Hi there!

 

If you are driving to the Upper Peninsula of Michigan from the Lower Peninsula, then the eastern part of the UP will be your welcome to the Upper Peninsula right after you drive across the Mackinac Bridge!

 

Best things to do in Eastern UP: Driving across the Mackinac Bridge to the UP from Mackinaw City to St Ignace. Things to do in eastern Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

Best things to do in Eastern UP: Driving across the Mackinac Bridge to the UP from Mackinaw City to St Ignace. Things to do in eastern Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

Best things to do in Eastern UP: Driving across the Mackinac Bridge to the UP from Mackinaw City to St Ignace. Things to do in eastern Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

Best things to do in Eastern UP: Getting to St Ignace. Things to do in eastern Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

 

And so… what can you do in this part of the UP?!

This list below will give you ideas for scenic drives, Lake Superior beaches, waterfalls, campgrounds, lighthouses, and then some!

 

Best things to do in the eastern UP Upper Peninsula. Best eastern UP scenic drives. northern michigan travel blog

Best things to do in the eastern UP Upper Peninsula. Best eastern UP beaches. northern michigan travel blog

Best things to do in the eastern UP Upper Peninsula. Best eastern UP waterfalls. northern michigan travel blog

Best things to do in the eastern UP Upper Peninsula. Best eastern UP agate beaches lake superior. agate rocks. agate stones. northern michigan travel blog

Best things to do in the eastern UP Upper Peninsula. Best eastern UP campgrounds. northern michigan travel blog

Best things to do in the eastern UP Upper Peninsula. Best eastern UP lighthouses, lake superior. northern michigan travel blog

Best things to do in the eastern UP Upper Peninsula. Best eastern UP: lake superior beaches, agate beach, waterfalls, campgrounds, lighthouses, scenic drives. northern michigan travel blog

 

More below about the places to visit in the Eastern Upper Peninsula!

 

 

 

 

 

The list!

Things to do in the Eastern Upper Peninsula of Michigan

 

1. Straits State Park

St Ignace MI

Best things to do in Eastern UP: Straits state park to see Mackinac Bridge views. Things to do in Eastern Upper Peninsula. Michigan travel blog

 

On the shores of Lake Huron on the UP side of the bridge is Straits State Park. From here, you can see the Mackinac Bridge.

You can also see the Mackinac Bridge from higher ground, where there’s also a picnic spot. You can drive here, or if you’re on lower ground you can also take the trail up.

 

Things to do in Eastern Upper Peninsula: Straits state park to see Mackinac Bridge views. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern Upper Peninsula: Straits state park to see Mackinac Bridge views. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern Upper Peninsula: Straits state park picnic area to see Mackinac Bridge views. UP Michigan travel blog

 

At the shoreline there’s also a spot to sit and rest, and there’s also a small beach here so you can go swimming with Mackinac Bridge views.

 

Things to do in Eastern Upper Peninsula: Straits state park to see Mackinac Bridge views. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern Upper Peninsula: Straits state park beach to see Mackinac Bridge views. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern Upper Peninsula: Straits state park beach. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern Upper Peninsula: Straits state park beach swimming to see Mackinac Bridge views. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern Upper Peninsula: Straits state park to see Mackinac Bridge views. UP Michigan travel blog

 

 

Camping in Eastern Upper Peninsula

There’s also the Straits State Park campground, and it’s possible to get a lakefront campsite with views of the Mackinac Bridge! 

 

Things to do in Eastern Upper Peninsula: Camping at Straits state park campground, Mackinac Bridge camping. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern Upper Peninsula: Camping at Straits state park campground, Mackinac Bridge camping. UP Michigan travel blog

 

 

2. Father Marquette National Memorial

St. Ignace MI

Best things to do in Eastern UP: Father Marquette National Memorial. Things to do in Eastern Upper Peninsula. Michigan travel blog

 

This is actually a part of Straits State Park, but it’s located in a different area from the main shoreline area of the park.

