Nestled along the edge of the Grand River, Chinook Pier features a unique collection of stores and eateries, plus a charter fishing fleet and Grand Haven Municipal Marina!
There is also an 18 hole miniature golf course and a small waterfront playground, plus an antique steam engine, Pere Marquette 1223.
For anyone looking for rentals, be sure to visit the Surf Shop for surf boards, stand-up paddle boards, skim boards and skate boards.
The park commonly referred to as “The Boardwalk” is actually officially named “Lighthouse Connector Park”. It extends 1.5 miles from Chinook Pier to the foghorn house at the end of the South Pier. Completed in 1984 during Grand Haven’s Sesquicentennial, this park is enjoyed by thousands of Grand Haven residents and thousands more vacationers throughout the year.
Grand Haven, Michigan is a favorite destination of sailors and power boaters. You can boat from Lake Michigan, the Grand River, and Spring Lake. With 57 slips, the Municipal Marina is located at 101 N. Harbor Drive, near Chinook Pier. Dockside facilities include electricity, pumpout, water, ice, restrooms, showers and public telephone.
The boat launch is located on Harbor Island, just west of US-31, south of the drawbridge. A pass is required to launch your boat. Daily and seasonal passes are offered. Daily passes are available at the launch ramp. Seasonal passes may be purchased at the Treasurer’s Office in City Hall, 519 Washington Avenue, Grand Haven, Michigan 49417 or by calling 616-842-3210.
For more information, please visit Municipal Marina and Boat Launch. Or call 616.847.3478 (Seasonal)
The lighthouses on Grand Haven’s South Pier do more than guide Lake Michigan sailors. Their magnificent presence symbolizes the rich history of our area and the commerce and recreational activities that have made Grand Haven what it is today.
Standing tall and steadfast, the lighthouses endure all the snow and ice and rain and waves that buffet them year round.
Seemingly indestructible, they appear impervious to the damaging effects of nature and time. But, of course, that’s not the case. The lighthouses’ exteriors are showing their age, their interiors even more so. These jewels of the lake have lost some luster. That’s the bad news. The good news is that the community is doing something about it via the Grand Haven Lighthouse Conservancy.
Phase I will focus on several evaluation and maintenance issues including hazardous materials testing, an architectural analysis, and replacement of some doors and siding.
Phase II will be much more comprehensive. It will include painting the structures’ exteriors and interiors, repairing their foundations, and installing new doors and ventilation systems.
Phase III will include replacing windows, restoring 24-inch portholes, stripping, priming, and painting the interior circular staircase in the inner light, and restoring holding tanks in its foundation.
For more information about Grand Haven lighthouses and the Conservancy restoration project, please visit Grand Haven Lighthouse Conservancy.
A visit to Grand Haven is not complete without a walk a day spent at the beach! Recently, Grand Haven Beach was named one of the world’s best secret beaches by Travel and Leisure Magazine. It was joined by other beaches in places like Koh Lanta, Thailand and Cirali Beach, Turkey.
The always changing hues of Lake Michigan make Grand Haven Beach an eye-pleasing place to pass time. Shades of deep blue, aqua and green offer a beautiful backdrop against the soft sands that sing when you swish your feet to and fro.
Lake Michigan’s waves are excellent for boogie boarding and even surfing most days. Many people pack the place to sunbathe, swim, play volleyball, frisbee and badminton. Some bring kites, kayaks and parasails. Others are out to simply enjoy the scenery with friends and family. Whatever the reason, Grand Haven Beach is indeed one of the best beaches on earth!
Waterfront Events & Activities
Locals and visitors come in droves to Grand Haven’s City Beach and boardwalk to enjoy the host of events held along the waterfront throughout the year. Summer is certainly peak season with Art on the Riverfront, the Musical Fountain, Dancing on the Waterfront, Sunday outdoor spiritual sermons and all kinds of other activities!
Chinook Pier is the perfect place for people who like to play putt putt. The area also has a farmer’s market that is open twice weekly, not to mention the eateries, retail stores, beach rentals, a playground and a marina complete with a charter fishing fleet. Further up the boardwalk is the Coast Guard Station and the Imagination Station–an educational experience for children. There are several other snack shops and restaurants scattered here and there too, like Snug Harbor, Jelly’s and the Pier Peddler, to name a few.
The Great Lakes Kite Festival takes place on City Beach in the spring each year. There is a sand sculpture contest held there in the summer. And the waterfront is packed with people during the Coast Guard Festival as well, particularly during the fireworks.
In the fall, the Salmon Festival celebrates the area’s rich fishing culture with a fish boil, live music, kids activities and more. People even brave the waterfront in the winter for Winterfest, to watch cardboard sled races, dog pulls and warn up at the annual bon fire. Whatever the season, there’s always a reason to head down to the Grand Haven waterfront!