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Drive to Paridise from Detroit

Boston
posts: 382
reviews: 2
Drive to Paridise from Detroit

What's the drive from Detroit to Paradise like? I know it's long but are there any good places to stop along the way?

When does it stop snowing up there? I'm thinking I want to visit but I don't want to get snowed in trying.... when would be the soonest safe month to try it?

Thank you in advance! I appreciate any advice.

Rochester Hills...
posts: 560
reviews: 69
1. Re: Drive to Paridise from Detroit

I hope that you are visting relatives in Paradise or the falls because if you blink you will miss the "town". To say that it is small town is an understatement.

Given that it is in the UP, it could snow as late as April and as early as October. So far Michigan has had a really mild winter but then again it is only the beginning of January. What are you going to Paradise for? Are you looking to do outdoor activities?

The Drive straight up I-75 from Detroit to Paradise is not all that exciting but it is the fastest most convenient route. Some of the best scenic routes would be along the western shore of Michigan but also pretty far out of your way. The drive up I-75 in the fall is very pretty though with all the leave color changes. You could also stop in Frankenmuth (a small bavarian village) or Birch Run for some outlet shopping.

Northern Michigan
Destination Expert
for Petoskey, Michigan
posts: 1,753
reviews: 29
2. Re: Drive to Paridise from Detroit

I thought Detroit was paradise!!!

Boston
posts: 382
reviews: 2
3. Re: Drive to Paridise from Detroit

Thank you for the information!

Yes, I'm visiting a friend in Paradise. It would be my first trip to Michigan...and if Detroit is Paradise too, then all the better!

Thank you SO MUCH!

Dundee, Michigan
posts: 682
reviews: 10
4. Re: Drive to Paridise from Detroit

Hi Dotchesta,

Fancy seeing you over here on the Michigan forum--now it's my turn to try to help you out since you have been so helpful to me over on the Boston forum!

First of all, the drive from Detroit to Paradise is not overly exciting, to say the least. Do you like pine trees? I mean, lots and lots of pine trees? Seriously though, from Detroit roughly up to Saginaw you will see several exits with the usual chain restaurants and big box stores. Once you get north of Saginaw though, the towns become much more scattered and you drive for long stretches without seeing much of anything except for trees. Gaylord and Grayling are decent-sized towns, but for the most part it becomes more and more uninhabited the farther north you get. If you can hold off at all until at least late April/early May, you will more than likely avoid any snow or ice. As the previous poster mentioned, we have had an incredibly warm winter so far. I live in SE MI and it was 53 degrees today! Another bonus to waiting for springtime is just the magnificent beauty of northern Michigan when the grass is green and the leaves are on the trees. The view from the Mackinac Bridge is spectacular but might be a little less inspiring this time of the year--probably just sort of gray and gloomy.

When you get to Paradise, I hope that you will take the time to drive up to Whitefish Point and visit the Great Lakes Shipwreck Museum. It is really cool, and the Lake Superior shore is pretty too, even though you live in MA and probably get to see the ocean fairly often.

One thing is for sure--you won't find any amusement parks or outlet malls up there.

Kansas
Destination Expert
for Mackinac Island, Mackinaw City, Kansas
posts: 3,660
reviews: 94
5. Re: Drive to Paridise from Detroit

Are you flying into Detroit? In Michigan, it is about the farthest commerical airport from Paradise.

Keith

Dundee, Michigan
posts: 682
reviews: 10
6. Re: Drive to Paridise from Detroit

I forgot to mention something in my post. I am inclined to believe that the previous poster who stated "Detroit is Paradise" was being facetious. Detroit does have a lot of neat things to see and do and a pretty impressive skyline, but, and I will probably get some flack for this, it is definitely NOT a city that you want to explore on your own unless you know exactly where you are at all times, preferably by having someone with you who knows the city very, very well. If you stick to the downtown area around the casinos and sports venues you will probably be okay, but it is very easy to get turned around due to the fact that, like Boston, Detroit was laid out a very long time ago and doesn't follow a definite grid like some large cities. If you have never been there before and don't know anyone knowledgable who can show you around, you are probably better off just observing it from the interstate or parking downtown during the day and exploring the immediate downtown district on foot. I have lived approx. 45 min. from Detroit for several years, and I know from whence I speak. You do not want to get lost in Detroit. On the other hand, if you know where you are at all times and keep your wits about you, Detroit can be a really wonderful place to visit.

Dundee, Michigan
posts: 682
reviews: 10
7. Re: Drive to Paridise from Detroit

I quoted him wrong. I meant to say "I thought Detroit was Paradise!" Sorry!

Boston
posts: 382
reviews: 2
8. Re: Drive to Paridise from Detroit

Sultana,

Thank you SO MUCH!! Funny...small world. I'll have to remember not to cut you off in Boston traffic!

