The Best Hiking Trails in Petoskey State Park
For hiking excursions, head into the heart of Petoskey State Park, where the trails begin. The 303-acre park's trails offer views of the bay, unique sand dunes, and tranquil forest scenery.
1. Old Baldy Trail
If you're staying at one of the Petoskey State Park hotels or Petoskey State Park cabins, drive through the main entrance of the park and start your hike on Old Baldy Trail. This short, 0.5-mile path leads you right up to its namesake for stunning views of Lake Michigan and the surrounding area.
2. Portage Trail
The mile-long Portage Trail offers more of a challenge. As you hike from one end of the park to the other, you'll encounter some steeper hills and beautiful forests. This trail's name refers back to when Father Jacques Marquette portaged his canoe here in 1672.
3. Campground Trail
For a shorter, easier hike, take the Campground Trail closer to the waterfront. You and your family will find a variety of ecosystems along the way, from beaches to dunes to thick forest. Watch for wildlife wherever you go!
Great Places to Stay Near Petoskey State Park
The Best Family Activities in Petoskey State Park
The area surrounding Petoskey State Park cabins offers myriad opportunities for family vacations. After shopping in the Historic Gaslight District or tasting the local fare, you'll find plenty to occupy your time, including bicycling, relaxing on the beach, or finding a famous Petoskey stone.
1. Little Traverse Wheelway
The Little Traverse Wheelway, a 23-mile paved path for walking or biking, runs between Charlevoix, Petoskey, and Harbor Springs. Rent bicycles for your family, and you'll be treated to expansive views of the bay on one side as you wheel past nature. You can always take a short detour off the trail to visit town for a bit.
2. Petoskey stones
Lake Michigan beaches are the most popular spot to hunt for Petoskey stones, the pebble-shaped rocks that are actually fossilized coral and, in 1965, became the state stone of Michigan. The park is a particularly good area to search for these ancient beauties.
When you're not focused on searching for stones, Michigan beaches are also perfect for sunbathing, strolling, and swimming. Petoskey and the surrounding area provide several beach options for families. Find dunes to climb or rent a boat for a day on the water.