Boat Tours in Frankenmuth | @michiganaddicts

Guided Boat Tours

Relax aboard a cozy tour boat with Frankenmuth FunShips, and sip wines paired with handmade chocolates while you’re on the water!

Feel the wind in your hair on a majestic tall ship sailing excursion with BaySail, possibly at sunset!

Dine & dance to live bands on-deck aboard Bay City Boat Lines, or enjoy a relaxing guided river tour.

Take a boating ecotour with Johnny Panther Quests Adventure Trips through one of the richest wildlife habitats in Michigan, the Shiawassee National Wildlife Refuge.

Board the 150-passenger Bavarian Belle Riverboat for a narrated history tour on the Cass River.

Boat Rentals

No boat? No problem! Choose your pontoon from Bay City Boat Rental, docked at Scotty's Sandbar, and enjoy a relaxing afternoon or weekend cruising the Saginaw River and Saginaw Bay.

Outdoors + Nature

Find yourself immersed in thousands of colorful blooms at Dow Gardens — and experience the nation’s longest treetop canopy walk that soars 40 feet into the air!

Conquer ziplines, ladders, and rope bridges at Frankenmuth Aerial Park, and look for dazzling Glow Nights this summer!

Explore 19 miles of trails at Chippewa Nature Center, and venture out for a guided bike ride or an evening kayak trip with a naturalist.

With waterfront scenery & wildflowers, hop onto the Great Lakes Bay Regional Trail. Discover the 30-mile Pere Marquette Rail Trail, 21-mile Bay City Area Riverwalk/RailTrail, or 11-mile Saginaw Valley Rail Trail.

Stop into Ray’s Bike Shop in Midland or Bay City to rent bikes for your time on the trails!

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

Catch a Great Lakes Loons Minor League Baseball game! Watch from stadium seats, or bring a blanket to cheer from the lawns.

Tee off at two of Michigan’s must-play public golf courses, The Fortress and Apple Mountain, or discover more than a dozen others.

Feet on the Street in Bay City | @miles2gobeforeisleep

Tours + Experiences

Coast into great times when you book the Sunrise Pedal Trolley! Bring beverages aboard and ride through Bay City enjoying architecture, shops, and local pubs.

Pedal through Frankenmuth on a 16-person bike when you rent the PedAle Trolley, or purchase single seats on an evening pub crawl!

Enjoy a guided tour and summer scenery all throughout Little Bavaria on a horse-drawn carriage ride with Fantasy Carriage Company or Frankenmuth Carriage Company.

Cruise through Shiawassee National Wildlife Refuge along the scenic, seasonal Wildlife Drive — a breathtaking 6.5-mile auto tour route.

Tour the Alden B. Dow Home and Studio, an oasis of mid-century modern architecture, or marvel at 400+ other structures, guided by the Mid-Century Modern Midland mobile app.

Immerse yourself in Frankenmuth from the cool comfort of the Golden Ticket Trolley when you hop aboard this nostalgic trolley bus for a narrated tour of town.

Dow Gardens | @jillwellingtonphotography_

Discover the enchanting gardens of the Great Lakes Bay along our curated, self-guided gardens tour.

Stroll through Bay City along the Center Avenue Historic District Walking Tour and take in beautiful views of buildings and homes built prior to cars!

Embark on a culinary journey with Flavors of Frankenmuth as you traverse Little Bavaria’s most iconic eateries — and hidden gems — alongside local food experts!

Haithco Recreation Area | @mi_playground

Beaches, Paddling + Fishing

Hit the beach at Haithco Recreation Area, a picturesque park with a 40-acre lake. Rent paddleboats, rowboats, canoes, or kayaks — and bring your fishing pole!

Soak up the sun at Bay City State Park, on a beach with nearly a mile of natural Saginaw Bay shoreline! Enjoy picnic areas and Tobico Marsh — a wetland preserve with observation towers.

Haithco Recreation Area | @mi_playground

Launch your scenic summer paddling trip with kayaks from Ike’s Mobile Kayak Rentals, Nor’East Outdoors, Frankenmuth Kayak Adventures, or Cattail Kayak Rental.

Drop your line into water that’s earned an international reputation for walleye fishingLake Huron’s Saginaw Bay! Set out on your own, or charter a guided excursion.

Great Lakes Bay

Make s’mores and summer memories at Bay City State Park, with mini-cabins available for rent, or find a handful of other cozy campgrounds where you can park your RVs or pop up your tents!

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Social Districts

Explore The Commons Pedestrian Plaza in Downtown Midland, with ample shade and seating, and visit The Commons Refreshment Area where craft brews, wine, and cocktails are openly allowed outdoors.

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Bay City

Enjoy fresh air and al fresco dining, live music, comedians and community events — even morning yoga sessions! Discover Bay City’s Feet on the Street and relax in the city streets all summer long!

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Saunter through fresh produce, florals, local honey, and handmade goods at local farmers markets — including the Midland Area Farmers Market and Downtown Saginaw Farmers Market.

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Dine on fresh catch on the decks of Real Seafood Company on the Saginaw River, cozy up by Prost! Wine Bar & Charcuterie’s outdoor fire bar, or enjoy your brews with river views at Frankenmuth Brewery, to name a few!

