Hi there!

 

This list focuses on stops to make to see the beauty of the Keweenaw Peninsula on your drive to Copper Harbor in the Western Upper Peninsula!

This includes plenty of Lake Superior views and views of what can look like red beaches!

 

Best things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula, in Copper Harbor: scenic drive in Michigan. Upper Peninsula. Northern UP Michigan travel blog

Best things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula, in Copper Harbor: See red sand beaches in Michigan. Upper Peninsula. Northern UP Michigan travel blog

Best things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula, in Copper Harbor: See red sand beaches in Michigan. Upper Peninsula. Northern UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: Hunters Point Park in Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

Best things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula. Best things to do in Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. Northern UP Michigan travel blog

 

 

 

 

Where is Copper Harbor?

Copper Harbor is at the very northern tip of the Keweenaw Peninsula, which is at the northern tip of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. This makes Copper Harbor the very northern end of “mainland” Michigan. (There’s a major island, Isle Royale National Park, that’s a part of Michigan and further north. You can get a ferry to there from Copper Harbor in normal times.)

These things to do on this list are located in the far northern area of the Keweenaw Peninsula. Consider these things to do on your drive to Copper Harbor.

For reference on a map, you can look for Eagle Harbor and Copper Harbor to know the general area of where these things are located in the UP.

 

Map of keweenaw peninsula location in upper peninsula UP michigan. Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: Stops on the drive from Eagle Harbor to Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog
Explore the map.

 

 

How do you pronounce Keweenaw?!

Probably not how you just read it! Keweenaw is pronouced more like “kee-wuh-naw.” You can listen to the audio here from the State of Michigan. And if there are other cities in Michigan that you’ve wondered how to say, the State of Michigan has a list that seems to include how to pronounce all the cities in Michigan!

 

Now see the list of things to do near Copper Harbor below!

 

 

🌳

 

 

 

And now…

Quick stops to make on your drive from Eagle Harbor to Copper Harbor!

 

Quick list of things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula:

This is in the order you can make these stops. This generally goes in the direction of south/west to north/east, with an exception that’s noted below. Pictures are below too.

 

To get from Eagle Harbor to Copper Harbor directly with no stops is around a 30 minute drive. You can take the northern route (M-26) or the southern route (US-41).

 

Map of keweenaw peninsula. Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: Stops on the drive from Eagle Harbor to Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog
Explore the map.

 

The stops on this list follow M-26, the northern route, which basically goes along Lake Superior. This road will then take you onto US-41 once you’re in Copper Harbor.

 

 

1. Eagle Harbor Lighthouse

Best things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: Eagle Harbor Lighthouse near Copper Harbor. Lake Superior lighthouse in upper peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

 

Being a state of many Great Lakes, Michigan is said to be home to around 100 lighthouses! And some of these lighthouses can be found in the Keweenaw Peninsula, and that includes the Eagle Harbor Lighthouse. This is one of the many Lake Superior lighthouses.

Even if the lighthouse museum is closed and you can’t go inside any of the building (which was the case in summer 2020), you can still visit the grounds to walk around and learn about the history of the lighthouse and how it was used in the past.

 

 

2. Esrey Park

Best things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula, in Copper Harbor: Esrey Park, M-26 roadside park. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

 

This is a roadside park. As you’re driving along M-26 you’ll come across it.

This can be a nice picnic spot. You can get vast Lake Superior views, and there are also areas where you can directly access the shoreline.

 

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: Esrey Park near Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: Esrey Park near Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: Esrey Park near Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: Esrey Park near Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: Esrey Park near Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: Esrey Park near Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog
Gloomy weather day near Copper Harbor! Lake Superior will always look better (aka amazing water color) on sunny/clear days! See some of the amazing Lake Superior water color in Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore near Munising. Pictured Rocks is around a 4 hour drive from Copper Harbor, and it will be a longer drive if you make the scenic stops on the drive to Munising!

