Traverse City, Michigan prides itself on being a holiday location for all seasons, with something to do whatever the weather. July to August is a good time to enjoy the beaches, September and October offer a stunning spectacle of turning leaves, and crisp snows in the colder months of the year allow for various winter sports. This all year round appeal is reflected in the prices of flights, which show little fluctuation from month to month, although it’s still worth shopping around for cheap flights to Traverse City as some airlines offer better deals than others. Warmest months in Traverse City are June, July and August, with soothing temperatures in the region of 21-27°C, coldest are January and February, where it can fall as low as -9°C. June, July and August are also the wettest months, with over 3 inches of rainfall, while the driest are February and March, which each receive less than 2 inches. For a deeper sense of the city’s heritage, time your visit for the first full week in July and the National Cherry Festival, which celebrates Traverse City’s status as the USA’s Cherry Capital, and which offers eight days of free live music and all manner of shows and events.
With over 180 miles (290 km) of sandy shoreline in the vicinity, Traverse City is a beach town, ideal for a relaxing swim or a stroll. Hugging the southerly tip of Grand Traverse Bay is the central area, Traverse City’s chilled-out shopping district which boasts over a hundred shops as well as cafes, restaurants and taprooms serving some interesting local craft beers. Dotted along the lakeside are a number of picturesque lighthouses, reminders of Traverse City’s proud maritime history, and the port is home to several magnificent replicas of 19th century tall ships, some of which cater to visitors with tours and even food and accommodation. If you like to be very active on your holiday, then the extensive forest and lake trails in and around Traverse City offer a picturesque backdrop for cycling, roller skating, snowshoeing or cross-country skiing depending on the time of year. During the baseball season, you can chill out with a hot dog and beer, watching Traverse City’s professional team, the Beach Bums, in their stadium just south of town. With its own symphony orchestra and a thriving Playhouse, Traverse City is also something of a haven for the performing arts, and it celebrates the movies at the end of July and the beginning of August with its internationally recognized Traverse City Film Festival.
Traverse City is well-served by bus routes called City Loops, and there’s also a Bike-N-Ride Program which allows cyclists to pedal out of the city, then catch a bus for the return leg of their trip. For motorists, the Larry C. Hardy car park offers free parking in Traverse City’s centre district on weekends and after 5 pm on Mondays to Fridays. For those keen to explore the lakes around Traverse City, there are various boat tours, organized fishing trips and yacht charter companies, or you might want to consider a wine-tasting tour of some of the local vineyards.
Located just 3 miles (5 km) from the downtown shopping district, Cherry Capital Airport (TVC) is conveniently placed for anyone catching a flight to Traverse City. If you plan on driving yourself, several rental car companies operate out of the airport in offices adjacent to the baggage claims area. Alternatively, there’s a bus stop just outside the terminal before you get to the short stay car park.