The Father Marquette National Memorial is a national memorial as designated by the National Park Service.

Marquette was from France, and he is known for traveling large distance of waterways by canoe in the 1600s, including a great length of the Mississippi River from north to south.

You can read more about the history of Michigan and the Great Lakes area by visiting the memorial, and you can read about the history here too.

Nearby the memorial, you’ll also find some more walking paths, including one that leads to an overlook with Mackinac Bridge views where you can also sit and relax!

 

Things to do in Eastern UP: Father Marquette National Memorial. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Father Marquette National Memorial. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Father Marquette National Memorial overlook with views of Mackinac Bridge. UP Michigan travel blog

 

 

3. Bridge View Park

St. Ignace MI

Best things to do in Eastern UP: Bridge View Park to see Mackinac Bridge, Lake Michigan. Things to do in Eastern Upper Peninsula. Michigan travel blog

 

This is another spot where you can get views of the Mackinac Bridge! This is on the opposite side of the bridge compared to the Straits State Park shoreline. This means that you get to see Mackinac Bridge from the shores of Lake Michigan.

 

Things to do in Eastern UP: Bridge View Park to see Mackinac Bridge, Lake Michigan. Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Bridge View Park to see Mackinac Bridge, Lake Michigan. Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Bridge View Park to see Mackinac Bridge, Lake Michigan. Michigan travel blog

 

Here you’ll also find a tribute to those who lost their lives in building the Mackinac Bridge, said to be one of longest suspension bridges in the world.

 

 

4. Huron boardwalk

St. Ignace MI

Best things to do in Eastern UP: Huron boardwalk, downtown St Ignace. Things to do in Eastern Upper Peninsula. Michigan travel blog

 

If going for a nice stroll alongside the lake sounds good to you, you can do so by walking the Huron boardwalk! You can find picnic tables along the way too.

 

Things to do in Eastern UP: Huron boardwalk, downtown St Ignace. UP Michigan travel blog

 

You can also make it a self-guided historic St Ignace walking tour.

 

 

5. Wawatam Lighthouse

St Ignace MI

Best things to do in Eastern UP: Wawatam Lighthouse, downtown St Ignace. Things to do in Eastern Upper Peninsula. Michigan travel blog

 

 

 

The Huron boardwalk can also take you to Chief Wawatam Park. You’ll find the Wawatam Lighthouse at the end of the boardwalk on this end.

 

Things to do in Eastern UP: Wawatam Lighthouse, downtown St Ignace. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Lake Huron boardwalk, downtown St Ignace. UP Michigan travel blog

 

At Chief Wawatam Park, you’ll also find some benches to sit with lake views, and there’s also a fountain with water spraying from the ground that kids can have fun running through in the summer.

 

Things to do in Eastern UP: Chief Wawatam Park, downtown St Ignace. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Chief wawatam park. UP Michigan travel blog

 

It’s possible to get a ferry to Mackinac Island from both the Upper Peninsula and Lower Peninsula. In the Upper Peninsula, there is a ferry to Mackinac Island from St Ignace that you can get from right next to Chief Wawatam Park.

 

Things to do in Eastern UP: St Ignace to Mackinac Island ferry. UP Michigan travel blog

 

Wawatam Lighthouse: See more about this eastern UP lighthouse on Lake Huron

 

 

6. Castle Rock

St. Ignace MI

Best things to do in Eastern UP: Castle Rock Michigan. Things to do in Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

 

 

 

You can climb up a bunch of stairs to hike up to the Castle Rock overlook so you can get a grand view of Lake Huron from above. In 2020, the cost to go up was $1.

