The Ultimate Relaxing Vacation: Midwest

relaxing vacations in the midwest

It’s 5:30 am and your kids are jumping on the bed. You think, “I need a vacation.” Grab your bags. Turn off your email. Call grandma and grandpa and head to one of these relaxing Midwest destinations. You know you want to!



Duluth is a precious gem in Minnesota. Located right on Lake Superior, Duluth has great relaxing scenery and is the perfect four season escape!

Where to Stay

Staying at Bluefin Bay resort on Lake Superior will take the edge off any worries you may have. They have anything from a small room for two- to an entire townhome. Experience relaxation in this pet friendly resort!

Want to be closer to the city? Canal Park is a popular destination for people wanting to be in the city but by the water. The Hampton Inn at Canal Park is always a pleasurable choice. I mean, can you go wrong with those amazing beds? They offer free breakfast and are close to area dining!

What to Do

Spend a day at the Waves of Superior spa for the royal relaxing treatment. Get a massage, facial, or pick from a myriad of other spa services.

Need something a little more active? Try a beautiful hike through the Gooseberry Falls State Park. It is known for its spectacular waterfalls, river gorge, Lake Superior shoreline, and north woods wildlife. Unwind by packing a picnic to enjoy after your hike.

History buffs will be excited to tour the Glensheen Mansion. Just five minutes from downtown Duluth, Glensheen’s 1908 collection is intact and offers visitors a palpable experience that they will always remember. You won’t want to miss this 39-room mansion.

What to Eat

Dine at Grandmas Saloon & Grill for a fun environment! Award winning food that includes: appetizers, salads, sandwiches, steaks, pasta, desserts & drinks. A fun, lively, and casual atmosphere!

If you are a beer connoisseur, you must go to Fitgers Brewhouse, Duluth’s only brewpub! Located in the historic Fitger’s Brewery complex, featuring handcrafted beer, gourmet sandwiches, fantastic salads, vegetarian entrees & live entertainment 4 nights per week.

Door country

Door County

Hidden in northern Wisconsin, you will find this little haven of Mother Nature. Perfect for the fitness freak in you, it is packed with amazing kayaking and canoe trips. With over 300 miles of shoreline, it is a water lover’s paradise.

Where to Stay

The Blacksmith Inn. Unwind and relax in one of the fifteen private guest rooms at our Wisconsin B&B, each with an in-room whirlpool, fireplace, private balcony and extraordinary harbor view.

The Beach Harbor Resort is a family owned resort that understands family vacations but also caters to couples or friends looking for an affordable getaway. You never need to leave the property to have fun. The entertainment starts with the sand beach, boat and bike rentals, fire pits, grills, tube/ski charters, fishing charters, sailing charters, Potawatami State Park, and Waterfront Mary’s Bar & Grill.

What to Do

Kayak Door County rents kayaks and gives you clear direction to see the amazing views!

This vacation is perfect for a family trip with all the various activities like rafting, sailing, golfing, beach-going, and more!

What to Eat

If you love fish, you have to check out the Door County fish boil! A traditional Door County fish boil, like the one served at the White Gull Inn, features freshly caught Lake Michigan whitefish caught by local fishermen and cooked outside over an open fire. The fish is cut in chunks and cooked in boiling water with small red potatoes.

The Whistling Swan blends perfection with urban flavors, surrounded by intimate comfort. The menu boasts mouthwatering dishes such as, roasted king salmon with crusty polenta and chocolate mousse to top it off. Finish your evening with a port or dessert wine.

Mackinac island

Mackinac Island

Shimmering on Lake Huron between Michigan’s Upper and Lower peninsulas, historic Mackinac (MACK-in-aw) Island defines a relaxed pace of life—car-less streets, horse-drawn carriages, and the smell of warm fudge.

Where to Stay

At the Grand Hotel, where unhurried summer days are legendary (and visitors have included Mark Twain, JFK, and Madonna), take a stroll on the world’s longest wraparound porch or read a newspaper in a rocking chair with views of the Mackinac Bridge.

The Mission Point Resort welcomes you. This Mackinac Island casual resort has lots to offer right at your doorstep – it’s the perfect setting to experience the history that is Mackinac Island.

What to Do

What would a trip to Mackinac Island be without a little bicycling? Mission Point has tandems, mountain bikes, and cruisers to choose from. But there are plenty of other options in town if you aren’t staying at Mission Point.

Enjoy the Esther Williams swimming pool at the Grand Hotel on the warm Michigan days. The heated 500,000-gallon, 220-foot long serpentine-shaped pool is ideal for sunning, or (duh) swimming!

Get yourself some of the popular fudge from Mackinac Island. The Island doesn’t claim to have created fudge. But after one taste, you’ll agree that it was perfected here. The flavors are unworldly. They even have a Fudge Festival!

What to Eat

Bistro on The Greens serves a tapas-style menu – unique worldly dishes that are perfect for ordering a few dishes and sharing. Overlooking The Greens of Mackinac, the Bistro on The Greens features outdoor seating with views of the Round Island Lighthouse, Lake Huron, and the passing ships.

For the elegant diner in you, try the Main Dining Room at the Grand Hotel. They serve breakfast, lunch, and a five-course dinner. The well-stocked wine cellar offers abundant domestic and imported choices, including many Michigan vintages and our award-winning Grand Hotel wine.

What is your favorite Midwest vacation spot?

Midwest not your thing? Try heading out East

Print Friendly, PDF & Email


Amanda is a designer at heart and loves to create infographics! She also loves race cars, spending time with her friends and family, and wasting time on Pinterest. She would be happy spending the rest of her life in Ely, MN.