Grand Island National Recreational Area
The Grand Island National Recreational Area is located just a 1/2 mile from Munising and is situated in the pristine waters of Lake Superior. Designated a National Recreation Area in 1990, Grand Island is a 13,500 acre addition to the Hiawatha National Forest showcasing a rich natural and cultural history and offering a great educational and fun opportunity for all!
Grand Island is the perfect place to spend a day or even just a few hours hiking, biking, fishing, and exploring. The island provides a combination of rugged dirt/sand trails and easier gravel roads that will accommodate any level of biker or hiker. More advanced, energetic cyclists can mountain bike the 20-mile main island perimeter route in four to six hours, with time for brief stops and some exploration.
Short on Time? Another option is to get a one way ride for yourself and/or your bike to the north end of the island and hike/bike your way back. This service must be reserved in advance. Note: Bicycling off roads and trails is not allowed because it damages fragile vegetation.
Visitors can get to the island via passenger ferry or private watercraft. The ferry departs from Grand Island Landing on the mainland, located on M28 about 2 1/2 miles west of Munising’s blinking light. Look for the Grand Island National Recreation Area sign.
The Grand Island Interpretive Bus offers a 2 1/2 – 3 hour narrated bus tour on the island, and runs from Memorial Day to Labor Day. After arriving by ferry, the narrated bus excursion includes scenic overlooks, beautiful beaches, historical buildings and nature walks in a peaceful setting. The bus trip features nine stops so you can truly experience Grand Island’s beauty. Along the route, tourists have been known to see black bear, white-tailed deer or sandhill cranes!
Munising can experience record breaking cold tempatures, and with these frigid temps comes a seasonal secret to Grand Island. If you don’t mind crossing 3,000 or more feet (depending on where you start) of Lake Superior’s icy, snowy surface, the Grand Island Ice Caves are a must see.