The Ultimate Guide to Vacationing in Holland, Michigan
Things to Do in Holland, Michigan
Whether you’re planning a weekend vacation or a week long getaway, there are endless things to do in Holland, Michigan. Included in Forbes Magazine’s list of “America’s Prettiest Towns,” Holland is a true gem. Millions of people flock to the city for Tulip Time each May, to celebrate the city’s Dutch heritage and beautiful tulip gardens. But this charming community is bursting with so many more must-see activities. Scroll down for a list of Holland area beaches, family activities, restaurants, and pubs.
4 Must-See Beaches in Holland, Michigan
Holland is home to a host of delightful beaches: the iconic Tunnel Park, Holland State Park, and Laketown Beach.
1. Holland State Park has something for everyone: fishing, a boat launch, concession stand, playground equipment, and a prime view of the picturesque Big Red Light House. This is an excellent beach for picnics, swimming, and spending all day in the sun – modern restrooms with a changing room makes it ideal for families with kids. For more details, visit Holland’s Holland State Park page.
2. Tunnel Park is a sprawling 22-acre park featuring playgrounds for kids, picnic tables for family and friends, sand volleyball courts, modern restrooms, and a dune climb stairway for a picturesque view of the lake. The iconic tunnel entrance provides a fun and memorable experience. To learn more, visit Holland’s Tunnel Park page.
3. Another beach option is Laketown Beach. Many locals call this “the beach with all the steps,” since there’s a steep uphill climb and downhill descent on the dune stairway. Located just south of Holland, there is roadside parking available and no cost to enter. Although there are no modern restrooms or playground equipment, this offers the pure simplicity of Michigan’s beauty. For pictures and an address, visit Holland.org’s Laketown Beach page.
4. Kouw Park is a small park situated on 200 feet of beachfront property along Lake Michigan. With designated picnic areas, play equipment, designated parking, this beach destination is one of many fun ways to enjoy the Holland area. To learn more, visit Kouw Park’s information page.
Family Friendly Things to Do in Holland, Mi
Due to its vast array of family-friendly attractions, Holland is one of the best family vacation spots in Michigan. Check out three of our favorite year-round options.
1. If you haven’t visited Windmill Island Gardens at least once, then it’s time to add this to your itinerary! This is a hands-on way to experience the rich Dutch culture of Holland, whether you’re strolling through the 36 acres of gorgeous gardens or admiring the custom street organ. You’ll love walking through the only authentic, fully-operational windmill in the United States. (The windmill’s flour is the perfect souvenir!) In order to learn more, check out Holland.org’s Windmill Island Gardens page.
2. Similarly, Nelis’ Dutch Village offers a lovely walk through Holland’s Dutch history. This pet-friendly park features plenty of rides and attractions for kids, including a carousel and petting farm. Additionally, authentic dutch dances and educational presentations are a fantastic way to learn and enjoy a day with family and friends.
3. The Felt Mansion is located between Holland and Saugatuck and directly next to Saugatuck Dunes State Park. This historic landmark features 12,000 square feet of fascinating architecture and history. You can schedule a self guided tour or book a group tour, which includes a boxed lunch on the terrace. Visit FeltMansion.org for pictures and details. You won’t regret it!
Restaurants & Pubs in Holland, Michigan
Whether you’re looking for quick and easy take out or craft brews and spirits, you’ll surely find something that suits your tastes in Holland. Need some inspiration? Start at one of the six venues below.
1. Both Poquito and Obstacle No.1 offer an exquisite food and drink experience. Obstacle No. 1 provides a sophisticated lounge experience with unforgettable craft cocktails and access to Poquito’s menu. Poquito, the adjoining restaurant, has a more relaxed atmosphere with the same exceptional food and service.
2. New Holland Brewing Company’s craft beers and spirits are in demand all over the country. And their food menu is a popular among the locals! Visit the pub in downtown Holland for distinct drinks and a full lunch and dinner menu.
3. Another option is Ottawa Beach Inn. This family owned restaurant is a local favorite for dining in and takeout orders. Visit OttawaBeachInn.com for the food and drink menus.
4. Hops at 84 East features a taproom as well as a restaurant. Since it’s located on downtown Holland’s bustling “main drag,” this is a fabulous place to enjoy before or after checking out the local shops and stores. Visit hops84east.com to learn more.
5. Known for its award winning spirits, Copper Craft Distillery offers a variety of premium spirits and canned cocktails. These are perfect for lazy days on the beach or nights spent around campfires.
6. If you’re craving steak, burgers, seafood, or chicken, then consider adding Beachwood Grill to your “must visit” list! Both indoor and outdoor seating is available. In addition to its traditional restaurant style service, Beachwood Grill offers catering for both large and small groups.
Rainy Day Adventures
Whether your beach vacation happens to fall on a rainy week, or you just want some ideas of indoor activities for the colder seasons, there are plenty of family-friendly indoor activities in Holland.
1. The Holland Aquatic Center has something to offer every age group. The 150 ft water slide, zipline, and children’s play area is perfect for the kids. Meanwhile, adults can pump some iron in the fully equipped exercise room and use the lap swim area in the designated pools.
2. Just a few blocks away, the Holland Museum is another great way to spend time in downtown Holland. The museum focuses on interactive learning and features exhibits honoring Holland and the greater Holland area. And, if you’re looking for free things to do, take note! On the second Mondays of each month are free admission days, so make sure to factor this in when making your vacation plans!
3. Sperry’s Moviehouse at 84 West 8th Street offers a broad selection of movies with exceptionally comfortable recliner seats. In order to see what’s playing, check out SperrysMovieHouse.com.
4. When was the last time you played Laser Tag? The Lost City features an indoor laser tag arena, miniature golf course, Oasis cafe, and indoor arcade. You can even reserve event space for birthday and graduation parties. Call the Lost City at 616-396-6746 for more information.
5. Another venue that offers Laser Tag is BAM! BAM contains many more fun activities for the family: a bowling alley, climbing walls, and even a competitive axe throwing. Visit Gobamgo.com for more information.
Vacation Rentals in Holland
More and more people are opting out of hotels and gravitating towards short term vacation rental homes. Luckily, Holland has plenty of options!
Remember, when you book directly through a management company like Unsalted Vacations, you can save quite a bit of money! This is actually cheaper than booking through VRBO and AirBnb. The following list features some of the best vacation rentals in the city.
1. Just a seven-minute walk from Holland’s esteemed State Park Beach, Aquafresca is the perfect destination for a beach vacation, reunion, or family getaway. This two-thousand square foot house’s Palm Beach-inspired interior is bright and airy to emulate what your stay will be: fun, worry-free, and memorable!
2. Equipped with an outdoor pool and hot tub, Sunny Waters is just one mile from Lake Michigan. Located on the north side of Holland along bike paths that lead directly to Tunnel Park, this five bedroom home is in the ideal location to get the most out of Holland.
3. The Green House is a pet-friendly vacation rental located in the heart of Holland. Full of character and charm, and located just a couple short blocks from Washington Square, you’ll find yourself immersed in all that Holland has to offer.
4. If you want a beachy bungalow with Lake Michigan access, then check out the Modern Mini. This affordable beach rental has two bedrooms and one bathroom.
To find more vacation rental homes in Holland, check out our complete list of Holland vacation rentals.