The historic and natural environments of the Straits of Mackinac sometimes present impediments to accessibility. Blowing sand, natural trails and steep grades can make traveling difficult. Many 18th and 19th century buildings have entrance steps, narrow doorways and other physical barriers.
Continuous effort is made to make all aspects of Mackinac State Historic Parks accessible. Where possible, physical changes have removed barriers. Alternate programs or services provide additional access opportunities and future projects will continue to improve access.
Museum and Park Services
• Accessible parking spaces are located at the Visitor’s Centers at Historic Mill Creek Discovery Center, Old Mackinac Point Lighthouse, and Colonial Michilimackinac. Wheelchairs are available for loan at most admission areas on a first-come, first-served basis.
• Site maps are available in large print format at admission areas.
• Scripts of some site demonstrations are available for loan at admission areas.
• Captioning is provided for audiovisual programs at all sites.
• Service animals are permitted at all sites and in all buildings.
Below is information for each of our sites on accessibility issues. The numbers refer to the building’s location on the individual site map. Click for a PDF of the printed Guide to Access.
Miles of island trails offer a variety of experiences and connect many areas of interest. All trails have at least one length of steep slope. Watch for carriages and horses on paved roads, and bicyclists on bike paths. Walking trails have gravel or wood chip surfaces. For more information, consult the Historic Mackinac Visitor’s Guide or guest service representatives at the downtown Mackinac State Historic Parks’ Visitor’s Center. Outdoor surfaces are hard-packed gravel, grass and sand.
Getting to Fort Mackinac
Passenger ferries and airplanes take visitors to Mackinac Island. Three private companies operate boats to the island from St. Ignace and Mackinaw City. Air-taxi service from Pellston and St. Ignace is also available. Motorized vehicles are not allowed on Mackinac Island, however, personal assistive mobility devices are allowed.
The ramp leading to the south entrance has 27steps at the top. This entrance is NOT accessible for visitors using wheelchairs.
Fort Mackinac’s most accessible entrance is located on Huron Road on the north side of the site and can be reached in several ways. The most immediate route from downtown is to follow Fort Street up the west side of the fort. This road is very steep and may be difficult for some visitors. Other less direct roads also lead to the north entrance. Horse-drawn carriage tours and taxis leaving from downtown locations will transport visitors to the north side of the fort. The taxi service has special horse-drawn vehicles equipped for wheelchairs and available by contacting the dispatch office at 906-847-3323.
Outdoor surfaces are wooden boardwalks and grass.
Alternate Fort Entrances
Moderate Access Locations
Access may be limited for some visitors with mobility impairments in these buildings:
Difficult Access Locations
Five to eight entrance steps to these buildings may make access difficult for visitors with
Alternate Building Entrances
American Fur Co. Store & Dr. Beaumont Museum
Benjamin Blacksmith Shop
and the door is 31” wide.
Access may be difficult for some visitors with mobility impairments in these buildings:
Outdoor surfaces are gravel, grass and sand.
Path to the Fort from the Visitor’s Center
Alternate Programs and Entrances
Outdoor surfaces are paved side-walks and grassy surfaces.
Access may be difficult for some visitors with mobility impairments in this area:
Access may be limited for some visitors with mobility impairments in these areas:
Natural conditions make access on these trails difficult for visitors with mobility impairments: