Summer may still be in the air, but the hustle and bustle of the busy season has slowed and this fall presents the perfect opportunity to escape to Ludington to soak up all of autumn’s splendors. Located on the shores of Lake Michigan with 28 miles of beachfront plus 2,000 miles of streams and 40 inland lakes, Ludington and Mason County offer a quintessential “Up North” experience of natural beauty with small-town charm that is magical in the fall – whether hiking a trail, driving a color route or paddling a canoe.
A trip “up North” during autumn would not be complete without taking in the colors of the season. Ludington’s Mason County Cultural Trails offer visitors a self-guided tour using a mobile device, of the area to not only see peek at the leaves, but learn about the areas history and culture. Visitors can also follow this 10-mile fall color loop starting in downtown Ludington, going in a counterclockwise loop through the countryside passing parks, orchards, small towns, and groves of trees that turn brilliant color in autumn. Experiences like hiking at Ludington State Park, kayaking the Pere Marquette River or Hamlin Lake, or riding a bike or a horse and hitting a trail, offer unmatched and unique vantage points to experience the changing landscape.
Outdoor destinations like the Ludington State Park, are must stops while visiting Ludington any tome of the year, but especially in the fall. This 5,300-acre piece of paradise, boasts 25 miles of trails, with trails in varying lengths for a full fall color nature experience. Popular hikes include the Lost Lake-Island Trail Loop and Skyline Trail.
Ludington’s beer and wine scene is nothing to scoff at. Downtown breweries like Jamesport Brewing Company and Ludington Bay Brewing Company offer not only great brews, but exceptional food as well. Outdoor areas with heaters and fires make fall days with crisper air more enjoyable. Newer to the scene are wineries making their mark in Ludington and Scottville. Pere Marquette Winery is located on the beautiful Buttersville Peninsula and offers distinctive wines produced in small quantities. North Branch Winery of Scottville will treat you to an afternoon of sampling in addition to snacks on their amazing charcuteries boards.
Downtown Ludington also hosts their annual Oktoberfest celebration featuring beer from presenting sponsors, Bell’s Brewery and Ludington Bay Brewing Company on September 24, 2022. The festival is complete with food, live music, and vendors, all in a family-friendly atmosphere at Legacy Plaza.
Golfers and disc-golfers will also find respite in Ludington this fall. Ludington has three local courses, which are sure to entertain the novice and challenge an avid golfer: Hemlock Golf Club, Lakeside Links and Lincoln Hills Golf Club. And if disc golf is more your scene, you have found your spot. The Ludington area is known as a disc golf mecca by fans of the sport, with seven disc golf courses to choose from within 15 minutes of town. The convenience and quality of courses, and one-stop-shop outfitters like Grip N Rip Disc Golf, makes Mason County a fantastic location to get out and try the sport with your crew.
And if all of that isn’t enough to get you excited about a getaway to Ludington, the slower-pace of autumn also brings a season of savings for visitors. Take advantage of fall specials at local hotels, cabins and bed & breakfasts. The summer crowds have dissipated, making it the perfect time to enjoy a relaxing weekend in this shoreline town. Find out who is offering 50% off a second night stay this fall, and for a complete listing of accommodations, click here.