ROAD TRIP: Mini Michigan getaways that will keep you busy during Winter Break


You finally have a little time to yourself. Whether you’re looking to get away with family, friends or that special friend of yours, cruising around the Mitten is a great way to bond with others and let out your adventurous side. 

Avoid cabin fever this winter with these fun-filled day trips all over Michigan! 

  1. Frankenmuth
    Two words: Christmas wonderland. If you go to Frankenmuth, located about 70 miles East from Mount Pleasant, you’re in for quite the winter wonderland treat. Have a family-style dinner at local landmarks Bavarian Inn or Zehnder's or stop by Frankenmuth Brewery for a drink and some excellent bar food. Once you're fueled up, take a walk around the charming downtown for some shopping, gawking and more eating – take advantage of the free fudge samples. No trip to Frankenmuth is complete without a visit to Bronner’s Christmas Wonderland. It’s the perfect place to visit for a day to get your holiday fun fix in! 
  2. Mackinac Island
    Winter is a great time to see the Island from a different perspective. The usual shopping, dining and photo-ops all over the island aren’t the only things a trip to Mackinac Island consists of this winter. The events page on the island’s website shows fun holiday activities ranging from live music performances and a special, Dec. 31 dinner at the Seabiscuit Cafe. For a truly unique New Year's Eve experience check out the schedule for the Huron Street Pub or Mustang Lounge. Mackinac Island is as fun during the winter as it is beautiful. For an awesome trip Up North, check out Mackinac Island! 
  3. Campus Martius in Detroit
    “One of my go-to bucket list activities is to go to Detroit, get dinner, then go to Campus Martius and go ice skating," said Mackenzie Koehn, 20, Lake Orion juinor. Ice skating, a giant Christmas tree, hot chocolate, great food and holiday music make for the ultimate winter combo. The rink opens weekdays at 10 or 11 a.m. and closes at midnight during weekends. It's just $8 for adults and $7 for kids 12 or younger. Skate rental is $4. There are seven great restaurants on campus –
    including Shake Shack! – and many others located nearby. Head to Detroit’s holiday hot-spot before the ice melts!  
  4. Somerset Collection
    If you’ve still got some last minute gift shopping to do, or you have extra Christmas cash, the best place to head to is a 3-story, double-sided mall in Metro Detroit! The holiday decorations are second-to-none, and everyone could use some retail therapy at this time of the year. And, yes, of course, you can get your photo taken with Santa there. 
  5. Detroit Zoo’s “Wild Lights”
    This fun event has become a popular event for Michiganders. This year there are more than five million LED lights to illuminate trees, buildings and more than 230 animal sculptures in the front half of the facility. Go see what all the fuss is about and walk through the zoo light show with a hot chocolate. The Detroit Zoo’s website says they’ll be open Dec. 20-23, 26-31. If you want to save a couple of dollars, make sure you grab your tickets in advance.
  6. Eastern Market: If you’re from the east side of the state or will be near Detroit over break, check out Eastern Market. Livonia native and Sophomore student of mechanical engineering, Andrea D’Amour, says this is one of her favorite parts of the holiday season: “It’s this big farmer’s market with all these shops and food that’s held every weekend, and during the holidays it’s decorated really nicely and is even more fun to go to.” The Holiday Market is focused on food vendors and is a perfect place to find ingredients for your holiday meals! There are also plenty of Michigan-made gift options including clothing, art, jewelry, beauty products, and more.
  7. Snowboarding/Skiing
    Treetops and Caberfae are both super close to Mount Pleasant. According to Caberfae’s website, “Show a valid student college ID and receive huge discounts every Monday, Wednesday and Friday! Discounts get better as the day goes on, and end with a $9 lift ticket at 6 p.m.” If you’re looking to go outside the mid-Michigan area, check out hills such as Mount Brighton, Mount Holly and Boyne Mountain/Highlands. No matter where you are in Michigan, there’s always a place nearby to hit the slopes!

There are plenty of places to visit in Michigan to remind you how awesome the state we live in is. No matter what your interests are, there is something for everyone who wants to have some winter fun!