Go For A Scenic Drive
Take a scenic drive in autumn and do some leaf peeping. Take in Redridge, a copper mining ghost town about 28 miles west of Houghton via the Covered Drive. Located off Houghton Canal Road, the scenic dirt road features trees that create a tunnel effect. In Redridge, youll find the historic Redridge Dam and Lake Superior. Right behind the dam, youll find a waterfall, accessible via a short trail system.
For stunning high level views, take a chairlift ride to the top of Mont Ripley.
Local Winter Guide To Visiting Houghton
Houghton serves as the Gateway to the Keweenaw Peninsula. Located on the southern shore of the Keweenaw Waterway, Houghtons collection of outdoor snow adventures, history, dining, and culture make the city a destination for winter enthusiasts. Here are our top recommendations for enjoying Houghton during the snow season.
Run Hike Or Bike The Michigan Tech Trails
The Michigan Tech Trails are so close to home that many people forget theyre there! In the spring, fall, and summer, you can hike, run, or ride a mountain bike. Winter is perfect for cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, walking, and snow biking. The Tech Trails are so much bigger than you think check out our summer guide to the Michigan Tech Trails and our guide to cross-country skiing on the Michigan Tech Trails to find the best spots for any activity and any time of year.
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Recommended Hotels And Places To Stay In Houghton County
Ae Seaman Mineral Museum Of Michigan Tech
In 1991, the A.E. Seaman Mineral Museum was named Michigans official mineral museum. Over the history of the museums gathering, there are now about 4,000 specimens on display over the three exhibit areas, though the number of specimens in the collection are well over 50,000. Those three exhibit areas are the Copper Pavilion, which showcases a 19-ton Lake Copper sample the Phyllis and John Seaman Garden, a place to view rocks and plants and the Thomas D. Shaffner Exhibit Hall, where mineral exhibits are housed. Guests are encouraged to dedicate, at minimum, two hours for touring the exhibits.
1404 Sharon Avenue, Houghton, MI 49931, Phone: 904-487-2572
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Welcome To Houghton Mi
Named one of the best 100 places to live by Norman Crampton, Houghton, Michigan, offers a multitude of opportunities for recreation and fun. Visit Houghton in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan in between the shores of Lake Superior.
offer lakefront activities with boating and picnicing. The kids will love Chutes & Ladders playground area at Houghton Beach. Adults can play a round of golf at several Houghton, Michigan courses. The whole family will enjoy a trip to the Isle Royale National Park and the Keweenaw National Historic Park.
Houghton visitors will not be disappointed during the winter months. Skiing, snowboarding, skating, snowmobiling and snowshoeing are just some of the wonderful winter activities in the Houghton, MI area. Check out 22 trails, terrain park, tubing park, and scenic overlook of the Keweenaw Waterway at Mont-Ripley!
The whole family will have a fun time at the Mine Shaft Mega Fun Center right next to the Country Inn & Suites hotel in Houghton. Tons of indoor fun including bowling, go carts, mini golf and great food.
Catch A Waterfront Concert
Every summer, the sounds of the Houghton Summer Concert Series drift across the water. Spend an evening in the sunshine at Kestner Waterfront Park bandshell listening to local bands just bring your own chair or blanket. Its a fun way to mingle with other people in the community and enjoy the fresh air.
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Ahmeek Stamp Mill Tamarack City Michigan
The ruins of the mill are easy to find and explore. They are directly off the side of and visible from M 26 as it passes through Tamarack City and Hubbell. It is very close and directly east of Hungarian Falls. The Ahmeek Mill was built in 1910.
There is a nearby playground for the kids. Take time to explore the many vertical structures, all lined up like dominoes!
We hope you found some good ideas for when you plan your next Houghton MI Michigan vacation!
Explore The Keweenaw Waterway
Youll find several ways to explore the South Portage Entry, from boat tours to paddle sports. Copper Country Boat Tours takes visitors out on its boat, the S.S. Dragonfly, for a narrated tour of the areas history and historic waterfronts. For a more active adventure, rent a kayak or stand-up paddleboard for a close-up view of the water. The Portage Canal offers a gentler paddling experience instead of paddling on the open waters of Lake Superior.
If youre captaining your boat, tie up along the waterway for free day-use near the Portage Lift Bridge. Then you can walk to nearby downtown Houghton for some shopping and dining.
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Denali Restaurant: A Top Pick For Houghton Michigan Restaurants
Seriously, do you see this gooey cheese? I’m not usually a sandwich girl but my stomach was growling, we had just ordered drinks and this sandwich sauntered past me, acting all arrogant with it’s meat, tomatoes and cheese piled high.
I decided to teach it a lesson and jam it right into my pie hole.
The Denali Restaurant is located in Lake Linden, MI .
“Traveling is about the gorgeous feeling of teetering in the unknown” Anthony Bourdain
Hike To Hungarian Falls
Okay, so this ones technically not in Houghton, but its just a 15-minute drive! If you want to get outside and see something new, drive out to the falls any time of year and spend an hour hiking around in the woods. See photos, videos, and tips for when to go in our guide to hiking Hungarian Falls.
