Travel North to Celebrate the Holidays in Benzie County, Michigan

This holiday season plan to travel North to experience leisurely shopping, Santa visits, a 5k run and all the magic of Benzie County’s unique hometown charm. Multiple holiday celebrations have been planned and include activities for all ages.

Visits with Santa will be held in Frankfort at the Hotel Frankfort on Saturday, November 26th. Frankfort will also feature their Annual Holly Berry Arts and Crafts Fair on the same day. On December 10, Downtown Beulah will hold Christmas Magic with a parade, Santa visits, plenty of shopping, and more. Crystal Mountain in Thompsonville kicks off the season with their Thanksgiving Reconnect Weekend and the Annual Turkey Trot 5K on Thanksgiving Day. Starting December 16th, Crystal Mountain launches daily family activities to light up the holidays for three weeks running through Christmas, New Years Day and the week following New Years.

Benzie County is only 130 miles north of Grand Rapids, 235 miles north of Detroit and 290 miles north of Chicago. Plan a couple of days or more and get a true flavor of Benzie County known by many as the “most beautiful location in Michigan” to experience outdoor sports and recreation.

Explore the quaint small towns and villages of Benzie County for seasonal treasures including cherry products, Michigan made food baskets, jams and spreads, Northern Michigan roasted coffees, fine wines, meads and honey, craft beer and spirits, candles and soaps, knitted items made of luxurious alpaca wool, and original designed furniture for your home or second home.

Relax at Benzie County year round gathering spots including Stormcloud Brewing Company in Frankfort serving delectable locally inspired food and house crafted Belgian brews; Lake Ann Brewing Company in Lake Ann serving their own craft beer, local cider, meads and wine, and offering regular music events; St. Ambrose Cellars offering sampling of award-winning wines and meads, as well as, appetizer food plates, and weekly music on Fridays and open mic night on Tuesdays; and Iron Fish Distillery, a beautiful newly opened establishment close to Crystal Mountain, featuring distilled spirits and more.

There are many lodging choices in Benzie County, including quaint cottages, cozy cabins, historical hotels and inns, and an award winning resort.  For an entire listing see For assistance with lodging choices and holiday experiences, call the Benzie County Visitors Bureau at 800-882-5801.

More Information about Winter Experiences in Benzie County

Benzie County has 135 miles of snowmobiling trails and spectacular sights for winter snowshoeing and cross-country skiing. In addition to 30 miles of Lake Michigan coastline along the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore for snowshoeing, Benzie County has over 50 inland lakes for ice fishing and 22 miles along the Betsie Valley Trail for cross country skiing.

If you’re looking for downhill skiing and snowboarding, look at Crystal Mountain in Benzie County named one of Ten Best Snow Resorts for Families from Parents Magazine and #8 on Midwest Living Magazine’s 12 Best Ways to Own Winter (2015). Crystal Mountain also has ice-skating, ice hockey, fat tire biking and more, as well as, luxurious spa services at the relaxing Crystal Spa. Children’s activities and events take place regularly. They also feature superb dining for romantic getaways or family gatherings at two onsite restaurants. For more information see or call (231) 378-2000.