Explore St Ignace Michigan (Upper Peninsula) | Best Things To Do, Hotels (Best Western), Restaurants, Camping, Beaches, Lighthouse, Castle Rock, Mystery Spot, Map 

St Ignace Michigan: Incredible Michigan Vacation Spot! | By Sherry Trautman | Travel-Mi.com | Updated October 14, 2022

Welcome to our Saint Ignace page, loves! 

This charming city in Michigan's Upper Peninsula is nestled along Lake Huron's coastline. Saint Ignace is a great northern Michigan vacation destination! 

Chris and I shop, eat and explore in St Ignace at least 3 days every summer as it's a great launch point for Michigan Dark Sky ParksMackinaw City and Mackinac Island, and the Upper Peninsula!

Since St. Ignace is such a fun town to explore, you may want to bring your bikes, we always do!

Table of Contents:

  • St Ignace Michigan Things To Do
  • Castle Rock St Ignace
  • Mystery Spot St Ignace
  • St. Ignace Marina
  • Saint Ignace Car Show Weekend
  • St Ignace Michigan Lighthouse
  • Our favorite St Ignace Michigan Restaurant
  • Our favorite St Ignace Michigan Hotel
  • St Ignace Michigan Beaches
  • Best Ice Cream in St Ignace
  • How to Catch Shepler's Ferry from St Ignace

So Many Cool Things To Do in St Ignace Michigan!

Just as a reminder, you will need $4 cash each way (cars) to cross over the Mackinac Bridge!

Interactive Map of St Ignace

Above are all our favorite spots at St Ignace in Michigan's Upper Peninsula.

St Ignace Frequently Asked Questions

What is St. Ignace known for? St Ignace is know for fantastic views of Lake Huron, incredible camping at the Straits State Park, climbing Castle Rock, smoked whitefish, Shepler's Ferry crossing to Mackinac Island and incredible lighthouse!

Is St. Ignace worth visiting? yes, absolutely.  It's a much more laid back atmosphere with beautiful boardwalks, Straits State Park and activities galore!

How do you pronounce St. Ignace? Michiganders pronounce it like Saint Ig-nis

Where can I swim in St. Ignace? We recommend swimming at the St Ignace Michigan Beach located at the American Legion Park. 

See Lake Huron From The Top of Castle Rock in St Ignace Michigan!

One place you have to stop, even if you are passing through St Ignace on your Michigan vacation, is Castle Rock. 

There is ample parking for campers, cars and motorhomes. For a very small fee you can climb the stairs to the top of Castle Rock. 

But the climb is worth it to see the incredible views of Lake Huron and the surrounding forest. Plus they have a great gift shop and clean restrooms.

St Ignace Mystery Spot in the Upper Peninsula

Voted Michigan's No.1 unusual attraction by readers of Michigan Living Magazine (AAA). (So now you GOTTA GO!)

Address: N916 Martin Lake Rd, St Ignace, MI 49781

This super famous tourist attraction in Mackinac County, Michigan is worth the stop! Plus, you know it's piqued your curiosity, so why not stop! Jump out of your car, stretch your legs, tour the Mystery Spot, AND go zip lining!

What's the St. Ignace Mystery Spot All About? Well, in the early 1950’s, surveyors noticed their tripod would always be drawn far to the east even when it was level. Plus, they had the feeling of lightheadedness. So odd! They determined their queasiness and surveying equipment problems only happened in a 300 feet diameter. Unable to shake their uneasiness, they deemed this area a “Mystery Spot!”

Plus, this Mystery Spot has 2 million visitors find their Mystery Spot year after year! ;)

They also have Ziplines, a Human Maze, gift shop, and 18-hole putt putt golf course!

How To Get To Mackinac Island From St. Ignace

If you are staying at the Best Western or a close hotel, you can ride your bike to the close Shepler's Ferry dock if you plan to take your bike to the Island (which we always do).  

Of course you can drive too. Parking is very close to the boarding area for the ferry, it's actually easier than from Mackinaw City. If you have purchased your ferry tickets ahead of time you can simply get in line and have your bar code ready on your phone or a printed copy. 

Tickets are valid from either St. Ignace or from Mackinaw City departure areas. 

You will need to purchase ferry passes for any bikes you plan to bring over. There is ample room for bikes and strollers on Shepler's ferry.

St Ignace City Marina

St. Ignace marina is a great place to relax under a shade tree and watch the boats bob in Lake Huron. You can also watch the ferries traveling to and from Mackinac Island.  

St Ignace Car Show Weekend!

St Ignace Car Show Weekend in Michigan is Freakin' Awesome! It's One of the Largest All-Make, All-Model Car Shows in the Country! 

The car show occurs in June each summer so get up-to-date info on our St Ignace Car Show page!

St Ignace Michigan Lighthouse at Chief Wawatam Park

I think the best time to enjoy Chief Wawatam park in St Ignace is in the evening.  I recommend having dinner downtown and then wander along the boardwalk and the pier after the heat of the day has subsided. 

Stay at the Best Western in St. Ignace

We love the balconies overlooking Lake Huron while staying at the Best Western in St Ignace.  The hotel is located right on the beach so you can walk the beach in the evenings. 

You can also sit by their fire pit and relax while enjoying the company of other guests at the hotel. Chairs are supplied. 

Walk Saint Ignace Boardwalk!

