Iron Mountain, Michigan, is one of the largest cities in the Upper Peninsula where you could enjoy a whole vacation. It is the perfect spot where you could enjoy the beauty of lush forests, flowing rivers, rich wildlife, art and music festivals, museums, Pine Mountain skiing, sports competitions, shopping, and all sort of entertainment you could ask for.
It is a single plate of all the activities you could get at a time. So, if you are a fun-loving person, Iron Mountain must be a location on your bucket list. Let us look at what are the activities they have to offer.
16 Incredible Things to Do in Iron Mountain
1.Skiing in Pine Mountain
Pine Mountain is the top most visited place in Iron Mountain. It is a hub of numerous activities and is the perfect spot for a vacation. The Pine Mountain Ski and Golf Resort are located here where you could stay for your holiday.
The resort offers skiing as well as golf courses. They have one of the best golf courses in Michigan and is ranked as one among the best in America. They feature the TimberStone Golf Course, which spans around 7000 yards within the 240 acres of the resort. It is surrounded by lakes and mountains and is indeed a spectacular scene of beauty.
During the wintertime, the place is all set for skiing. There are various cross-country ski trails around the iron mountain. Besides skiing and playing golf, you could visit the Sitzmark Bar, which offers a mind-blowing view of the hills. It is open from Friday through Sunday. They have a wide variety of hot drinks and beverages and music to add to the mood.
There is also the Famer’s Restaurant, which is not only a full-time restaurant but is also the Upper Peninsula’s Sport’s Hall of Fame. They are in operation seven days a week and serves special during both lunch and dinner. When you visit Iron Mountain, skiing, golfing, and vacation at this restaurant is a very much needed break to lift your festive mood.
2.Get a Beer from 51st State Brewing Co.
51st State Brewing Co. is a family-owned and brewed company that has been serving the visitors of Iron Mountain for the past four years. They are the first brewery in a mountain area, and has been a risky journey. The idea of the brewery was made out of the owner’s passion for brewing. They produce some of the best beers you could get in the whole of Iron Mountain.
Some beers push the limits, and some awaken your curiosity. They have an extensive barrel system that is capable of making 124 gallons of beer at a time. They create a wide variety of beers are some of their flagship beers are the State of Superior, 3 Vagabonds, Batty Millie, GC-4A Glider, Woody Wagon, and Ski Jump IPA.
Apart from the beer, they have an exotic range of food to make your vacation comfortable. They have pizzas, salads, appetizers, and drinks. Their pizzas are 12-inch sized ones that serve 2-3 people and are baked in a wood fire oven. Their beer and garlic pizza dough is their special recipe and is hand-tossed. The pizzas are topped with homemade marinara sauce.
The pizza varieties include the usual Margherita Pizza, Antipasto, Sweety Drop, Roasted Veggie, Smoked Pulled Pork, Buffalo Chicken, Six Cheese, Chicken Caesar, and many more. You can also customize your pizza by selecting your favorite toppings among Onions, green peppers, black olives, mushrooms, Italian sausage, pepperoni, and bacon.
Their appetizers include garlic planks with beer cheese, meatballs, chips-n-dip, etc. They have a house salad and a large Caesar salad. The drinks would be 51st State Coffee and a Loose Leaf Tea. The place is a perfect spot where you could spend a peaceful evening with your family.
3.Watch the Monuments at WWII Glider & Military Museum
If you are a history enthusiast, you have the perfect place to visit in Iron Mountain. WWII Glider & Military Museum is a museum complex that features seven fully restored CG-4A World War II gliders worldwide. They also contain a collection of military uniforms used by the soldiers during the civil wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. There are also photographs of the 2nd World War, the Germans’ artifacts, and many other restored items, including vehicles.
There are pictures on the walls of people who had served the war and who have contributed to the construction of the museum. The idea of creating a glider museum began when a fuselage frame was given to the Menominee Range Historical Foundation. The interest in old artifacts among the founders leads to the fundraising for creating a suitable museum for their priced artifacts. It was opened in July 2011.
