Monday, September 8, 2014

Mackinac Island - A Most Memorable Day for the Little RV

When people find out we are full time RVers they often ask what our favorite place to visit has been.  I always fumble for an answer because we have been to so many great places but none were really head and shoulders above the rest, until yesterday. 

It was another gorgeous day here in Michigan.  We wanted to go to Mackinac Island during our stay so we just packed up and headed to the Star Line terminal. 

Route from St. Ignace to Mackinac Island via ferry.
Mackinac Island is only accessible by boat. It makes sense because it is an island after all. There are no motor vehicles allowed on the island except emergency vehicles like two a firetrucks an ambulance and very few maintenance vehicles. Getting around on the island can be done by foot, bike or horse drawn carriage.  

Within 30 minutes of purchasing our tickets we were on the top tier of the boat heading for the island.  The trip was quick and the view coming into the marina was so beautiful. 
Mackinac Island Marina
The Grand Hotel Carriage
Lola and Sharon and those "summer cottages"

We disembarked and spotted a carriage heading for the Grand Hotel so we hopped on for the trip up hill. 

Once we had seen the hotel we strolled back down the hill in search of a carriage tour.  We wanted to do the drive yourself carriage ride but when we checked with the office we were told we could not stop to take pictures. You have to keep moving. That would never work for us so we ended up hiring a private carriage for a one hour tour of the island.  

Our driver was Adam and he was awesome. He lives on the island year around and is friendly and professional. Our horses were Sharon and Lola. The tour started in front of the park just a couple of blocks from the ferry dock.  We went up the hill and around the Grand Hotel then along the bluff and saw the "summer cottages".  How do those poor people manage a whole summer in those cottages?

We drove on around the island and we passed the summer residence of the State Governor and the old fort. We stopped on a bluff with a beautiful view of the harbor. 
We passed the beautiful St. Ann's Church built in 1874. The gingerbread work on the church is beautiful.
The downtown area near the ferry docks is a bustling place with everyone coming and going.  The bike rental stations are on the same street along with many shops and restaurants.  

We had a wonderful dinner at The Pink Pony Bar and Grill. We are able to eat out so rarely that we enjoy it very much when we do 

After dinner we took the last boat back to the mainland. The last boat of the evening takes a longer route and treats the passengers to a ride under the Mackinac Bridge.  

I've been trying to put my finger on the reason I loved the island so much. It was beautiful, filled with flowers and the hoof-beats of the horses and so relaxing.   

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