leland michigan

Explore Leland, Michigan (Fishtown)

Picture yourself driving along the iconic M22 Michigan Highway and reaching a destination embraced by the serene blue hues of Lake Michigan, a pristine river, and a charming waterfall.

All of this and more awaits you in the delightful town of Leland, MI, which stands as one of the top tourist attractions in Northern Michigan.

Located just a short drive from Traverse City and nestled along the shores of Sleeping Bear Dunes, Leland offers a unique experience with its historic fishing shanties-turned-shops, a variety of waterfront restaurants, and boat trips to the Manitou Islands, all while you relax to the soothing sound of the Carp River waterfall cascading into the heart of Fishtown, Leland.

leland mi

Read on to uncover more about the picturesque Leland, MI.

Visit Leland, MI

Whether you’re seeking a tranquil weekend getaway, a romantic escape, or an adventure-filled retreat with outdoor activities, the charming and thriving fishing town of Leland, MI, nestled along Lake Michigan’s shores, is the perfect destination. Leland sits in the heart of Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, surrounded by breathtaking beaches.

This enchanting resort town offers commercial fishing charters, delightful gift shops, local art galleries, and waterfront dining establishments specializing in fresh catches of the day.

If fishing doesn’t pique your interest, worry not. Leland, MI caters to everyone’s tastes. Many visitors love to relax on the warm and inviting deck of the Cove Restaurant, sipping a refreshing Chubby Mary.

Others may prefer to wait in line for a delectable sandwich from the Village Cheese Shanty or indulge in smoked fish from Carlson’s Fishery while enjoying a picnic along the picturesque banks of the Leland River, accompanied by the gentle sound of the cascading blue waters from the majestic waterfall.

No matter what captures your interest, a vacation in Leland offers countless opportunities to experience and appreciate the beauty of Northern Michigan.

fishtown michigan

About Leland, MI and Historic Fishtown

Leelanau County was established in 1863 as part of the state of Michigan. In 1957, the Leelanau Historical Society was formed to safeguard and preserve the history and heritage of Leelanau and its settlers.

Serving as the county seat of Leelanau County, Leland, Michigan, is renowned as a historic fishing village, boasting a charming downtown adorned with local art galleries, specialty shops including the Fishtown shanties, and the backdrop of a delightful crystal blue waterfall.

Leland, MI also offers waterfront accommodations, charter fishing services, Leland wine, and boat excursions to the Manitou Islands: North Manitou and South Manitou. Camping is permitted on both islands, while day trips are available only to South Manitou.

Centrally located on the Leelanau Peninsula, Leland provides convenient access to various other exciting Northern Michigan tourist destinations such as Traverse City, Maple City, Suttons Bay, Lake Leelanau, Northport, Omena, Empire, and Glen Arbor.

historic fishtown michigan

The Weather in Leland, MI

Leland experiences typical Michigan weather, with hot summers and very cold winters. It showcases the beauty of all four seasons and offers a plethora of activities to accompany each one. June, July, and August are the most pleasant months, with July traditionally being the warmest, boasting an average high temperature of 76 degrees Fahrenheit, making Leland a refreshing summer retreat.

In winter, Leland’s average low temperature in January is 19 degrees Fahrenheit, with substantial snowfall. Northern Michigan is renowned for its vibrant fall foliage, and Leland adds to the spectacle and vibrancy of the season.

leland michigan fishtown

What is Leland, Michigan Known For?

Charming Leland is a sought-after vacation destination, particularly during the summer, with plenty to offer its visitors. From fresh farmers’ markets to hiking trails to charter fishing trips on Lake Michigan, Leland truly has something for everyone.

Click the link below to discover more information about things to do in the area.

Wedding Venues in Leland, MI

Wineries in the Leland Area

Art and Wine Events


Leland, MI Restaurants and Shopping

Leland offers a diverse range of dining options, from cozy bars to full-service restaurants serving the day’s fresh catch, as well as shanties along the Fishtown dock featuring artisanal cheese and sandwiches. Rest assured, you can’t go wrong with any of the dining choices in the vicinity.

Here are some of our favorites:

The Riverside Inn

The Cove

The Bluebird Restaurant and Tavern

Trish’s Dishes

The Leland Lodge

Village Cheese Shanty

Leland Mercantile Co.

Carlson’s Fishery

Discover the TOP Places to Visit in Michigan

Shopping in Leland, MI The charming downtown shops surrounding Fishtown offer an enjoyable shopping experience, ranging from bookstores and upscale boutiques to gift shops and art galleries, featuring handmade jewelry and home decor.

Van’s Beach This popular public beach is just minutes away from downtown Leland, situated behind Van’s Garage. It’s an ideal spot for hunting Petoskey stones, picnicking, or sunbathing.

Nedow’s Beach Located on a private inlet on Lake Leelanau, Nedow’s Beach offers shallow and warm waters, along with a boat launch, dock, and picnic tables. To reach Nedow’s Bay, head straight down Pearl Street, about 7 blocks past the Leland Country Club.

Schneiders Beach and Park The public access beach on Lake Leelanau can be found at the end of Popp Road (right off M-204), approximately 1.5 miles east of the village of Lake Leelanau. It features a sandy beach, picnic area, and boat launch. It’s also dog-friendly!

Christmas Tree Beach (South Beach) South Beach is a Lake Michigan beach formed at the public road end of Reynolds Street.

Hidden Beach Located at the end of Thompson Street in Leland, this beach sits on the shores of Lake Michigan.

North Beach Situated at the end of North St., this quiet and less crowded beach provides a pristine setting for a picturesque sunset.

Where to Stay in Leland, MI If you’re searching for accommodations in the Leland area, we recommend:

Falling Waters Lodge

The Riverside Inn

The Leland Lodge

Whaleback Inn

Jolli Lodge

Airbnb rentals in Leland

VRBO homes in Leland