 

Things to do in Eastern UP: Castle Rock Michigan. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Castle Rock Michigan. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Castle Rock Michigan. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Castle Rock Michigan. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Castle Rock Michigan. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Castle Rock Michigan. UP Michigan travel blog

 

Castle Rock: See more about this eastern UP activity

 

 

7. Lake Michigan scenic highway (US-2)

Best things to do in Eastern UP: Lake Michigan Scenic Highway, US-2. Things to do in Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

 

If you’re driving up north from St Ignace and the Mackinac Bridge, add a slight detour to your route! You can drive with views of Lake Michigan! You can also stop and get out to walk along the shoreline too. 

 

Things to do in Eastern UP: Lake Michigan Scenic Highway, US-2. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Lake Michigan Scenic Highway, US-2. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Lake Michigan Scenic Highway, US-2. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Lake Michigan Scenic Highway, US-2. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Lake Michigan Scenic Highway, US-2. UP Michigan travel blog

 

For reference on google maps, drive along US-2 from the Mackinac Bridge to around Brevort before you make your way up north. See the map. Alternatively, be sure to drive along this road on your way back down south!

 

 

8. Soo Locks

Sault St Marie MI

Best things to do in Eastern UP: Soo locks ship crossing, sault st marie. Things to do in Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

 

Sault St Marie is located at the US – Canada border, and this is where the Soo Locks are located.

The Soo Locks are considered a great engineering feat, called the “lynchpin of the Great Lakes,” connecting the Great Lakes of Lake Huron and Lake Superior. This allows for big ships to pass through the narrow waterway.

 

Things to do in Eastern UP: Soo locks ship crossing, sault st marie. UP Michigan travel blog

 

In 2020, the observation deck which allows you to see the Soo Locks from higher up was not open due to health safety reasons, but it was possible to visit from ground level.

 

 

9. Brimley State Park

Brimley MI

Best things to do in Eastern UP: Brimley State Park swimming Lake Superior. Things to do in Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

 

Brimley State Park has a beach that allows for swimming in Lake Superior.

 

Things to do in Eastern UP: Brimley State Park beach. UP Michigan travel blog

 

 

Camping in Eastern Upper Peninsula

There is also the Brimley State Park campground, and it’ll be a short walk to the beach. You can also catch the sunset on Lake Superior a short walk from your campsite!

 

Things to do in Eastern UP: Brimley State Park beach. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Brimley State Park swimming Lake Superior sunset. UP Michigan travel blog

 

 

10. Point Iroquois Lighthouse

Brimley MI

Best things to do in Eastern UP: Point Iroquois Lighthouse Lake Superior. Things to do in Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

 

 

 

If you’re looking for a nice stroll alongside a lake, the Point Iroquois Lighthouse on Lake Superior is another place to consider visiting!

In 2020, it wasn’t possible to go inside the lighthouse, but you can still walk around the lighthouse grounds. There’s a boardwalk that leads to some benches where you can sit with great views of the lake.

Point Iroquois Lighthouse is a part of the Hiawatha National Forest and Whitefish Bay scenic byway.

 

Things to do in Eastern UP: hiawatha national forest, Point Iroquois Lighthouse on Whitefish Bay scenic byway. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Point Iroquois Lighthouse Lake Superior boardwalk. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Point Iroquois Lighthouse Lake Superior beach. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Point Iroquois Lighthouse Lake Superior boardwalk. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Point Iroquois Lighthouse Lake Superior boardwalk. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Point Iroquois Lighthouse Lake Superior boardwalk. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Point Iroquois Lighthouse on Whitefish Bay scenic byway. UP Michigan travel blog

 

Point Iroquois Lighthouse: See more about this eastern UP lighthouse on Lake Superior

 

 

11. Andrus Lake

Best things to do in Eastern UP: Andrus Lake. Things to do in Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

 

This can be a quiet stop on an inland lake. There is a small day use picnic area, and there is also a small beach for swimming here.

 

Things to do in Eastern UP: Andrus Lake picnic spot. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Andrus Lake beach. UP Michigan travel blog

 

 

Camping in Eastern Upper Peninsula

There’s also the Andrus Lake State Forest campground, and it’s possible to get a lakefront campsite! This is a rustic campground.