The ticket prices for visiting varies from children to senior citizens. It is free for children under 10 and 4 dollars for students from age 10 to 18. Adults should pay 8 dollars while senior citizens need to pay only 7 dollars. Currently, it is closed for the season. But it would be opening soon, and you could visit it to make your vacation an enlightening one.
To get a virtual tour of the WWII Glider and Military Museum, click here.
4.Visit Lake Antoine Park
Lake Antoine Park is one of the largest and most visited water bodies in Iron Mountain. There is also a campground attached to it. The park has playgrounds for golf, volleyball courts, hot showers, horseshoe pits, basketball ground, potable water fill station, and many more necessary attachments.
It is a 20-acre land with a beautiful mix of trees like oak and pine. You could always come here during a summer day to lie down under the shades. There is also a recreation area for swimming, kayaking, hiking, fishing, biking, and other outdoor activities. There are three restrooms on the site and facilities for hot showers. You could also get sanitation services before 5 pm.
There is a wide range of facilities and activities provided by the Park Partners like Hiking Trail, Horseshoes, Hot Showers, Ice Fishing, Ice Sales, Jet Skiing, Jogging/Running, Kayaking, Lake Access, Outdoor Showers, Paddle Boating, Parking Area, Paved Parking, Paved Roads, Pets Allowed, Picnic Area.
Within 10 miles, you have access to immediate services like ATM, Airport, Bank, Bicycle Rentals, Boat Rentals, Bus stops, Cafe/Restaurant, Church, Emergency Services, Hospital, and many more.
You should also note that dogs are also welcome but must be on a leash. Dogs are not permitted near the swimming area; the dog’s mess is the owner’s responsibility. Also, no fireworks are permitted on the grounds. It is a family-friendly park that runs from 10 pm to 8 am, and you can visit this place to have as many activities as you can have in the whole of Iron Mountain.
5. Cornish Pumping Engine and Mining Museum
Another historical museum at Iron Mountain to satisfy your historical thirst is the Cornish Pumping Engine and Mining Museum. It has been recognized by the Regional and National Historic Site. There is much equipment in the museum for display. It is the largest pumping engine ever built in the US and is famous all over the world.
The museum houses rare collection of artifacts and mining equipment like scrapers, man cars, dynamite cars, and many more. Some of the smaller artifacts they have and the larger equipment are displayed on the museum grounds. In addition to the artifacts, there is also a gift shop nearby where you could get gifts from.
At present, the museum is closed for the season.
For the adults, the ticket charge is 5 dollars. For seniors, it is 4.5 dollars, and for children between the age of 10 and 18, it is 3 dollars. Children below the age of 10 get the ticket free of cost.
6. Dickinson County Library
If you are a voracious reader, the perfect place for you to visit in Iron Mountain is the Dickinson County Library. The library situated in Iron Mountain and has been serving the locality people in their need for knowledge and information. The library aims to help the people of the locality to grow as an individual, a family, and a community by providing them with the needed materials.
The director of the library meets every month in the library branch to discuss the readers’ needs. Also, the board that runs the library meets every week to discuss the needs of the library. Through these initiatives, they are trying to teach the habit of reading to the people. Their motto is to LOVE YOUR LIBRARY, and because of this, they have been working their best to promote the growth of the library.
The library has also initiated programs for adults and kids to make sure that they would read at least one book every month. The adults have book clubs like A Novel Bunch Book Club, Page by Page Book Club, Adult Winter Reading, Seed Savers, and many more.
For kids, there are programs like Bow Wows and Books, Storytime, etc., so that the kids would concentrate more on the field of reading. If you visit Iron Mountain, make sure that you visit this library and take some time to spend among the books.
7. Iron Mountain City Park
The Iron Mountain City Park is the best place where you could take a rest after a tiring day of activities in and around Iron Mountain. You could come and take a rest in this park by lying down on your back. It is a 69.2 acre of land run by the municipality located in the city’s west-central part.
The park has many facilities. The park amenities include a bocce ball court, a soccer football field, two tennis courts, a walking trail, 23 picnic tables for you to enjoy a lunch with your family, two water faucets, a large pavilion, and four small log buildings.
