Michigan is best known as the birthplace of the U.S. automotive industry, but the truth is The Great Lakes State has much more to offer tourists than history and assembly lines. Whether it is the beautiful lakeshores, the numerous college towns or the amazing sights of the countryside, there is plenty to see in Michigan.
If you've never been to Michigan before, you may be concerned about navigating this beautiful state, but don't worry. Seeing the sights is easy when you travel Michigan by train with Amtrak. You'll see the best the state has to offer without the hassle of traffic jams or airport lines.
Michigan is served by 22 stations and three different train services — Wolverine, Pere Marquette and Blue Water. These routes will bring you to anything you want to see in Michigan without the hassle of trying to drive yourself. Instead, you'll enjoy big, comfy seats and the freedom to get up and stretch your legs at any time.
If you're ready to start planning your Michigan adventure but you don't know where to start, here are some destination ideas to get you going.
When most people think waterfront, they think of states like California, Florida or Texas. Michigan has its place in the discussion, however, The Great Lakes State has more freshwater coastline than any other political subdivision in the entire world as the state borders four of the five Great Lakes. If you're looking for a lakefront excursion, Michigan can't be beat.
You may have never heard of Michigan's Traverse City, but you won't forget your visit. Traverse City was named one of the nation's 10 best small towns by Fodor's, and Bon Appetit called it one of America's 5 Top Foodie Towns. The town is rich with delicious restaurants and its microbrewing industry earned it recognition as one of America's Top 3 Emerging Beer Towns from Draft Magazine.
One of the most iconic museums in the country, The Henry Ford, located in Dearborn, is home to some of the most historic pieces in American history. The museum is named after its namesake, Ford creator Henry Ford, and features many exhibits related to the auto industry. But The Henry Ford also includes other one-of-a-kind pieces such as Rosa Parks' bus, John F. Kennedy's limousine, Abraham Lincoln's chair and the Wright Brother's home and cycle shop.
Michigan is home to several large universities and most of these schools can be reached by train. Interested in visiting East Lansing to see Michigan State? The station in East Lansing is less than half a mile from campus. Want to go to the Big House? The Wolverine and Blue Water routes will bring you there. Wayne State, Western Michigan, Eastern Michigan and Oakland University are also accessible with Amtrak.
When you travel Michigan by rail to top attractions, you not only travel in style, but you can save plenty of money as well. Amtrak offers discounts for kids, seniors, military, students and more, plus SmartFares are available weekly (For sale Tuesday – Friday only, applicable cities vary).
Photo credits: Joe Ross (Greenfield Village); Ethan Kan (Michigan Theatre); Joe Ross (Car Museum); Joe Ross (Rock Harbor Marina); Dave Sizer (Spirit of Detroit)