Top 10 Island Getaways


Mackinac Island, Michigan

The view of Mackinac Island Harbor
The view of Mackinac Island Harbor

A getaway perhaps better known to Great Lakes locals, Mackinac Island (pronounced MAK-in-aw) lies in the Straits of Mackinac, where Lake Michigan's waters mingle with those of Lake Huron. Historically, it was a nexus of the fur trade and British-American conflict. Today, it's a popular summer getaway spot -- a historic landmark known for its architecture, cultural events, picturesque landscape and ban on nearly all motor vehicles (snowmobiles are allowed in winter, but most amenities are only open during the summer months). The Grand Hotel, made famous by the film "Somewhere in Time," is the place to stay, but there are plenty of options for those with tighter purse strings.

While some may find it a bit sleepy, others will say it's just what the doctor ordered: a spot for walking and shopping, golf, tennis, kite-flying, butterfly-watching and maybe a bit of scenic photography. Take a carriage tour through Mackinac State Park, or head back to town and wander down historic Market, Mission and Huron streets, then catch some chills on a haunted history tour. Visitors who are more active will want to walk off their confectionery purchases, particularly the famous Mackinac fudge, by participating in the annual Mackinac Bridge Walk from Michigan's Upper Peninsula to its Lower Peninsula.