The carefree days of your youth are alive and well in Alpena. Catching fireflies on warm summer evenings, searching for minnows with a net, reading a book under a shade tree, and watching the sunset while crickets provide background music are nostalgic experiences that we often wish we could relive. Alpena is that place where summer memories come alive as an everyday way of life, and stress floats away with the river current. Visit a downtown coffee shop to catch up on email, or disconnect to reconnect in the Sanctuary of the Great Lakes.
The Great Lakes are a gift from prehistoric glacier movement, and treasures have been left behind along the shores of Lake Huron and the many inland lakes and rivers. Hunt for fossils dating back 400 million years to the Devonian Period. Rocky edges along the shorelines, Rockport State Park Recreation Area, and the Lafarge Fossil Park at Besser Museum are perfect locations for an afternoon of prehistoric adventure. Follow it up with a trip to Dinosaur Gardens to see life-size prehistoric recreations.
Use our Adventure Checklist to find your explorer’s spirit: Sanctuary of the Great Lakes Adventure Checklist
Biking is one of the best ways to explore Alpena! Plan your adventure with the Friends of the Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary! We offer a great selection of Raleigh bikes for men, women and children as well as Burley child trailers and tag-alongs. Explore the Maritime Heritage Trail, the 16.5 mile long Alpena Bi-Path or grab a map and head out on a number of self-guided tours. Bikes are available seven days a week on a first-come, first-served basis. All rentals require a security deposit. For your safety, please wear a helmet – provided with your rental – and obey the rules of the road. For information on availability and selection, contact the Sanctuary Store at (989) 356-8805, ext. 18.