Indian Summer In Saugatuck | The Perfect 3 Day Getaway
Indian Summer is the best time to visit Saugatuck. September may mean the end of summer for other resort towns. But it’s perfect time for your mid-week Indian Summer Getaway to Wickwood Inn. Imagine spending 3 perfect days in Saugatuck, Michigan. Our days are always 10 degrees warmer by the lake in September and October! Plan your relaxing and warm mid-week getaway at Wickwood Inn. Plus, there’s no better time to enjoy the local fall food harvests. Throughout the day at the Inn and at local farm-to-table restaurants, taste the delicious difference everywhere in town.
Take a walk along the shoreline and dig your toes into the sun-kissed sand of Oval Beach. It’s more special without the hectic crowds of summer. Visit idyllic ripe grape heavy vineyards and cider mills in orchards full of apples. Or, take a long exhilarating bike ride over dunes, through forests and around rolling farmlands. Then come home to Wickwood and share your adventures with fellow guests at Sips and Small Plates at Six. Our 3-day itinerary highlights the best things to do in Saugatuck during Indian Summer. And, it helps you plan the perfect 3-day Indian Summer getaway.
“It’s 10 degrees warmer at the lakeshore!”
~ As We Say In Saugatuck
Day One of Your Mid-Week Stay
Explore the riverfront for bit, then wander over for lunch at Ida Reds in downtown Saugatuck. Ida Reds is one of the best kept secret lunch locations in town! After lunch stroll the streets of downtown, exploring the unique shops and fine art galleries. Be sure to check out Spice Merchants for a dazzling array of fragrant herbs and spices, often frequented by local chefs. As you make your way through downtown Saugatuck, take note of the boats bobbing at the docks. You may want to schedule time to take a harbor cruise or sunset lake cruise on the Star of Saugatuck.
When you’re ready to put your feet up, make your way to the Wickwood Inn for check-in. Our friendly and welcoming innkeeper guides you to your romantic hideaway for the next few days. Enjoy your cup of freshly brewed coffee or tea and freshly baked afternoon sweets. Relax and sit outside on the lovely porch and gazebo surrounded by gorgeous gardens. If you’re road-weary, take a nap or curl up with a good book from the library. Claim a few quiet moments for yourself. No matter what you do, don’t forget to enjoy Wickwood’s signature evening tradition, Sips and Small Plates at Six. Sip a glass of something delicious and sample the bounty of local harvests that inspire the recipes for our bed and breakfast’s appetizer hour.
To complete your evening leave your car in our private parking lot and stroll downtown to one of the many local restaurants within walking distance of the Inn. For a casual meal, try Phil’s Bar & Grill. It’s where many locals hang out, but if you’re looking for a dining adventure head for Grow. This wonderful Saugatuck restaurant has a signature menu that satisfies the foodies in us!
Indian Summer Getaway Day Two
Your second day begins with the inviting aromas of breakfast wafting towards your room. Wander down for some fresh brewed coffee to start your day. Your taste buds are in for a treat no matter what’s on the menu this morning. It’s sure to feature something fresh, local and delicious. Wickwood’s recipes, created especially for guests, are from the award-winning author of the Silver Palate Cookbook. She just happens to be the owner of the Inn. And since September is prime apple season, you may find yourself devouring Wickwood’s Glazed Apple Bismarck With Spiced Maple Syrup.
A Beach Adventure
The best way to work off an indulgent breakfast? Head to nearby Oval Beach for a morning stroll along the water’s edge. You can drive there in 10 minutes… But, why not have a little adventure. Take Saugatuck’s Historic Chain Ferry from Water Street in downtown Saugatuck across the Kalamazoo River. Then walk the short half mile to our beautiful beach. Noted by both Conde Nast and National Geographic Traveler as one of the top beaches in the country, you are soon walking to the rhythm of the waves. You splash around in the clear and warm blue water. Of course, you could spend the whole day here, languishing in the sand and walking around the Lake Michigan sand dunes. But, packing a picnic and exploring some of the lovely vineyards and wineries in the area is equally appealing.
