One of northern Michigan’s most popular destinations was just recognized as one of the best beaches in the world.
National Geographic named Sleeping Bear Point, part of the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore on the northwest coast of the Lower Peninsula, was named one of the 21 top beaches on Earth, particularly as a prime destination for dune walkers.
“Pure, fresh water and 450-foot bluffs mean eyes-open swimming and vast views over Lake Michigan,” wrote Kimberley Lovato of National Geographic. “Walk from the former Sleeping Bear Point Coast Guard Station, now a maritime museum, or along the Sleeping Bear Point Trail over low-lying dunes to the beach. In the distance, look for North and South Manitou Islands, prime spots for hiking and camping.”
In 2011, ABC’s Good Morning America named Sleeping Bear Dunes the most beautiful place in America, and through the years it has become a national tourist attraction, drawing a record 1.5 million people in 2015.
The park spreads 35 miles along the shoreline in Michigan’s northwestern Lower Peninsula.
Other American beaches recognized by National Geographic include Bowman’s Beach on Sanibel Island, Fla.; Sunset Beach, N.C., near the North Carolina-South Carolina border; Cannon Beach, Ore., south of Ecola State Park; Papakōlea Beach, a green sand beach on the Big Island of Hawaii; and Carmel City Beach in California.