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From Makin’ Bacon Truck that serves bacon mac ‘n’ cheese to Bavarian Inn Cluck Truck’s Frankenmuth chicken and 5-2-Oh’s Korean-inspired street tacos, taste what food trucks bring to our city streets!

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Free Outdoor

Enjoy amazing music all summer for free as can be! Join the Party on McCarty in Saginaw, gather 'round for The Commons Live Music Series in Downtown Midland, and sway freely to even more no-cost tunes!

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Outdoor Beer Gardens
Bay City

Float your boat up to Drift Shoreside Beer Garden in Bay City, then relax on the deck with waterfront views, plus brews & bites from the on-site food truck park!

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Belly up at the Midland Brewing Company Beer Garden and enjoy plentiful brews at picnic tables — or around the fire pit!

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Bay City

Head to Downtown Bay City’s dining district at Drydock Beer Garden to enjoy an intimate space, live music, beer, and wine.

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Discover Schnitzelbank Biergarten in front of Frankenmuth’s Bavarian Inn Lodge for outdoor drinks, dinner, and fun!

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Bay City

Enjoy Bay City's hometown brewery from the comfort of a classic beer garden — and keep a lookout for rotating food trucks!

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Delight in a music cafe reminiscent of the outdoor beer gardens of Germany, and listen to talented accordionists while sipping your brew or wine in the Frankenmuth sunshine!

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Follow cobblestone walks to 40+ stores at Frankenmuth River Place Shops, and find clothing boutiques to fudge kitchens and even a bead shop with in-store wine tasting!

Peruse “Michigan’s Largest Village of Unique Shops” at Pride and Country Village, each one housed in a historic, refurbished farm building.

Shop 100+ designer and name-brand stores at prices of up to 65% off at Birch Run Premium Outlets.

Stroll through seven unique shops inside a cobblestone-lined castle at the Bavarian Inn Castle Shops.

Peruse the SVRC Marketplace, sampling from unique & ethnic eateries while shopping yarn & beads to apothecary & wellness products.

Experience the magic of Christmas — even in the midst of summer – at the world’s largest Christmas store, Bronner’s CHRISTmas Wonderland.

With gifts to global textiles, apothecary and plants, uncover unique treasures and fashionable clothing at Rebel Co., My Secret Garden, and Botanica Modern Market.

Step inside inviting shops including Violets Blue, Little House, Warmbier Farms, Baxman Market, or Saturday Mornings Home Décor & Gift Haus — and find your fill of home décor, gifts, and garden items.

Serendipity Road | @serendipityroadmi

Find handcrafted artisan gifts & goods at Serendipity Road, Half Mile Handmade, Creative Lane, or Amazin’ Mitten.

Choose from the curated racks inside Ferne Boutique, Omoni Boutique, Prim Sage, Panache Boutique, SoCal Threads and more — and leave with a refreshed summer wardrobe!

Find fashions, accessories, and apothecary items at Adorn Boutique, White House Boutique, Rapunzel’s Boutique, Ellie & Isabelle, Margos & Co., Sassy & Chic Boutique, Rose Wilde, and many more.

See, smell, and taste small-batch, handmade cheeses from around the world at Artigiano Artisan Cheese Shoppe, or discover 270+ different specialty cheeses at Frankenmuth Cheese Haus.

Find unusual souvenirs and memorable gifts, many Michigan-themed, at unique locations like Frank’s Muth or The Michigan Shoppe.

Stock up on essentials for summer adventures from fishing to camping when you shop Frank’s Great Outdoors, Little Forks Outfitters, Saginaw Bay Trading Company, or Northwoods Wholesale Outlet.


Get lost within Michigan’s largest antique mall, Bay City Antiques Center/Bay Antique Center, and shop multiple floors and 400+ booths, including European-imported finds.

Peruse 70+ antique vendors and six specialty shops inside the Antique Warehouse, then grab a bite to eat at Cafe K-Wall's Kitchen.

Stroll through 90+ booth spaces stocked with antiques and vintage goods at Freeland Antique Mall.

Get your fill of nostalgia at Americana Company Antiques, with unique antiquities, vintage items, and local memorabilia.

Be inspired by vibrant, reimagined pieces of mid-century modern furniture at Retro Attics Studio, open Saturdays only.

Shop old & new at The Iron Gate Emporium, a marketplace blending Michigan-made, handcrafted, vintage, shabby chic, antique, industrial, and mid-century modern.

With vintage kitchenware to collectibles and memorabilia, discover The Little House Antiques that's been delighting shoppers for over 40 years!

Get your hands on interesting garden décor and vintage galore from 60+ vendors at Around the Farm Antiques.

Travel to Thrifty Treasures Antiques & More to shop from 20+ dealers offering jewelry, glassware, furniture, primitives, and more.

Visit Vintage Annex and find yourself surrounded by retro goodies from fashions to housewares and fabulous vintage jewelry.

Americana Company Antique Mall

Step into a vintage goldmine at Sister's Vin-Tiques, filled with mid-century furniture, retro clothing, and quirky collectibles.