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Tours Of Quincy Smelter
The Upper Peninsula use to be a major mining region of the country. While this no longer is the case, there are the remains of several turn of the 20th century manufacturing and production towns. While not actual cities, many of these smelter plants are made up of 20 or more buildings. Now more or less ghost towns, it is a pretty interesting tour. Plus, the facilities are right along the water, with a hilly, green backdrop. It really is rather beautiful and yet eerie at the same time.
Houghton Michigan: Best Things To Do In The Upper Peninsula
Houghton Hancock Michigan is gold mine for adventurers, photographers and historians alike.
Houghton Michigan, located in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, is home to the famous Quincy Mine tours, blue Portage Lake lift bridge, Winter Carnival, Ranger III, Isle Royale Seaplane, some seriously good eats and a few surprises to boot.
Plus it’s Chris’ hometown so you have the insider’s advantage!
So grab your hiking shoes, camera, bug spray and snacks because we are about to do some crazy exploring in Houghton Michigan.
While Traveling Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, we will also wander into Hubbell Michigan, a super interesting nearby town that is only 9 miles away. So are you ready? Let’s go!
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Experience Winter Carnival In Houghton Michigan
Winter Carnival is an ultra popular carnival held at Michigan Tech every
Winter Carnival started in 1922 and has grown to become one of the largest annual winter festivals in the nation! Come to enjoy dozens of huge, intricate snow statues all around campus and the community!
Watch students engage in exciting broomball and hilarious comedy skits. Take sleigh rides, watch a queen coronation, and join lots of winter fun. I can’t wait to try ice wall climbing this year-its on my Michigan Bucket List!
Best Things To Do In Houghton Mi
The Keweenaw Peninsula draws many tourists, thanks to its fantastic nature and distinguished history.
The region has earned the moniker of Copper Country of its connection to the industry throughout history.
Here, what was considered the first Copper Boom in the country happened.
You can find Houghton in the northern part of this peninsula.
While it serves as the largest city and the seat of the county that shares its name, you may find that Houghton is relatively small.
Nevertheless, the community takes pride in its identity and history, and you can witness this through the many attractions in and around the city.
Experience its small-town charm and outstanding attractions by making it your next holiday destination.
Check out the best things to do in Houghton, MI, and in nearby areas.
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Best Restaurants In Houghton
Houghton features one of Michigans Upper Peninsula regional specialties on its Pasty Trail. During the copper boom, miners would take hand-held pie-style pasties filled with beef, potatoes, onion, rutabaga, and seasonings to work. Other local favorites are the Lake Superior whitefish, thimbleberries, and craft beer. Here are some places you can sample pasties and dishes from these ingredients.
Explore A Place Like No Other
Copper Country Inn is ideally located to be your home base while you explore the natural beauty, the wildlife and the rich historical heritage that make this area unique.
Our staff are all locals who can provide excellent area information complete with directions and recommendations. We even know all the hidden gems and best secret spots. If not, we know who to contact in the area to find out!
The best place to watch the sunset or see the Northern Lights. Check. Where to find copper trinkets. Check. How about the most excellent locally brewed beer, favorite pizza, or preferred place to get a pasty? Check, Check, Check! And if thats not enough we have plenty of the freshest air and scenic beauty for the perfect relaxing getaway vacation. They dont call this area Gods Country for nothing!
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Best Things To Do In Houghton Michigan
Have you ever visited a new place and felt wow about it? For many visitors, it happens at Houghton.
Houghton may not be as popular as other cities in United States, but dont let that fool you. Houghton is a smaller but beautiful upcoming tourist destination that is worth a visit. You will be surprised by some of the unique things to do and places you can explore at this hidden destination.
You might wish to revisit it someday again, to take a break and relax at Houghton.
If you have plans to visit United States and are not sure if Houghton should be included in your itinerary, keep reading. In this list, we have put together some of the things to do in Houghton and around. We have a hunch that if you include this city in your travel plans, you will be thrilled you did so.
Go To A Football Or Hockey Game
Want to get loud? Join the community at a Michigan Tech football or hockey game. The home football games are the perfect fall experience: the weathers crisp, the band is playing, and there are plenty of delicious snacks at the concession stand. When winter rolls around, warm up your lungs at a Huskies hockey game at the John MacInnes Student Ice Arena. Sit in the stands with a hot chocolate, or enjoy a drink in the beer garden. The legendary Michigan Tech Pep Band is always at football and hockey games to keep things lively .
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Enjoy Live Music & Performances
Visit the Rozsa Center
The Rozsa Center for the Performing Arts at Michigan Technological University is the leading performing arts presenter in the Western Upper Peninsula. It is a beautiful modern facility that attracts world-class concerts, performances, and events year-round.
It is also home to the Department of Visual and Performing Arts at Michigan Tech, and a place to experience student performances and work. The lower level of the Rozsa Center has two art galleries, that feature student art twice a semester, as well as exhibits from professional guest artists. There are also several musical and theatrical student performances that take place in the Rozsa Center each academic year.
Check out the Rozsa Center calendar to see what events will be taking place while you are here!
Keweenaw Symphony Orchestra playing at the Rozsa Center for Performing Arts. Photo by Michigan Technological University.
The Orpheum Theater & Studio Pizza
The Orpheum Theater in Hancock is a historic venue that invites a large variety of talented musicians and performers to take the stage on a regular basis. This theater also serves delicious pizza, and its bar has a fantastic selection of adult beverages to choose from. Check their page to learn about upcoming shows!
The Continental Fire Co.
A view from the stage at The Bonfire Restaurant/ Continental Fire Co.
Portage Lake Lift Bridge
Portage Canal Lift Bridge, Houghton MI Michigan
Per Wikipedia, the Portage Lake Lift Bridge connects the cities of Hancock and Houghton. It crosses Portage Lake, a portion of the waterway which cuts across the Keweenaw Peninsula with a canal linking the final several miles to Lake Superior to the northwest. It is the only land-based link between the north and south sections of the Keweenaw peninsula.
This movable bridge is a lift bridge with the middle section capable of being lifted from its low point of four feet clearance over the water to a clearance of 100 feet to allow boats to pass underneath.
The bridge is the world’s heaviest and widest double-decked vertical-lift bridge. More than 35,000 tons of concrete and 7,000 tons of steel went into the bridge, which replaced the narrow 54-year-old swing bridge, declared a menace to navigation on the busy Keweenaw Waterway.
Hancock and Houghton MI Michigan hold an annual celebration called Bridgefest to commemorate the opening of the bridge that united their two communities.
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Beer And Takeout At The Kbc
When you want to get out with friends, take part in a beloved Houghton tradition: beer and takeout at the Keweenaw Brewing Company . Enjoy the high ceilings and comfortable couches by the huge windows in the taproom, or soak up the sunshine by the colorful mural on the outdoor deck. Youre welcome to bring your own food pick up a tostada pizza from the Ambassador Restaurant a few blocks away, or run across the street and pick up sushi from Sky Sushi. Rodeo Mexican Kitchen also pairs perfectly with KBC beer.
Learn Watersports With Portage Wake
Stay active and learn a new watersport while in Houghton.
While youre here, dont forget to head over to Portage Wake.
The said watersport company aims to teach people the fantastic activity of wake surfing.
In a nutshell, wake surfing is a sport that utilizes a boat to make waves large enough for a person to surf on.
Even people without prior experience can pick it up quickly, thanks to being low-impact.
Apart from wake surfing classes, Portage Wake also offers wakeboarding, water skating, and water skiing lessons.
It also offers jet ski rentals for those who want a relaxing adventure on the water.
Its an exciting activity that you will enjoy.
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Things To Do In Houghton
From an outdoors perspective, Houghton offers a combination of hiking and mountain biking, keeping all activity levels busy. With the South Portage Entry, water enthusiasts will enjoy the Keweenaw Waterway, which provides access to Lake Superior. McLain State Park rests on the shores of the Keweenaw Waterway at the North Entry, where you can also enter Lake Superior. To get farther into Lake Superior, use Houghton as a jumping-off point to Isle Royale National Park. If you prefer a more sedentary trip, a drive through the areas stunning fall colors will fit the bill. For history buffs, the region is rich with copper mining tales of yesteryear told through mine tours and ghost towns from the copper boom.
See A Show At The Rozsa Center
Michigan Tech is big on engineering, but it also has a thriving performing arts department. The Rozsa Center has a full schedule of plays, musicals, symphony concerts, jazz, choir concerts, and art shows the theater hosts professional touring productions and student/community shows. Feel like learning something new? Check out the lecture series. Some productions take place on the main stage in the Rozsa Center, while others happen in the Walker black-box theater. Check the calendar to see whats coming next!
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Quincy Mine And Dry House
The Quincy Mine is an extensive set of copper mines located near Houghton MI Michigan.
The mine was owned by the Quincy Mining Company and operated between 1846 and 1945, although some activities continued through the 1970’s.
The Quincy Mine offers tours that tells of the fascinating history. Grab a jacket and hard hat as you embark on the family friendly tour so you can play the part of a hard working miner!
The tour definitely sets your imagination ablaze as you imagine the hard life these miners lived everyday.
Make sure you have time to explore the nearby grounds shown in the photo below.
Aren’t we dashing in our yellow hard hats? Don’t be jealous, you too can join the hard hat fashion statement by going on this fun tour!
I adore ruins and their history just as much as I love gorgeous landscapes. This fantastic building is part of the Quincy Mine in the Upper Peninsula near Houghton MI Michigan. I absolutely love the feel of this building, it’s arched doorways and missing roof. My soul just soars while exploring this place. I been here a few times and each time I discover new tidbits that I missed.