100 Best Midwest Small-Town Getaways
Mackinac Island area, Michigan
It's become a cliche to say that arriving by ferry at an island's harborside village is like stepping back in time. But it's so true at Mackinac Island that you'll wonder if the idea originated on this Gilded Age holdover. The queen of Victorian Era resorts, the white-columned Grand Hotel (left), occupies a bluff over the waters between Michigan's peninsulas.
Because cars are banned, the signature sound is the clip-clop of horses' hooves. Visitors take carriage tours, ride bikes, taste famous fudge and tour the 1700s fort. Back on the mainland, explore the island's gateways, St. Ignace (population: 2,700) and Mackinaw City (population: 860), linked by the five-mile Mackinac Bridge.