Well, we certainly think its great!

It's getting to be that special time of year when beachside communities like South Haven and Holland come out of hibernation in preparation for the busy summer tourist season.

Only a short drive from the metro Chicago area you'll find quaint beachside communities up and down the Lake Michigan lakeshore; stop and visit any one and I guarantee it will look straight out of a Hallmark movie!

Marina saugatuck, MI
Marina saugatuck, MI -Lauren G/TSM

However, one of West Michigan's best kept secrets is finally out after Time Out media named this little lakeside town one of the Best Weekend Trips in the U.S.A. For 2024.

I'm sure you've been there-- and if you haven't you need to!

Directions Chicago to Saugatuck, MI
Google Maps

Why We Love Saugatuck, Michigan

Personally, when my family says we're "Going to the beach" we mean Saugatuck, Michigan.

I spent many summers at the county park, Pier Cove, and Oval Beach. Of course any trip to Saugatuck means a stop at the iconic Root Beer Barrel for a post-beach pick-me-up! I even climbed Mt. Baldy in heels on prom night that's how much I love Saugatuck.

Google Street View
Root Beer Barrel - Google Street View

Here's what Time Out had to say,

This welcoming West Michigan town combines local charm with a beautiful lakefront setting to provide visitors with the platonic ideal of a midwestern beach getaway. Long known for its vibrant arts community...the laid-back destination is now emerging as a culinary hot spot...The town has also been long known for welcoming LGBTQ+ travelers thanks, in part, to lively party spots like The Dunes Resort.

From shops like Swell Times to the old drugstore soda fountain the Saugatuck/Douglas area just seems to embody the word "quaint". Find plenty of nearby wineries, antique stores, waterfront dining, and ice cream shops while you're there or try one of my favorite things to do: take a ride on the only remaining hand-cranked chain ferry in the United States!

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Gallery Credit: Lauren Gordon

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