Marquette (Michigan)

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Marquette [1] is a city in the Upper Peninsula of the state of Michigan.

Get in[edit]

Drive, take the Greyhound, or fly into Sawyer International Airport [2], a former Air Force base converted in recent years to civilian use. Driving in the Upper Peninsula during winter can be treacherous and might not be safe for inexperienced winter drivers. The city is rather isolated on the shores of Lake Superior but than again so is the particular part of the state. The drive there will take you through endless forests and small lakes.

Get around[edit]

For the most part one would want to take a car, especially in winter when snow or ice covers everything. In the summer one could rent bicycles from one of the local bike shops, notably Lakeshore Bikes [3], which is fittingly located on Lakeshore Drive which fittingly runs alongside Lake Superior. Marquette has several bike paths [4], one of which runs alongside the lake from Presque Isle Park [5] to the intersection of M-28 and US-41. Biking on M-28 or the backroads around town is rather pleasant and the traffic isn't too harsh.

There is also county-wide bus service [6], which runs a few fixed routes and also offers door to door service.

See[edit][add listing]

  • Downtown Marquette, [7]. Downtown Marquette, which is located just feet away from the shores of Lake Superior, is the cultural nexus of the city. The area is both quaint and pedestrian friendly, and visitors will find a wide array of shops, restaurants, bars, and hotels, as well as many of the city's museums and historical sights. Washington Street is the primary downtown thoroughfare, while Front, Main, Spring, Baraga, and Third Streets form the core of what locals consider "Downtown Marquette."  edit
  • The Superior Dome, 1401 Presque Isle Avenue, [8]. Perhaps Marquette's most recognizable landmark, the Superior Dome is the world's largest wooden dome (per Guinness World Records, 2010). At 14 stories tall, the building looks even more impressive from the inside. NMU's football team plays here and the structure is open to the public daily, and the inside contains several exhibits about the history of the area and the university. Free.  edit
  • Marquette Ore Docks, (Both can be accessed via Lake Shore Boulevard). Another of Marquette's recognizable landmarks are the ore docks. Marquette has two massive "pocket" style docks on Lake Superior which are used to load iron ore, which is mined inland, onto the large shipping freighters that traverse the Great Lakes. The dock at the Lower Harbor is no longer operational, but it has become a symbol for the lakeshore district. Meanwhile, the Upper Harbor ore dock is still operational, and recently loaded its 400 millionth ton of ore. Visitors can observe the loading process in action (which is actually quite interesting, even just to see the massive boats coming in and out of the harbor) from Presque Isle Park on the north side of town  edit
  • Lake Superior. Marquette is a town built on two natural harbors, which means that Marquette is, at its core, a city that revolves around Lake Superior. Because of the natural change in elevation, the lake is truly visible from almost anywhere in the city, but it is best observed at Mattson Lower Harbor Park, a large public park on the shore just east of downtown, or from one of Marquette's many beaches. Adventurous visitors should walk out along the breakwall at Lower Harbor for the best views of both the lake and the city.  edit
  • Father Marquette Statue, 501 S Front Street. A large bronze statue honoring Marquette's namesake, Father Jacques Marquette. Father Marquette was a Jesuit who explored the Great Lakes region and is believed to have camped at the site where the city of Marquette was later founded. The statue is in a park near downtown, overlooking Lake Superior.  edit

Parks and Beaches[edit]

  • Presque Isle Park, (Located at the Northern terminus of Lake Shore Boulevard), [9]. At 323 acres, Presque Isle Park is by far Marquette's largest public space. It is located on a large peninsula on the far-northern side of the city, and is undoubtedly one of the most visited attractions. It's a great location for a beautiful drive, bike ride, or hike right in town. The trail around the perimeter of the island meanders through the woods, occasionally popping out for breathtaking views of cliffs and the lake. Don't miss jumping off the black rocks, accessible from a parking area on the west side of the island.  edit
  • Mattson Lower Harbor Park, (Located on Lake Shore Boulevard, just East of downtown), [10]. The location of many of Marquette's festivals, Mattson Park is 22 acres of reclaimed greenspace along the Lake Superior shore, just one block east of downtown. Showcasing great views of the lake and downtown, it features a large wooden playground, as well as a marina and great fishing opportunities along the water. There is a pavilion with restrooms and a concession stand.  edit
  • McCarty's Cove, (Located at the intersection of Lake Shore Boulevard and E Michigan Street). McCarty's Cove is Marquette's most picturesque beach. Located just north of the Marquette Harbor Lighthouse, beach goers have great views of the shoreline, the lighthouse, and several offshore islands. As is common with Lake Superior, the water can be quite cold - especially early in the summer season.  edit
  • South Beach, (Located on S Lake Street). South Beach is probably Marquette's most popular beach, most likely because the water is artificially heated by the Municipal Power Plant, which is located right next to the park. If Lake Superior is too cold for you ordinarily, this may be the place for you, but only if you enjoy swimming in the shadow of a large power plant.  edit
  • Mount Marquette, (Located on Mt Marquette Road). Mount Marquette is the highest point in the city of Marquette, and a drive and easy walk to the top rewards visitors with a panoramic view of the city, Lake Superior, and the surrounding area. Not to be confused with Marquette Mountain, the popular ski hill located nearby.  edit