I appreciate the warning about Detroit too. I'd heard that it's rough. I read an article somewhere about the suburban sprawl around Detroit and the fact that unlike in other cities (like Boston), the yuppies aren't moving into the city, but rather moving out of it and building up the 'burbs, leaving behind very depressed areas.

I appreciate the info about the drive. This will be a test of friendship! But seriously, it sounds like beautiful country. Nowhere becomes somewhere as the big box stores take over.

Thank you so much all of you for your helpful answers. I'm printing out this page in preparation for a trip later on, probably in summer. (I've been warned about the kind of snow they get up there! )

Dundee, Michigan
posts: 682
reviews: 10
9. Re: Drive to Paridise from Detroit

Dotchesta,

Going in the summer is a great idea. Michigan is a truly beautiful state in the summer. I hope that you will take the time to stop off in Mackinaw City and take the ferry over to Mackinac Island (that's not a typo-they really are spelled two different ways for some reason), especially if you go in mid-June when the lilacs are blooming on the island. There are lilac bushes there that are bigger than some trees and when they are in bloom, combined with the wonderful Victorian architecture and the view of Lake Huron, you will truly think that you have died and gone to heaven. It is the most peaceful place on earth (no cars or trucks allowed, just horses and buggies). I hope that your friend will take you there because as long as you are going to be in upper Michigan it is a must see.

I'm not sure if yuppies are settling into downtown Detroit or not at this point. I am inclined to say that at least some are coming back into town, because over by Comerica Park and Ford Field they have built some pretty swanky-looking apartments/condos and you can tell that they are designed for those who have money. That whole area has seen an incredible transformation, mainly because of the efforts of the Ilitch family who own the Detroit Tigers. There is a wonderful old theater right across the street from Comerica Park, the Fox, which has been totally renovated and is a real jewel. There are also many restaurants and nightclubs that have sprouted up since the renovation of the Fox and the construction of the two new sports venues. That part of Detroit feels pretty safe and there are usually lots of people around, especially if the Tigers or the Lions have a game that day.

There are many things about Detroit that are good. They have some of the wealthiest and most beautiful suburbs in the country. Up in the Grosse Point area there are huge mansions that would rival any in Beverly Hills. The Edsel Ford estate is incredible, as is the Henry Ford estate in Dearborn. Up in Auburn Hills where the Pistons play there is a huge outlet shopping center called Great Lakes Crossings that draws people from all over the region. The village of Troy, another suburb, has lots of upscale shopping. The Henry Ford Museum and Greenfield Village (now referred to simply as "The Henry Ford") in Dearborn is an American treasure and very, very well worth a visit if you have the time and are so inclined. Just to name a few of their items on display: the limo that JFK was riding in when he got shot in Dallas, the bus that Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat on, President Washington's camp bed from the Revolutionary War and the chair that President Lincoln was sitting in when he was shot at Ford's Theater, complete with bloodstain on the upholstery. Needless to say, this museum is no slouch. I highly recommend it if you have never been to MI and may not get back anytime soon, but I understand time constraints and your desire to get to Paradise.

I didn't mean to write a book here, lol, so I'll stop now. As in any big city with a sometimes dubious reputation, just be very wary in Detroit, know where you are at all times, stay on the main streets and you should be fine.

BTW, you won't be able to cut me off in Boston traffic anyway, because after reading all of the responses to my thread on driving in Boston, I have absolutely no intention of attempting it. If we drive into the city, Hubby will be behind the wheel, not me. ; - )

Northern Michigan
Destination Expert
for Petoskey, Michigan
posts: 1,753
reviews: 29
10. Re: Drive to Paridise from Detroit

Nice posts Sultana, you obviously know your immediate surroundings and state very well. Obviously, I was being sarcastic with my "paradise" comment, but you're right...Downtown Detroit has undergone a fairly major revitalization in recent years. Downtown Detroit is fun again!!! There's a slew of great bars and restaurants around downtown and tons to do...As for yuppies moving back in, I think you'll see more and more of this over the next few years. Michigan's been developing "Renaissance Zones" in urban areas throughout the state (Detroit, Lansing, Grand Rapids, etc.) In a rennaissance zone, old run down buildings are remodeled and turned into high end housing, commercial property, etc. (I'm sure these are the swanky appartments you mentioned) and to attract high end buyers, the renaissance zone is able to offer major tax benefits, such as no property or income taxes for a pre-determined amount of time (usually 7-10 years). This type of project almost always attracts high end developers and buyers...I'm most familiar with a couple of these projects in Grand Rapids and the success is amazing!! I know of areas in GR that I wouldn't have walked through 10 years ago that are now full of families, restaurants, parks, etc.