 

 

3. Hebard Park

Best things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula, in Copper Harbor: Hebard Park, M-26. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

 

This is another roadside park that’s just down the road from Esrey Park.

If you’ll be staying in Copper Harbor for a few days, this is another picnic spot you may consider! 

Be sure to walk around along the coast around here! You’ll find “hidden” beaches, and maybe have the beach to yourself! These are rocky beaches, though, as are most “beaches” around here. (Water shoes can be a good idea for a Michigan road trip in general.)

 

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: Hebard Park near Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: Hebard Park near Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: Hebard Park near Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: Hebard Park near Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: Hebard Park near Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: Hebard Park near Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

 

From a distance, it can even look like you’ve found a red sand beach! (It’s more like red pebbles or red rocks.) Although this may not compare to a “real” red sand beach, I’d say this is a unique type of beach in Michigan!  

 

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: Hebard Park near Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: Hebard Park near Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: Hebard Park near Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: Hebard Park near Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

 

 

4. Devil’s Washtub

Best things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula, in Copper Harbor: Devils Washtub. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

 

Consider this a hidden spot! 

You’ll park on the side of the main road, and then there’s a short trail you’ll take to get to this spot.

If you aren’t looking out for this trail, you may easily drive right by it! (Although there is a small pullover parking area nearby which might be a giveaway that something worthy is in the area!)

 

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: Devils Washtub near Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: Devils Washtub near Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

 

Devil’s Washtub: See more about this place to visit in the Keweenaw Peninsula.

 

 

5. Brockway Mountain Lookout

Best things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula, in Copper Harbor: Brockway Mountain Drive lookout. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

 

Now a little break from going directly to the Lake Superior shoreline!

This time you’ll drive a little inland to a little higher ground on Brockway Mountain Drive so that you can see Lake Superior from above!

 

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: Brockway Mountain Drive lookout in Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: Brockway Mountain Drive lookout in Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

 

If you love the views of Lake Superior from the Brockway Mountain lookout, you’ll probably love the views of Lake Superior from the Sugarloaf Mountain lookout in Marquette too! Marquette is around a 3 hour drive from Copper Harbor.

 

 

6. Astor Shipwreck Park

Best things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula, in Copper Harbor: Astor Shipwreck Park. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

 

This is named because… well there was a shipwreck that occurred right in this area. This is a part of the Keweenaw Underwater Preserve.

Aside from that, it’s a nice spot for a Lake Superior lookout, and once again you can find some colorful red rocks.

 

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: Astor Shipwreck Park in Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: Astor Shipwreck Park in Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: colorful red and purple rocks at beach in Astor Shipwreck Park in Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

 

You can see the Copper Harbor Lighthouse off in the distance from the overlook at this park. 

 

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: Copper Harbor lighthouse overlook at Astor Shipwreck Park. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

 

This is right near Fort Wilkins Historic State Park if you want to explore the history of this area.

 

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula, in Copper Harbor. Fort Wilkins historic state park. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

 

The state park isn’t exactly a quick stop though. Maybe it’d be good to give yourself an hour. There are many buildings to walk through with informational signs to learn about what life was like back in the day. It’s like an outdoor museum. The buildings were open in summer 2020.

You can camp at the Fort Wilkins State Park campground.

 

 

7. Hunter’s Point Park

Best things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula, in Copper Harbor: Hunters Point Park. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

 

You’ll have passed the road to Hunter’s Point Park on your way to the previous 2 stops, but saving this for last because this might be the spot you might want to spend the most time at!

There’s direct shoreline access a short walk from the parking lot if you do want to make it a quick stop.

There’s also a couple miles of hiking trails here that go through some trees. Along the way, you can make your way to the shoreline and find different stretches of more red sand (red pebble) beaches. 

You can find some colorful rocks here too.

 

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: Hunters Point Park in Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: Hunters Point Park in Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: Hunters Point Park in Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula: Hunters Point Park in Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

 

If you love looking for colorful rocks, you’ll probably love Sable Beach in Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore too! This is on the Grand Marais (far east) side of the national lakeshore, and it’s about a 4.5 hour drive from Copper Harbor.