For the kids, they have a special area for playing. This playground has a sandbox, two large swing sets, a merry-go-around, two multiplayer apparatuses, two swing sets, and some small climbing apparatus. There is also a skater board park nearby, which runs from 6 am to 9 pm. There is also a dog park which runs at the same time as the park.
The park offers a frisbee course that takes applicants on a first-come, first basis. There is also an air pavilion that needs no reservation or booking policies. Once you finish a tiring day in Iron Mountain, come to this park with your family and dogs so that you could spend a peaceful evening on the park grounds.
8. Immaculate Conception Church
The Italians who came for the mining at Iron Mountain, built the Immaculate Conception Church. It was built within 5 months and has been built on beautiful ground. If you visit Iron Mountain on a Sunday, you could visit this church to attend a holy mass and take a quick tour of the church grounds.
The church is made in the model of renaissance churches in Italy and reflects the Italian architecture. The church is rectangular and has a central nave. It also has an octagonal bell tower. The church roof is supported by a wooden barrel made of timber. The windows are made of glasses. Every visitor who comes to the church would be in awe of its beautiful construction.
The church also has a beautiful ground. Many beautiful flowers grows in the garden of the ground, and no visitor would leave the church without taking a stroll through the garden. So make sure that you pay a visit to this beautiful church and its grounds.
9. Visit the Iron Mountain Iron Mine
The Iron Mountain Iron Mine is a family-owned and runs the iron mine, which is one of the oldest tourist destinations of Iron Mountain. The mine offers a tour into the underground kilometers down. You could travel 2600 feet through drifts and go down 400 feet below the earth’s surface to see beautiful rock formations. There is also a rock shop nearby where to could buy some beautiful rocks.
The iron mine began in 1956 and ever since has become one of the largest tourist attractions visited by people worldwide. The tour starts every 35 minutes, and a whole tour takes 45 minutes. There is special accommodation for groups from schools and other institutions. For this, reservations and bookings must be made before the visit.
For adults, the tickets cost 15 dollars, and for children from the age of 6 to 12, it is 10 dollars. For children below the age of 6, the ticket is free of cost.
10. Rafting at Northwood Adventures
If you have visited Iron Mountain to get an adventurous experience, Northwood Adventures has the best activity for you. The offer Whitewater Rafting and would take you on an adventurous ride. The rafting starts from True North Outpost and gives the best ride to the Upper Peninsula.
There will be experienced guides who have paddled the river many times. The rafting season is daily from May to September and on weekends during October when you could enjoy the fall’s beauty while you raft.
The raft can accommodate 7 to 8 people, and you must be above the age of 11 and above 100 pounds to raft. An adult must accompany children who are below the age of 4 . You need no previous experience in rafting. The essentials like canoes, kayaks, paddleboards, mountain bikes, etc., will be given on rent by the group.
You must arrive at the location 30 minutes before starting the trip to know about the guidelines and wear the safety equipment. Adults have to pay 49.95 dollars, and kids must pay 37.95 dollars for the ticket. So, to get an action-packed vacation at Iron Mountain, come to Northwood Adventures.
11. Visit Millie Mine Bat Cave
The Millie Mine Bat Cave is the largest holder of bats in the whole of North America. The area was an abandoned mine, which was later occupied by bats. There is a steel grate on the entrance of the mine shaft so that it prevents people from falling.
The visitors will be given guidance about the bats and their benefits. The best time to view the bats coming and going is at dusk.
The project, which resulted in the protection of the bats, was initiated by the locals. The residents took initiative for the project, and the local businessmen contributed to the cause. The people in Iron Mountain are proud that they could contribute to the wildlife.
12. Drink Coffee from Contrast Coffee Co.
Contrast Coffee Co. is an initiative in Iron Mountain to support the local business. Their motto is to create a bonding community over a cup of coffee. The initiatives of Contrast Coffee Co.is are strikingly attractive.
They bond with the local farmers by visiting them often and buying the essential ingredients from them. They also invest in them so that they could make a strong bond. They swear to purchase coffee from the best among the market and never compromises the quality.
They are the company in the Upper Peninsula that has 4 branches. Through this, they are making it accessible to all communities. They also make sure that they provide the best service. They also support local bodies and help non-profit organizations.
