Van Buren Trail State Park in South Haven, MI

Hiking and Walking Trails Directory Grand Rapids

Directory of Hiking & Walking Trails – Grand Rapids & West Michigan

Hiking West Michigan kids is a snap – so many places to choose from, and so much beautiful scenery at each location that it makes it one of our top choices for recreational activities.

Most of these walking trails are free (some charge a small fee or a parking fee). We’ve checked a lot of these hiking trails off of our list and can’t wait to add some more before the year is over.

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Directory of Hiking & Walking Trails – Grand Rapids & West Michigan

Find your next adventure by searching the features below.

Park Managed by State of Michigan

About Van Buren Trail State Park in Southwest Michigan
Lovejoy Ave, South Haven MI 49090
Park Website
check mark 40x40 navy blue Open: Open all year
check mark 40x40 navy blue Dogs Allowed? Yes, on leash
Linking South Haven to Hartford, Van Buren Trail State Park is a dirt and gravel topped trail that stretches for 14 miles. There are some sections of grass and sand as well, so be cautioned that this isn't for those looking for a super smooth trail.

The trail will bring you through rural areas perfect for seeing lots of wildlife. Mountain bikers, birders and naturalists will find this trail perfect.

Winter riders will enjoy skiing and snowmobiling on the trail.

The town of Covert halfway through offers the only stop on the stretch for a restroom or food break. The last leg of the trail boasts lots of beautiful trees and vineyards.

Van Buren State Park caps the trail and leads to more trails and views of the Lake Michigan shoreline. Trailhead available at Hartford, and parking is available in South Haven near the beginning of the trail.

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The Walking Paths at Van Buren Trail State Park
Trail is 14 miles of mostly dirt and gravel, with some stretches of grass and sand. It is not ideal for strollers with smaller wheels, but those with larger wheels might do ok.

Van Buren Trail State Park Features & Amentities
Accessible, Dog Friendly, Free Admission, Paved Walking Path, Paved Bike Path

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Etiquette & Tips for Hiking & Walking Trails

Here are some things to keep in mind while hiking the walking trails in Grand Rapids.

  1. Stay on the right side of the path when others are approaching.
  2. Wait your turn on the stairs.
  3. Pack in and pack out your trash.
  4. Bring sunscreen and bug spray (we keep a set in the trunk of our car so we’re always prepared!)
  5. Bring water for everyone.
  6. Binoculars and/or a compass can making any hike an adventure for a child
  7. Check for ticks when you’re done (Read this helpful info about ticks in West Michigan)
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Saugatuck Dunes State Park trail

It’s easy to forget how lucky we are to live where we do. West Michigan has incredible scenery! And we have so many well kept trails and state parks in our area with different things to see.

I have friends in other parts of the U.S. who miss their Michigan home, saying that all the trails where the live are all the same, and not as varied or well-kept as in Michigan.

So don’t take this place for granted, friends! And don’t wait to experience Michigan in all four wonderful seasons on a trail near you.

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West Michigan Walking Trails and Hiking Map

We’ve taken a map of West Michigan and plotted favorite family walking trails, parks and more on it to make it easier for you to find your next outdoor destination. Use the map or look below for reviews on all of our best walking trails in Grand Rapids and beyond.

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7 thoughts on “Van Buren Trail State Park in South Haven, MI”

  1. Be careful when going to aman park. You will need bug spray. Lots of mosquitoes!! Other than that highly recommended 🙂

  2. We went to the Calvin College Nature Preserve. I didn’t realize their trails were free and open until sunset. Grabbed fellow mom, Allison Hoogheem Kampmueller and her kids, and off we went! It was beautiful! Thanks for posting the info.

  3. We went to the Calvin College Nature Preserve. I didn’t realize their trails were free and open until sunset. Grabbed fellow mom, Allison Hoogheem Kampmueller and her kids, and off we went! It was beautiful! Thanks for posting the info.

  4. Mel – you have officially made my job easier at church as I plan out hikes for our high school students to train on before we head to Colorado. Muchas Gracias sister!

  5. This is so great. We’ve been looking for trails that are near and a little further.
    this is so helpful. thank you!

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