Winter in Charlevoix is dazzling. The quiet beauty, fresh snowfall, and small-town charm are the perfect trifecta for a winter destination. It’s no secret that Michigan winters are highly underrated. We would like to share several reasons why we think Charlevoix winters are simply the best.
Candlelight Hikes at Mt. McSauba
First up is one of Charlevoix’s best-kept secrets! Every Friday night during the winter, you can enjoy a candlelight hike at Mt. McSauba where you can set your own pace. This weekly event is free to the public (donations are appreciated). You can rent snowshoes at the ski hill, but most times you can hike on the trails in snowboots. At the end of the trail, stop by the campfire to warm up and experience the beauty of the woods and dunes at Mt. McSauba. This is by far one of our favorite winter activities.
Snowshoeing, fat tire biking, cross-country skiing, and ice skating
Ahh winter, there’s something so magical about fresh snow glittering in the sun's reflection. It’s a wonderful time of year to grab your snowshoes, cross country skis, or fat tire bike to experience all of Charlevoix’s great trail systems. If want to try something new this winter, you can rent snowshoes and cross country skis from Mt. McSauba, check snowshoes out from the Public Library, or rent a fat tire bike from Revolution Bike. Insider tip: If you’re a beginner at these activities, simply use the Little Traverse Wheelway. This bike trail is flat which is perfect for learning a new skill! Try ice skating at Mt McSauba's outdoor rink where the ice is fresh!
We would like to take a moment to dispel a common misconception that we are closed in the winter. Surprise we’re open! A majority of downtown stores remain open throughout the winter and most offer great sales on last season’s merchandise. You can also enjoy all of your favorite restaurants without having to wait!
Stargazing and Dark Skies
The Aurora Borealis is a bucket list item for many. Did you know that winter is one of the best times to view this impressive phenomenon? Crisp winter nights and more hours of darkness make viewing conditions optimal. Words cannot describe the sheer majesty of the Northern Lights dancing across the sky. Even if the aurora is not happening, the stars and dark skies of Charlevoix will have you mesmerized.
Proximity to major ski areas
For our readers that are avid downhill skiers and snowboarders, Charlevoix is centrally located to all major ski areas in Northern Michigan. While Mt McSauba is in Charlevoix and an excellent place for beginners, Boyne Mountain, Boyne Highlands, Nubs Nob, and Schuss Mountain are 30-45 minutes away. Whatever style of lodging you like, you’ll find it here in Charlevoix, and much less expensive than staying at a resort! Whether you’re looking for historic properties, upscale amenities, condo conveniences, lake view rooms, or family-friendly, there’s an option perfect for you.
Take a moment to unplug
There is something so relaxing about unplugging and taking a moment to unwind. Trust us, you need to do this once in a while. Escape the hustle and bustle, by sitting by the crackling fire, trying a new wine or beer in an igloo, sampling local cuisine, exploring the trails, or grabbing a coffee and walking downtown. Being unplugged in Charlevoix is awesome!