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Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Wayfaring Wednesday ~ Mackinac Island

I keep a bucket list of places I would like to someday visit. Close to the top of the list is Mackinac Island. Have you heard about this gem? It has been rated “One of the top 10 islands in the world” by Conde Nast Traveler.

Mackinac Island is an area of just 3.8 square miles. It is located in Lake Huron, at the eastern end of the Straights of Mackinac, between Michigan's upper and lower peninsulas.  It is accessible only by ferry, private boat or small aircraft.

In the late 1800’s it became a popular summer destination for tourists. Most of the island has undergone extensive historical preservation and restoration and as a result the entire island is on the National Historical Landmarks list.

mackinac island
It is famous for its ban on motor vehicles. Bicycles, horses, carriages, roller skates and of course merely walking are the only acceptable modes of transportation with the exception of snow mobiles in winter.

Mackinac Island came onto my radar many years ago through the romantic tear jerker “Somewhere in Time” which is set on the island. If you have not seen this screen gem it is a must see.

It stars the elegant Christopher Plummer, the beautiful Jane Seymour and the heart palpation inducing Christopher Reeve.

While there are several lovely bed and breakfasts on the island, my hearts desire is to spend the night at the Grand Hotel.

The hotel began construction in 1886. At it’s opening in 1887 it was billed as a summer retreat. In the 1890’s the world longest front porch was built.

In 1976 Carleton Varney, Dorothy Draper’s protégé, redesigned the hotel’s interior. Given my love for Dorothy Draper this makes my ardent passion for the hotel burn even stronger. 

No two of the 385 guest rooms are alike. I could have some sweet dreams under this canopy.

There are several suites named after a few of our First Ladies. I am rather partial to the Jacqueline Kennedy suite which was added in 2002.

In addition, there is a four bedroom cottage, Masco Cottage, that is available for those who would like a more intimate experience. One option available is that you may have meals prepared by a personal chef in the cottage when staying multiple nights. Yes please!!!!

Of course the Grand Hotel gardens are legendary. I am not sure if I would even want to leave the resort.


But there are many other lovely experiences to be had on Mackinac Island. The Round Island Lighthouse light was built in 1894 and automated in 1924. It was abandoned in 1947 and deteriorated at the hands of plunderers and vandals. Restoration efforts to save the light were begun in 1974.

Fort Mackinac was built in 1780 and was closed as a fort in 1895 as it no longer had any strategic purpose. It has been restored to its late 19th century state.

Walking remains one of the best ways to see the island. A popular path leads hikers to a natural landmark called Arch Rock.

What trip(s) are currently on your bucket list?

Don’t forget to enter the Anthropologie $40 Gift Card Giveaway!!!


Wayfaring Wednesdays


Denise said...

Mackinac Island and the Grand Hotel will be all you dreamed and more! I recommend going there over the Fourth and spending an entire week! It was one of the memorable vacations EVER. Check out the Grand Hotel's web specials ~ it really is an excellent value and the memories will always be treasured!

mississippi artist said...

What a beautiful place. It is going to be 103 here today-I don't feel like getting dressed and going anywhere!LOL!

Mildred said...

John grew up near there. The pianist for our wedding, played the theme song as guests waited for our wedding to begin. John gifted me a tiny music box which plays the same. Thanks for a lovely post, Laura.

Julie Tucker-Wolek said...

Wowwwwwww!! What a dream to go there! :):):):):):):):):):):):):):):)

Pat said...

Six years ago, this past June, we were on Mackinac Island during the Lilac Festival. We rented a condo in Mackinaw City right on the water and had a beautiful view of the island and Grand Hotel. Our daughters, one son in law and grandchildren were with us. A fun and absolutely unforgettable vacation. We enjoyed the island, reached by ferry and a wonderful lighthouse tour, from Lake Huron and Lake Michigan. Just wonderful and the Lilacs...oh my!
We would love to return.

GARAGE SALE GAL ~ Deb's Earthly Delights said...

It's on my list too! I want to o during the lilac festival that Pat mentioned!
A bit of heaven on earth!
Wishing you an early Happy Birthday and you are so YOUNG!! I hope you are also celebrating now!
deb :)

The Boston Lady said...

I've been there! In the early 1970s with my parents - just a day trip over, but I never forgot that lovely verandah and the feeling that I had stepped back in time. Love that tear-jerker, have seen it a time or two.

My bucket list includes Australia to visit my brother and Hawaii. Ann

April said...

wow, that's beautiful! thanks for the lovely loveliness you seek out and share--inspiring images to carry in the mind's eye through the day of schoolwork and homekeeping.
you inspire me to try to make HOME beautiful!

Katie, Julep and Derby's Mom said...

Thank you for this post - I love to learn about beautiful and exciting new places to put on my 'B List' ... as far as what is on my 'B List' ... the Biltmore in Asheville!

Vicki said...

What a beautiful place! I've heard of it, but don't recall every seeing photos of it. One of the places on my list is Seattle, WA. I would just love to go there and take the ferry over to Victoria, BC.

Yvonne @ StoneGable said...

Laura, Every time I visit your beautiful blog I come away not only inspired but much better educated! You really do your homework and present us with the best quality, well thought out and beautiful posts. This is no exception. Mackinac is now on my "bucket list". Just breathtaking!
I hope I have not pushed the envelope too much, but I thought my tablescpape would fit in today. Thanks for letting me participate!
xo Yvonne

Cindy (Applestone Cottage) said...

