With its untouched forests and rugged coastline, Michigan offers countless spots for wilderness getaways. Whether you’re in search of a luxury log cabin in a cozy resort town or off-the-grid Michigan cabin rentals, this beautiful state has a location to meet your needs. Launch kayaks on Lake Superior in your back yard with a lakeside cabin near Munising, or stay within seconds of spectacular tulip fields in Holland. Check out these Lower Peninsula and Upper Peninsula cities for some of the state’s best cabin rentals.

1. Traverse City

traverse city beach
Source: Flickr / Adam Sonnett

One of Michigan’s most popular lakeside towns, Traverse City offers the best of urban and rural amenities. Cabins near the city center enable you to leave the car behind and spend your trip biking along the lake and walking through the historic downtown shops. For a quieter retreat, look for charming lakeside log cabins on the East Arm of Grand Traverse Bay. If you’re visiting in the summer, enjoy leisurely days swimming in Lake Michigan, touring local wineries, and sampling baked goods at the National Cherry Festival. Winter brings quieter streets, excellent snowmobiling in the Jordan River Valley, and downhill skiing at Shanty Creek. If you’re a golfer, vacation rentals near the Grand Traverse Resort and Spa put you close to three stunning courses.

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2. Houghton Lake

houghton lake
Source: Flickr / Joe Ross

Situated in the center of Lower Michigan, Houghton Lake is a popular vacation destination. This inland lake offers calmer waters than the turbulent Great Lakes, making it a great spot for kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding, and canoeing. Many lakefront cabin rentals include recreational watercraft, so you can start each day with a relaxing paddle. If you’re visiting in the winter, join the locals in ice fishing on the frozen lake, snowmobiling in the nearby fields, and kicking back at a local pub. Year round, Houghton Lake cabins are also convenient to arts performances at the Pines Theatre, the Historic Playhouse, and the Kirtland Center for the Performing Arts.

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3. Munising

sea cliff
Source: Flickr / Adventures On Wheels

If you’re looking for a cabin off the beaten path, head straight for Munising. This tiny town in the Upper Peninsula is surrounded by thick forests and wild lakeshore, creating the feeling of a remote retreat. The best cabin rentals in town are near the water northeast of town; from here, you can launch a kayak or canoe to explore the area’s most popular spot, the spectacular Picture Rocks National Lakeshore. Paddle past waterfalls and through sea arches, and land on beaches that are only accessible by water. If you want to stay on land, hike through silent forests on more than 100 miles of trails.

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4. Holland

holland michigan
Source: Flickr / Peter C

Holland, with its extensive lakefront, is a beautiful place for a vacation in Lower Michigan. If you’re in town for the annual Tulip Time festival, choose a cabin rental near the stunning Windmill Island Gardens. The rest of the year, the best cabin options are located on the shores of Lake Macatawa or nearby Lake Michigan. For the quietest atmosphere and beautiful water views, search the shores south of the Big Red Lighthouse. North of Holland Harbor, enjoy swimming and boating at the popular Holland State Park. A short drive south, hike up one of Lake Michigan’s enormous sand dunes at Saugatuck Dunes State Park.

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5. Mackinaw City

mackinac bridge
Source: Flickr / Deb Nystrom

Tucked at the northern tip of Michigan’s Lower Peninsula, Mackinaw City serves as the gateway to the remote Upper Peninsula and Mackinac Island. The best vacation rentals in the area sit to the east and west of downtown. Cabins on Trails End Bay sit close to the Headlands International Dark Sky Park, which offers stunning views of the night sky. To the east, enjoy white-sand beaches and the cool waters of Lake Huron. Winters bring cold temperatures and blowing snow; enjoy the weather on cross-country skis, snowmobiles, or snowshoes. Year-round, drive across the massive Mackinac Bridge or take a boat out to Mackinac Island to hike wilderness trails and explore historic buildings.

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6. Muskegon

bay sunset
Source: Flickr / Collin Anderson

Water dominates life in Muskegon, which features a large protected bay and extensive Lake Michigan shoreline. Get away from it all with a cabin near Muskegon State Park, or bike or walk to the quaint downtown. Summers and falls are lively, with flocks of visitors coming in to hike the dune trails, sunbathe at Pere Marquette Park, and enjoy the thrills at Michigan’s Adventure amusement park. During the winter, a well-traveled network of snowmobile trails provides safe, high-speed fun. You can also climb on frozen waves in Lake Michigan or cross-country ski at Muskegon State Park. No matter when you visit, sample the city’s excellent breweries and farm-to-table restaurants.

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7. Petoskey

petoskey state park beach
Source: Flickr / Kate Ter Haar

One of Michigan’s most beautiful coastal resort cities, Petoskey places wilderness and water activities at your fingertips. In the summer, get out on the sparkling waters with a kayak or speedboat; Little Traverse Bay offers smaller waves and picturesque inlets. Cabins on the wild shores west of downtown offer spectacular views and a quiet atmosphere. When the snow falls, head straight for the Petoskey Winter Sports Park for sledding and outdoor ice skating. The downtown area, with its friendly shops and world-class restaurants, is lovely year-round. If you’re visiting in the fall, choose a cabin in the woods and enjoy a vacation surrounded by brilliant fall colors.

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