The biggest of the Great Lakes, there's plenty of things to do at Lake Superior.
We confess. Forced to choose a favorite of the Great Lakes, this is ours.
There’s a reason it’s called Lake Superior!
Let's Put it in Perspective
Lake Superior is by far the biggest and deepest of the Great Lakes. With a staggering 31,700 square miles of surface water, this lake is 350 miles wide. So, it has the look and feel of an ocean.
Scientists have even detected tides on the Lake Superior shoreline!
It has a maximum depth of 1,332 feet, and a volume of 2,900 cubic miles – that’s enough to fill all of the other Great Lakes combined!
Lake Superior is so gigantic, we will be traveling across three states and two time zones. It is the biggest, the deepest, the coldest, and certainly the wildest of all the Great Lakes.
It’s really hard to put into words the magnificence of this, the largest lake in the U.S. It has nearly 9.8 billion acre-feet of freshwater.
10 Best Things to Do at Lake Superior: East to West
Since we're crossing three states and two time zones, there are lots of things to do at Lake Superior. We're going to cover the best of the best!
Near the small town of Bay Mills, MI, this lighthouse was named after the Iroquois warriors massacred there by the Ojibway in 1662.
Built in 1855, and first exhibited in 1857, its fourth-order Fresnel lens shone over one of the busiest shipping lanes in the world. High above the waters of Lake Superior at the entrance to the St. Mary’s River, the lighthouse marks the narrow channel for passing sailors.
After 107 years of service, the light was replaced by an automatic light in the channel off Gros Cap, Ontario. At the top of the spiral staircase is a 65-foot tower.
This museum is located at Whitefish Point on N. Whitefish Point Road, near Paradise, MI. It gives visitors a chance to learn about the many shipwrecks that have happened on Lake Superior over the decades, and also about life-saving devices.
The most famous wreck was the Edmund Fitzgerald, and the museum has the bell from the ship on display. The Lake’s
oldest lighthouse resides here, as well.
Tahquamenon Falls: Located inland on US-123, this is the largest waterfall east of the Mississippi, it has a drop of 50 feet and is more than 200 feet across.
The maximum flow recorded on these falls is a whopping 50,000 gallons of water per second!
Four miles downstream is the Lower Falls; a series of five smaller falls cascading around an island. Although not as dramatic as the Upper Falls, they are equally magnificent.
The island can be reached by rowboat rented from a park concession. For a day-use map, click HERE.
We've written a lot about Tahquamenon Falls as we generally have a Winter Campout there each year.
Located 3 miles east of Munising on road 720, this is a stunning, 2-mile stretch of sandstone cliffs, carved out from the mighty waves of the big cliffs. Take in wilderness views, waterfalls, and undeveloped beaches – perfect for an RV destination.
Stretching up to 200 feet above lake level, part of it has been naturally sculpted into shallow caves, arches, and formations that resemble castles and battleships.
The best way to see this lakeshore is by boat, most notably, the Pictured Rocks Cruise Line. There are other boat tour companies, including a glass-bottomed boat tour, where you may spot one or more of the famous shipwrecks down below.
Again, we have written about this area extensively, too.
Do you enjoy your Small House and BIG Yard RV Lifestyle experience? Maybe you need a t-shirt or hoodie to tell the world. This saying is a favorite in our community. Don't need a hoodie? We have mugs. 🙂
This is quite the photogenic waterfall, a cascading 50-foot spectacle at the western end of the Pictured Rocks area and located within the city limits of Munising on M-28.
A small paved trail leads to a cool sandstone canyon along Munising Creek and two viewing platforms at the base. The visitor’s center is a must-stop.
There are tons of waterfalls in the area – click here for a guide to the waterfalls in the area.
You can also read the 5 Best Things to Do in Munising Michigan.
In Marquette, MI is this forested 323-acre park on a peninsula that offers tremendous views of Lake Superior. Presque Isle offers the opportunity to hike, view wildlife, go biking, and visit Sunset Point for spectacular sunsets.
Something fun to try on a hot summer afternoon is cliff diving off of Blackrocks – if you dare! If a 10- to 15-foot jump into frigid Lake Superior appeals to you, then go for it!
This amazing peninsula offers several scenic drives, each showing off the beauty of the natural landscape.
The main highway is US-41, and in autumn, there is no better place to see the changing of the leaves. You can see The UP in Fall in Full Cover (with an awesome video).
Look for the roadside sign in the shape of a giant measuring stick that shows how deep the snow got last winter. The average lately has been about 32 feet!
More things to do at Lake Superior
This park is located 53 miles out from Copper Harbor in the middle of Lake Superior. It is a great place to get away and enjoy some quiet solitude on a remote wilderness island on the big lake.
There are no roads. The 36 designated tent campsites are accessible only by foot or watercraft.
Tremendously isolated and beautiful, it offers hiking, backpacking, camping, and kayaking opportunities. The island is reachable only by ferry or seaplane from Copper Harbor and nearby Houghton, in Michigan, and Grand Portage and Grand Marais in Minnesota.
It is a great place for a day trip. Obviously, RV’s are not permissible on the island.
At the UP’s far western end, this 60-thousand-acre natural wonder is one of the few remaining virgin wilderness tracts in the Midwest. It has towering virgin timber, secluded lakes, and miles of wild rivers and streams.
The Wilderness Center should be your first stop in “the Porkies.” It’s located along the South Boundary Road, three miles west of Silvery City on M-107.
The center has an exhibit hall featuring natural communities of the mountains and native wildlife species, including fisher, goshawk, gray wolf, porcupine, peregrine falcon, bear, and beaver. It also displays the history of the mountains from prehistoric copper miners to lumber camps of the early 1900s.
Just outside the center is an easy mile-long loop trail that highlights the wildlife and other natural features of the Northwoods.
Located near Ashland, WI, this is a wonderful place to get an entertaining education of the Great Lakes area.
A huge floor-mounted model of the big lake greets visitors inside the lobby. National park service employees are
there to answer questions about the region and provide orientation about the displays at the center.
It’s where we learned about Superior’s tidal fluctuations – changes in water level caused by the gravitational forces of the sun and moon.
This bundle is our popular Upper Peninsula RV Adventure Guide PLUS our newest Adventure Guide – The Great Lakes Shoreline Tour! Both ebooks will give you plenty of ideas and resources to enjoy this part of the US.
The Great Lakes Shoreline Tour — One of our favorite RV trips has been driving the United States side of the five Great Lakes. It is a trip of over 4,000 miles and takes you to 8 states! And it’s filled with beautiful vistas, welcoming towns and villages, and fabulous places to camp, hike, and explore.
Upper Peninsula RV Adventure Guide — Whenever someone asks us “Where is one of your favorite places in the US for RVing?” Our answer is unquestionably, in unison, “The UP of Michigan.” The “UP” meaning Upper Peninsula, of course.