  • Marquette Maritime Museum, 300 N Lakeshore Boulevard, (906) 226 2006, [11]. Open daily May-October. The Marquette Maritime Museum features exhibits about Great Lakes shipping and boating, including famous shipwrecks and lighthouses. Guests can also tour the Marquette Harbor Lighthouse, which is located on the premises. The Lighthouse has been in use since 1863 and the tour is an additional $4. $5.  edit
  • Marquette Regional History Center, 145 W Spring Street, (906) 226 3571, [12]. The Marquette Regional History Center features information about the history of Marquette and surrounding areas, dating from prehistoric times to modernity. Rotating special exhibits highlight specific areas of the permanent collection, all of which is never on display at once. The center also features a research library and gift shop. $7.  edit
  • Upper Peninsula Children's Museum, 123 W Baraga Street, (906) 226 3911, [13]. Popular among locals and visiting families with children, the Children's Museum is an educational way for families to spend an afternoon, particularly if the weather is less than ideal. The museum has a hands-on focus and it feels like more of a large, informative play area than a museum. Includes live reptiles and amphibians, arts & crafts, instruments, aviation exhibits, a gigantic jungle gym made of organs and body parts, and much more. There is a toy store/gift shop downstairs. $6.  edit
  • Michigan Iron Industry Museum, 73 Forge Road (located about 10 miles West of downtown Marquette, near the city of Negaunee.), (906) 475 7857, [14]. This museum celebrates Marquette County's iron mining heritage, some of which is still taking place today. It's located just outside of town, but admission is free and it is a checkpoint on the popular Iron Ore Heritage Trail. The museum is also the point of departure for tours of Michigan's two operational iron mines, which are offered 5 days a week from June to August. Free (donations accepted).  edit

Do[edit][add listing]

Marquette has the best freeride mountain biking in the country. The trails are insane so you better gear up. In the summer Marquette is host to the Ore to Shore mountain bike race [15] and Superior Bike Fest, which is huge. For good riding advice, stop by Lakeshore Bikes or the Quick Stop Bike Shop. Guys at both shops are avid riders and will be happy to point you in the right direction.

As you might expect the hiking is exceptional as well, with many hikes heading up the big hills in the area that overlook the lake. One can hike up Sugarloaf Mountain or Hogback Mountain and then hike back down to the Lake for a relaxing lounge on the beach.

Sugarloaf Mountain [16] is another good short hike north of town. Mostly uphill, one route takes you straight up, the other is a little gentler and includes staircases over the rougher spots. The view from the top is spectacular - a great photo spot. Also one of the best places for autumn foliage viewing.

In the winter there is a sled dog race [17], and the start is immediately followed by fireworks off of the dock in downtown. As well in the winter there is a cross country ski race [18] which goes from Ishpeming to Marquette.

In the summer there is the Hiawatha Traditional American Music Festival [19].

Northern Michigan University has a good hockey team and it's worth going to the games. NMU is also home to the Superior Dome, the largest wooden dome in the world (until recently) and host to NMU football and indoor track.

Uncle Ducky's Charter Fishing [20] has fishing trips on Lake Superior. Otherwise you can fish off of the breakwall downtown, which is accessible from the Coast Guard station off of Lakeshore Drive (just north of downtown).

Marquette Magazine, a free monthly, always has a new list of 101 things to do in Marquette.

Buy[edit][add listing]

The city has an old-fashioned pedestrian-friendly shopping district in the downtown area. There are dozens of shops downtown, all of which specialize in a wide variety of products. Listed here are the most popular or unique shops in town. Marquette also has a commercial strip on the West side of the city. Here you will find the Westwood Mall, as well as several chain retailers. Because Marquette is the largest city in the Upper Peninsula, this retail area draws in a large number of people from across the region, but it may not be of much interest to the out of area tourist.

