Explore the most popular nature trips trails in Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

This is gorgeous trail!! It was slightly challenging as there were a lot of steep inclines, and I was carrying a baby. The trail was very well labeled, and it's a great workout! Definitely a recommendation to other hikers, and I look forward to going back.

Not a hard trail and the view is incredible!

It’s hard but rewarding!!!

Great fun. Different loops so you can do as little or as much as you’d like. This trail takes you through varied landscapes and fauna.

walking
7 days ago

Easily accessible and well groomed. Worth the views!

Went today and walked the whole thing barefoot. 55 degrees and cloudy were perfect conditions for this trail. Great cardio workout. Pure Michigan

My wife and I made the trip on this trail, to reap the wonderful reward, a view that is spellbinding! The clouds seem to be touchable from atop the bluff. The benches make a comfortable place to ponder the legend of Sleeping Bear Dunes, as the "cubs" (North and South Manitou Island) are easily visible from the bluff. Allow yourself some quiet time at the turn around to listen to the clarity and peace of nature on this trail. There is a friendly chipmunk that visited us also , sit still and be quiet, I bet he or she(?),will introduce itself to you!

We hiked all the way to the lake, myself (40 something) and two athletic sons. We made it to the lake in 41 minutes, that was a non stop good pace. The expression on people's faces when you meet them at the top of the first section at post marker 4 and advise them there are 27 total, priceless! There is something special about this area, perhaps Mama Bear keeps an eye on all of us when we are in her dunes...enjoy!

Spectacular. We very much enjoyed the hike and sights.

Amazing views.

hiking
1 month ago

This was a great hike. The sand was really loose on the trail and made for slow going up hill, but the views at the tops were worth it!

hiking
1 month ago

Great for kids!

Beautiful trail. Inclines for half a mile to the Point; lovely stands of birch and wild columbine in May. Once out on the dunes, the views are amazing. After the Point, trail dips back into the woods and spits out on even more incredible duneage, covered with sand cherry shrubs and moss. Unfortunately, I somehow managed to connect myself with the neighboring trail at Hidden Lake and got lost - had to backtrack and found people who were kind enough to drive me back to the trailhead. Definitely study the map before heading out, is my advice, because getting back up the dune from the adjacent trail would have been murder.

hiking
1 month ago

Weather makes all the difference! We went right after a light rain/sprinkle that even helped pack the ground a bit, leaving the air about 79 degrees. I walk regularly but not a ton of recent hiking and I could’ve done it twice, running every downhill. If you can make it past the first dune, you made it up the biggest, and while there’s still a bunch left, you can do it!! Be smart. Bring a hat and PLENTY of water regardless of the weather. You never know. We did 1 hour each way, but keep maybe 2 hours each way in case. The number markers go up to 28! Secluded beach at the end makes it worth it!! Have fun!

Brought our large dog. Lots of other walkers, several w dogs. Hike was fairly easy w moderate elevation changes. Tricky part (at least w a large dog) was the wooden boardwalk as you approached the bluff. VERY narrow-not enough room for us to walk one direction and another hiker the other direction. A bit crowded overlooking the lake but the view was simply spectacular. No regrets!

hiking
1 month ago

Awesome trail but challenging. The trail seems like it goes on forever. Just when you think you are close to the Lake, you go over another hill to realize you are not quit there yet. Gorgeous views once you do make it to the Lake.

hiking
1 month ago

If you are looking for a trail in Sleeping Bear Dunes that isn’t all sand and dune trails, this is a perfect choice. There is a parking lot right at the trailhead and the trail is well marked and easy to find. This trail includes deep woods, open dunes, spectacular dune cliffside views of Lake Michigan, open meadows, and a lot of elevation change. I’d say the difficulty level is moderate, in Michigan trail standards at least.

hiking
1 month ago

Beautiful, plan to do again in the fall. Make sure to read Douglas’s comment below. The mapping is off.

Great view at the lookout (0.6)!

hiking
1 month ago

Great easy trail. Lots of variety.

Great little loop with a 5 yr old. Well kept trail. Beautiful sand dunes/ beach at half way point. The forest is spectacular

Easy, neat walk to see the views of the lake.

Right off the trailhead you can either go left or right. If you go to the right, it’s just a short walk to an incredible and secluded beach where you will be one of a few people occupying the beach. We ended up staying there and swimming for hours!
However, the left side of the trail at the Y has “okay” views and tons of dunes. It was alright, maybe 2/5 stars.
But that beach was soooooo amazing! So clear!

Short and amazing views! Worth your stop!

backpacking
1 month ago

This trip was as good as it gets. Trail was well maintained, getting water is very easy being that your on a island. Did this loop ten days ago and didnt pull out the bug spray once. Gorgeous views every night at camp, the best part is once you are off the boat and on the trail you dont run into anyone. I would highly recommend backpacking the NMI loop.

Great shaded trail. Dogs are not allowed on the spur to Lake Michigan.

If you are looking to spend time in the sleeping bear dunes area with some degree of seclusion, this is the place for you! Four days was just enough time to hike the trail and enjoy all there is to offer from the island. The other reviews stand true and cover most of the bases. I highly recommend NMI!

Due to time and others we just went out and back, was a nice short hike the incline might be a little more strenuous for some people.

Very challenging and fun day hike! Beautiful views from multiple dune peaks.

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