Hi Laura,
Hubby and I have been there twice!
We're about a 6 hour drive from there and it is everything you put here and more~
The views of Lake Huron off the side of the Grand Hotel will take your breath away.
Last time we were there, the lilac festival had just gotten over and there were so many gorgeous lilacs in bloom!
The grand hotel rates are $400/night so we didn't get to stay but you can take a tour, very worth it. The grounds are just breattaking!
Hopefully I will get to see you when we visit Phoenix!

Kit said...

I love that movie! What great photos and I agree, wouldn't it be "grand" to stay at that hotel?! Soooo lovely! Kit

Kellie said...

Thank you for sharing this wonderful blog with us Laura. I hope your dream does come true someday soon!

Lorrie said...

I remember the hotel from the movie. It's one I watched several times, and thought about afterwards.

Such a lovely, lovely place.

Who is Susan . . . said...

Thanks for sharing something for your Bucket List, I now have an addition to mine. This hotel looks so pristine! I also got a kick out of the horse pulled deliveries. I get the UPS delivery person could tell us a few stories.


the cape on the corner said...

this place is everywhere lately! we went when i was a bratty preteen, and i'm sure i didn't appreciate it for all its beauty. i long to go back and really SEE it as an adult. it's definitely on my bucket list. also, heart island off of new york after i saw a blog post about it.

Elaine @ Sunny Simple Life said...

Oh I have always wanted to visit there. I have family in MI and it would be wonderful to mix in a trip to the island. So gorgeous.

{northern cottage} said...

oh how I love mackinaw/mackinac! We would go there every year on the way to visit my grandparents in southern michigan or my uncle in traverse city! Isn't it the most delightful spot?! Thanks for sharing & making me smile!

Sue said...

This beautiful place is only about 6-7hrs from my home. But I have never actually made it there but I so want to go someday. I fell in love with Mackinac Island when I first saw the movie Somewhere in Time. It just made it all that more magical. Fantastic movie and one I watch at least once a month. Thank you for sharing and thanks for stopping my blog and making such nice comments. Take care and enjoy each and every day all that you can. We never know when we might lose something or someone we love. :)

jeanette from everton terrace said...

Oh Laura I have seen that movie about 10 times and I never tire of it - just love love loved. Of course I have also always wanted to visit. My husband's brother and wife went there for their honeymoon.
On the list for sure :)

Shelia said...

I have always wanted to go there. I love the movie Somewhere in Time too! We have checked online for the prices at The Grand and they're pretty expensive, but I think it'd be worth it.
be a sweetie,
Shelia ;)

Craftymoose Crafts said...

What a gorgeous place! My bucket is kinda empty right now...but I'm thinking!

Hines-Sight said...

I love your August header.

Great post. Lovely island. I'm sorry that I did not link up sooner today, but it's been a busy day with the kids.

ImagiMeri said...

I've been wanting to go there ever since my childhood girlfriend went years ago. She's from Michigan and when she moved back there in our Senior year of high school she got to visit the island and tell me all about it. Then of course was the movie...I adore time travel movies and books, and I got to see more of it. There's so many places on my bucket list I might as well call it an ocean, but I can still dream.

Hugs and love,

Bloggymom said...

I have been to Mackinac Island as a kid many times. Beautiful place. We usually went in the month of July... beautiful time of the year there.

Terri said...

I have never been but it is on my bucket list! Thank you for the glorious report. Off to go vacationing at other blogs!

martinealison said...

Quelle visite extraordinaire... la photo du chemin avec l'arche est superbe aussi...
Merci pour cette belle publication ma chère et gros bisous à vous.

Karena said...

Laura I will love to visit now, I had already heard wonderful things about the island and you have brought it to life!


Art by Karena

Debbie said...

It is one my bucket list too! In fact, that's the one place in the US that I would like to visit more than any other. (Blame it on Richard Gere? Maybe...)

Baye said...

This is my first visit and entry.
What an incredible island! It is definitely on my list of places to see now.

5th and State said...

well from all these comments, you see that you MUST go!

this 'somewhere in time addict' had to go there for our honeymoon and stay at the grand hotel and back for more over the years. rent bikes and wander to your hearts content, picnic's on the water, horse tour, and on and on.

not being a lover of massive crowds, my favorite time is the weekend after labor day. rates drop, crowds drop (better for photo's) and the gardens are looking fresh and stunning.

Red Rose Alley said...

Manckinac Island looks green and groomed. I'll have to tell my traveing daughters about it. I've never seen 'Somewhere in TIme.' Jane Seymore is my absolute favorite, and I have collected many of the 'Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman' movies. Thanks for sharing this wonderful place with us. It looks dreamy.
~Sheri at Red Rose Alley

Red Rose Alley said...

whoops...I spelled Jane Seymour's name wrong. You'd think I would know it by now - She is gorgeous!
~Sheri at Red Rose Alley

laxsupermom said...

What a wonderful place to visit! Just gorgeous! The grand hotel looks like a dream stay. Thanks for sharing and for hosting this linkup each week.

Lady Dorothy said...

Oh! Mackinac is on my list, too! I just pinned a Valspar color called Mackinac Blue. It is the color of the porch ceiling. Just lovely. (The movie is what brought the Grand Hotel to my wish list! Great movie.)

Carol E. in AZ said...

Yes! This is a definite bucket list occupant! Has been for years, ever since I fell in love with "Somewhere in Time". Thank you for posting pics.

Mom in High Heels said...

My goodness, what a beautiful place. I'd like to stay in the "cottage" too. Cottage! That thing is a palace compared to many of the small homes we've lived in.
I haven't seen that movie in years. I'm thinking I need to track it down and watch again.