Exploring Southwest Michigan’s Wineries and Beaches

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When I think of Michigan I generally don’t think of endless beaches and wine country. For the most part I think of Detroit and the industrial boom of the mid 19th century. I think of the aftermath of the failed auto business. But in the past few years Michigan’s tourism board has been pushing the slogan “Pure Michigan,” which promotes the more natural aspects of the state, which is way bigger than just Detroit. I must say Michigan is surprising beautiful and worth visiting more than once.
South West Michigan has a ton to offer and as a Chicagoan I can drive to the beautiful town of Lakeside in under 90 minutes. There are way more activities than what is covered in this post, but let me share with you some of the highlights from our Michigan weekend adventure.

Lakeside Beaches

WOW, these beaches can stand up with the best of them. Spend the day playing beach volleyball, rent a kayak, or just relax in the sand. Michigan’s shore line is filled with whitey sandy beaches that are just begging for you take a break and relax. We stayed in Lakeside, but the coast runs the length of the entire state. There are endless beach towns to choose from. Just remember that lake Michigan may look inviting but isn’t always warm. Our September trip didn’t provider the best water temperatures but it didn’t matter. We had a fantastic time tossing around a football on the sand. I don’t even like “playing catch,” it was the scenery that left me wanting more.

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Tip: Don’t forget to come back at night to check out the spectacular stars! I couldn’t believe we were able to see the milk way so close to the city. Also, make sure you know how to get to the beach before making your first attempt at night. We had an epic adventure trying to find the beach trail though the woods.*winky face*

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Baroda Wineries

This is the true reason for our weekend getaway. I’ve been hearing more and more about Michigan’s wineries and decided to check them out. We ended up at Round Barn Winery and loved it so much it was the only place we visited! They have a live band on the weekend and outdoor games. They also have food carts serving up mac and cheese, artichoke dip, and all sorts of yummy comfort foods. We got caught up playing games and eating and drinking but don’t miss out on the vineyards themselves. We took a walk around to check out the grapes and ended up seeing a gopher!

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Tip: Had your fill of wine? Go for the vodka lemonade slushy. Its perfect for a hot day.

Get those old images of Michigan out of your head. Pack your bags and find out what “Pure Michigan” is all about. I cant wait to return, I have my eye on you Traverse City.

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