  • Art U.P. Style/Scandinavian Gifts, 130 W Washington Street, (906) 225 1993. An art gallery and gift shop downtown which specializes in handcrafted pottery and paintings. It also carries Scandinavian imports and Upper Peninsula themed gifts.  edit
  • Casualties, 503 N Third Street, (906) 226 8484, [21]. Casualties is a downtown clothing and equipment store specializing in activewear fashion. They carry a variety of snowboard, skateboard, and surf apparel and equipment, as well as name brand shoes and sunglasses.  edit
  • Che Bello Boutique, 145 W Washington Street, (906) 273 1362, [22]. Che Bello is a trendy, locally owned clothing boutique located downtown. They specialize in women's fashion, but they do carry some men's and children's apparel as well.  edit
  • Getz's, 218 S Front Street, 1-800-745-7438, [23]. Located in the heart of downtown, Getz's Department Store has been operated at the same location since 1900. Occupying a three story historical brick-sandstone building, Getz's is a bright spot at a time when the "downtown department store" has disappeared in most American cities. They are a regional dealer of Carhartt, North Face, and other name brand products, and they specialize in activewear. They also sell Stormy Kromers, which are popular Upper Peninsula-made winter hats.  edit
  • Lake Superior Photo, 211 S Front Street, (906) 228 3686, [24]. Lake Superior Photo is a shop and gallery displaying local photography, most of which is outdoor and nature related. Although they are based in Marquette, their photographs cover much of the Upper Peninsula. They also offer photography training workshops.  edit
  • Michigan Fair, 114 W Washington Street, (906) 226 3894, [25]. Michigan Fair is a downtown shop that sells only items made in or pertaining to the state of Michigan. It has a varied selection of items and is a great place to go to find local or regionally made souvenirs and gifts.  edit
  • Snowbound Books, 118 N Third Street, (906) 228 4448, [26]. Snowbound is a popular local book store. They specialize in both new and used books, and they are a great place to find books by local authors or books of regional interest.  edit
  • Risak Pottery, 2909 Island Beach Road, (906) 226 6003, [27]. Art gallery and pottery studio located on the North side of Marquette, right near the entrance to Presque Isle Park. The Risaks are an internationally known family of pottery makers whose artwork is displayed in the White House, the Smithsonian, and around the world. Their art can be purchased from their gallery or ordered online.  edit
  • Touch of Finland, 2853 US-41 West, (906) 226 2567, [28]. In recognition of Marquette's Finnish and Scandinavian heritage, Touch of Finland sells a variety of Finnish imports, as well as Finnish-American themed cultural artifacts, books, and novelty items. They also carry general Marquette and Upper Peninsula souvenirs, including hats and t-shirts.  edit

Eat[edit][add listing]

Marquette has far more restaurants per capita than most cities in Michigan, which makes it easy to find something to suit your taste. Most of the restaurants are located downtown or along the Third Street Corridor, and are within walking distance of both Lake Superior and Northern Michigan University. There is also a commercial strip of chain restaurants (Applebee's, Buffalo Wild Wings, etc.) on the West side of the city, near the mall.


  • Border Grill, 800 N Third Street, [29]. An affordable local Tex-Mex chain with three locations in the area. $5-10.  edit
  • Jean Kays Pasties, 1635 Presque Isle Avenue, [30]. Takeout restaurant serving traditional pasties and sub sandwiches. $5-10.  edit
  • The Rice Paddy, 1720 Presque Isle Avenue, (906) 225 0368, [31]. Closed on Saturdays. Very popular takeout Thai restaurant. It's recommended that you call at least 45 minutes ahead to place your order. Cash only. $5-10.  edit
  • Toarmina's Pizza, 1907 Presque Isle Avenue, (906) 226 6400, [32]. Home of the 24" pizza. $10-30.  edit
  • Togo's Submarine Sandwiches, 1000 N Third Street, [33]. Local sub shop with two locations in the area. $2-10.  edit


  • Aubree's Pizza, 227 W Washington Street, [34]. Gourmet pizzeria and grill downtown. $10-30.  edit
  • Donckers, 137 W Washington Street, [35]. A gourmet chocolate and candy maker with a novelty shop downstairs and a popular sandwich shop upstairs. $5-20.  edit
  • Portside Inn, 239 W Washington Street, [36]. Casual pub style dining with a wide selection of pizzas, sandwiches, and burgers. $10-20.  edit
  • Stucko's Pub and Grill, 900 N Third Street, [37]. Pub famous for their barbecue and burgers. $10-20.  edit
  • Sweet Water Cafe, 517 N Third Street, [38]. Cafe focusing on fresh and organic ingredients, as well as locally made art. $10-20.  edit
  • The Thai House, 1031 N Third Street, [39]. Dine-in Thai restaurant with a very large selection of dishes and East Asian beers and teas. $10-20.  edit
  • Vango's Pizza and Cocktail Lounge, 927 N Third Street, [40]. A Greek restaurant and pub with popular pizzas and waffle fries. Live music on Thursday nights. $10-15.  edit
  • The Wild Rover, 142 W Washington Street, [41]. An Irish pub downtown, popular for its nightlife and Irish and American inspired food. $10-20.  edit


