage Company or Frankenmuth Carriage Company horse-drawn carriage ride. Traveling with friends? Book the PedAle Trolley Circle Cruiser for a four- to six-person, circular bike where you can sip pints while you pedal through town!
Lunch: Located right on Main Street, try Tiffany’s Food & Spirits (known for its Sicilian-style pizza, downhome food, and good-times vibe) and enjoy lunch on the front patio overlooking Downtown Frankenmuth. Or try locally sourced goodness at Michigan on Main Bar & Grill — like their house-made Ale Brat and a Pretzel — with your choice from Michigan’s largest selection of German beers, or one of 17 rotating Michigan craft brews on tap!
Mingle on Main: Spend time exploring shops galore along both sides of Main Street. Watch taffy or fudge get made at Zak & Mac’s Chocolate Haus, Frankenmuth Fudge Kitchen, Frankenmuth Taffy Kitchen, and more. Try chocolate-flavored cheese (or 270+ other varieties) at Frankenmuth Cheese Haus, or sample house-made Bavarian specialty sausages at Kern’s Sausages or Willi’s Sausage Co. Don’t miss out on spots like Adorn Boutique or White House Boutique if vacation fashion is what you’re after!
Sip & Sample: You’ve already covered a ton of ground on your first day in Frankenmuth! Treat yourself to wine tasting at the Frankenmuth tasting room of Michigan’s most-awarded winery, St. Julian — where you can sample six wines or spirits (in your take-home souvenir tasting glass)!
Dinner: When in Rome, right? Experience Frankenmuth’s world-famous chicken dinners (in multiple courses served family-style) at Zehnder’s of Frankenmuth or Bavarian Inn Restaurant. How to choose between the two? Flip a coin, or do each a different day! They both offer a rich, authentic, German experience and food you won’t soon forget.
Or cozy up at Prost Wine Bar & Charcuterie and revel in a European-inspired wine bar experience offering flavors from around the world. Here, you’ll celebrate with charcuterie boards and global tapas, an extensive wine selection (including wine served on tap), and the option of dining inside or out — even by the fire bar, if you like.
Seize the Night: End at the historic 1862 Frankenmuth Brewery — Michigan's oldest microbrewery — and enjoy the evening views from an enclosed patio with ceiling-to-floor glass overlooking the Cass River, or from its heated, wraparound decks! You could even head to Zehnder’s Tap Room for Friday Night Flights, featuring Zehnder’s 20 specialty craft beers, and live lounge entertainment.
Breakfast: Order up a Breakfast Pizza at T-Dub's, or begin your day at Oma’s Restaurant inside the Bavarian Inn Lodge. “Oma” means “Grandma” in German, and the Banana Nut Bread French Toast, German Potato Pancakes, and Potato Cheese Dumplings all taste like a big ole hug!
Chime Time: Be sure to witness the Bavarian Inn Glockenspiel Tower, a 35-bell carillon and illuminated clock with figurine movement, when it chimes at 12 p.m., 3 p.m., 6 p.m., and 9 p.m. daily. Make time, too, to explore the 239-foot, 230-ton Bavarian Inn Holz Brücke — an iconic covered bridge made entirely of wood which spans the Cass River.
Lunch: Head to Frankenmuth River Place Shops for lunch, and experience more than 40 shops that make up this German-themed village. Eat at Pasty Haus or taste a piece of Paris at La Crepe du Jour (and discover savory crepes like the Bavarian or Mediterranean). Or venture into Cass River Bar & Grill and enjoy big TVs and big German beers.
Stroll the Shops: Pick your pleasure while at Frankenmuth River Place Shops — from The Michigan Shoppe to I Love Frankenmuth. On top of the shops, this spot is home to Serendipity Wellness Spa (need we say more?), and a shared tasting room between Grand Traverse Distillery and Black Star Farms Winery. Or waltz into Modern Craft Winery (inside Bead Haven) to try their anything-but-routine “mixperience” wine tasting.
Head Downriver: Get to the docks at Frankenmuth River Place Shops' waterfalls and board a riverboat queen, the Bavarian Belle, for a narrated historical tour of Frankenmuth on the Cass River. Or ride in an electric-powered, 12-passenger tour boat with Frankenmuth FunShips. (Book the one-hour Wine & Chocolate River Tour to enjoy Michigan wines paired with gourmet chocolates while you cruise!)
Want to drop right into the Cass River’s calm waters on your own? Rent Frankenmuth FunShips’ pedal-powered AquaCycles that each hold four passengers, or look to Frankenmuth Kayak Adventures for paddling fun.
Dinner: Serving up mouthwatering ribs, brisket, and pulled pork with a twist in a classic blues atmosphere, Slo’ Bones BBQ Smokehaus offers drink specials, live music on weekends, and an inviting patio (and you might just wind up here all night)!
Or enjoy artfully plated European dishes (paired with the perfect wine selection by an in-house, internationally certified sommelier) at The Station 100, tucked inside Frankenmuth's former train station.
Nightlife: After dinner, you’ll find lively times at Tiffany’s Food & Spirits and Frankenmuth Brewery, plus the seasonal, outdoor Schnitzelbank Bier Garten during summer months. Or, buy first-come, first-serve single seats for the 9 p.m. Saturday tour on Frankenmuth's 16-person PedAle Trolley, where you'll sip brews while you bike from pub to pub!
Brunch: Start the day off right with a Build-Your-Own Bloody Mary (or GT’s Raw Organic Kombucha) and the German Heritage charcuterie board while brunching at Prost Wine Bar & Charcuterie.
Stroll for Souvenirs: From Bavarian Inn Castle Shops to Covered Bridge and Leather Gift Shop and Amazin’ Mitten — souvenirs, gifts and goodies that’ll fill your suitcase with memories of Frankenmuth can be found all around town. Don’t take off without (at least) a few!
Before You Go: You simply can’t visit Frankenmuth without visiting Bronner’s CHRISTmas Wonderland! Overflowing with more than 50,000 trims and gifts, this store is the size of one-and-a-half football fields — and offers the opportunity to customize ornaments for the perfect souvenir!
Lunch: If you’re still full from brunch, grab a late lunch of some light eats. Track down a local food truck — Bavarian Inn Cluck Truck or The Cheese Trap — to taste signature Frankenmuth flavors on-the-fly. Or choose from the grab-n-go selections at Zehnder’s Marketplace or Bavarian Inn Castle Shops and picnic with what you found, right down by the riverfront in Heritage Park.
Cheers to your big weekend in Little Bavaria Drive over that covered bridge one last time, watch the Bavarian Belle Riverboat glide down the Cass River, and recognize you’ve experienced a feeling of “willkommen” you could only find here! Explore More of Frankenmuth +
Jen is a writer and small business owner in Saginaw, Michigan. She specializes in writing that connects, delivered through website copywriting, branded content articles and blogs, and ad copy. You can find Jen reading, always, camping with her family, or at feelthesewords.com