Have A Picnic
Shop in three delicious places for your picnic in Saugatuck. You can head over to the Farmhouse Deli to gather up provisions for an impromptu feast. Everything you need is here, from delicious salads and sandwiches to artisan cheeses and smoked meats. The next food destination in town is Pennyroyal Café & Provisions. The owners, a chef, a pastry chef and a farmer, provide you with the absolute freshest food in town in this café/farm market on Blue Star Highway. Finally, the Butler Pantry has a wonderful cheese selection! Plus, choose from a variety of Michigan jams, preserves and condiments that pair with the cheeses.
“The world is a book and those who do not travel read only a page.”
~ Saint Augustine
Visit The Countryside
Your first winery stop is Fenn Valley Vineyards and Wine Cellars. Take the hour and forty-five minute tour. Learn all about how grapes are grown, harvested and made into wine. And yes, tasting the wine is a part of showing the wine-making process. And, if you reserve the experience on the day you book your room, you can arrange a private tour by wagon through the vineyards.
Next up, and nearly across the street, is Virtue Cider. They make proper farmhouse cider. Using a timeless tradition, they press apples, age the juice in barrels, and allow natural fermentation using wild yeasts. Visit their Tap Room and Bottle Shop and sample their delicious, hard ciders. Take a few of your favorites back to Wickwood Inn with you.
The final stop on this little tasting tour is Crane’s Pie Pantry Restaurant and Winery. Open since 1972, guests enjoy this family-owned business in the rolling farmland of western Michigan. Crane’s offer tastings of their award-winning wines and hard ciders. Plus, don’t skip the flight of homemade pies and a cider float. They’re made with fruit from Crane’s own orchards. If you miss their Fennville location, visit them in downtown Saugatuck at their new Water Street tasting room. Serving up the same wines and ciders found on the farm, along with jams, jellies, honey and more.
Enjoy Fine Dining
After a pause to refresh at the Inn, ask for directions to the Bowdie’s Chophouse in Douglas, MI. A great upscale dinner option with the best cocktails and steaks around! And, like many restaurants in town, it’s so close you can walk there.
Indian Summer Getaway Day Three
There’s lots more to see and do on the last day of your Indian Summer Getaway in “the prettiest little village in Michigan”. Drive out to Saugatuck Dunes State Park for a spectacular short walk along a secluded strip of Lake Michigan. Two and a half miles of shoreline and dunes stretching 200 feet up offer plenty of opportunity for Instagram-worthy photo ops.
So Many Things To Do In Saugatuck
Or, opt for a scenic cruise. Choose from a paddleboat ship ride aboard the Star of Saugatuck. Or maybe sail with Saugatuck Sailing for a few glorious hours. Or, steer yourself around Saugatuck’s harbor in the vintage boat of your choice. See the lovely homes and cottages along the shoreline of the Kalamazoo River. Guests often return with stories and photos of local wildlife from their water adventure.
Finally, a bike ride along one of the many bike trails that dot the countryside might just be the ideal way to end your Indian summer getaway. From a slow cruise through our lovely shopping streets to a challenging trek on a mountain loop, novice and experienced bikers alike will enjoy a memorable ride.
For your final evening in Saugatuck, take a short for some down home cooking at The Southerner. Their fried chicken and other great southern comfort foods are the draw here, along with a carefully curated wine list and a perfect menu of craft cocktails.
“The shortest distance between two points is not a very interesting journey.”
~ R. Goldberg
Reserve Your Indian Summer Getaway For A Mid-week Stay Today
Indian summer is a great time to visit us here at the Wickwood Inn, but every season has its own unique flavor. If you love this trip, start planning your winter and spring getaways now. We have plenty of great ideas for you to enjoy Saugatuck in all its glorious seasons.