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Mackinaw City Travel Guide

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Mission Church, Mackinac Island © Mackinac State Historic Parks

Mackinaw City, situated in Michigan's Cheboygan County at the top of the state's Lower Peninsula, is linked to the Upper Peninsula by one of the world's longest suspension bridges. The city has become Michigan's most popular vacation destination, offering many historical and cultural attractions and acting as a gateway to the scenic Upper Peninsula with its hiking trails, state parks and recreation areas, and sandy beaches.

The city itself has a rich history, having been first settled after French explorer Jean Nicolet negotiated with the local tribes in 1634. It became a fur-trading post and later the site of a busy fort and trading store. By 1882 the settlement had become a flourishing town; today it is a popular shopping destination, with many unique stores and restaurants lining its main street, and boasting more than 50 hotels and holiday resorts. Regular ferry services connect the city with historic Mackinac Island just offshore.

The most popular time to travel to Mackinaw City is during summer, when cool breezes from the ocean moderate the summer heat, ideal for beach-going and outdoor activities. The population of this small town swells enormously during high season, so if you want to avoid the crowds, holiday in Mackinaw City in spring or autumn, when days are mild and nights cool.

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