Things to Do in Bellaire MI – 2024 Ultimate Guide

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Welcome to Bellaire, Michigan, a hidden gem nestled in the heart of the picturesque Great Lakes State. This charming village offers a plethora of activities and attractions for visitors of all ages. Whether you’re a nature enthusiast, a foodie, an adventure seeker, or a history buff, Bellaire has something special in store for you. Join us as we explore the top things to do in Bellaire and uncover the beauty and excitement this vibrant destination has to offer.

Can’t-Miss Attractions

Bellaire, MI is a hidden gem in Northern Michigan, offering a variety of attractions that cater to different interests. Here are the top 5 must-see attractions in Bellaire:

1. Torch Lake: Known for its crystal-clear turquoise waters, Torch Lake is the largest and deepest inland lake in Michigan. Visitors can enjoy swimming, kayaking, or simply relaxing on the sandy shores. The stunning scenery and vibrant colors of the lake make it a favorite spot for photographers and nature enthusiasts.

2. Grass River Natural Area: This 1,400-acre nature preserve is a haven for wildlife and outdoor lovers. With over 7 miles of hiking trails, visitors can explore diverse habitats including wetlands, forests, and meadows. Birdwatchers will especially appreciate the chance to spot a variety of bird species in their natural environment.

3. Short’s Brewing Company: A must-visit for beer enthusiasts, Short’s Brewing Company is a local favorite known for its creative and flavorful craft beers. Visitors can take a brewery tour, sample a flight of beers, or relax in the beer garden. The laid-back atmosphere and friendly staff make it a great place to unwind after a day of exploring.

4. Glacial Hills Pathway and Natural Area: Outdoor enthusiasts will love the extensive trail system at Glacial Hills. With over 30 miles of multi-use trails for hiking, mountain biking, and cross-country skiing, this natural area offers something for everyone. The rolling hills and scenic views make it a popular destination year-round.

5. Shanty Creek Resorts: Whether you’re a golfer, skier, or just looking for a relaxing getaway, Shanty Creek Resorts has something for you. With four championship golf courses, ski slopes, and a spa, this all-season resort offers a range of activities for visitors. The picturesque setting and top-notch amenities make it a popular choice for travelers.

Each of these attractions in Bellaire, MI offers a unique experience that showcases the natural beauty and recreational opportunities of the area. Whether you’re seeking outdoor adventures, cultural experiences, or simply a relaxing escape, Bellaire has something for everyone.

One-day trip

If you’re looking for exciting day trips within a 2-hour drive from Bellaire, MI, you’re in luck! Here are five fantastic destinations to consider:

1. Traverse City, MI – Known as the “Cherry Capital of the World,” Traverse City is located just an hour’s drive from Bellaire. This charming town offers a mix of outdoor activities and cultural experiences. Visitors can explore the scenic beaches of Grand Traverse Bay, hike the trails at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, or stroll through the vibrant downtown area filled with shops, galleries, and restaurants.

2. Mackinac Island, MI – Situated about 2 hours from Bellaire, Mackinac Island is a step back in time with its horse-drawn carriages and Victorian architecture. Visitors can bike around the island, visit historic sites like Fort Mackinac, or indulge in delicious fudge from local shops. The lack of cars on the island adds to its unique charm and makes for a peaceful day trip.

3. Charlevoix, MI – Just a 45-minute drive from Bellaire, Charlevoix is a picturesque town nestled between Lake Michigan and Round Lake. Outdoor enthusiasts can enjoy hiking at Fisherman’s Island State Park or taking a scenic drive along the famous “Mushroom Houses.” The town’s quaint downtown area is perfect for shopping, dining, and admiring the Earl Young architecture.

4. Petoskey, MI – Located less than an hour away, Petoskey is known for its beautiful waterfront parks and unique “Petoskey stones” found along the beaches. Visitors can explore the historic Gaslight District, hike the trails at Petoskey State Park, or try their luck at the Odawa Casino. The town’s vibrant arts scene also offers galleries and boutiques to peruse.