  • Capers, 230 N Front Street, [42]. Fine dining restaurant located in the historic Landmark Inn hotel downtown. $20-30.  edit
  • The Casa Calabria, 1106 N Third Street, [43]. Popular upscale Italian restaurant $15-25.  edit
  • Coco's, 911 Lake Shore Boulevard, [44]. Fresh upscale dining with outdoor seating, located on Lake Superior. $15-25.  edit
  • Elizabeth's Chop House, 113 S Front Street, [45]. Chic fine dining restaurant downtown. Marquette's most upscale restaurant. $30-60.  edit
  • Lagniappe Cajun Creole Eatery, 145 W Washington Street, [46]. A Cajun style bistro with a bar, "gris gris" gift shop, and weekly live music. $15-20.  edit
  • L'Attitute, 105 E Washington Street, [47]. Trendy cafe downtown with outdoor seating and great views of Lake Superior. $15-25.  edit
  • Sol Azteca, 105 E Washington Street. Sit-down Mexican restaurant located directly above L'Attitute Cafe. Also features great views of Lake Superior. $15-25.  edit
  • Steinhaus, 102 W Washington Street, [48]. German inspired restaurant that uses locally grown food. Menu frequently changes, and they have a large selection of international beers and wines. $20-30.  edit
  • The Vierling, 119 S Front Street, [49]. Downtown restaurant and microbrewery famous for their fresh Lake Superior whitefish and French onion soup. $20-30.  edit

Drink[edit][add listing]

Marquette has dozens of drinking establishments, the most popular of which are listed. Marquette also has a popular and growing microbrewery scene.

  • Northland Pub and North Star Lounge, 230 N Front Street, [50]. Two drinking establishments located in the historic Landmark Inn hotel downtown. The Northland Pub is adjacent to Capers Restaurant and features live music three nights a week, while the North Star Lounge is located on the top floor of the building with specialty cocktails and great views of Lake Superior. Both are more upscale establishments.  edit
  • The Verabar, 145 W Washington Street, [51]. Marquette's only true nightclub, the Verabar has a large dance floor and is popular among students and young people.  edit
  • The Blue Lounge, 145 W Washington Street. Located directly above the Verabar, The Blue Lounge is a more low-key venue in which local musical talent is showcased. Also popular with students.  edit
  • 906 Sports Bar, 145 W Washington Street, [52]. A recently opened sports bar located downtown and with impressive views of Lake Superior. Also serves food.  edit
  • The Doghouse Pub, 154 W Washington Street, [53]. Downtown drinking establishment that is popular with NMU students. Well known for their buffalo wings.  edit


  • Black Rocks Brewery, 424 N Third Street, [54]. Popular microbrewery downtown with a very relaxed atmosphere. Features live music five nights a week, and is located in a large, repurposed house. Black Rocks beer can be found throughout most of Michigan.  edit
  • Ore Dock Brewing Company, 114 Spring Street, [55]. Another downtown microbrewery with frequent live shows and a wide selection of popular beers.  edit
  • The Vierling, 119 S Front Street, [56]. Operational since 1995, The Vierling was one of Michigan's first brewpubs. The beer is brewed in the basement, while the main floor also serves as a popular restaurant.  edit

Sleep[edit][add listing]

  • Nordic Bay Lodge [57] 1880 US 41 South (800) 892-9376, (906) 226-7516 Fax (906) 226-0699, ***Nordic Bay Lodge has closed down***
  • Comfort Suites Marquette Hotel 2463 US 41 West. Tel: +1 906 228 0028. Fax: +1 906 228 3893. Close to Sawyer International Airport SAW. 60 spacious and relaxing suites, including five Whirlpool Suites and two Two-room Executive Suites.
  • Econo Lodge Lakeside Marquette Hotel 2050 S US 41. Tel: (906) 225-1305. Fax: (906) 228-7342.
  • Country Inn & Suites, 2472 US Hwy 41 W. (We are on the North side of US 41, approximately 3 miles from Downtown Marquette), (906) 225-1300, [58]. checkin: 3 PM; checkout: 12 PM. Featuring 84 rooms including: guest rooms with with 1 King or 2 Queen beds, Whirlpool Suites, Studio Suites with 1 King bed, Family Suites with either 1 King or 2 Queen beds in a separate bedroom, and an Extended Stay Suite. Deluxe complimentary continental breakfast includes both hot & cold items. Indoor pool, whirlpool and fitness room, as well as complimentary 24 hour access to SNAP Fitness. Free wired and wireless internet access throughout the building, in addition to 24 hour business center with printer. Meeting room available for rent as well.  edit

Stay safe[edit]

Get out[edit]

Every surrounding town has some sort of tourist attraction. Ishpeming has the Yooper Tourist Trap [59].

Routes through Marquette
HoughtonIshpeming  N noframe S  GladstoneEscanaba

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