A must-visit for retro clothing and décor, be transported to a bygone era at Flash Back Vintage.

Perfect for history enthusiasts and antique collectors alike, find vintage furniture to rare memorabilia at Michiganders Antiques and Collectibles.

Discover antique and primitive furniture, vintage décor, glassware, and toys at Yorkshire Antiques & Primitives.

Browse a bit of vintage and a bit of brand new inside The Finest Antiques & Home Décor.

Enjoy a vintage, antique, and upcycle shop, Court Street Antiques, located inside a historic building brimming with character!

With a specialized selection of estate sale items, quality costumes, and vintage clothing pieces, enjoy exploring Adomaitis Antiques.

Find a curation of new & used records, electronic equipment, and funky vintage household items in an eclectic atmosphere at Electric Kitsch.

Search for storied treasures inside The Antique Center, featuring vintage clothing, jewelry, collectibles, and antiques of all kinds.

Brinstar | @frommichiganwithlove

Live Entertainment + Nightlife

Feel the nostalgia at Brinstar while playing pinball and arcade games — and sample from a menu of creative burgers, with 12 on-tap beer options.

Bounce back into retro gaming fun at Crazy Quarters Arcade — and be sure to test your skill on dozens of pinball machines!

Catch a comedy show, concert, or other performance inside Midland Center for the Arts, The Temple Theatre, The Dow Event Center — or on the lawns of Jolt Credit Union Event Park!

Saunter into Stardust to bowl for strikes, but stay for axe-throwing, four escape rooms, and The Taproom with 41 craft beer handles.

Escape the heat (and the room) at Great Lakes Escape Game, Saginaw Escape, or Code Breakers Escape & Puzzle Rooms. Unravel cryptic clues together and get out before your time is up!

Step into an immersive experience at 906 Lapeer, featuring four escape rooms, indoor GellyBall, axe-throwing, and a haunted house!

The Maple Grille | @rachelwazhere

Beer, Wine + Spirits

Grab a picnic table outside The Maple Grille Restaurant & Microbrewery, where the locally sourced food and craft brews are both wood-fired!

Taste 150 years of brewing tradition while soaking up Cass River views at Frankenmuth Brewery, Michigan’s oldest microbrewery!

Linger in a laid-back space at Oracle Brewing Company and sample inventive sours to IPAs.

Bask in the beautiful backyard beer garden of Midland Brewing Company — at a picnic table, or by the fire pit!

Sip on suds that pay homage to the area at Tri-City Brewing Company, best enjoyed with flavors from rotating food trucks!

Kick back with street eats and cold pints on the patio at Loggers Brewing Company and try the Section 37 Red IPA.

Sip your brew (beer or coffee) while snacking on baked-in-house goods and listening to live music at MI Element Grains & Grounds.

Three Bridges Distillery & Taproom | @three_bridges_distillery

Experience a distillery, brewery, and winery in one at Three Bridges Distillery & Taproom! Watch the distilling process through a viewing wall as you sip your Raspberry Hibiscus Lemonade or Rye IPA.

Slip inside Old Town Distillery to taste vodka, rum, whiskey, and Moonshine, distilled on-site. Order the Orange Creamsicle — or a cocktail flight to sample all four spirits!

Relax with artisan cocktails in an intimate space inside The Public House, and choose from house specialties like Gin-Soaked Girl.

Gather on the patio at Prost! Wine Bar & Charcuterie and discover six tap wines. Sip samplers like Rosé All Day or spritzes like Lethal Lemon.

Sample from an award-winning portfolio during a guided tasting session at St. Julian Winery — and hold onto your souvenir glass!

Unwind on the patio with “worldly wines made local” at Grape Beginnings Winery, or sip a Wine Crushy (slushy) in the summer sun!

Experience a wine tasting unlike any other (mixing wines together, with lemonade, or even cream soda) at Modern Craft Winery.

Enjoy wines, ciders, and charcuterie in a cozy, rustic tasting room at Crazy Vines Winery.

Japanese Cultural Center | @karthographer

Arts + Culture

Spend an afternoon amidst tranquil Japanese gardens at the Japanese Cultural Center, Tea House and Gardens of Saginaw, then tour the traditional tea house.

Have a summer daydream amidst Italianate gardens outside the Saginaw Art Museum, and peruse the historic mansion and its permanent and traveling exhibitions.

Discover beautiful bronze sculptures, botanical beds, and fountains at the outdoor Sculpture Garden after exploring the Marshall M. Fredericks Sculpture Museum.

Take a break from the heat inside Painterly Pottery, a paint-your-own pottery studio, or choose a piece to personalize at the Glaze Bar inside Space Studios.

Attend a DIY workshop at Board & Brush Creative Studio and turn raw wood into a work of art!

Get the Great Lakes Bay Region Public Art Passport (free), and preview public art before you travel to see it in person!

U.S.S. Edson | @jeffcaverlyphotography

History + Museums

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

Venture through the Michigan Heroes Museum, featuring displays of Michigan veterans.

Discover a three-story gem of fascinating history inside a French chateau-style castle, the Castle Museum of Saginaw County History.

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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