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Friday, September 16, 2011

My Favorite Fall Foliage Travels—Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, Empire, Michigan

Head to the Grand Traverse Bay area, a four-hour drive northwest of Detroit, in the autumn months for a weekend, and you’ll be treated to far more than a fun frolic on a Great Lake. Slow down and explore the region at a slow pace on bike or on two feet and you’ll find diverse terrain, from the shaded wetlands of the Grass River Natural Area to the rolling countryside of the Leelanau Peninsula to the steep dunes of Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, the largest sand dunes west of the Sahara Desert. The towering slopes of sand, some as high as 440 feet, slide steeply to the shores of Lake Michigan. Stroll on the 1.5-mile Cottonwood Trail and the dunes look like bowls of sand that only a giant could drink from. No wonder Good Morning America just named Sleeping Dunes the most beautiful locale in America.

Posted by Steve Jermanok on 09/16/11 at 01:00 PM
Hiking • (2) CommentsPermalink Bookmark and Share


Thanks, Steve! Here in Traverse City, the gateway community for the Sleeping Bear Dunes, we think the park is at its very best in the fall, but most people don't know how gorgeous September and October can be up here. By the way, visitors who head this way may want to consider the money-saving Fab Fall specials that the Traverse City Convention & Visitors Bureau has put together, combining low room rates with lots of discounts on dining, entertainment and attractions. Just go to to find out more.

Picture of Mike Norton Comment by Mike Norton
on 09/21/11 at 02:51 PM

Thanks for directing people to the fall deals, Mike. And for checking in!

Picture of Steve Jermanok Comment by Steve Jermanok
on 09/21/11 at 04:04 PM

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Longtime Boston Globe travel writer, Steve Jermanok, dishes out his favorite travel locales and provides topical travel information that comes across his desk. is an Austin-Lehman Adventure's Top 125 Best Travel Blog Semi-Finalist

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