When I started thinking about writing this particular post I made a list of all the places and things which I wanted to include. Unfortunately my list was a couple of pages long and so I have to winnow it down to a reasonable length - sort of by category. Today's category, "Favorite places to visit/disappear to." That being said, most of you will never have even heard of most of the places I am going to tell you about and yet they are places which really should not be missed if you get the chance to visit.
Ranger Lake, Ontario, Canada. A couple of hours North of Sault Saint Marie, Ontario - Ranger Lake is located in the Algoma District of the province of Ontario and, like many lakes in this part of Ontario, surrounded by the Porcupine Mountains. It takes a while to get there but the drive is a wonderful drive through the woods, the views are spectactular, the fishing is fantastic and the people are warm and welcoming. What few people there are. Don't try to get there in the winter though, unless you plan to fly in. Ranger Lake is "off the beaten path" and the nearest plowed road to get in ends about 30 miles before you get there.
Alpine Chocolat Haus - an old fashioned candy store featuring a wealth of homemade candies. I do not make candy - ever. I call Bruce and let him make it for me because they are much better at it than I ever will be. They make one they call the "Cow Patty" which is homemade seafoam candy, lightly crushed and mixed with homemade milk or dark chocolate that is absolutely heavenly.
Grandpa Shorter's in the gaslight district of Petoskey Michigan. An old fashioned emporium and toy store Grandpa Shorter's sells everything from books to toys to clothes to gourmet foodstuffs. It has also been voted one of Michigan's favorite gift stores for 64 years.
Mackinaw Crossings. A unique shopping and entertainment venue in Mackinaw City, Michigan. It blends the historical with the modern. Laser light shows mix with old fashioned rubber duck races around the fountain (that one up there), concerts, period costumes, fun and fantastic foods. Right across the street from Mackinaw Crossings is Mama Mia's Pizza- they make the BEST Pizza in the state of Michigan and upstairs from the pizza parlor is the FREE Mackinaw Bridge Museum. A visit to Mackinaw City is NOT complete without a trip to Mackinaw Crossings, Colonial Michilimackinac, Mama Mia's and the Bridge Museum.
Visit Mackinac Island too.... just do it after you visit Mackinaw City so that you can truly appreciate the unique character of the island and the lack of hustle and bustle you will find. Don't forget to have tea on the veranda of the Grand Hotel... just make sure you are off the hotel grounds before 6:00 pm... they have a strict dress code.