21 underrated beach towns you should be spending more time in

Being surrounded by giant lakes gives us ample opportunities to lay out at a beach over the summer months. We complied a list of our favorite towns that have beautiful beaches. Not only are the views in these towns amazing, but the towns are charming, cute, and full of that small town vibe that everyone loves.

 

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Harbor Springs
4 hours and 9 minutes from Detroit
Is there any “up north” town better than Harbor Springs? Not only does the marina in town lead out to the chilling Lake Michigan, but the bars, restaurants, and cookies (hello, Tom’s Mom’s!) make people come back and back. Photo via IG user @syd_n_ey.
Harbor Springs
4 hours and 9 minutes from Detroit
Is there any “up north” town better than Harbor Springs? Not only does the marina in town lead out to the chilling Lake Michigan, but the bars, restaurants, and cookies (hello, Tom’s Mom’s!) make people come back and back. Photo via IG user @syd_n_ey.
Alpena
3 hours and 58 minutes from Detroit
Ahh, Alpena. You cheeky little town. The beach in Alpena overlooks the gorgeous Lake Huron, but the community life in Alpena is what really draws you in. There are tons of trails and hikes that you can take, and the community theatre program in town is always putting on amazing performances. Photo via IG user @lakeshorerealty.
Alpena
3 hours and 58 minutes from Detroit
Ahh, Alpena. You cheeky little town. The beach in Alpena overlooks the gorgeous Lake Huron, but the community life in Alpena is what really draws you in. There are tons of trails and hikes that you can take, and the community theatre program in town is always putting on amazing performances. Photo via IG user @lakeshorerealty.
Rogers City
4 hours and 9 minutes from Detroit
Not too far away from Alpena, Rogers City also looks out on the glorious Lake Huron. Rogers City is a lot smaller than Alpena, so if you want an even smaller small town feel we suggest you go here. Photo via IG user @travispeltz.
Rogers City
4 hours and 9 minutes from Detroit
Not too far away from Alpena, Rogers City also looks out on the glorious Lake Huron. Rogers City is a lot smaller than Alpena, so if you want an even smaller small town feel we suggest you go here. Photo via IG user @travispeltz.
Manistee
3 hours and 56 minutes from Detroit
Another small town that is located on Lake Michigan, the downtown area is charming with a slew of local shopping and a historical museum about the town. Oh — and the beach is pretty fabulous, too. Photo via IG user @glennpakulak.
Manistee
3 hours and 56 minutes from Detroit
Another small town that is located on Lake Michigan, the downtown area is charming with a slew of local shopping and a historical museum about the town. Oh — and the beach is pretty fabulous, too. Photo via IG user @glennpakulak.
Pentwater
3 hours and 27 minutes from Detroit
You technically have two options for water in Pentwater. There is Pentwater Lake which is beautiful and gorgeous, as well as big ole’ Lake Michigan. Don’t forget to check out the great restaurants in shopping in town, too. Photo via IG user @lindsaykate92.
Pentwater
3 hours and 27 minutes from Detroit
You technically have two options for water in Pentwater. There is Pentwater Lake which is beautiful and gorgeous, as well as big ole’ Lake Michigan. Don’t forget to check out the great restaurants in shopping in town, too. Photo via IG user @lindsaykate92.
Caseville
2 hours and 34 minutes from Detroit
Caseville may be the ideal beachside city. From the dunes, forests and plentiful beachfront property, to the great variety of restaurants and shopping centers downtown, this gem on Saginaw Bay is truly one of Michigan’s best vacation destinations. Photo via IG user @canaro_detroit.
Caseville
2 hours and 34 minutes from Detroit
Caseville may be the ideal beachside city. From the dunes, forests and plentiful beachfront property, to the great variety of restaurants and shopping centers downtown, this gem on Saginaw Bay is truly one of Michigan’s best vacation destinations. Photo via IG user @canaro_detroit.
Grand Haven
2 hours and 52 minutes from Detroit
Grand Haven is the mecca when it comes to beach towns in Michigan. Not only is there a huge beach that outlooks Lake Michigan, but the boardwalk is fabulous, and let us not forget about the Pronto Pub corn dogs which are amazing and should be cherished forever. Photo via IG user @visitgrandhaven.
Grand Haven
2 hours and 52 minutes from Detroit
Grand Haven is the mecca when it comes to beach towns in Michigan. Not only is there a huge beach that outlooks Lake Michigan, but the boardwalk is fabulous, and let us not forget about the Pronto Pub corn dogs which are amazing and should be cherished forever. Photo via IG user @visitgrandhaven.
Silver Lake
3 hours and 27 minutes from Detroit
Alright, so Silver Lake technically isn’t a town, but it is home to the Silver Lake Sand Dunes which is the craziest sand dunes you can find in all of Michigan. Tons of people head to the dunes over the summer to go wild. Plus, the view of the lake isn’t half bad, too. Photo via IG user @silverlakedunes.
Silver Lake
3 hours and 27 minutes from Detroit
Alright, so Silver Lake technically isn’t a town, but it is home to the Silver Lake Sand Dunes which is the craziest sand dunes you can find in all of Michigan. Tons of people head to the dunes over the summer to go wild. Plus, the view of the lake isn’t half bad, too. Photo via IG user @silverlakedunes.
South Haven
2 hours and 53 minutes from Detroit
Lounging on the sandy shores of Lake Michigan isn’t the only thing to do here. With strong agricultural roots, visitors will delight in the top-notch farmers markets, and U-Pick stops. Plus, with a deep water harbor, the town is a good spot to check out tall ships rolling on by. Photo via IG user @visitsouthhaven.
South Haven
2 hours and 53 minutes from Detroit
Lounging on the sandy shores of Lake Michigan isn’t the only thing to do here. With strong agricultural roots, visitors will delight in the top-notch farmers markets, and U-Pick stops. Plus, with a deep water harbor, the town is a good spot to check out tall ships rolling on by. Photo via IG user @visitsouthhaven.
Empire
4 hours and 15 minutes from Detroit
If you’re not going to the sand dunes when you’re in town of Empire then what are you even doing with your life? Located at the top of Lake Michigan near Traverse City, the sand dunes in Empire are simply breathtaking and look over gorgeous Lake Michigan. Seriously, you need to go there. Photo via IG user @puremittenpride.
Empire
4 hours and 15 minutes from Detroit
If you’re not going to the sand dunes when you’re in town of Empire then what are you even doing with your life? Located at the top of Lake Michigan near Traverse City, the sand dunes in Empire are simply breathtaking and look over gorgeous Lake Michigan. Seriously, you need to go there. Photo via IG user @puremittenpride.