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Lighthouse Tours & Experiences

Beaver Island offers some of the most remote lighthouses in Lake Michigan. Dating back to the mid-1800s, these hidden gems are full of history and charm. The Beaver Island Boat Company, based out of Charlevoix, has your lighthouse adventure covered! With their 2019 season starting in mid-April, let them ferry you away to this former kingdom and explore unique island life. You’ll even catch a glimpse of the Whiskey Point Harbor Lighthouse as you make your way into St. James Harbor. The U.S. Lighthouse Association Passport Stamps are available for both of the lighthouses in their tour office as well.

Based out of Mackinaw City, Shepler’s Ferry’s approach to transporting people to Mackinac Island has been one of class and value. This approach continues with their series of lighthouse cruises. You’ll get a unique look at these lighthouses, with tours lasting either three or four hours long. You can even cap off your day in northern Michigan with an Evening Lighthouse Cruise, where you’ll see the lights at work as the sun sets and the stars come out.

The Keweenaw Adventure Company‘s Porter’s Island Paddle sea kayak adventure is great for novices, families, and those just wanting to get out on Lake Superior! Explore ancient rock shoreline and an uninhabited island with your entire family. You can even learn about the history of the largest, natural harbor on the Keweenaw Peninsula, including its shipwrecks and the historic Copper Harbor Lighthouse, built in 1866.

St Joseph has a long history as a harbor town, and the Heritage Museum & Cultural Center has tours to teach you everything you need to know. The need for a lighthouse began as early as 1832 when the first light was built on the bluff. The lighthouses currently located on the north pier were constructed in 1907, and have recently been restored to their 1932 appearance, earning St. Joseph the Michigan Historic Preservation Network Building Award in 2017. For $5, a climb to the top of the fifty-three-foot structure will reveal a spectacular 360-degree view of Silver Beach, Tiscornia Park, and Lake Michigan. The St. Joseph Lighthouse is open from Memorial Day to September 8, 2019.

Since 2010, Mission Point Lighthouse has had a keeper program and it has grown into a unique and very popular experience. Volunteer keepers stay for one week in the beautiful keeper quarters and work in the gift shop. The fee is $200 for the week for a couple. There are many perks, including local shopping, restaurants and winery discounts, close access to hiking trails and beach, private access to the tower after hours, a beautiful view every day, and more! Interested applicants must apply with a partner.

The Michigan City Historical Society invites you to visit the Old Lighthouse Museum. This is the oldest remaining lighthouse in Indiana. Located in Michigan City, Indiana, you can tour this historic 1858 lighthouse and even climb the tower into the lantern room. See the museum’s exhibits, including one about Lake Michigan shipwrecks. Their collection of picture postcards commemorates the Eastland Disaster, the tragic sinking of a steamship bound for Michigan City’s Washington Park from Chicago in 1915. The Old Lighthouse Museums is easily worth the trip to see for yourself this piece of lighthouse history.