The first stop was on the peninsula in Traverse City at the Old Mission Point Lighthouse. We spent a little time in T.C. while we were there, but it wasn't our main stopping point so, we kept moving. We did stop at The Village at Grand Traverse Commons. It used to be an insane asylum called the Traverse City Hospital, but now it is full of shops, restaurants, condos and vacation rentals.
The lighthouses were jam-packed with people, so it was really hard to get any good photos. I'd like to go back in the dead of winter and take more photos-can you imagine how cool they would look with the ice and snow piled up!?!?
The Hessler Log Cabin was on the same property. If you walked around to the back, this is what you saw.
The asylum had several buildings and it is massive and gorgeous and there is so much character in the architecture. I could wander around it for an entire day just gazing at every nook and cranny. I'd love to see some of the condos or vacation rentals to see what was done to make them a home.
We tried to visit the music museum, but we were a little late getting there. They closed at 4:00 and we arrived at 4:14! We were disappointed that they had such short hours, but it isn't that far from my parents house to make a day trip to T.C., so maybe we'll get a chance to visit some other time-soon I hope. If you're interested, you can find out more about it here.
Point Betsie Lighthouse in Frankfort, built in 1858. It was closed so we couldn't get any closer.
Gorgeous houses in Manistee!
We kept driving and stopping, driving and stopping and before we knew it, the day was winding down and we were tired of being in the car. We found a little, out of the way motel called the Riverside. It was on the water (marina), off the beaten path and near where the fishing charters leave from. It was built in the 1950's. It was very cozy, but also very clean and very reasonable. We got a kick out of the sign on the wall that said "NO FISH COOLERS IN ROOM". The only complaint I had with the hotel was the wifi. They had it, but not in the rooms. You had to stand outside the office to get it, and since my phone was acting crazy and showing no service for 90% of our trip (I plan to switch carriers as soon as I get home), we really needed the wifi.
When we left then next morning, we followed a sign for an estate sale. It was the last day so everything was half off. The sale was on the third day. There was so much left, it was unbelievable! The home owner was a plate collector, an art collector, and a book collector. The plates were the kind you order from a magazine-the kind with scenery on them. Most were still in their original styrofoam packing packages. I bet there were thousands of them.
I found some old silverware for projects and some vintage souvenir rings that are just cheap costume jewelry. I plan to cut the ring part off and stick the jewel part on a plain long hat pin-that's a project for another day though!
The Manistee Lighthouse park was just a couple of blocks away from our hotel. The lighthouse was actually on the other side of a little bay or canal that lead to the Coast Guard station. We had to get back in the car and drive around through a little subdivision until we found the entrance. There is also a very nice beach next to the coast guard station. It was very humid and very gloomy when we visited, so there weren't as many people as some of the later stops.
The next stop was the Hart/Mears arTea and Silver Lake Sand Dunes. We stopped at the welcome center to find out what the area had to offer. The very nice older lady working in the center told us that all of the hotels were booked and had been for months. Good thing this was just a stop on the trip and not a place that we planned to stay over night!
Stumps and trees molded and shaped by blowing sand.
At one point, the stopped and let us all out to walk around and explore.
After the dune ride, we went down the road a little ways and took a break with an ice cream cone. Se the cute little faces they put on the ice cream?
This is the Little Sable Point Lighthouse. It is just a little ways down the road from Mac's Dune Rides. It is free to enter the park if you have a state park pass, and $3 per person to climb the tower. We both enjoyed climbing the tower. It is 130 step to the top. It was a little challenging with so many people going up and coming down.
Going down was a lot easier on the knees, but harder on the eyes since you could see down through the holes in the steps-I was thankful for the handrail!
I'd love to see this view on a clear, sunny day!
This is the White River Lighthouse/Station
It's hard to get good shots when there are so many other people visiting the lighthouses. The red stroller kind of ruins the shots! At other lighthouses you will see people in the shots. I'd like to go back and visit them all in the fall or winter when I have a better chance at getting some good shots.
This was a little museum on the property
Holland Harbor Lighthouse
Bid Daddy K was here...no he didn't write this, it was already there-lol.
After we finished with the lighthouses, we stopped in Douglas at the Blue Star Highway Antique Mall. I was so excited to go antiquing at a new place, that I forgot to take a picture of the outside!! I really liked this little mall great variety, great booths, average prices in most booths, some were way too high, but that happens in all malls. I bought a bunch of old outdoor faucet handles for projects.
Here are some shots from the inside. They have a brewery and restaurant next door, and if you take your receipt you will get a discount on your food purchase. We were there too early for lunch so we weren't able to use our discount. Since it is only 2 hours from home, I'm hoping someday to kidnap Auntie and head back for another visit and hit a few places in between.
The next stop was the Busy Bee Flea Mall. It is a year round indoor flea market. They mostly carried new stuff with one room for used stuff. I saw a lot of plates and dishes that would be good for someone who might want to have a wedding reception with a hodge podge of dishes, but nothing else that I was interested in, Mr. bought a hatchet. He's been looking for a while for one like the one he found, so he was pretty happy with it.
Then we went to an outdoor flea market in Paw Paw. It was so humid and hot and the vendors were selling all of the things you'd find at a Florida flea market, that for a minute, I felt like I had left Michigan! There were very few dealers selling vintage or antique stuff, so we didn't stay very long. I'm glad we stopped, because know I know, and now I'll not have to wonder if I was missing something! We also stopped at a consignment shop, but I didn't see anything there either. It was just fun to be out hunting for treasures again!
We ended up back home Sunday night to sleep in our own beds. I'd recommend the lighthouse tour to anyone who asked if it was worth it. I enjoyed it. Mr didn't care for it very much. I keep telling him, "It's all what you make of it". It was a lot of driving, but we got to see some beautiful homes and buildings and got to see a side of our stat that neither of us has seen before or for a very long time.
The most disappointing thing was the road didn't really follow the shoreline like it looks like on a map, and when you were following the shoreline, it was a small road with very low speed limits and the trees were so thick you couldn't really see the water anyway.