 

Things to do in Eastern UP: Camping Andrus Lake state forest campground. UP Michigan travel blog

 

 

12. Whitefish Point

Best things to do in Eastern UP: whitefish point, whitefish bay, lake superior. Things to do in Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

 

You can make a visit to Whitefish Point on Lake Superior a quick stop to go and check out the Lake Superior beach here, or you can easily spend several hours here.

This area has also been called the “Graveyard of Lake Superior” or the “Graveyard of the Great Lakes.” It’s said that there have been over 500 shipwrecks in this area. 

 

Best things to do in Eastern UP: whitefish point, whitefish bay, graveyard of lake superior, graveyard of the great lakes, shipwreck. UP Michigan travel blog

Best things to do in Eastern UP: whitefish point, whitefish bay, graveyard of lake superior, graveyard of the great lakes, shipwreck. UP Michigan travel blog

 

The day I went to Whitefish Point, it sure seemed to give the mood of this! It was a gloomy day with choppy water, and you could imagine how the waters of Lake Superior may not be so kind.

So, what is there to do at Whitefish Point?

The Great Lakes Shipwreck Museum is here, which you could take your time going through and spend 1-2 hours. On the same grounds is also the Whitefish Point Lighthouse which you can also walk through. And then you can spend as little or as much time going for a leisurely stroll along the shores of Lake Superior. You’ll see a lot of driftwood on the beach. You can walk for 15 minutes, or you could go for a 1 hour beach walk! This is also known as a beach to search for agate stones and you will likely see people looking closely at rocks. This means you can find many colorful rocks here.

 

Things to do in Eastern UP: Great Lakes shipwreck museum, whitefish point. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: whitefish point lighthouse lake superior. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Whitefish Point beach, Lake Superior. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Whitefish Point beach, Lake Superior. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Whitefish Point beach, Lake Superior. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Whitefish Point beach, Lake Superior. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Whitefish Point beach, Lake Superior. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Whitefish Point beach, agate rocks, agate stones, Lake Superior. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Whitefish Point beach, Lake Superior. UP Michigan travel blog

 

In 2020, both the museum and lighthouse were open to visitation for the cost of $13 per person. See current prices. No cost for parking or to visit the beach!

 

Whitefish Point: See more about this eastern UP activity

 

 

13. Vermilion Point

Best things to do in Eastern UP: vermilion point, lake superior. UP Michigan travel blog

 

You may consider visiting Vermilion Point for a quieter experience. This is also on the shores of Lake Superior and you can get a somewhat similar experience as the Lake Superior shoreline at Whitefish Point, but there will be far less people here. 

At the Vermillion Point beach you’ll also find driftwood and colorful rocks, and you can seemingly walk for miles. This was also the location of a US lifesaving station, which was the equivalent of the US coast guard, also looking out onto the waters of Lake Superior. This Vermilion Point lifesaving station is now in a state of disrepair, but the building is still standing. This is a part of the Vermillion Point Nature Preserve. There are smaller sand dunes to be seen here. It’s a dirt road to get back to the shores of Vermilion Point.

 

Things to do in Eastern UP: drive the road to vermilion point. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: vermilion point lighthouse, US coast guard lifesaving station, lake superior. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: vermilion point lighthouse, US coast guard lifesaving station, lake superior. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: vermilion point lighthouse, US coast guard lifesaving station, lake superior. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: vermilion point nature preserve sand dunes, lighthouse, life saving station, lake superior. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: vermilion point nature preserve sand dunes. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: vermilion point nature preserve sand dunes. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: vermilion point nature preserve sand dunes. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: vermilion point beach lake superior. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: vermilion point beach lake superior. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: vermilion point beach, agate stones, agate rocks, lake superior. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: vermilion point nature preserve sand dunes. UP Michigan travel blog

 

Vermilion Point: See more about this eastern UP activity

 

 

14. Tahquamenon Falls State Park

Best things to do in Eastern UP: Tahquamenon Falls State Park. Things to do in Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

 

 

 

The most popular waterfalls in Michigan are located in Tahquamenon Falls State Park.

