Torch Lake Family Vacation

Nothing shouts “summertime” like a trip Up North for us Michiganders!

My family was happy to find a treasured spot we return to each summer: Alden, on Torch Lake.

Alden is a small town located along part of the 19-mile long stretch of Torch Lake (which, according to tradition, is the third most beautiful lake in the world). Just south of Charlevoix and Petoskey, and only 17 miles northeast of Traverse City, this is a delightful stop for my family during our trips to northern Michigan.

Torch Lake is Beautiful

Torch Lake is an amazing place to see.  To understand the depths of its beauty and appreciate the deep aqua and turquoise colors throughout this lake, you really have to take it in with your own eyes. And guess what? That feat is easier than you might think, as this Michigan treasure is only a 2 ½ hour drive from the Grand Rapids area!

My family’s favorite thing to do in Alden is to stop at the general store for ice cream and then walk down to the boat dock to enjoy our treats, relax, and soak in sights. My five kids love to explore along the rocks at the lakeshore.

Torch-Lake-shoreline Michigan Vacations

Things to Do with Kids at Torch Lake

The main street through Alden is lined with unique little shops and adorable white picket fences covered with bright, colorful flowers. Oh, so pretty.

After ice cream, the playground is a great place to send the kids to run and play–with my husband–while I shop the antique store and other favorite stores. My must-stop favorite shop is The Alden Mill House, for its freshly ground spice blends. These spices are perfect for summer grilling and gifts. (Miracle Blend and Bavarian seasoning are the best!)

My kids love to have picnics in the summer, so we have used the picnic tables and grill located in the pavilion next the playground.

During our trips my large family tries to pack, cook outside and picnic more than dine at restaurants, so we love this park in Alden! (I have to mention that the public restrooms are very clean. Yay!)

In my family we have two guys on a life-long mission to seek, find, and devour the best burgers in every town we visit. So for one dinner we ate at the Alden Bar & Grille. We found out they serve up a mighty satisfying cheeseburger for these connoisseurs.

Fireworks at Torch Lake

We experienced the Fourth of July fireworks from the harbor one summer, but it wasn’t a great location since the fireworks were launched from the other end of the lake.

However, there is still much more for my family to see and do, like the train depot, caboose tour and boating on the lake. We’ll return for many more summer adventures.

Torch Lake is a treasure Up North and loved by many Michiganders like my family. 

From what I have heard, Kid Rock owns a vacation home on Torch Lake and mentions its famous sand bar in his song “All Summer Long.” Although we haven’t spotted Kid Rock at Torch Lake and I don’t know his song by heart, I do wish my family could enjoy Torch Lake… all summer long!