Boat Tours in Frankenmuth | @michiganaddicts

Tours + Experiences

Beginning in May, board the Bavarian Belle Riverboat or Frankenmuth FunShips to discover gorgeous scenery and facts about Frankenmuth as you glide along the Cass River.

Reserve a guided boating ecotour through pristine nature, the Shiawassee National Wildlife Refuge, with Johnny Panther Quests Adventure Trips.

Board “Lucy,” the big, red trolley of Golden Ticket Trolley Tours, and immerse yourself in Frankenmuth on a narrated ride led by a local guide.

Tour the streets of Little Bavaria on a horse-drawn carriage with Frankenmuth Carriage Company or Fantasy Carriage Company and enjoy the spring scenery.

Book a City Tour with PedAle Trolley to ride a 16-person bike through Frankenmuth — or purchase single seats on a pedal-powered pub crawl!

Bike through Bay City when you reserve the Sunrise Pedal Trolley. Bring your own beverages and coast into great times!

Take your taste buds on a culinary journey with Flavors of Frankenmuth and be guided by seasoned experts through Little Bavaria’s most iconic eateries — and hidden gems!

Reserve a tour through the Alden B. Dow Home and Studio, an oasis of mid-century modern architecture, then find your way to 400+ other structures with the Mid-Century Modern Midland mobile app.

Take the Center Avenue Historic District Walking Tour through Bay City and enjoy a self-guided exploration of buildings and homes that were built prior to cars!

From a sprawling botanical oasis to serene Japanese gardens, find breathtaking floral beauty along our curated, self-guided gardens tour.

Outdoors + Nature

Find yourself amidst 22,000+ flowering bulbs at Dow Gardens! Discover 110 acres of natural splendor, award-winning gardens, and a canopy walk that stretches four stories high in the trees!

Time your trip to also experience Butterflies in Bloom — and witness thousands of brilliantly colored butterflies from around the globe taking flight within the tropical conservatory!

Spend the day catching big ones on Lake Huron’s Saginaw Bay with the pros from a local walleye fishing charter — or captain your own adventure!

Challenge yourself on an aerial obstacle course of ziplines, ladders, and rope bridges at Frankenmuth Aerial Park.

Venture out to Chippewa Nature Center! With 19 miles of trails, join a guided Full Moon Stroll or Spring Wildflower Walk.

Relax along the shoreline at Bay City State Park and explore Tobico Marsh — a scenic coastal wetland with walking trails and observation towers.

Bay City State Park | @mi_playground
Great Lakes Bay Regional Trail

Get some fresh air along the Great Lakes Bay Regional Trail, including the 30-mile Pere Marquette Rail Trail, 21-mile Bay City Area Riverwalk/RailTrail, and 11-mile Saginaw Valley Rail Trail. Look to local Ray’s Bike Shop to rent some wheels for your time on the trails!

Kayaking the Cass River | @krista_b_fitness

Paddle yourself along calm waters with Frankenmuth Kayak Adventures, Ike’s Mobile Kayak Rentals, Nor’East Outdoors, or Cattail Kayak Rental.

Bring your binoculars to the Saginaw Bay Birding Trail, a natural habitat for 200+ species of birds!

Grab some peanuts & Cracker Jack and head to see the Great Lakes Loons Minor League Baseball team at bat!

Tee off at two of Michigan’s must-play golf courses, Apple Mountain and The Fortress, or your choice from more than a dozen other courses!

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Top Spring Outdoor Attractions


Follow cobblestone walks through clothing boutiques to fudge shops, partake in wine tastings to spa treatments, and enjoy the spring florals and Bavarian architecture at Frankenmuth River Place Shops.

Score huge finds (and save big) on a shopping trip to Birch Run Premium Outlets, where you’ll find 100+ designer and name-brand stores, with discounts of up to 65% off!

Explore “Michigan’s Largest Village of Unique Shops” at Pride and Country Village! Celebrate spring through six sprawling shops, each housed in a historic farm building.

Stroll along winding cobblestone through a fairytale castle to seven unique shops at the Bavarian Inn Castle Shops.

Enjoy the indoor, European-style SVRC Marketplace, and sample from unique and ethnic eateries as you browse items from yarn and beads to beauty products.

Experience the world’s largest Christmas store, Bronner’s CHRISTmas Wonderland, where it’s merriment, joy, and Christmas 361 days a year!

Shop home décor, garden, and gifts inside inviting shops like Violets Blue, Little House, Warmbier Farms, Baxman Market, or Saturday Mornings Home Décor & Gift Haus.

