Friday, August 7, 2015

Visiting Northern Michigan - by Boat and Car!


Visiting Leland
 Our third day visiting Elk Rapids, we decided to leave Seapickle at the dock for the day and explore some of our favorite areas of Northern Michigan by car!  Our first stop in the morning was Leland, for breakfast at Early Bird and a nice walk and shopping around Leland and Fishtown.

Launch ramp at Leland - for future reference :-)
Leland Marina

 We still haven't stayed at Leland with Seapickle, only visiting once before and stopping for fuel on our 2010 trip before crossing to Wisconsin.  It's a very cute little marina, though, and we hope to bring Seapickle next time!


4 Month Pregnant Hike
View from the overlook on the Whaleback Natural Area Trail
After buying a cute Leland ornament for future Baby Liss we drove down the coast and looked for a place for an (easy) hike.  We happened across the Whaleback Natural Area Trail a couple miles south of Leland, at the beginning of Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore.  It was a nice, but still a little difficult, hike for this mama-to-be.  The view from the top was well worth it though!

Couldn't resist checking out the tiny life jackets at West Marine

One of the buildings not yet renovated at The Village at Grand Traverse Commons

Inside the mercado of the Village at Grand Traverse Commons

Our next stop on the driving tour was Traverse City.  If you know Ben, you know we had to stop at West Marine in Traverse City before we were able to do anything else. :-)  Next I had been wanting to visit the Village at Grand Traverse Commons - built in 1884 and previously the Northern Michigan Asylum and Traverse City State Hospital.  We walked around a bit then grabbed some cheesecake for the road!  If you're a old building or history (or cheesecake) fan, it's worth a visit in my opinion.