Mackinac Island State Park was established in 1895—Michigan’s first state park. For twenty years before that it had been Mackinac National Park, the United States’ second national park. Today, over eighty percent of Mackinac Island is State Park property, and most this park land remains in its natural condition to be enjoyed.Mackinac Island State Park Map

A great variety of historic and natural resources provides something of interest for every Mackinac Island visitor. Historic landmarks, breathtaking vistas, spectacular rock formations, quiet forests and inspiring nature trails are just minutes away. The sites are accessible by foot or bike, rented horse or buggy, sightseeing carriages or horse-drawn taxi.

Highlights

Natural Wonders

Ancient seas, Ice Age glaciers, and 10,000 years of rising and falling lake levels formed Mackinac Island. In recent centuries the climate, erosion, and human activity have shaped the island.  Click here for a summary of the natural wonders of Mackinac Island State Park.

Historic Sites and Monuments

The park is filled with historic attractions. Fort Mackinac and the Historic Downtown sites are the most prominent, but there are many points of interest and monuments throughout the park. Click here for a summary of the Historic Sites and Monuments of Mackinac Island State Park.

Roads and Trails

Mackinac Island State Park contains 70.5 miles of signed and interpreted roads and trails. Some are paved, some are not. Some are shared by horses, bikes and walkers; others are best for hiking only. There are also over 50 interpretive panels throughout the park that describe the natural wonders and historic locations. Click here for a summary of the park’s trail system.

Travel Information

Mackinac Island, part of Mackinac County, is located in the Straits of Mackinac. Private ferry companies provide service to the island. The island boat docks adjoin Main Street, a bustling business district filled with hotels, restaurants, souvenir stores and fudge shops. The Park Commission maintains the Mackinac Island Airport.

Street Addresses

Mackinac Island State Park Visitor’s Center: 7165 Main St.

Administrative Office: 7029 Huron Rd.

Park Field Office and Maintenance Complex: 1856 Fort Service Rd.

Mackinac Island State Park Airport: 7700 Annex Rd.

Arch Rock: 6131 Arch Rock Rd.

British Landing: 3596 M-185

Travel Directions

Click here to map your route to Mackinac Island State Park and for general travel information on your visit to Mackinac Island.

Visitor Services

Visitor’s Center

The Mackinac Island State Park Visitor’s Center is located on the shore at the foot of Fort Street across from Marquette Park. The Visitor’s Center is a great place to begin your tour of the island. Here you can talk to friendly staff who will answer your questions and provide you with helpful suggestions. The Visitor’s Center has well-maintained restrooms and a wide selection of Mackinac books and pamphlets. This is an ideal place to purchase tickets for Fort Mackinac, the Mackinac Art Museum, and the other state park historic buildings.

Visitor’s Center Hours

May 9 – June 5, 2015
9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

June 6 – September 6, 2015
9:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.

September 7 – October 11, 2015
9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Restrooms

In addition to the Visitor’s Center, restrooms are also located at Arch Rock and British Landing. Water fountains are available at both locations.

Accessibility 

Island transport services and visitor attractions make special efforts to welcome people with disabilities and those using assistive devices. Motorized wheelchair units that are medically necessary are permitted on island streets. These units are available for rent on the island at Ryba’s Bikes (rybabikes.com or 906-847-3208).

The taxi service has special horse-drawn vehicles equipped for wheelchairs and available by contacting the dispatch office (906-847-3323). Advanced reservation is recommended. For additional information about accommodations for visitors with disabilities please contact individual businesses or the Mackinac Island Tourism Bureau.  Click here for further information about accessibility.

Visitation Tips & Courtesies

Getting Around

Please keep in mind that Mackinac Island State Park is an outdoor experience so prepare accordingly for various weather conditions. Automobiles were banned on Mackinac Island in 1898. The absence of cars has created a unique, charming and historic ambiance. But, how do you get around?

Most visitors travel by foot power, either walking or pedalling. Many of the prominent sites are less than a mile from the Visitor’s Center. Other popular sights are for more adventurous hikers. Even though there are no cars to contend with, walkers need to be cautious, watching out for horses and bikes, using sidewalks and foot paths where they are available.

Aside from walking, visitor transportation is via horse or bicycle. Mackinac Island is a bicyclist’s paradise, especially the road around the island. Eight miles in circumference, Lake Shore Boulevard (M-185) is the only state highway where cars are banned! Another great way to see the island is by horsepower. Horse-drawn carriage tours of the island’s scenic and historic sites are very popular. Click here for further information on biking and horse transportation. 

While the park includes over 80% of the island’s land, park boundaries meander irregularly, particularly near the downtown area and the west end. Non-park areas are under the jurisdiction of the City of Mackinac Island. Visitors should be respectful of private property, leaseholds and city regulations.

Road Safety

Remember that with hundreds of horses and more than 2,500 bicycles sharing the road, following traffic rules is a necessity. When walking, always use sidewalks, foot paths and crosswalks where provided. Cyclists ride to the right, yield to horses and pedestrians, park only in designated areas and observe all traffic safety signs.

Pet Friendly

Well-behaved pets are welcome in Mackinac Island State Park. Please clean up after your pet.

Prohibited Activities

It is unlawful to do the following in Mackinac Island State Park:

  • Camp
  • Hunt
  • Build Fires
  • Use land for commercial operations without proper permission
  • Use a loudspeaker or public address system without proper permission
  • Hold or participate in a road race without proper permission
  • Engage in any disorderly conduct
  •  Possess or consume alcoholic beverages in Marquette Park between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 8:00 a.m.
  • Conduct excavations, diggings, or surveys without proper permission
  • Carry or possess a metal detector without proper permission

See Mackinac Island State Park Commission General Rules for a full description of all park regulations.