7 Fun Things To Do In Petoskey, MI While On Vacation

shopping downtown petoskey michigan

It may not have the booming populations of Lansing or Detroit; but the small city of Petoskey, perched upon the shores of Little Traverse Bay, is nonetheless a place that ought to feature prominently on your travel itinerary during your trip to Michigan. A quiet resort town, after all, has to be one of the best places from which to soak in the natural wonders of the state – and on top of that, there’s so very much to do. Below, we’ve gathered just seven of your many options for your Petoskey visit.

7 Things To Do In Petoskey

petoskey state park

1. Petoskey State Park

Of course, our first stop had to be an outdoorsy spot. It’s the first place any trip to any spot in Michigan ought to be – it’s the only appropriate approach to take when visiting a state as beautiful as this one.

And there are few better places to appreciate that natural Michigan beauty from than the Petoskey State Park. Located on a sprawling 303 acres in the northern portion of Little Traverse Bay, this lush and woody expanse of natural Michigan wonder boasts two separate campsites for those with a hankering of sleeping under the stars, and a sandy shoreside for those keen to dive into the cool waters of Lake Michigan.

petoskey farms vineyard and winery

2. Petoskey Farms Vineyard & Winery

It’s well known among those with a taste for fine vintages that Michigan, besides boasting some breathtaking natural beauty, is also home to a number of flourishing vineyards; and there’s simply no justifying making a Michigan trip without sampling their fine produce.

At Petoskey Farms Vineyard, you have the opportunity to sit back and sip upon a glass of freshly produced local vintage, whilst soaking in the view of 22 lush and rolling acres of vineyard glowing under the Michigan sun. It’s really the only way to enjoy fine wine.

historic gaslight district

3. Historic Gaslight District

Everyone likes to indulge in a little shopping now and then; but if there’s anything that can enhance a round of retail therapy, it’s a backdrop of natural and historical Michigan beauty.

Over 100 years old, the Historic Gaslight District in downtown Petoskey is simply the perfect place to indulge in retail whilst simultaneously immersing yourself in the beauty of the town. An array of restaurants, shops, and boutiques overlook a gorgeous view of the beauty of Great Traverse Bay; and the district’s name is drawn, naturally, from a row of beautiful, historical gas lamps that cast the street in a gentle glow as night falls.

crooked tree arts center petoskey

4. Crooked Tree Arts Center

No visit to any new place is complete without taking the opportunity to soak up the local artistic and cultural scene, and Petoskey is no exception.

Located just a few blocks southeast of the bay, the Crooked Tree Arts Center showcases the vibrant and remarkable work of some of Michigan’s best local artists. The center is ever playing host to various art-related events and open markets, and admission is free six days a week. It is, in short, a must-stop spot for those seeking a distinctly Michigan-flavoured cultural experience.

odawa casino and resort

5. Odawa Casino Resort

Let it never be said that you have to head to the big cities for the thrill of a casino experience. Named for the Odawa Indians that operate it, the Odawa Casino Resort, located on the Little Traverse Bay Reservation, plays host to a variety of thrilling Vegas-style games. The casino also keeps up with the Petoskey entertainment scene, from stand-up routines to live music performances.

The generous selection of dining options includes a gourmet menu, a buffet, and a simple café. With the free shuttle service between the casino and the Odawa hotel, you should find that, after a day of indulging in all the thrills the casino has to offer, all your accommodation needs are taken care of too.

rodzilla fishing charters

6. RodZilla Fishing Charters

If you’re at all a fan of fishing, then you really are doing yourself a disservice if you complete your Michigan visit without casting your rod out over the sprawling Lake Michigan. And while, inevitably, there’s a great number of fishing charters to choose from in the region of this Great Lake, during your time in Petoskey, your go-to option really ought to be the RodZilla Fishing Charters.

Operating out of the Village of Bay Harbour, just one of the many resort options located minutes from downtown Petoskey, this company is dedicated to offering family-friendly fishing trips, catering to all skill levels. They offer you the opportunity to cast your line all across Lake Michigan, and to snag a sampling of some of the diverse variety of specimens that flourish in this sprawling expanse of beautiful freshwater.

And to cap it all off, should the unfortunate happen, and the day should round out without a catch, your fishing trip is free. You’ve really nothing to lose by casting your line with this company of fishing experts. Have fun fishing on the lakes of Michigan!

kayaking down Bear River Valley

7. Bear River Valley Recreation Area

Again, we’re talking about Michigan here, so we really can’t round out this list without mentioning another prime opportunity to soak up its outdoor wonders.

The Bear River Valley Recreation Area is the sort of walking trail for those that really like to appreciate Mother Nature at her most well-preserved. This isn’t a restrained and manicured public park; this 36-acre valley is a wide expanse of rugged natural beauty.

Whether you’re looking for a simple stroll along the boardwalks surrounded by lush nature or hiking up a rocky bluff, this 1.5-mile valley has everything a nature-lover could need. Being a mere few minutes’ walks from the bustling Gaslight District, it’s as accessible as such a stretch of rugged natural beauty could be. 

handmade petoskey stone jewelry

Take A Piece Of Petoskey Home With You

The most important thing to capture from your vacation to Petoskey, Michigan are the memories but what about a gift to remember your trip? There are plenty of unique gift shops in Petoskey where you can purchase Petoskey stone jewelry, fudge, t-shirts, stickers, and everything you can imagine. Take a stroll downtown and you will surely find a memorable gift to bring back home to friends and family.

Enjoy your stay!

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