Bay Harbor Michigan Travel Guide

Bay Harbor, Michigan Travel Guide

This last July Luke and I got to celebrate the marriage of our friends Rowan Burch and Teresa Sinacola! It was a destination wedding to Bay Harbor, Michigan and we spent a three day weekend there. I had never heard of this place before being from Texas and wanted to share some details about our trip, because I highly recommend you go. Looking back we also realized a few activities we wish we had done and I want to make sure you don’t make the same mistake. Read about our experience in Bay Harbor, Michigan and towards the end I have several suggestions of places to go and things to do. This would be a great place for you and your family or loved one to make a trip to!

The Inn at Bay Harbor

I will say it was a long trip coming from Texas. We flew into Traverse City, Michigan and rented a car. We then drove about 2 hours to Bay Harbor. Along the way we passed many fruit farms, vineyards, and fruit stands. We stayed at The Inn at Bay Harbor along with Lukes parents. They were also invited to the wedding and we stayed in the hotel’s Cottages located on the hotel property which was less than a 5 minute walk. The Cottages are great because they have a full kitchen and if you are traveling with a large family or several friends this would be a great rental option to all split. I have included a list of hotels that other guests stayed and and other nearby hotels below.


Wedding Eve Soirée

We arrived Friday evening and quickly got ready for the wedding eve soiree by the lake on the backside of the hotel. This consisted of friend and family celebrating together before Rowan and Teresa’s wedding on Saturday. There was an absolutely stunning sunset that seemed to last for an hour with every color you can imagine.


Wedding Day

On Saturday the wedding was going to be held in the early afternoon. We slept in and then went exploring. The hotel rents complementary bikes and there are so great bike baths you can take. We went over the the Bay Harbor Village, which was only about 5-10 minutes away. The water was so clear you could see at least 30 feet down and we had fun looking at all of the boats and houses by the bay. There were charger boats you could rent take you out for a ride or fishing. There were also many great little boutiques and restaurants. After that we ended up going back to our hotel and used the private beach and pool. The lake was really cold, but very refreshing. We enjoyed listening to the waves I never would hav thought a like could feel more like the ocean than when I was at Bay Harbor.


The Ceremony

The wedding ceremony was in the early afternoon at St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church in Petoskey, which was about 10-15 minutes away from our hotel. This is a great little town to visit. It was an absolutely beautiful wedding and Teresa look stunning! And even though Luke and I did not coordinate our outfits with his parents we all ended up matching. I guess great minds think alike!


The Reception

After a few hours everyone met back up at the The Bay Harbor Yacht Club, which was 5-10 minutes away from our hotel, for the reception. The cocktail hour was out on the balcony overlooking all of the amazing boats and yachts. The rest of the evening was spent with friends and family celebrating and dancing the night away!


Newlywed Brunch

On Sunday the newlyweds had a farewell brunch and continued onto their honeymoon. Our flight was not until late in the evening so we had the rest of the day to explore. We were going to rent a charter boat, but the there was a very thick fog that day. So explored a few nearby towns and ended up back at the beach and playing a giant game of chess. Below are a few places and things other couples did while they were there and really enjoyed. Two that are on my bucket list for next time is visiting Mackinaw Island and Wine tasting.

Boat Tours : Lake Escape, The Pointer Boat

Enjoy the open water of Lake Michigan on a private yacht, Discover sandy beaches or the unique beauty of Lake Charlevoix with four different cruise destinations.

Bike Rentals : Latitude 45, The Outfitter, Trail Council

Boat Rentals : Summertime Rentals, Boyne Water Sports, Tommy’s Off Walloon

Golf : Bay Harbor Golf Club, Crooked Creek Golf Course, Little Traverse Bay Golf Course, Dunmaglas Golf Course, Boyne Mountain Golf

Northern Michigan is known for their gorgeous golf courses and views.

Fishing : List of Fishing and Charters

Walloon Lake yields bass and walleye. Petoskey’s Bear River plays host to brook trout, salmon and steelhead. Head to Lake Charlevoix in Boyne City for walleye, smallmouth bass, yellow perch, bluegills and rock bass. In Alanson, you can reel in largemouth bass, yellow perch, northern pike, walleye and bluegill. And those who hit the colder waters of Little Traverse Bay will likely pull in trout, salmon, bass and steelhead.

Vineyards : Vine Ride Wine Tours, Crooked Vine Vineyard & Winery, Mackinaw Trail Winery,