Mackinac Island

Mackinac Island (pronounced mack-in-awe) lies in Lake Huron just east of the Straits of Mackinac which connects Lake Huron to Lake Michigan. This is also the point where the upper and lower peninsulas of Michigan are closest.

There is no bridge to Mackinac Island. You have to get there by boat or plane. The ferry ride across Lake Huron is a worthwhile attraction in its own right.


The main harbor is on the south side where another nearby island breaks the wind and waves. Buoys and a lighthouse mark the channel for the ferries, cargo boats, and pleasure craft going to and from the island.

The entire island is a state park. Gasoline-powered vehicles are prohibited except for an ambulance and a fire truck. Guided tours of the island are conducted from horse-drawn carriages.


Many of the horses on the island are large draft horses bred to pull the heavy carriages and cargo wagons. There are also horse-drawn taxis, small rental carriages, and horses for riding.

The eastern shore has extensive shallows formed from layers of the rock that makes up the island. Trees cover the surface of the island, but are limited in height by the shallow topsoil.

Arch Rock

The most spectacular view on the island is through Arch Rock. Natural erosion formed the arch as softer rock was leached away by flowing water.

The highest point on the island is at Fort Holmes. You can see the island, two Great Lakes, and the Mackinac Bridge.

Mackinac Bridge

The Mackinac Bridge is one of the longest suspension bridges in the world as well as one of the most graceful.