Enjoy a walk along the very well kept boardwalk near the St Ignace marina.  It's a lovely way to spend an afternoon or evening.

Labor Day Bridge Walk

Kayaks near the Mackinac Bridge and downtown Mackinac CityLabor Day Bridge Walk Guide

FYI: You can walk over the famous Mighty Mac (Mackinac Bridge) during the Labor Day Bridge walk from either Mackinac City or St Ignace.

See our Labor Day Mackinac Bridge Walk Tips, Rules and Things To Know Guide!!

Bridge View Park in St Ignace

Address: Boulevard Dr. St. Ignace, MI 49781

Hours: Open daily from mid-April thru November 7 am to 9 pm (summer) or daylight hours

We ALWAYS stop at Bridge View Park before passing over the Mackinac bridge to the lower peninsula of Michigan.  The views of the Mackinac Bridge are incredible, the statues are interesting, the beach is inviting and well, they have bathrooms!

You don't need a state park sticker to enter Bridge View Park. Everyone is free!

Visit Deer Ranch

1540 US-2, St Ignace, MI 49781

Established 1950, Deer Ranch is the oldest live whitetail exhibit in North America!  So if you want to visit a deer park (perfect for kids!), check this place out!

You will see dozens of native Michigan Whitetail Deer and fawns, including beautiful white deer in a natural setting to photograph and feed while walking along a nature trail.

They also have a gift shop with one of the largest Minnetonka moccasin inventories in the north!

Open seven days a week Mid-May through Mid-October, check their website for hours and important information.

St Ignace Michigan Beach at American Legion Park

Yey! Beach time! I drive Chris nuts as I every time we see a beach I just gotta stop and get my toes wet.  

We recommend parking by the American Legion Park if you wish to go to the beach.  There are restrooms, picnic tables and a covered gazebo to give you some shade.  The beach here is rocky, so it's perfect for rock hounds! I can walk the beach for hours searching for lovely rocks to squirrel away in the trunk of the car!

Straits State Park in St Ignace: Go Camping, Biking and Sight Seeing!

Address: 720 Church St, St Ignace, MI 49781

The Straits State Park is a phenomenal place to go camping, bike riding, exploring, and enjoying views of The Mighty Mac (Mackinac Bridge). 

Can you swim at Straits State Park? Yes! There is a shoreline (rocky) but you can swim in Lake Michigan. 

What lake is Straits State Park on? Lake Huron. You can see breathtaking views of the Mackinac Bridge and Straits of Mackinac.

Does Straits State Park have showers? Yes, absolutely!

There are plenty of shady camping spots at the Straits State Park. Nice bathrooms too. 

We always take our bikes so we can be more mobile around the State Park. Lots of places to explore. 

Our Favorite St Ignace Restaurant is the Mackinac Grille

We have eaten at the Mackinac Grille several times as we are never disappointed in the food or service.  Plus the views of Lake Huron and the St Ignace Michigan Lighthouse at Chief Wawatam Park are breathtaking.

You can eat outside on their porch, outside in their screened porch or inside the restaurant or at the bar if the weather isn't cooperating. 

I mean seriously, isn't this view gorgeous? You can watch the Starline Ferry pass by every few minutes as you enjoy your meal. I took this photo from our outside dining table.

Chris loved his blue cheese burger with fries and I enjoyed my Michigan salad with grilled chicken, blue cheese and cranberries.

Plus the Mackinac Grille is super cute, isn't it?

We All Scream for Ice Cream (From Molly Moo's Ice Cream Parlor!)

OMG! So. After a long day of exploring on Mackinac Island, we returned to St Ignace for dinner. One would think a full meal was enough, but noooo, I NEEDED ice cream.  

And lo and behold, we discovered Molly Moo's Ice Cream Parlor. So freakin' cute!  Plus, the ice cream is killer good. So many choices!

What a great way to end a phenomenal day!

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About the Lead Author | Sherry Trautman

Thanks for stopping by!

Our Words of Wisdom: “Never follow anyone else’s path. Unless you’re in the woods and you’re lost and you see a path, then by all means follow that path.”

"Sherry & Chris"

We're Sherry and Chris the founders of one of Michigan's most comprehensive and Top Travel Blogs!

    Sherry Trautman is a seasoned business owner and a multifaceted content creator, deeply entrenched in the world of travel in Michigan. With her extensive background in writing, editing, photography, marketing, website design, web mastering, social media, and publishing, she is the driving force behind the acclaimed Michigan Travel site "Travel-mi.com." A lifelong Michigander, Sherry's journey began in Mt. Pleasant, Michigan led her to St. Joseph during her formative years, and further to Kalamazoo for her higher education. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Design and Fine Art from Western Michigan University. Her career initially blossomed in Battle Creek, where she contributed significantly to aviation, marketing, and the art industry.

    In 2018, Sherry, alongside her husband Chris, embarked on a passionate endeavor with the inception of Travel-MI.com. This venture was not just a business but a full-time commitment to exploring and celebrating the diverse landscapes and communities of Michigan. Together, they tirelessly traverse the state, curating unique experiences, capturing stunning visuals, and weaving engaging narratives that showcase Michigan's rich cultural tapestry and natural beauty. From her early experiences in different Michigander locales to her extensive professional background, Sherry's life and work epitomize a deep-rooted expertise in Michigan travel, making her an authoritative voice in this niche.

Sherry & Chris are at the Inn at Bay Harbor and looking out at the lake.
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