Browse curated collections of clothing to gifts, home décor to house plants at stylish lifestyle boutiques including Rebel Co., My Secret Garden, and Botanica Modern Market.

Serendipity Road | @serendipityroadmi

Find the perfect gift (or treat yourself to something unique) from the selection of handcrafted & artisan goods at Serendipity Road, Half Mile Handmade, Creative Lane, or Amazin’ Mitten.

Try on the latest on-trend fashions and stylish accessories at Ferne Boutique, Omoni Boutique, Panache Boutique, Prim Sage, and SoCal Threads, to name a few.

Discover an eclectic assortment of fashions, accessories, and apothecary items at spots like Adorn Boutique, Rapunzel’s Boutique, White House Boutique, Ellie & Isabelle, or Margos & Co.

Shop & sample from 270+ different specialty cheeses inside the Frankenmuth Cheese Haus or savor small-batch, handmade cheeses from around the world at Artigiano Artisan Cheese Shoppe.

Take home the perfect souvenir from the unusual selections and one-of-a-kind finds at Frank’s Muth, The Michigan Shoppe, and many more.

Gear up for exciting spring outdoor adventures at Little Forks Outfitters, Frank’s Great Outdoors, Saginaw Bay Trading Company, or Northwoods Wholesale Outlet.

Birch Run Premium Outlets
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Best Spots for Shopping


Discover the largest antique mall in Michigan, Bay City Antiques Center/Bay Antique Center, with 400+ booths housed in a historic building.

Join friends for a bite to eat at the Memory Lane Cafe before perusing 70 antique vendors — and six specialty shops — at the Antique Warehouse.

Stroll down memory lane at Freeland Antique Mall, where you’ll find more than 90 booth spaces stocked with antiques and vintage goods.

Take a trip through Americana Company Antiques and find an eclectic mix of vintage, local memorabilia, and unique antiquities.

Browse treasured & thoughtfully restored pieces of mid-century modern furniture at Retro Attics Studio, open Saturdays only.

Explore a marketplace of vintage, shabby chic, antique, industrial, and mid-century modern at The Iron Gate Emporium.

Find vintage galore from 60 vendors at Around the Farm Antiques — and shop the outdoor collection for interesting garden decor.

Go on a thrilling hunt through Thrifty Treasures Antiques & More. Shop 20+ dealers with jewelry, glassware, primitives, and art.

Americana Company Antique Mall

Lose yourself inside Vintage Annex — and find retro goodies from fashions to housewares and fabulous vintage jewelry.

Step into a vintage goldmine of furniture, clothing, and quirky collectibles at Sister's Vin-Tiques.

Be transported to a bygone era at Flash Back Vintage, a must-visit for retro clothing and decor.

Find a cherished piece of the past at Michiganders Antiques and Collectibles, from furniture to memorabilia.

Shop farm, primitives, antiques, vintage decor, glassware, and toys at Yorkshire Antiques & Primitives.

Scour for vintage treasures, or look toward the repurposed and repainted at The Finest Antiques & Home Décor.

Have fun browsing a historic building at Court Street Antiques, a vintage, antique, and upcycle shop where nothing is newer than 1970!

Discover unusual items and estate finds at Adomaitis Antiques, including a selection of professional quality costumes and vintage clothing pieces.

Stroll through the music of then & now at Electric Kitsch! Find new and used records — and the equipment to play them on!

Get lost in yesteryear inside The Antique Center, where memorabilia, vintage clothing, jewelry, collectibles, and antiques await.

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Favorite Antique Shops
Brinstar | @frommichiganwithlove

Live Entertainment + Nightlife

Stretch your fun late-night at Brinstar! Play pinball and video arcade games, and sample from 12 on-tap beer options.

Step back in time at Crazy Quarters Arcade into Pac-Man, Galaga, and more — and test your skill on dozens of pinball machines.

Catch a concert, comedy show, or performance at Midland Center for the Arts, The Temple Theatre, The Dow Event Center — or the outdoor Jolt Credit Union Event Park!

Bowl for strikes at Stardust — then enjoy The Taproom with 41 draft craft brews, escape rooms, axe throwing, and more!

Act fast and work together at Great Lakes Escape Game or Code Breakers Escape & Puzzle Rooms to see if you can solve cryptic clues and get out. Good luck!

Enjoy an evening of immersive experiences at 906 Lapeer, with four escape rooms, axe throwing, an indoor GellyBall arena, and a full-scale professional haunted house!

