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9 Reasons You Should Visit Michigan City Indiana This Summer

Despite often being written off as a flyover state, Indiana is full of hidden gems. Although the state tends to hibernate during the cold winter months, it always wakes up during summer with family-friendly festivals, beaches, state parks, and lots of good food!

Located just off the shore of Lake Michigan, Michigan City, Indiana, is packed with fun things to do that the whole family will enjoy.

Trinity Church, Michigan City Indiana
Trinity Church, Michigan City Indiana

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1. Indiana Dunes

Perhaps the biggest draw of tourists to Michigan City is the picturesque Indiana Dunes, which can be enjoyed throughout the entire year. Although Lake Michigan is too cold to swim in during the winter, the beaches are beautiful year-round for walking and stargazing. 

Bike trails, horseback riding, fishing, and boating are only a few of the activities available alongside plenty of grassy areas your four-legged friend will also love. 

2. Shady Creek Winery

The newly renovated family-owned winery offers much more than just a good glass of wine. 

Igloo Village, Shady Creek Winery
Each igloo has an individual theme, a space heater, throw blankets and plenty of twinkling lights ✨

Though sleek and modernized, the tasting room still feels cozy and comfortable due to the magnificent fireplace warming up the room. There are ample outdoor patios and seating for either tasting or dining, and the food menu is impressive in comparison to other wineries across the state.  

Looking for entertainment alongside your wine? Shady Creek offers a wide variety of live entertainment, from live music to guided painting nights, trivia, outdoor movies, and much more.

Read more about Shady Creek Winery here.

3. Antiquing

Whether you’re searching for a new vinyl or simply love the hunt for the unique and unknown, downtown Michigan city is sprinkled with vintage shops and adorable boutiques around every corner. Furniture, clothing, games, decor, and art-there is sure to be a treasure hidden somewhere waiting for your discovery. Try starting at "Good News Vintage" on Franklin Street and walk from there wherever the smell of your grandma’s attic takes you. 

4. Lighthouse Place Premium Outlets

Things to do in Michigan City Indiana
Lighthouse Place Premium Outlets

Looking for something more in this decade? The Lighthouse Place Premium Outlets are open daily from 10 am-6 pm. They are home to 100 different stores, including Michael Khors, The North Face, Underarmor, Starbucks, and our favorite, The Beef Jerky Experience. 

5. The Colorful Storefronts

The walkable downtown area of Michigan City is covered in art and color on every building.  Trinity Episcopal Church Michigan City sits in the middle of Franklin Street, where you’ll also find art structures, a surplus of coffee, restaurants, and shopping. 

6. Washington Park Beach

Open daily from 5 am to 10 pm Washington Park Beach's beautiful sands stretch on for acres. The shores of Lake Michigan make the perfect scenic picnic, and if you feel like exploring, you can visit the nearby Washington Park Zoo or Friendship Botanic Gardens

7. Michigan City Lighthouse
Michigan City Lighthouse
The view over the Michigan City Lighthouse is best over sunset 🌅

The oldest lighthouse in Indiana, built in 1858, offers a magnificent sunset view across Lake Michigan, which is especially vibrant during summer. Although you cannot climb the lighthouse itself, a boardwalk and long pier leading up to the structure provide space for all visitors, whether going for a romantic walk, taking a selfie, or casting a fishing line. 

If you’re interested in learning more about the lighthouse's history, save some time to visit the Old Lighthouse Museum as well.

See the official website for opening hours. 


8. Shoreline Brewery

Less than a 10-minute walk from the Lighthouse, Shoreline Brewery is an easy must-stop during your visit. Another family-owned business, the brewery offers a wide variety of food alongside its 18 varieties of beer. Not sure what to try first? “Sum Nug” and “Happy New Beer” will definitely leave you feeling smug and happy.

If you’re still in the mood for a pint Burn Em’ Brewery is less than a 10-minute drive down the road. Always remember to drive responsibly and bring a sober driver if you plan on drinking. 

Breweries in Indiana
Shoreline Brewery

9. Blue Chip Casino

If you’re feeling lucky, Blue Chip Casino offers almost 2,000 slots and a wide variety of table games and poker tables. Multiple restaurants and bars, as well as smoking and non-smoking areas, are also available. 


Looking for more to do in Indiana? Subscribe below to get updated with all the latest travel guides, tips, and tricks, including the best road trip stops across the Hoosier state.

If you plan on stopping at Shady Creek, don't forget to learn more here before your visit.

Sending love from Indiana,


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