A one-time dine at Contrast Coffee Co. is necessary as you should get the taste of the local farming. They provide regular lattes, their signature drink, tea, and other food like crepe, salad, breakfast, etc. Once you reach Iron Mountain, get a coffee from Contrast Coffee Co. and support the local business.
13. Savour the Italian taste of Crispigna’s Italian Market
Crispigna’s Italian Market was established at Iron Mountain in 1924 and has been serving the taste of Italy to the US. Since then, the bakery is carried on by generations after generations. Here you could order gift baskets, and everything you wish could be added to the basket. They create delicious lunches and dinners that include dessert, tiramisu, cheesecake, cannoli, etc. From multi-course events to small parties, Crispigna’s Italian Market covers all ranges of events.
Their menu includes Porketta, cheese tortellini pesto salad, Italian cheese and meats for sandwiches, freshly baked specialty loaves of bread and rolls, freshly made Italian sausage, Cheese and meat portions of ravioli, meat, marinara, vodka, alfredo sauce, and mushroom sauce, various kinds of pizzas, manicotti, Lasagna, homemade antipasto and many more.
Their unique menu includes imported pasta, parmesan cheese, imported cheese, cakes, cookies, candies, and many more.
If you ever crave Italian while you are at Iron Mountain, you have nowhere else to go but to Crispigna’s Italian Market.
14. Visit DeYoung Family Zoo
DeYoung Family Zoo at Iron Mountain is a zoo that holds a collection of 400 animals. They also have the biggest collection of the cat family in the entire state. If you would like to see all the animals, you have to spend at least 2 hours inside the zoo. They have a wide variety of animals, and you would be surprised to see all these in such a small and unnoticed zoo.
The zoo has animals of all varieties ranging from the cat family to the hippo family. There will be fences around the animals, and you would be able to view them from a distance of about 10 to 15 feet.
The zoo is in a close set up, unlike the large national zoos we see everywhere. The big cats are placed at the front of the zoo so that they would get more attention. Also, animals like hyenas, foxes, etc., come in the next part of the zoo. The hippopotamus is found at the back of the zoo, where it could be seen roaming about or taking a bath in the pond.
The charge for adults is 12 dollars, and 8 dollars for children, which is very much reasonable compared to the number of animals visited in the zoo. The experience would be very much exciting for children as they would view animals at such a small distance. So, while visiting Iron Mountain, also see the DeYoung Family Zoo with your kids.
15. Watch Water Ski Show
Bring along a chair or a mat to enjoy the Water Ski Show at Iron Mountain. The Water Ski Show takes place every Wednesday and Sunday summer nights, and you could enjoy a pleasurable evening watching the water skiing. The refreshments will be available at the location. All you have to do is to bring a chair or a blanket and enjoy the show.
You will also be able to watch breathtaking performances like barefoot line, deep water barefoot, swivel skiing, ballet line, thrilling jumping, trick skiing, wakeboarding, Eric on the fantastic Sky-Ski, strap doubles, the pyramid formation, and many more to make you jump from your seat. This would be a unique experience for you to enjoy with your family.
16. Pay Homage at the Upper Peninsula Veterans Memorial
The Upper Peninsula Veterans Memorial is located atop the pine mountain at Iron Mountain. The memorial was built as a tribute to those who had served during the wars like WW 1 and WW 2 and to those who had to sacrifice their lives for others. The memorial has been made for all of the 15 countries of the Upper Peninsula. There are stone tombs atop the mountain on which the names of the veterans and the war they have participated have been written.
The initiative for this memorial began when somebody noticed that there is nothing like a flag or something to mark the top of Pine Mountain. And after 13 months, a memorial was formed on the top of the mountain.
When you come to enjoy your vacation to Iron Mountain, make sure that you visit this memorial along with your friends and family to remember your past. Make the opportunity to thank the martyrs and remember them for what they have done.
The places you can visit and things you can do in Iron Mountain would go on and on. The ones mentioned above would take you a month to visit completely. So, book your tickets to Iron Mountain and make the best of your vacation. Also, comment below about what more you know about Iron Mountain and your experience visiting the place.