A Weekend in Silver Lake Michigan
I love Indiana. I do. But I really love Michigan. Michigan has been the home to many a weekend trip for my family and I. It’s proximity is just too close to pass up.
See- we are water people. Have a nice lake shore? Then we are there. We just really love being on the water. Last summer we spent 12 days traveling to Traverse City, Michigan then down the coast to the Silver Lake-Hart, Michigan area, then to Holland, then the Chesterton/ Valparaiso, Indiana area then home. It was awesome and I can’t wait to do it again in a few weeks.
We did a lot on this long weekend in Silver Lake Michigan so I am going to share the highlights linked so you can plan your own trip. Since we visited Silver Lake, Michigan in 2014 I have had so many people contact me for information and links to where we ate, played and stayed. I am SO excited that you all enjoyed following along on social media!
First things first- where to stay. We were fortunate enough to land a reservation at Sierra Sands Hotel. It is one of the first places you see when entering Silver Lake and BY FAR (!!!) the cleanest place we have ever been. A spacious room, continental breakfast offerings, a quiet location, a nice (and clean) pool/hot tub, plenty of parking for trucks and all-terrain vehicles, fire rings, corn-hole (and really nice ones to boot) and more- Sierra Sands gets 2 thumbs up from my whole family. There may be other great places to stay in the area but we will never stay anywhere else.
Next door is quite possibly one of the coolest things we have ever done- Parrot’s Landing Recreational Rentals. When you have 2 boys that are in their teens you really have to be creative on ways to entertain them. Enter in Parrot’s Landing. You can rent a jeep and go on a guided tour of the nearby dunes. They can drive you or YOU can be the navigator. We opted to drive ourselves and took off in our shiny red jeep in a caravan led by a Parrot’s Landing guide. It was one hour long but I could have stayed all day. I say I because I loved it SO much. It was fun, it was unique and I highly recommend it. What did we do? Well- drove all over the dunes of course!
Next is a stop at a local winery The Fox Barn Market and Winery. You knew I would have to stop and see what the locals produced and quite possibly buy some to take home. The Fox Barn is a family owned winery that makes unique fruit blends and quite possibly the most unique wine I will ever have in my life- asparagus wine. Yes, you read that right. They make asparagus wine.
I tried some and it even came in a special glass. I am not sure I would drink another whole glass but I would sure cook with it. It very literally tasted just like liquefied asparagus. It was very well done! Not to be forgotten- Michigan is practically the asparagus capital of the world and we were there in peak season!
We also visited a golf course that has a driving range and restaurant- Golden Sands . I think it is a popular hangout for the locals and I can see why. Excellent pizza, a big wine and beer selection, a gold course and right outside the restaurant- a driving range. We spent way too much time there eating, sampling local wines and beers, hitting a few buckets of balls and chatting with the owners. From golf camps for all ages to a rental cottage- we have never felt so welcomed or so at home than at Golden Sands. Side note: their herb crust pizza is some of the best I have ever had and the owner is one heck of a tour guide. She planned out one whole day for us with just a map and a smile. I highly recommend you make a trip here. I can’t wait to visit with them again!
Speaking of food- when we drove into Silver Lake (which consists of a road that ends in the water and a few stop lights ) Jacob went nuts over a restaurant he saw and we knew we were going to have to visit it before we left. It was called Frickin Chicken. He just couldn’t get over the name and being the foodie he is he felt like it was a challenge. Let me tell you it was pretty tasty. As you can guess it has fried chicken, sides, local beer/wine and is situated on the water. By water I mean a huge recreational center with mini-golf and so much more. If you are there you need to try it.
We really lucked out because Sierra Sands had SO much information on what to do in the area and one such item was a sunset cruise that was FREE at Wave Club Water Sport Rentals. This was within walking distance of where we were staying. We walked down, reserved a pontoon boat ride and headed out with a guide at sunset. Our guide was a student at Michigan State and was back ‘home’ for Summer break. He was not much older than Noah and I couldn’t help asking all of the typical questions a mother would ask. He was so polite and did such a fantastic job telling us about the area and more. These rides are free but gratuity is expected and deserved. Be sure to bring cash. This is a must do.
Can you believe we did all of this in one day? We are crazy. So after sleeping in the next morning we headed to a local dairy- Country Dairy and to a really neat 700 acre farm market and petting zoo- Lewis Farm Market! What a neat place! We got sidetracked when we first got their with all of the seasonal baked goods and treats. Then we made our way through their amazing petting zoo and fun area. A bouncy floor- like a huge trampoline, every kind of animal you can imagine from cows to pigs to chickens to prairie dogs- there was a lot to see and do. If you have children this is a must see. My recommendation is to go to Country Dairy then to to Lewis Farm Market. It will all take you about 6 hours if you take the tour at the dairy then see all of the animals at the farm market.
I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the sheer amount of asparagus growing in all of the fields around Silver Lake. We brought a soft cooler to bring home food and I filled it with asparagus, cherries, baked goods and wine (of course). There was also an amazing grocery store in Hart, Michigan (a few minutes away) that had a HUGE selection of Michigan wine, beer and food. I had what is for sure my favorite burger ever there- asparagus and sweet onion brat burger (I still think about it) and stocked up on more Michigan wine to take home.
It may seem like we did a lot here but I really tried to relax. I did! I really tried! I ate a lot of good food, I read a lot of information about the area and I spent 1 whole day watching the waves roll in on the shores of Lake Michigan. We did visit a light house- Little Sable Point Lighthouse in Silver Lake and while we were there we saw a wedding in progress. The whole day was wonderful. Do I have photos? Not many. I was too busy enjoying the view.
When it comes to family travel- you need to get the most bang for your buck. If you have children over the age of 5-7 then this is a great weekend trip for you. Visit ThinkDunes.com to plan your trip and get ideas. There are so many things going on during their season (go before October, after October the town closes up) that you need a source like that to plan your trip. And please- reach out to me if you have questions or need help finding something to do.
I want to thank Think Dunes.com for helping me plan my trip and coming up with a fantastic outline of things to do!