There are a few different ways you can experience the waterfalls here. There are 2 separate areas of the park, to view the Lower Falls and Upper Falls of the Tahquamenon River.

You can walk to the viewing areas, and you can also row a boat across the river to an island in the river to see waterfalls from a different viewpoint.

 

Things to do in Eastern UP: Tahquamenon Falls State Park. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Tahquamenon Falls State Park. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Tahquamenon Falls State Park. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Tahquamenon Falls State Park. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: Tahquamenon Falls State Park. UP Michigan travel blog

 

 

Camping in Eastern Upper Peninsula

There are campgrounds at Tahquamenon Falls State Park. You can choose to camp closer to the waterfalls at the Lower Falls campground, or you can choose to camp closer to Lake Superior at the Rivermouth campground.

 

Things to do in Eastern UP: camping Tahquamenon Falls State Park campground. eastern Upper Peninsula campgrounds. UP Michigan travel blog

 

 

15. Crisp Point Lighthouse

Best things to do in Eastern UP: crisp point lighthouse lake superior. Things to do in eastern Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

 

 

 

And for another lighthouse to visit when you’re in the eastern UP, there is the Crisp Point Lighthouse!

Here you will get more scenic views of Lake Superior, beaches on both sides of the lighthouse, and another chance to search for colorful rocks. You’ll also take a dirt road to get here.

 

Things to do in Eastern UP: drive to crisp point lighthouse road. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: drive to crisp point lighthouse road. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: drive to crisp point lighthouse road. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: crisp point lake superior beach. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: crisp point lake superior beach. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: crisp point lake superior beach. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: crisp point lighthouse boardwalk. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: crisp point lake superior beach. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: crisp point beach lake superior, agate stones, agate rocks. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: crisp point lighthouse lake superior. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in Eastern UP: crisp point lighthouse lake superior. UP Michigan travel blog

 

Crisp Point Lighthouse: See more about this eastern UP lighthouse on Lake Superior

 

 

And those are some ideas of things to do in the Upper Peninsula!

 

Best things to do in Eastern UP: Drive Michigan scenic byway, lake michigan circle tour, m123. Things to do in eastern Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

 

See more about how to spend your time in the eastern UP:

 

More things to do in the eastern part of the Upper Peninsula

Now, depending on what you consider to be the eastern part of Upper Peninsula, you may also consider adding these things to your Eastern UP road trip too!

And then also see things to do in the western UP!

 

HAPPY VISIT TO EASTERN UPPER PENINSULA OF MICHIGAN!

 

Best things to do in the eastern UP Upper Peninsula. Best eastern UP: lake superior beaches, agate beach, waterfalls, campgrounds, lighthouses, scenic drives. northern michigan travel blog

 

 

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Things to pack for your Michigan vacation!

The ultimate beach towel for travel?!
Turkish towels are considered to be more lightweight than your average beach towel while still being absorbent. Be sure to check out turkish towels like these!
How to be a little bit more eco-friendly during your road trip!
Instead of using plastic silverware, try out bamboo silverware like this set!
The cheapo way to waterproof your phone
You can beach-proof your phone with a simple waterproof phone case like this.
Wear less sunscreen by wearing a UPF swim shirt!
Wearing a swim shirt means less skin that's exposed to the sun which means less sunscreen you need to apply! See about wearing swim shirts with UV protection like these when you're swimming in Lake Michigan or Lake Superior! Less sunscreen also means less chemicals from that sunscreen will enter our precious Great Lakes!
Get your travel bags more organized!
Packing cubes can make it so you're spending less time on your vacation looking for things! They are basically a form of drawers in your suitcase. Take a look at these packing cubes.