Michigan is well known for its stunning waterfalls. There are over 300 in the state! However, most of them are located in the Upper Peninsula. That makes it easy to find an easy or challenging hike that ends at a waterfall. If you are in the UP.
But what about lower Michigan? Are there waterfalls in lower Michigan?
How many waterfalls are in Lower Michigan?
Of those 300+ waterfalls in Michigan, there are only 2 waterfalls in lower Michigan. And only one of them has been officially recognized as a natural waterfall.
The largest waterfall in lower Michigan is Ocqueoc Falls. As the only universally accepted accessible waterfall in the US, it’s a perfect place for anyone to visit and enjoy
Location of Ocqueoc Falls
Located about 12 miles west of Rogers City, Ocqueoc Falls is near the Northeast top of lower Michigan (if you are using your hand as a map, it’s near the top of your ring finger). There are a few regional airports nearby, but the closest International airport is located in Flint, 191 miles away.
Due to the distance from a large city (and airport), visiting Ocqueoc Falls works best as part of a Michigan road trip.
How to enjoy Ocqueoc Falls
As far as waterfalls in lower Michigan go, Ocqueoc Falls is the most popular for good reason. There are several loops with trails that range from 3 to 6 miles. In addition to hiking, Ocqueoc Falls trails can be enjoyed by mountain bikes, and in the winter, cross country skis or snowshoes.
Insider tip: Use this link for AllTrails to find descriptions of the trails as well as reviews, and if you use this link to sign up (it’s free!) they will plant a tree for you – AllTrails is my favorite source for finding hikes!
Wheelchairs can access the falls via a wooden ramp, so that’s another option for enjoying the falls.
Another exciting aspect of Ocqueoc Falls, is that it’s one of the few waterfalls in Michigan that allow for swimming! There are several nice pools of water that you can enjoy, as well as having fun exploring the falls themselves.
It gets crowded, but is still a unique way to cool off on a hot summer day!
Things to do near Ocqueoc Falls
There isn’t much right around Ocqueoc Falls, but nearby Rogers City is a lovely destination on the shores of Lake Huron.
In Rogers City, you’ll find a maritime museum, lighthouse, a 10-acre park right on the lake, and more. Book a room and spend one day exploring Ocqueoc Falls and the next discovering all the attractions in Rogers City.
Seven Bridges Preserve
Although known more for its beautiful rustic bridges, thanks to a series of small cascades under some of the bridges, Seven Bridges Preserve is the other interesting waterfall in lower Michigan worth visiting. Seven Bridges is not a natural waterfall, so keep that in mind if it’s important to you – we just love the beautiful scenery – whether it’s man-made or natural.
Location of Seven Bridges Preserve
Visiting the Seven Bridges Preserve would be an excellent addition to a trip to Traverse City as it’s located in Rapid City, Michigan which is just 23 miles away.
How to enjoy Seven Bridges Preserve
The best way to enjoy the waterfalls at Seven Bridges Preserve is to get out and hike the short trail that will take you over the four remaining bridges.
Fishing is another popular activity at Seven Bridges Preserve, so if that’s something you enjoy, check out local regulations and bring along a pole!
Things to do nearby Seven Bridges Preserve
Traverse City is a wonderful place to spend a long weekend (or more), so definitely plan on a few days. You can enjoy amazing restaurants, breweries, plenty of outdoor activities, and more.
If you can, time your visit to coincide with the annual Cherry Festival. There is nothing like enjoying a cupful of fresh Michigan cherries while browsing the talented vendors!
👉 Book your hotel in Traverse City with Booking.com for the best deal!
More info about waterfalls in lower Michigan
In addition to the two waterfalls in lower Michigan highlighted here, there are half a dozen or so dams throughout the state that offer lovely waterfall-like views. However, to really enjoy a BUNCH of waterfalls in Michigan you’ll need to head to the Upper Peninsula.
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