Traverse City is known throughout the U.S. as the "Cherry Capital of the World" and for good reason. Michigan produces 75% of the country's tart cherries and the majority are grown on the city's 3.8 million tart cherry trees. Traverse City also hosts an annual Cherry Festival during the peak of the season in mid-July. We had plans to attend the festival for the first time this year and unfortunately it was cancelled due to COVID-19 but we will certainly be back in 2021.
Every time I visit Traverse City I always love seeing the creative ways cherries are incorporated into everything from wine, beer, food, and ice cream. I've rounded up 9 of the best cherry products that are definitely worth trying on your next visit.
I had honesty never heard of Hocking Hills State Park until a few months before we booked our trip. But a few Google searches later and I knew we had to check this Midwest gem off our travel bucket list. Located only 5 1/2 hours from Southwest Michigan, it made for the perfect anniversary road trip destination. It's also only about 50 minutes outside of Columbus so we decided to spend two days there before driving the rest of the way to Hocking Hills. Check out my foodie guide to Columbus, Ohio here - yum!
Hocking Hills has 7 different hiking areas - all of which are relatively short and moderate making it easy to visit multiple stops in one day. We stayed for two nights and it seemed like the perfect amount of time to explore it all. Keep reading for all the details you'll need to know to plan your own trip and a breakdown of how we spent each of our days.
My husband and I recently spent two days in Columbus, Ohio for our wedding anniversary. This city was originally on my radar as just a fun place to explore on our way to Hocking Hills State Park. Little did I know what a foodie lover's dream the 15th largest city in the U.S. was. We only had a short amount of time here and were determined to try as many finger-licking dishes as we could get our hands on. Below are my favorite places to eat in Columbus, Ohio.
It's important to note that restaurants may change their hours, in person dining availability, etc. due to COVID-19. Always be sure to check the restaurant's website for the latest information before you visit.
As much as I love to travel and explore new destinations, I also have those select few places that keep me coming back again and again. Northern Michigan is definitely one of those and is a beautiful area to explore no matter the season. We love Traverse City, Michigan for so many reasons and make it a goal to visit at least once every summer. Since we'd been there multiple times before, the focus of this trip was to discover new restaurants and wineries which made it seem like it was our first time visiting all over again.
You can discover my other Traverse City guides here:
Located only 30 minutes outside of Traverse City, Michigan, Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore encompasses a 35 mile stretch along the Lake Michigan coast line. It is truly a can't-miss natural wonder when visiting Northern Michigan offering a range of landscapes including forests, beaches, and of course the star of the show - towering sand dune formations. While there are a few accommodations in the surrounding areas, area can easily be explored on a long day trip. You'll find a variety of hiking options here for all ages and fitness levels - each rewarding you with breathtaking views. I'm sharing 5 of my top Sleeping Bear Dune hikes below:
I love calling Southwest Michigan home for so many reasons. In addition to being located along the gorgeous shores of Lake Michigan, it's also one of five American Viticulture Areas in Michigan. The sloping terrain, mild temperatures and variety of soils make it the perfect location for growing grapes and other fruits that serve as the inspiration for a vast array of award winning wines. In fact, our growing season has been compared to noteworthy destinations such as Bordeaux, France and Piedmont, Italy.
With more than 20 wineries dotting the landscape along the Maker's Trail, you can easily enjoy an afternoon or an entire weekend with a glass in hand. In fact, I've lived here for over six years and still have yet to make it to all of our wineries. But fear not, I have done my fair share of sipping (all in the name of research of course) and am sharing my top picks for planning a tour along the Lake Michigan Wine Trail.
I'll admit I would have never guessed St. Louis would be such a foodie destination. I knew it was known for the Gateway Arch and some other great attractions but that was about it. Much to my surprise we discovered neighborhoods dedicated solely to a particular culture's culinary style as well as a few dishes which got their start in St. Louis and can be found on almost every menu in the city. Grab your fork, I'm sharing 5 must-eat dishes as well as a couple bonus items which we didn't have the chance to try. You can also read more about our trip to St. Louis, including our full 3-day itinerary here.
When trying to decide on my travel plans for the summer, I knew I wanted to focus on road trips and discovering new Midwest cities. Located only 5 1/2 hours from Southwest Michigan, and home to a National Park (another one of my travel goals), St. Louis made the perfect choice for a long, weekend getaway. The city is home to numerous attractions and the food scene was unlike anything I'd experienced before with culinary kudos to so many different cultures. Be sure to spend time checking out the city's various neighborhoods which each offer their own unique flare. And of course you can't forget bout the 630 foot arch which in the heart of downtown!
Keep reading to discover how we spent three days in The Gateway to the West.
As much of the United States begins to open up after nationwide shutdowns in response to COVID-19, many of us, myself included, are beginning to research and plan for summer and fall travel. Perhaps more important than deciding where to go, is deciding how you can do so safely. This summer I think we'll see a lot more people choosing to travel locally and opting to pack up the car and hit the road as opposed to booking a flight. With that in mind, I started to make a list of Midwest destinations I wanted to explore, and Fort Wayne - Indiana's second largest city - was top on my list. Located just a short drive from most major cities, it makes the perfect weekend getaway with many outdoor attractions and activities which allow you to enjoy the summer sun while maintaining your distance from others. Keep reading to discover how we spent a weekend in the city!
Disclaimer: This post was sponsored by Visit Fort Wayne. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own.
The first time I saw a photo of the sprawling poppy field in West Michigan I knew I had to find it. So this year, when the field was in peak bloom, I hopped in the car and made the short drive up to Fennville, Michigan to see it for myself. And let me tell you - it certainly did not disappoint! As soon as I laid eyes upon the four acres of red, pink and purple flowers it took my breath away. It is certainly one of those places that photos can never do justice.
The poppy field was planted by Joan Donaldson and John Van Voorhees who own and operate Pleasant Hill Blueberry Farm in Fennville. In addition to it's natural beauty, the field also has a deeper meaning which makes it that much more special. The couple originally planted the field two years ago in memory of their son who suffered from PTSD after returning home from a tour in Afghanistan and took his own life. The field is located across from the cemetery where he is buried. The flowers also attract bees and butterflies which help pollinate the farm's blueberry crop.
When I originally shared about my trip to see the flowers on Instagram I had so many people reach out and ask about how to find the field and if anyone was welcome to visit. Keep reading for all the answers!
I love creating detailed travel guides to ensure you get the most out of your time. On this blog I'll be sharing some of my past trips in hopes that it helps you plan your next adventure. Pack your suitcase you never know where I'll be heading next!
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