We love summer in Charlevoix, but we also equally enjoy the other months of our town. In fact, we think Charlevoix is often overlooked from November through May. There are so many fun ways to enjoy our community in the quiet seasons and we would like to say we are not just a summer town. We would also like to dispel the misconception that Charlevoix closes after Labor Day. We promise that we are a year-round travel destination with lots of fun things to do in other seasons. We’re highlighting some ideas on why you should visit us again!
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.
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.
Warmer temps call for spring blooms. Northern Michigan is home to numerous cherry and apple orchards. While you may be familiar with taking a fall color tour, have you ever thought about taking a spring bloom tour? The orchards are awash in beautiful spring flowers and fresh scents. If you visit wooded areas, you may even find trilliums in bloom (just a reminder, these flowers cannot be picked, and they’re protected under Michigan law).
The area has some great trails along the shores of Lake Michigan as well as beautiful timbered woods in the surrounding countryside. Whether you choose to fat tire bike, cross-country ski, or snowshoe, Charlevoix has a great variety of trails for every skill level.
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!
Rafting down the Jordan River is a must! We cannot recommend highly enough booking a tour with Jordan Valley Outfitters. Their experienced guides will help you navigate this beautiful inland waterway and even entertain your group with stories at a stop with hot cocoa and special treats. Dress warmly with layers. The river is sheltered from the wind but can still give off a chill when sitting on the raft.
Who doesn’t love a good deal? If you’re like us and love a good sale, Charlevoix is in the winter the place to be. Accommodations are offering great savings on overnight stays. Restaurants are offering dining specials throughout the winter months. Check out restaurant's Facebook pages' Finally, stop by downtown stores to score great deals on last season’s merchandise. There are all sorts of deals just waiting for you in Charlevoix.
There's something awe-inspiring about the majesty of the nighttime sky and Northern Michigan is one of the best places to enjoy the dark sky. Because of the numerous nature preserves offering wide-open expanses, Lake Michigan as far as the eye can see and low levels of light pollution, the Charlevoix area has lots of great places to watch the stars, Northern Lights, Milky Way, and meteor showers.