A Guide To Summer Fun in Petoskey Michigan

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Between here and Petoskey is a 2-lane road that cuts its way through the woods and past a few small towns, some nothing more than a gas station and small store.

It’s only 75 miles between our towns, but it’s a world of difference in character and charm.

Summer Fun Petoskey Michigan



This resort community, located on the shores of Little Traverse Bay, has an air of relaxed, casual fun that invites visitors to enjoy all that Petoskey has to offer.

Be sure to visit my list of Ultimate Things To Do In Michigan, 100 things to do in Michigan in winter (60+ of them are FREE!!!), and 36 Free and Affordable Things To Do In Petoskey MI

This is the land of Hemingway’s youth and Petoskey stone hunts, where the most important thing you have to do is take a stroll along the waterfront or go window shopping in the Gaslight District. 

The way of life here is a bit slower and more relaxed and you can’t help but fall in love with this little piece of paradise in northern Michigan.

Morel Mushroom Festival

The Delights of Morel Mushrooms 

You can’t visit a place without discovering the taste of place and I had the opportunity to do exactly that when I attended the Annual Morel Mushroom Festival in Boyne City.

This annual event is held every May to celebrate the abundance of wild morels found in the surrounding woods.

Of course, a wild morel mushroom dinner is the perfect way to be introduced to this delicious food.  

Chefs created a variety of morel based foods for us to try and they were all delicious, but my favorite was the mushroom soup.

After trying this delectable offerings I now know why people get so excited about morel mushroom season.

petoskey stones

Petoskey Stone Hunting

Getting outside and hunting for Petoskey stones is a great way to spend a morning or afternoon.

Even though I’m a lifelong resident of Michigan I’ve never been very good at finding them.


Lucky for me Nikki from the Chamber of Commerce stopped by the Petoskey State Park to give me a lesson in finding these local stones.

She is a pro at finding them and spotted many during our visit.

Sadly, even with her excellent guidance I was still unable to find a stone, however she was generous and sent me home with some of her finds.

She was even brave enough to shed her shoes and wade in the icy cold water to gather stones she spotted.


1. Have a cup of water or another water source nearby {hint, the Lake works really well}

2. Look for stones that have dark dots on a light background or light spots on a dark background.

3. Dip the stone in water. The spots should be easily visible on the stone (see image above).

Petoskey Gaslight District

Petoskey’s Gaslight District

Window shopping through the boutique stores of the Gaslight District is an opportunity to find fun and unique gifts for friends and family back home.


Grandpa Shorter’s offers a plethora of souvenirs and the bear that stand guard out front makes a great photo opp. Everything from t-shirts to these fun hanging displays. You are sure to find something for yourself and anyone else on your list.


At McLean and Eakin, one of the top 5 bookstores in the United States, you’ll find a beach read or three. I love browsing the Staff Recommends shelf and finding new authors and books to read. I wrote more about McLean and Eakin here.

Symons General Store Petoskey

Symons General Store offers gourmet foods, a deli and candy by the pound. I found some great fig jam to use on my goat cheese and fig bites. You can also pick up a fifth of whiskey from Traverse City Whiskey Co., which I highly recommend.


I’m not much of a shopper, but there is something about the unique stores in Petoskey’s Gaslight District that just pulls me in.

Maple Wine

Maple Moon Sugarbush & Winery

One of the most unique wineries in Michigan can be found just outside of downtown Petoskey.

This is the only winery in the entire United States that makes Maple wine and it is so very good!

Each year Maple Moon Sugarbush & Winery taps 100s of Maple trees to make maple syrup and their specialty maple wine.

A small boutique winery, the Maple Gold is my favorite, but you’ll want to try all their varieties to find yours.

PetoskeyKilwins Chocolates

Stop by Kilwins of Petoskey and try their hand-crafted fudge and home made ice cream.

Here you can find displays full of chocolate candies, watch fudge being made (and maybe have a taste of two) and indulge in a cool treat.

Petoskey Area

Hemmingway in Petoskey

During summer weekends the city park is always bustling with activities.

From festivals and concerts to movies in the park and more. The park is located right downtown and an easy stroll from area restaurants and shopping.

Petoskey Hemingway

Hemingway fans will be thrilled to learn that the author spent a great deal of his youth in the area and had a cottage in Walloon Lake. Plaques mark Hemingway spots and a self-guided tour map is available through the Petoskey CVB or by clicking this link.


Of course, a day in Petoskey isn’t nearly enough so you’ll need a place to stay.

Grand Mountain Lodge Boyne Resort

The Mountain Grand Lodge and Spa at Boyne Mountain Resort is a great spot. All the resort amenities you could possibly want and a few you probably haven’t thought of.

Enjoy s’mores by the campfire, zip line, golf, take a chair lift for a scenic overlook and so much more.

If traveling with small children book a suite completely with an upper and lower level and an adorable castle area for the kids to sleep in.


City Park Grille

There are many great places to eat in the area.

My favorites include Barrel Back in Walloon Lake, Cafe Sante in Boyne City, City Park Grille and Palette Bistro in downtown Petoskey, and Stafford’s Pier Restaurant in Harbor Springs.

Are you ready to plan your escape to nature and fun this summer in Petoskey? 

You can find more information at If you need more suggestions of things to do, places to eat or stay drop me an email I’m always happy to help!

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