Pictured Rocks Michigan: The Best Ways to See Them (We've Got a Map!)

By Sherry Trautman | Traveling Michigan

Magnificent Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore is located along the scenic Lake Superior Shoreline in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Perfect for kayaking, hiking and photography! Located near Munising, the National Lake Shore is a Must-See during your UP vacation!

Would you love to visit Pictured Rocks but not sure how to see them?  We have an interactive map that will solve all your concerns!  Our locations are free, easy to see and just magnificent! Plus lots of other things to do while you are here!

How to See Pictured Rocks

For so many years we only saw Pictured Rocks from the Miner's Castle viewpoint.  What a shame! This past year I decided I research more immersive ways to see this spectacular Upper Peninsula marvel and boy were we not disappointed! 

You can see the magnificent cliffs in so many ways! Hiking, snowmobiling, boat cruises, beaches and driving to iconic view points! We will cover some of the easier and best ways to get your started here!

Want the Ultimate UP Waterfall List?

I spent a week putting together 45 Upper Peninsula Waterfalls and MUST-SEE spots so be sure to check it out!

Pictured Rocks Interactive Map

IMPORTANT: Be sure to click this Pictured Rocks Map link to be connected live with Google Maps on your phone.  

We created this Pictured Rocks Interactive Map to help you find your specific stops and aid in planning your trip. 

Helpful Map Tips:

  • Click on the plus and minus in the left corner to zoom in or out of the map.
  • Click on the icons for more info, addresses and photos of the stops.
  • Click on the map to drag and move it to view surrounding areas.
  • In the Header, click on the rectangle in the upper left of the map to see a menu of all of our stops. Click on anything that looks interesting to see where it is on the map. To hide the menu, click the rectangle in the header. 
  • In the Header, click on the "square" icon in the upper right side to expand the map for better viewing. 

Riptide Ride is an Absolute Blast!

We really REALLY enjoyed our exciting Rip Tide Ride around Grand Island during the Rip Tide Ride in Munising, Michigan. This is a great family owned business to support as they are so friendly and care about your well being. 

You will scream with delight during the zig zags and high speed turns.  We got to see waterfalls so close up that we could touch them! 

We dipped into caves, saw lighthouses and enjoyed great views of Grand Island.

Things to Know Before You Go:

  • Book this UP adventure at least 3 days before your visit as times fill up.
  • No food or drink is allowed on the boat.
  • Leave your purse in the car. You don't need to have it sliding around.
  • Don't wear floppy sun hats as it will blow off.  A tight visor or baseball hat is better if you need to wear a hat.  
  • Wear sunscreen!
  • It will be very windy.  Girls, put your hair in a braid or bun or you will have a rats nest!
  • It's best to arrive 30 minutes prior.  
  • If the parking lot is full near the gift shop, there is another one across the street.
  • The gift shop has restrooms. 
  • Take note, the lake is much cooler.  Even if it's 75 outside, wear pants and bring a sweatshirt or long sleeve t-shirt.
  • Oh, and you might get a little wet from the spray during the high speed turns but we didn't.  
  • No bathrooms on the boat. You will remain seat belted the entire time.

Want More Activities on the Water and Views of Pictured Rocks in Munising?

Want more activities on the water? Check out:

  • Glassbottom Shipwreck Tours
  • Pictured Rocks Kayaking
  • Pictured Rocks Cruises 

These are great options for more fun on the water! We recommend later afternoon/evening cruises as the light is best on the rocks at this time. 

You can also rent pontoons at Superior Pontoon Rentals to view Pictured Rocks, caves and waterfalls on your own. Or you can dock close to shore and spend time on Grand Island exploring historic landmarks, lighthouses, waterfalls, and scenic overlooks. You can rent them for the evening, half or full day. Great for families!

Sand Point Beach has Stunningly Clear Water!

Sand Point Beach is a great spot to spend the afternoon!  Wonderful beach to wander along and build sand castles. The water is amazingly clear and beautiful as you can see. I love that there is shade trees to get a break from the sun.

No food or amenities so be sure to pack in what you need. There is a porta john. This area gets very busy so arrive early so you can get a closer parking spot. 

Sand Point Marsh Trail 

The Sand Point Marsh Trail is one heck of a great place to walk and see wildlife.  It's a 0.5 mile loop that is all boardwalk.

Located across from Sand Point Beach, this boardwalk trail takes you through beautiful wetlands. See lots of  a cattail marsh, small ponds, and white cedar and black spruce swamp communities dominate the scene. The best times for wildlife activity are early or late in the day. Wheelchair accessible. 

Minor's Castle and Famous Pictured Rocks Viewpoint

Yeah, you are stuck with a photo of us, but you know you gotta find this point and take a pic!  It's so incredibly beautiful! See the point on the map above!

Miner's Beach is a Wow Factor with Magnificent Views of Pictured Rocks!

When they say a picture is worth a thousand words, how about a video?  It's just breathtaking here!

Elliot Falls

While at Miner's Beach, check out Elliot Falls which is on the east end of the beach.  While it is small, it takes the day for it's beauty!

Where to Stay in Munising


We stayed at the AmericInn which was in a good location for the falls, restaurants and beaches.  Lots of great choices in the Munising area. 

Pin This Pictured Rocks Page!

Want More Waterfalls and FUN? 
See Two More Options Below!!

1.  45 Upper Peninsula Waterfalls and Jaw-Dropping Scenic Spots to Visit This Summer!

See our whole page dedicated to 45 Upper Peninsula Waterfalls and Jaw Dropping Scenic Spots Your Family Will Love This Summer!

OR...Another Awesome Choice

2. Ultimate Upper Peninsula Road Trip!

Zoom in and out of the map to see our stops!

Click the links below for full city guides, tips, maps, photos and things to do!

  • Mackinaw City (See our City Guide)
  • Mackinac Island (See our Island Guides!)
  • Tahquamenon Falls or a train ride/river boat excursion (Tons of photos, info)
  • Whitefish Point (This place is spectacular! See our photos and things to do!)
  • Manistique (be sure to visit this page, there's at least 2 full days of activities and additional map of things to see in this area)
  • Kitch-iti-kipi (Highlight of the summer! This place is jaw-dropping!)

Keep Reading!

Tahquamenon Falls
Manistique Michigan

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