May 14, 2018

Mackinac Island Staycation!

While vacations are absolutely amazing, sometimes a staycation is really what you need!
What's a staycation you may ask?
A vacation where you are staying close to home, yet it feels like you've traveled far!
My suggestion?
Even though it's still a part of Michigan, it feels like you've stepped into another country. Cars are replaced with horse drawn carriages, bikes, and a healthy dose of walking! Fudge and ice cream are essential parts of your diet, and if you leave without a printed "Mackinac Island" tee you might as well not have gone at all!
Last time I had been, I was the giddy 12 year old who wanted nothing but to pet the horses, eat all the traditional chocolate fudge, and get a lime green hoodie with yellow ducks and "Mackinac Island" printed across the front (yikes).
This time was a very different experience. We happened to go the first weekend that the island was open to tourism, so we were able to see EVERYTHING without the crowds! 
It was the absolute perfect staycation.
Want to have a trip as terrific as we did?
Here's a little advice ;)
Stay at the Pontiac Lodge.
No, it's not The Grand Hotel, but IT IS cozy, qaint, quiet, comfortable, and reasonably priced. The rooms are spacious, with kitchen space, free WiFi, and beds you can just sink into. If you're lucky enough, you can snag the room with the waterfront view like we had ;)

Hike it rather than bike It.
Hiking is free, where biking is an hourly fee. Not only that, but with hiking you're able to get to things you can't on bike. Like the tippy top of Arch Rock, the overlook of Sugar Loaf, the highest point on Mackinac at Fort Holmes, or the view from inside Fort Mackinac! It's worth the uphill battle ;)
Stop at every shop.
It only takes a few hours to hit every shop on the strip, so why not hit them all? I personally just wove in and out of shops for half a day. While some are your typical tee shirt stop, others are uniquely themed little boutiques! So shop till you drop ;) 
Grab ice cream at The Grand Hotel.
You don't have to stay there to have ice cream at Sadie's Parlor! They have a huge array of flavors, and the size of their scoops are grand ;)
Don't forget to grab some fudge.
While there are endless options for fudge, Ryba's was my personal fave! I went against the traditional fudge and got cashew turtles. Let's just say they were gone a lot faster than I anticipated. "Well fudge!" ;)
So consider chucking a vacation for a staycation, and make Mackinac Island a must!
I promise it will bring out your inner child ;) 

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