Mackinac Island's Hidden Spots

Chances are, if you have been to Mackinac Island before, you have done the typical bike ride around the island, a picnic thanks to fresh selections from Doud’s Market, wandering through the shops downtown and then dinner on the island before either staying on the island for the night or heading home via the ferry. 

But have you ever wondered what else is on the island to explore? Here are some of our favorite hidden spots on Mackinac Island:


Mackinac Island Solider’s Garden: This hidden gem on the island is a peaceful place. From many years ago, you will see old stone foundations and walls next to the area cleaned for the garden. 

Sunset Rock Mackinac Island

Sunset Rock:  If you are fortunate enough to know about Sunset Rock, you are one of the few! Sunset Rock is located on the backside of The Inn at Stonecliffe and is a magnificent spot to take in a sunset over the water.

Anne’s Tablet: For the best hidden view, visit this spot! It is a small, secluded section of the island dedicated to Constance Fenimore Woolson, who was a nineteenth century author, who wrote about Mackinac Island. 

Anne's Tablet, Mackinac Island

Next time you are on Mackinac Island, pop into Canvas and Paddle to ask us for directions to any one of these hidden spots and to grab any adventure gear that you might need to take along! 

Spring Bucket List for Mackinac Island

With spring officially here, it’s time to make a bucket list of fun things to do on Mackinac Island and in Northern Michigan!  Some of the items on the list may still include a little bit of snow (because it’s still everywhere in Northern Michigan!) but there are also some fun activities to look forward to later in spring when the snow is finally gone.

  1. Explore the frozen waterfalls in the Upper Peninsula. Did you know that there are more than 300 waterfalls in the UP? Plan a trip to explore some of these gorgeous places!

  2. May 2nd marks “Open the Grand” at the Grand Hotel for the 133rd season! If you haven’t ever experienced opening day at the Grand Hotel, be sure to book a stay for this exciting time. In addition to the Grand Hotel’s opening day, many of the hotels on Mackinac Island having spring specials, which you can read about here!

  3. May 12th marks the 100th anniversary for the Michigan State Parks! Pop on over to Mackinac Island and explore our state parks for the day! If you need some trendy stickers or patches to mark the momentous occasion, pop into Canvas and Paddle and we have just the thing!

  4. Spring is the perfect time to look for Petoskey Stones, because the winter waters have left them prime for the picking! Look for these beautiful treasures along the shores of Mackinac Island. 

  5. If you’ve ever wanted to see the Northern Lights, Spring is a great time to check out the Headlands International Dark Sky Park. The Headlands Dark Sky Park is in Mackinaw City and is an incredible 550 acre park along Lake Michigan. Not only is it perfect for sky gazing, the Headlands Dark Sky Park also has many trails for hiking, cross country skiing, bicycling, bird watching and more! If you have not had a chance to visit this spectacular park, add it to your spring list.

Canvas and Paddle will be open for the summer before too long and we are excited to welcome you back to Mackinac Island! Book your stay for spring on Mackinac Island and come explore all that the island has to offer in the new season! 

All About S'mores

One of the best parts of camping is when the sun sets for the evening and everyone gathers close by the fire, huddled in sweatshirts and blankets. 

Someone in the group might pull out a guitar or the radio plays slowly in the background. A fun song might be sung or a game is played to keep everyone entertained for the evening. Eventually, everyone’s favorite part of the night is here. The time when the wooden sticks are pulled out and it is time for s’mores to concocted. 

Growing up, only graham crackers, chocolate and marshmallows were used to create s’mores. However, it seems like these days, s’mores are getting much more creative and tasty! Here are three s’more recipes that if you haven’t tried, you need to make sure that you incorporate into your next campfire roast.

S’mOreos 

S'more Recipe

What You’ll Need:

  • Oreos

  • Peanut Butter

  • Graham Crackers

  • Milk Chocolate

  • Marshmallows


Picture Provided by Taste of Home // Recipe Provided by Christina Smith, via Taste of Home

Candied Bacon S’mores

What You’ll Need:

  • Graham Crackers

  • Chocolate

  • Marshmallows

  • Candied Bacon

Picture Courtesy of Shared Appetite


According to Shared Appetite cover the strips of bacon with brown sugar. Bake in an oven at 400 for about 15-25 minutes. Then add the bacon to your s’more! You know what they say, don’t knock it til you try it!

Peach, Brie and Dark Chocolate S’more

What You’ll Need:

  • Brie

  • Dark Chocolate

  • Peaches

  • Graham Crackers

Melt the brie, instead of the marshmallow! Then add some peaches and dark chocolate to the graham cracker for a sophisticated and savory twist on the traditional s’more. 


Photo and recipe courtesy of Joy the Baker for Grate, Pair Share magazine. 


Next time you go camping, try one of these new variations of a s’more. When you do, tag #CPandMe on Instagram for us to see what tasty or savory treat that you created! Or better yet, pop into Canvas and Paddle on Mackinac Island to tell us all about it! 

Canvas and Paddle Instagram Takeover: Green Drinks

Did you follow Canvas and Paddle's Instagram Takeover from Sara Wright, @greendrinks? If you missed it, head over to @canvasandpaddle on Instagram to see what’s been posted lately.

Sara Wright is the face behind @greendrinks and @itswonderfulphotography. Sara lives on Mackinac Island year round working as a photographer and marketing coordinator for Grand Hotel! She also runs It's Wonderful Photography, a small wedding photography company based here on Mackinac Island and Northern Michigan.

“What’s your favorite part of living on Mackinac Island?”

"The best part about living on Mackinac Island, aside from the obvious beauty of being surrounded by such a pristine landscape is definitely the people that live here. We have a very special community of creative and very caring people that are constantly inspiring one another. In winter we all get a chance to slow down and enjoy the island for ourselves, it's quite cold but we know how to bundle up.” - Sara Wright

Thanks so much to Sara for partnering with us for a fun week over on Instagram! Pop into Canvas and Paddle this summer to find the featured products or visit our online store!