Exploring Grand Haven, the best beach town on a lake in the U.S., according to Parents Magazine

Explore Michigan

GRAND HAVEN, Mich. (WLNS)—Grand Haven, Michigan is a city located on the eastern shore of Lake Michigan, and it’s home to the Grand Haven State Park.

The city is home to sand dunes, beaches, a small town with restaurants, small shops, and wildlife. The city was recently named “Best Beach Town on a Lake” in the United States, according to Parents magazine. It received the nomination based on safety and kid-friendly attractions chosen by a panel of judges for nearly 150 nominations.

Grand Haven has a boardwalk that runs along the harbor to the State Park Beach and south pier. Many tourists upon visitation love to visit that area.

“The lighthouse and pier are a go-to for visitors,” said Olivia Koster, The Marketing and Communications Manager at the Grand Haven Convention and Visitors Bureau. “It’s about a mile and a half walk from the downtown area out to the lighthouse, and it’s along the boardwalk.”

The city is known for its outdoor activities like biking, hiking, and water sports.

“A lot of people do surf here on lake Michigan and Grand Haven is a hot spot for that so it’s really awesome to go out there on the wavy days and watch the surfers ride along,” Koster stated.

The famous town is aligned with shops, restaurants, and famous coffee shops.

Aldea Coffee is a local tourist staple for coffee-lovers. The shop supplies coffee beans to local Anna’s House restaurants in Michigan, and they also started off as a nonprofit in Columbia to help give back to coffee farmers,” Koster said.

“Being on the westside we call it the sunset side and we have some spectacular really moving type sunsets, and fall and winter are some of the most stunning,” said Marci Cisneros, The Executive Director of The Grand Haven Convention and Visitors Bureau.

Cisneros told 6 News that visitors are welcome all year round.

“Our historic downtown is kind of the lifeblood of this community,” Cisneros stated. “The retail businesses, the restaurants, and all the small businesses, in general, keep us as a community going. 

“Grand haven was first settled by indigenous people, specifically the Ottowa,” Kate Crosby, Exhibit Curator and Facility Manager at the Tri-city Historical Museum in Grand Haven said.

Crosby says Grand Haven over time became a main base for the U.S. Coast Guard. The museum carries the original light from the famous lighthouse guiding shipping vessels on Lake Michigan.

“The lighthouse itself was part of this creation period for the coast guard as the lifesaving service,” Crosby said.

The Coast Guard is stationed in Grand Haven and is fully operational. The next time you plan a trip you can visit its station, restaurants, stores, and explore Michigan’s beautiful wildlife.

For more information check out Grand Haven’s Convention and Visitors Bureau, and Pure Michigan.

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