One of our favorite places to vacation is in Northern Michigan. Every year we make a trip or two in the winter to ski and often we’ll add another long weekend if we can find the time. On our last trip, it was too early in the winter for skiing, so instead, we created the perfect fun family day in Petoskey. Head up there for your own wonderful experience!

Start your day off right

The first place we hit for breakfast on every trip is Johan’s Bakery. Although there are several locations, the main one in Petoskey is our favorite. Load up on fresh bagels or donuts (be sure to buy extras to take home) and if it’s cold outside, enjoy them right away in your car. Yum!

Stop by Johan's Bakery for breakfast

Solve a mystery in downtown Petoskey

The local escape room, Know Way Out has a really unique alternative to the traditional escape room experience. As we visited during COVID, we took advantage of it and enjoyed it so much we will be looking for these experiences now every time we travel!

We participated in an outdoor cluehunt adventure and spent the morning driving around Petoskey with a map and our cell phone finding clues and solving puzzles. Although we’ve visited Petoskey dozens of times through the years, we discovered many new things about this town we love. It was crazy cold the day we visited, but it was still a blast. If the weather is good, you could walk most of the hunt.

Solve a mystery in downtown Petoskey

Insider Tip: Let’s Roam has similar scavenger hunts all over the US, so take a look to see if there is one near you for a fun family activity!

Enjoy lunch with a view

Although there are numerous wonderful restaurants in Petoskey, head a bit out of downtown to Mim’s Mediterranean Grill for affordable and delicious Greek-inspired food. Currently, Mim’s is carryout only (and they have a fantastic system), but hopefully someday soon they will reopen their indoor seating. For this fun day you will want carryout anyway, so go ahead and place your order to go.

Once you grab your yummy meal, drive back to Sunset or Bayfront Park near downtown and enjoy your lunch with a gorgeous view of Lake Michigan’s Traverse Bay. If it’s cold you might see white caps like we did as we consumed our food from the car, but if it’s nice out, sit outside and enjoy the fresh air.

If the weather is clear, Sunset Park is also a fantastic place to come back to at dusk and enjoy an amazing sunset.

Enjoy a picnic at Sunset Park

It’s time for a sweet treat

Most years we make sure to save time for Kilwin’s Chocolate Tour in Petoskey, but during COVID, the tours have been canceled. Luckily, you can still enjoy seeing the chocolates being made in the factory through the windows, and of course the delicious chocolate at the flagship store.

Indulge in a sweet treat and pick up some goodies for later – the chocolate is outstanding, and you can also purchase ice cream and fudge that is made fresh daily. Yum!

Kilwins chocolate is the BEST

Coffee and shopping to end the day!

Finish out your afternoon by browsing downtown, Petoskey. It’s a darling town full of unique shops and interesting buildings and it’s super walkable. You’ll find fun novelty gift items at Grandpa Shorters, pretty much any book you desire at McLean and Eakin, and delicious jams and jellies at American Spoon (oh, and their Bloody Mary Mix is amazing). It’s also fun to stop at Rocking Horse Toy Store and pick up a new game to enjoy – play it in your room tonight!

Be sure to grab a cup of coffee, chai, or specialty hot chocolate at Roast & Toast to warm you up. With its eclectic atmosphere and delicious array of drinks, it’s the perfect ending to a wonderful day exploring Petoskey.

Enjoy shopping in downtown Petoskey and coffee from Roast & Toast!

So what do you think? Are you ready to spend the perfect day in Petoskey? We visit every year and never get tired of it!

If you are on the hunt for fun family activities, get your FREE copy of 5 Fun Family Experiences!

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Ready for a family fun day in Petoskey, Michigan? It's the perfect Midwestern getaway.  If you are looking for fun things to do in Northern Michigan, this day trip is perfect!
Ready for a family fun day in Petoskey, Michigan? It's the perfect Midwestern getaway.  If you are looking for fun things to do in Northern Michigan, this day trip is perfect!

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