Seven million acres of breathtaking autumn brilliance

Ask fall color seekers their favorite destinations and Michigan’s Upper Peninsula makes their lists. Seven million acres of tree coverage, the pristine shores of three Great Lakes, picturesque historic lighthouses, mirror-calm inland lakes and roaring waterfalls make this a fall getaway no other U.S. destination can match (USA Today readers voted the U.P. the number one destination for fall color).

The leaf show begins when our daylight hours shorten in mid-September and the night air grows crisp. First, there’s a spatter painting of scarlet reds and sunny yellows amid acres of green. Then, almost overnight, the hardwood forests explode in reds, oranges, yellows, purples, browns and greens. The colors intensify and peak by mid-October. But this breathtaking show continues for a couple more weeks, especially along tree-canopied roads near the shorelines of Lakes Huron, Michigan and Superior.

Below, are 10 of our favorite fall color routes across the U.P. (nearly 1,500 gorgeous, leafy miles). To help plan your trip, check our weekly color reports here for our eastern, central and western regions. 

Fall Tour 1 – 100 Miles
Keweenaw Peninsula - Copper Harbor, Eagle Harbor, Eagle River, Calumet/Laurium, Hancock, Lake Linden, Bete Grise

Keweenaw Peninsula – Copper Harbor, Eagle Harbor, Eagle River, Calumet/Laurium, Hancock, Lake Linden, Bete Grise

Fall Tour 2 – 225 Miles
Upper Peninsula of Michigan Fall Color Tour 2

Hougton, Ontonagon, Silver City, Porcupine Mountains, Wakefield, Bergland, Baraga/L’Anse

Fall Tour 3 – 221 miles
Ironwood, Wakefield, Bergland, Bruce Crossing, Covington, Crystal Falls, Iron River, Watersmeet

Ironwood, Wakefield, Bergland, Bruce Crossing, Covington, Crystal Falls, Iron River, Watersmeet

Fall Tour 4 – 177 Miles
Big Bay, Marquette, Negaunee, Ishpeming, Palmer, Gwinn, Chatham, Shingleton, Munising, Au Train

Big Bay, Marquette, Negaunee, Ishpeming, Palmer, Gwinn, Chatham, Shingleton, Munising, Au Train

Fall Tour 5 – 127 Miles
Iron Mountain, Norway, Spalding, Menominee, Cedar River, Escanaba

Iron Mountain, Norway, Spalding, Menominee, Cedar River, Escanaba

Fall Tour 6 – 144 Miles
Escanaba, Rapid River, Manistique, Gulliver, Naubinway, Epoufette, Brevort, St. Ignace

Escanaba, Rapid River, Manistique, Gulliver, Naubinway, Epoufette, Brevort, St. Ignace

Fall Tour 7 – 160 miles
Munising, Seney, Grand Marias, Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore (H-58)

Munising, Seney, Grand Marias, Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore (H-58)

Fall Tour 8 – 172 Miles
Whitefish Point, Paradise, Newberry, Deer Park, Grand Marais, Seney, Seney National Wildlife Refuge

Whitefish Point, Paradise, Newberry, Deer Park, Grand Marais, Seney, Seney National Wildlife Refuge

Fall Tour 9 – 81 Miles
Paradise, Lake Superior Shoreline Road (Curley Lewis Scenic Highway), Bay Mills, Brimley, Eckerman

Paradise, Lake Superior Shoreline Road (Curley Lewis Scenic Highway), Bay Mills, Brimley, Eckerman

Fall Tour 10 – 168 Miles
St. Ignace, Hessel, Cedarville, De Tour Village, Goetzville, Pickford, Sault Ste Marie, Kincheloe

St. Ignace, Hessel, Cedarville, De Tour Village, Goetzville, Pickford, Sault Ste Marie, Kincheloe

 

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