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Live Entertainment + Nightlife
Oracle Brewing | @oraclebeer

Beer, Wine + Spirits

Order the rotating IPA at Oracle Brewing Company, a laid-back space with inventive artisan brews.

Enjoy outdoor seating and Cass River views at Frankenmuth Brewery, Michigan’s oldest microbrewery.

Sip on suds that pay local tribute at Tri-City Brewing Company — and be ready for rotating food trucks!

Toast to Michigan history at Midland Brewing Company, and try spring’s seasonal Three Mile Marker Hefeweizen!

With IPAs to hard seltzers, sip something new at Loggers Brewing Company — and sample from food trucks that regularly park & serve.

Taste wood-fired craft brews at The Maple Grille Restaurant & Microbrewery — and farm-to-table menu items, scratch-cooked over fire.

Enjoy your brew — craft beer or coffee — alongside fresh-baked goods at MI Element Grains & Grounds, where it’s all about “local brewing, baking, and music.”

Prost | @brittney_frost

Gather at Prost! Wine Bar & Charcuterie to discover tap wines — or select from a menu of global wines, wine cocktails, and house specialty drinks.

Indulge inside Frankenmuth FunShips Tasting & Tours, where you’ll sample wines paired with handmade chocolates.

Experience a guided, six-pour wine tasting session at award-winning St. Julian Winery.

Mix it up at Modern Craft Winery — mixing wines together, with lemonade, or even cream soda!

Sample “worldly wines made local” at Grape Beginnings Winery, known for its approachable atmosphere.

Cozy in at Crazy Vines Winery to enjoy wines, ciders, and charcuterie in a comforting, rustic space.

For a distillery, brewery, and winery in one, look to Three Bridges Distillery & Taproom. Try the frothy Blue Jasmine Fizz or a pint of Honey IPA!

Sip handcrafted cocktails at Old Town Distillery to sample vodka, rum, whiskey, and even Moonshine, distilled on-site.

Taste thoughtfully crafted artisan cocktails at The Public House and order the River Cruiser, a drink for two to share.

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Best Places to Sip Beer, Wine + Spirits
Japanese Cultural Center | @you._can._call._me._al

Arts + Culture

Tour the traditional tea house at the Japanese Cultural Center, Tea House and Gardens of Saginaw, and stroll through serene Japanese gardens.

Explore gorgeous, Italianate gardens while touring permanent and traveling exhibitions at the Saginaw Art Museum.

Peruse Gingerblue Gallery to experience locally crafted art alongside international works.

Browse the gallery at Studio 23/The Arts Center and choose a project from the Craft Bar!

MFS Museum | @mfsmuseum

Visit the Marshall M. Fredericks Sculpture Museum — and its outdoor Sculpture Garden for bronze sculptures, botanical beds, and fountains.

Find handmade pottery for painting at Painterly Pottery and Space Studios — or turn raw wood into a work of art at Board & Brush Creative Studio.

Discover the Great Lakes Bay Region Public Art Passport and map your route to see public art!

Saginaw Art Museum | @travelingmichigan
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An Art Lover's Guide to the Great Lakes Bay
U.S.S. Edson | @jeffcaverlyphotography

History + Museums

Explore the Saginaw Valley Naval Ship Museum aboard a National Historic Landmark, the U.S.S. Edson DD-946!

Venture through the Michigan Heroes Museum, the only of its kind in the country, featuring displays of Michigan veterans.

Experience the Castle Museum of Saginaw County History, a three-story gem tucked inside a French chateau-style castle.

Castle Museum | @travelingmichigan
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Self-Guided Museums Tour
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With sunshine and fresh air beckoning, let this list of favorite outdoor attractions inspire your adventures in Pure Michigan's Great Lakes Bay Region this spring!

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Squeal with delight while zooming through treetops at an unforgettable aerial park. Take in a ball game, travel the zoo, or tap maple trees together. When the kiddos are ready for easy-breezy fun, discover the best of what spring brings when you Go Great Lakes Bay in Pure Michigan as a family!

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Jen W. O'Deay + Go Great Lakes Bay

By: Jen W. O'Deay | Updates: Go Great Lakes Bay | Jen is a Saginaw native and owner of Feel These Words, an independent copywriting studio & home to the free "5 Day Website MiniBoost". Jen specializes in writing that connects, delivered through website copy, branded content articles, and WingWoman writing services. You'll find Jen camping with her family, laughing, and at