Where Life Meets Lake Boyne City, Michigan
Where Life Meets Lake
Lake Charlevoix charmed Ernest Hemingway and generations of resorters who followed. Today, its eastern gateway town of Boyne City, Michigan is doing the same.

Underneath the oversized canvases of Michigan sunsets and Northern Lights, across from a pendant depicting the patron saint of mariners and not far from a lounging shop dog, sits a small sign on a desk at the Boyne’s Beyond Borders gift shop. It reads: “Be nice or leave.” If y...

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Hidden Gem South Haven, Michigan
Hidden Gem
Best known for its ample dockage, breathtaking sunsets and abundance of blueberries, the tiny community of South Haven, Michigan is a boater’s paradise just waiting to be discovered.

"We're almost there," Vic called from the helm. Cozied into Secret Formula’s dining lounge with my notes and a Lake Michigan cruising guide, I peeked out one of the starboard portlights to see South Haven’s 1903 South Pierhead Light standing sentinel off our bow. This bright-red cyli...

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Isle Royale Lake Superior
Isle Royale
A unique window into one of Lake Superior’s most remote and picturesque destinations.

Native Americans first journeyed to Isle Royale more than 4,000 years ago. If they could have seen a marine chart of the island, they might have imagined that Ursa Major, the Great Bear in the sky, had raked its giant claws across the 45-mile-long island. The resulting parallel rocky ridges are ...

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Great Escape British Virgin Islands
Great Escape
When the Great Lakes ice over, charters in exotic locales — like the BVI — provide the perfect getaway.

The moment of truth had arrived. Anne-Marie stood on the dock, smiling. “Don’t worry, you can do it,” she said encouragingly. “Remember, it’s a right-handed prop, so it’s going to pull to port.” I looked at the tight confines of the marina. If we re...

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The Other Face of Put-in-Bay Put-in-Bay Region, Ohio
The Other Face of Put-in-Bay
This Lake Erie hotspot is perfect for family-friendly fun — if you know where, and when, to go.

Sometimes, things don't turn out exactly the way you plan. Sheets of rain swept the Miller Boat Line dock at Catawba Island, Ohio, where a smattering of soggy passengers awaited the 5:30 p.m. ferry to South Bass Island. Disheartened, I settled into the dockside waiting area. Originally, I’...

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Adventure in the Abacos Bahamas
Adventure in the Abacos
A weeklong Bahamian charter vacation helps alleviate the wintertime blues.

I strolled along a crescent of beach on Fowl Cay, enjoying the softness of the white sand between my toes. I’d alternate, walking on hard, packed sand where the warm sea lapped around my ankles like bathwater; then shifting onto the dry, powdered sugar sand. In front of me, an oddly shaped...

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Uncovered Gem Northeast Ohio
Uncovered Gem
The northeastern Ohio communities of Geneva-on-the-Lake, Ashtabula, Conneaut and Mentor hold a plethora of culinary, scenic and historic delights.

From wineries, covered bridges and a haunted lighthouse to a U.S. President’s home and library and the beautiful natural areas of a state park and arboretum, northeastern Ohio is a gem of a destination. The region, stretching from Lake County just east of Cleveland to Ashtabula County bord...

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The Great Outdoors Meets the Big City Duluth, Minnesota and Superior, Wisconsin
The Great Outdoors Meets the Big City
The vibrant sister ports of Duluth, Minnesota and Superior, Wisconsin are well worth a visit, by boat — or otherwise.

Few cities can compare to Duluth, Minnesota, when it comes to sheer paradox. Located in the far reaches of the Upper Midwest, where Wisconsin’s and Minnesota’s deep, dense North Woods kiss the shores of mighty Lake Superior, this community of nearly 90,000 people still conjures image...

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Kayaking the Calusa Lee County, Florida
Kayaking the Calusa
Florida’s Lee County welcomes Midwesterners with open arms as they seek to escape from Old Man Winter and get up close and personal with nature.

When Cynthia Gilbert meets fellow Midwesterners along Southwest Florida’s shimmering shoreline, she watches them discover what she felt her first time in a kayak: Clear salt water as warm as a bath teeming with wildlife that—from a paddler’s perspective—is literally at be...

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Slice of Paradise Apostle Islands & Bayfield, Wisconsin
Slice of Paradise
Winter, spring, summer or fall… Lake Superior’s Apostle Islands and the communities of Madeline Island and Bayfield, Wisconsin, offer year-round activities set against a stunning backdrop of equal parts pristine, sugar-sand beachfront and lush, unspoiled wilderness.

Our multicolored beach towels and assorted sand toys were the only objects marring the unbroken, sweeping crescent of golden sand, shimmering in the warm midsummer sun. Incredibly, no one else from the nearby campground decided to join us, and the day-trippers from the mainland and from the isla...

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