is dancing underwater." --- Jim Harrison
FROM WICKWOOD ARE THE AWARD WINNING OVAL BEACH, THE SAUGATUCK DUNES, AND
OFTEN A GLIMPSE OF THE GREEN FLASH! ALL ON THE SHORES OF OUR GREAT LAKE
are to the Midwest what the Grand Canyon is to Arizona, and Yosemite to
California. They contribute a signature of time and eternity. Once lost,
the loss would be irrevocable." --- Carl Sandburg
boasts one of the most beautiful harbors up and down the entire Coast of
Lake Michigan. With its uninterrupted shoreline, our vast expanse of
sandy Saugatuck beaches provide miles of possibilities for joy and days
of opportunities for endless adventure.
When you need
to simply slow down, there's no better place than the beaches in
Saugatuck to sit, read, soak up a little sunshine, and completely
unplug. There are countless ways to get outdoors and enjoy our sweet
You may want to
head to Oval Beach (one of the top two fresh water beaches in the United
States according to National Geographic Traveler) by car, the Chain
Ferry, or a short hike. Take a break from the summer heat with a
refreshing swim in Lake Michigan. Enjoy the thrill of catching a wave
and body surfing your way back to shore. Bordering Oval is the Saugatuck
Harbor Natural Area. Its stunning network of trails meander through the
dunes and provide expansive access to pristine sandy beaches, the Lagoon
as well as access to a walk along the Harbor's pier.
While you're on
the beach you may want to simply take off your flip flops and stroll
barefoot in the sand. You can walk for miles and miles. The sounds of
the singing sands will make the minutes simply disappear as you look for
driftwood, lucky stones and gather beach glass.
The sand on the
pure, crystal beaches of Saugatuck/Douglas is called "Singing Sand".
Nowhere else on earth did ancient forces combine in the same way to form
the quartz dunes. It's a compound of millions of tiny, clear fragments
of quartz crystals (nine out of every ten sand grains is quartz) that
gives this sand its soft, smooth texture. When the sand has just the
right balance between wind and humidity, the sand along the water's edge
will sing underfoot, thus, geologists term it "Singing Sand".
To get out in
the water, rent a kayak, canoe, or stand up paddleboard and head out on
the river . . . maybe even winding your way all the way to the big lake.
Reserve a pontoon boat, charter a fishing trip, or book a sunset sail.
Take a tour by land and water on the Harbor Duck. Or, enjoy the sound of
gently splashing water as the Star of Saugatuck's paddle wheels propel
you around Lake Kalamazoo and out to the channel into Lake Michigan.
To marvel at
the giant dunes along the shore, hit the trails at the Saugatuck Dunes
State Park and walk, run, or skip your way through the stunning woods
and dunes. Your reward will be breathtaking views and a vast, uncrowded
Lake Michigan beachfront. Be a kid and slide down the dunes and climb
back up again.
Hop aboard the
Saugatuck Chain Ferry (the only hand-cranked chain ferry left in the
country!) and cross the Kalamazoo. On the other side, you can explore
the Historical Society's Pump House Museum (one of the best-known and
most-visited small town museums in Michigan!) and climb your way up the
302 steps of Mt. Baldhead. After catching your breath and taking in the
views from the top, make your way back down the steps, or wind down the
dunes to the adjacent, award-winning Oval Beach.
Just south from
Oval Beach is the smaller, quieter, Douglas Beach. Set in a residential
area, parking is limited but the sand and water are just as spectacular.
Further south is Pier Cove Beach, known for the "water trenches" formed
by a stream flowing into Lake Michigan. This spot is special because of
its unusually smooth stones and beach glass.
On any given
evening along the quiet windswept sand dunes towering above the gently
rolling surf of Lake Michigan, hundreds of world travelers watch in
awe-inspired admiration as the brilliant sun slowly sets with a fiery
crescendo of a lipstick streaked sky. The heavenly performance entrances
visitors who often stay long after the spectacular panorama slowly fades
under the gentle veil of night. It's reminiscent of an old-fashioned
outdoor movie theater with the sun as the Hollywood star. "I've never
seen such a beauty in the sunset before," said Sun-Ai Ch'oe, a recent
visitor from Seoul, Korea. "The sky was painted such brilliant colors
like an artist’s canvas."
Yet a third
treasure, is a myth for some, others, a reality and a nightly watch for
many. Tourists and year-round residents alike marvel in the
unpredictable, extraordinary image of "The Green Flash" light show. Many
think the "green flash" is a myth before witnessing the shocking beauty
for themselves. "A brilliant green light appeared across the horizon and
our jaws dropped. We sat still, stunned!" Linda Rowder of Saugatuck
couldn't believe the "green flash" even existed until she saw it with
her own eyes. "I'd heard the myth and one summer night, saw it. It
reappeared three or four more times during the next few weeks. Each time
it was a slightly different shade of brilliant, phosphorus green – and
each time, it flashed for only a few seconds. To catch the "green flash"
is now a quest, and a great reason for supper on our front porch." "It's
a phenomenon that I have wanted to see for years - and I finally saw
it!" exclaimed Mary Margolis.
Wolf-Chase, a researcher astronomer at Alder Planetarium, Chicago,
explains: "At sunset, you're looking at a lot more layers of atmosphere
than at noon. The atmosphere acts like a prism and refracts lights. The
setting sun looks kind of reddish, and if you catch it at the right
time, as the sun disappears, you can catch a glimpse of the green left
over." Wolf-Chase says that if you're a regular sunset watcher, you're
bound to see the flash eventually. And the expanse of Lake Michigan as
viewed from the 200-foot Saugatuck/Douglas sand dunes or the large, soft
beaches is widely believed to be the prime location to see this natural
Saugatuck is a
small resort village that's a little slice of paradise. Time has
forgotten it and decades have only polished it until it glows.
lake . . . is earth’s eye; looking into which the beholder measures the
depth of his own nature."
--- Henry David Thoreau
JULY, AUGUST & SEPTEMBER EVENTS CALENDAR
Weekday rates begin
Wickwood's Farm to Table Breakfast
Afternoon and Evening Sweets
Evening Sips and Small Plates
We suggest you book now for Fall
We are experiencing unusually heavy reservation bookings.
Reservations 800.385.1174 and 269.857.1465
Inn | 510 Butler Street P.O. Box 1019
| Saugatuck, MI 49453
Tel (800) 385-1174 |
Bill and Julee Rosso Miller, Proprietors