The sun-drenched beaches in the Petoskey Area of northern Michigan are the perfect way to relax and unwind. Then, add the Victorian charm and easy-going pace found in our communities of Petoskey, Harbor Springs, Bay Harbor and Boyne City and it’s easy to see why the Petoskey Area is known as a Michigan treasure.

But what if you are looking for a little more adventure? You’ve still come to the right place. The Petoskey Area has a multitude of adrenaline-pumping activities and high-flying fun.

Zipline Adventures are available at both Boyne Mountain and Boyne Highlands. You can choose routes that take you through the treetops on tours up to 3 hours long. These tours will take you on a series of lines that travel up to 4300 feet in length and as high as 50 feet in the air. Or you can challenge your friends to a twin zip race. Here you will travel 780 feet while flying 25 feet above the ground on side-by-side ziplines.

Wildwood Rush also offers zipline tours through the canopies of northern Michigan. Try the incredible and exciting new double dare feature. Participants will cross our longest sky bridge spanning the 136-foot gap between two monstrous towers. Upon reaching the summit, riders will begin the second dare; a 25-foot head rushing free fall from the top of our six story platform. Eddy current magnetic breaking technology then kicks in, allowing the rider a consistently fun and safe descent to the ground. Think bungee jumping, without the bounce!

Prefer a different sort of birds-eye view? Try the hot air balloon rides from Walloon Balloon Adventures. With over 40 years of flying hot air balloons, commercial pilot Lesley Pritchard offers sunrise & sunset adventure flights in the Boyne Area. The rides accommodate up to four people, plus Pritchard, and last about one hour.

Ever tried skydiving? Why not give it a go while you’re in the area? Enjoy a half hour scenic flight around Little Traverse Bay on your way to jump altitude – 2 miles above the earth!  Skydive Harbor Springs will make sure you are safely strapped to your experienced tandem instructor, then you’ll jump over the Harbor Springs coastline. After 40 seconds of freefall, the parachute opens and you’ll have a peaceful 5-minute canopy ride back to the landing area. What a rush! An accelerated freefall program is available in addition to the tandem dives.

Those who prefer to fly a little closer to land can try parasailing, just 45 minutes away in Mackinaw City with Mackinaw Parasailing. The sky is the limit on these single and tandem parasail rides. No need to get wet, just have fun as you float above the water.

Water lovers can get their fill of fun, too. There are plenty of exciting watercraft options to try that will keep your blood pumping. Rent a speedboat for the day or race across the lake on a Jet Ski. If you are looking for even more adventure on the water, grab a kayak and try tackling the whitewater rapids at Bear River Valley Recreation Area. This ¼-mile-long course is the only one of its kind in the lower peninsula.

Kids can get their fill of excitement at Big Bear Adventures with its rope challenge course. The course features 11 different elements that require balance, dexterity, and focus to conquer, like swinging steps, ‘tremor bridge’, tightrope walk, and vertical angle stairs. There are also bumper boats and an 18-hole adventure golf course to keep the whole family entertained.

Whether you are looking to get your heart racing or just take it easy, the Petoskey Area is the place for you. Grab your free Vacation Guide to plan a trip today.


About the author

Diane Dakins is passionate about all of the communities that comprise the Petoskey Area of Michigan: Petoskey, Harbor Springs, Bay Harbor and Boyne City. As assistant director of the Petoskey Area Visitors Bureau, she has “been there – seen that” when it comes to virtually every area attraction. She strives to create informative content that gives potential visitors the scoop on planning a northern Michigan vacation.