5. Torch Lake, MI – Just a short 30-minute drive from Bellaire, Torch Lake is famous for its crystal-clear blue waters and sandy shores. Day-trippers can rent a kayak or paddleboard to explore the lake, relax on the beach, or take a scenic drive along the shoreline. The area is perfect for water sports enthusiasts and nature lovers alike.

Each of these destinations offers a unique blend of outdoor adventures and cultural experiences, making them ideal choices for day trips from Bellaire. Whether you’re seeking a relaxing beach day, a hike through nature, or a taste of local history, these locations have something for everyone. So pack your bags, hit the road, and get ready for a memorable day of exploration and enjoyment!

Restaurants and bars

When exploring Bellaire, MI, be sure to check out these top 5 dining spots that offer a delectable culinary experience:

1. The Blue Heron: Indulge in their famous Lake Michigan Perch, lightly breaded and fried to perfection, while enjoying stunning views of the lake.

2. Lulu’s Bistro: Savor their signature Cherry Chicken Salad made with locally sourced cherries, a delightful blend of sweet and savory flavors that keeps patrons coming back for more.

3. The Dockside: Treat yourself to their mouthwatering Whitefish Tacos, featuring fresh-caught whitefish and homemade slaw, a favorite among seafood enthusiasts.

4. The Bellaire Bar & Restaurant: Try their renowned Pecan-Encrusted Walleye, a unique dish that perfectly combines crunchy pecans with flaky walleye, creating a delightful texture and taste.

5. Toonie Moonie Ice Cream Shop: End your culinary journey with a visit to this charming ice cream parlor, where you can enjoy a scoop of their famous Cherry Chocolate Chunk ice cream, a local favorite loved for its rich flavor and creamy texture.

For a cozy and unique cafe experience in Bellaire, make sure to visit Mabel’s Cafe, known for its artisanal coffee blends and homemade pastries that are perfect for a quick breakfast or a leisurely afternoon snack.

If you’re in the mood for a refreshing drink in a laid-back setting, head over to The Thirsty Sturgeon, a local bar that offers a wide selection of craft beers and cocktails, along with a welcoming ambiance that makes it a favorite hangout spot among locals.

Interesting Facts

Bellaire, Michigan, nestled in the heart of Antrim County, offers a delightful array of activities for visitors to enjoy. Here are three surprising and interesting facts about Bellaire that make it a must-visit destination:

1. Unique Chain of Lakes: Bellaire boasts an interconnected chain of lakes, including the famous Grass River Natural Area. Visitors can explore these pristine waters by kayak, canoe, or paddleboard, immersing themselves in the serene beauty of Northern Michigan. Fishing enthusiasts will also find ample opportunities to reel in a variety of fish species, adding an exciting element to their outdoor adventures.

2. Home of Short’s Brewing Company: Beer aficionados will be delighted to discover that Bellaire is home to Short’s Brewing Company, a renowned craft brewery known for its innovative and flavorful brews. Visitors can tour the brewery, sample a wide selection of beers in the taproom, and even attend special events and festivals hosted by this beloved local establishment. Whether you’re a beer connoisseur or simply enjoy a cold pint, a visit to Short’s Brewing Company is a must when in Bellaire.

3. Gateway to the Chain of Lakes: Bellaire serves as the gateway to the stunning Chain of Lakes, a series of interconnected waterways that offer endless opportunities for boating, swimming, and relaxation. From Torch Lake, known for its crystal-clear turquoise waters, to Intermediate Lake, perfect for water sports and leisurely cruises, the Chain of Lakes provides a picturesque backdrop for unforgettable memories. Visitors can rent a boat, book a scenic cruise, or simply bask in the natural beauty that surrounds Bellaire.

With its unique natural attractions, vibrant craft beer scene, and access to the stunning Chain of Lakes, Bellaire, Michigan, promises a memorable and enriching experience for all who visit. Whether you’re seeking outdoor adventures, culinary delights, or simply a peaceful retreat in nature, Bellaire has something special to offer.

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