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
These WATER front bungalows are available to rent year-round. The Hubbard Lake view at the front of both of these bungalows is just short of spectacular. Hubbard Lake spans three townships that offer a never-ending selection of activities, attractions and conveniences, such as golf, hiking, bicycling, and small-game and bow hunting, color tours, snowmobiling, and ice fishing. The lake is one of today’s prime resort areas as well as an attractive retirement destination. This beautiful resort offers sandy-bottom swimming, prime fishing, snorkeling, water-skiing, canoeing, and has access to a nearby boat launch. All bedrooms are furnished with a double bed. Each unit also has a sleeper sofa in living room. Private baths have been updated with modern fixtures and shower enclosures. Both units have fully-equipped eat-in kitchens, including microwaves, cable TV, DVD player, gas grills, sun deck, air conditioner & a fire pit. The Lake Front unit also has a washer & dryer. Groceries and paper products are the responsibility of renters.
The bungalows are located on the west side of Hubbard Lake in a quiet community of summer homes. Each bungalow includes all the necessary amenities of home plus, a spectacular view of the shimmering water. Mt. Maria, visible from this property, has been designated by National Geographic as one of the ten most beautiful views in the country.
Go to http://www.uptothenorth.com for rates on these beautiful cottages.
Rockport State Recreation Area Sinkholes
GPS: 45.202533, -83.384076, take US-23 North, turn right on Rockport Road, the park is at the end of Rockport Rd.
Rockport is Michigan’s 100th State Park and is the first State Park where you are allowed to take a piece of it home with you. There are 13 sinkholes located at Rockport as a result of the Karst topography of the area. One of the sinkholes is over 100 feet deep and filled with water from an underground aquifer. Search for Devonian Era fossils around the sinkholes or in the abandoned 300-acre limestone quarry located on the property. Visitors are allowed to take up to 25 pounds of rock per person from the park per year. While you are here also check out the old deep port harbor, remnants of the former limestone mining operations that sat on the property.
Rugged trails loop throughout the property. Hike, bike, or bring your horse to ride the trails.
YEAR ROUND cottage on GRAND LAKE (across from the largest island) rent by the week or day. Fully equipped kitchen, full bath, 2 full and 2 single beds, living room with gas fireplace, charcoal grill, dock, fire pit and garage (if needed). Boat launch, harbors, lighthouses, gas station and store nearby. Year ’round outdoor recreation-10,000 acres of state land nearby.
Soaps and Such is a northeast Michigan destination shop. Bath and beauty products as well as unique Michigan illustrated candles and necklaces are part of the product line crafted by the local artisan and owner in a workshop off the shop. Alpena, Hubbard Lake, and other designs are emerging at the shop too. You are sure to find unique local artisan designed and crafted treasures at this shop. As well, the focus is “natural” with the bath and beauty products which are diverse from goats milk soap to natural repellent, to sulfate free shampoo. The shop itself has an old world charm and a tranquil setting as fountains flow and birds chirp offering a respite of solitude to those that browse the shop. Interactive offerings with the artisan without appointment every day include the exclusive interactive fragrance bar where customers can make their own perfume and body spray from over 35 essential oils or a nail polish and more. This little shop is nestled on Second Avenue in downtown Alpena and offers party rentals, customized gift baskets, demonstrations upon requests of groups, and shipping of those treasures or gifts for seamless gift giving or delivery to your home. It is truly a northern Michigan destination shop that you will be glad you visited.
Starlite Beach is full of family fun. Sandy swimming beach, playground, splash park (coming summer 2018), picnic pavilion, indoor restrooms, and outdoor shower. Close to restaurants and lodging. Adjacent to Lee’s Mini-Golf, the oldest continuously run miniature golf course in Michigan.
Stevens Twin Sinkholes
GPS: 45.18231, -83.71981, near the corner of Leer Rd and Maple Lane Rd, approx. 20 minutes from Alpena.
Stevens Twin Sinks Preserve is a 31-acre parcel purchased in 1993 with gifts from William and Archie Stevens and other members and friends of the Michigan Karst Conservancy. In it are two sinkholes separated by a fragile saddle ridge, each sink is about 200 feet in diameter and 85 feet deep. Located across from the Bruski Sink on Leer Road near the intersection of Maple Lane Road, the Stevens Twin Sinks are a geological treat. Earth cracks are viewable at Stevens Preserve and indicate that the sink hole is slowly continuing to collapse and the surface is sliding toward the sink hole. This Preserve has two self-guided trails. One trail generally follows the perimeter of the sinkholes with a spur to the earth cracks. Another trail is found off the spur trail and takes visitors through the woods and meadows of the preserve and is marked with yellow and red flagging.
More information is available at the Alpena Visitor Welcome Center at 420 N. Second Ave, Alpena, MI 49707.
Taste and purchase locally-made wine and soda at Stoney Acres Winery in Alpena. Stoney Acres makes several different kinds of grape and fruit wines including Silver City White (Riesling), Silver City Red (Merlot), and more than a half-dozen fruit wines including several berry varieties and cherry, pear and apple. New at Stoney Acres is a line of Shipwreck Soda! Delicious root beer, cream soda, raspberry and orange soda are named for some of the famous shipwrecks in Thunder Bay. The winery also offers a number of handmade delights, including wine truffles, fudge, candy bars, cheese popcorn, old fashioned caramel corn and triple-chocolate drizzled caramel corn. Stoney Acres carries a full line of beer and wine-making supplies and is open Tuesday through Saturday 11:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. and Sunday noon until 5:00 p.m. Closed Mondays. For more information, call (989) 356-1041.
Subway has been happily serving the Alpena community for nearly 30 years, providing fresh food and awesome service to our guests. Join us for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. We have some great healthy and indulgent choices to satisfy any craving! And don’t forget about catering. We can help feed your guests no matter the size of the party!
Arthur E. Sytek Park is located on Thunder Bay River and is the trailhead for the Alpena Bi-Path trail. The park offers a wildflower garden, picnic area, and barrier-free covered fishing deck, kayak/canoe launch site.
- Bird watching
- Nature observation
- Picnic area