 

 

What makes up all the red cliffs, red rocks, and red beaches you see?!

Volcano activity in Michigan!

Volcanoes in Michigan?!

Well, it was a LONG time ago (said to be over a billion years ago), but there was volcanic activity in this area, and remnants of this volcanic activity can be seen all around! 

 

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula, in Copper Harbor: See red sand beaches in Michigan, volcano lava rocks in Michigan. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog
While this is specifically about Hunter’s Point Park, it explains the Keweenaw Peninsula’s landscape in general too!

 

It’s also been said that the Keweenaw Peninsula is home to “one of the Earth’s largest lava flows“!

Watch this video (or see the transcript) for more about the geology of the area, including the lava flows that happened long ago.

 

If you’re interested in a volcano vacation with more recent volcano activity, have a look at the Hawaii volcanoes on the Big Island or the Hawaii volcano on Maui for your next vacation!

 

 

And those are a few great things to see in the Keweenaw Peninsula! Now some more things to do in the area with more time…

 

Copper Country aka Coppertown USA

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula, in Copper Harbor. Copper Country. Coppertown USA. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

 

The Keweenaw Peninsula once had a thriving copper industry. And so the name Copper Harbor.

If you’re further interested in exploring the history of this area, there are many sites dedicated to preserving this history. 

There is the Keweenaw National Historical Park (part of the National Park Service) and Keweenaw Heritage Sites located throughout the area.

 

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula, in Copper Harbor. Keweenaw heritage sites. Copper Country. Coppertown USA. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

 

 

Best hike in the Keweenaw Peninsula?!

The weather wasn’t good at the time I wanted to hike in the Keweenaw Peninsula so I skipped out on hiking. But a hike to Bare Bluff in the Russell and Miriam Grinnell Memorial Nature Sanctuary looks AMAZING if you are looking for a solid hiking trail! The trail seems to be around 3 miles round trip and many call it challenging and strenuous. Map location. This is also near the Bete Grise Preserve.

 

 

Mountain biking is a thing in Copper Harbor

IMBA (International Mountain Bicycling Association) has considered Copper Harbor as a top mountain biking destination in the US.

Check the mountain biking trails for going out on your own. You can bring your mountain bike along on your Michigan road trip, or there are also places where you can rent mountain bikes in Copper Harbor. You can also go for guided mountain bike tours too. Shuttles are also available if you only want to ride the trail one way!

 

 

Michigan state park campgrounds in the Keweenaw Peninsula

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula, Michigan state park camping. Lake Superior campground. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog

Things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula, Michigan state park camping. Lake Superior campground. Upper Peninsula. UP Michigan travel blog
McLain State Park, where you can get a campsite with views of Lake Superior!

 

There are also campgrounds located in Michigan state parks (for tent camping and RV camping) in the Keweenaw Peninsula:

See the list of Michigan state park campgrounds in the UP!

 

Keweenaw island?!

Oh, and as it turns out, the Keweenaw Peninsula is actually not completely a peninsula!

A peninsula is a land mass that is surrounded by water on 3 sides.

The northern part of what can be considered the “Keweenaw Peninsula” can more technically be considered an ISLAND!

But, I guess if you look at a map without looking very closely it looks like a peninsula with water on 3 sides, so it was given the peninsula name?! Take a closer look at the map. Zoom in and out to see that water separates entirely the north and south side of the “peninsula”!

 

And those are a few ideas on how to spend your time in the Keweenaw Peninsula!

 

If you’re interested in the Keweenaw Peninsula, you may be also be interested in these Upper Peninsula activities:

 

HAPPY VISIT TO THE NORTHERNMOST POINT OF MAINLAND MICHIGAN!

 

Best things to do in the Keweenaw Peninsula, in Copper Harbor. Upper Peninsula. Northern UP 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.