Going to Belle Isle? Starting Feb. 1 You’ll Need A Recreation Passport

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The view of Detroit's east side from Belle Isle. (c) Daily Detroit file photo

Beginning February 1, 2015, all vehicles must have a Recreation Passport to enter Belle Isle. Over the past year, the Recreation Passport has gradually been phased in at Belle Isle; vehicles were allowed into the park without a Recreation Passport until the vehicle owner’s next registration renewal date.

However on February 1, visitors entering Belle Isle without a vehicle Recreation Passport will be required to purchase a window sticker. The cost for the passport is $16 for buses, $11 for Michigan-resitered vehicles, and $5 for motorcycles. Owners of vehicles that aren’t registered in Michigan must buy a $31 nonresident passport.

“The best value is to purchase it when you renew your registration. Eleven dollars for a full year of access comes out to three cents a day. Purchase of the Recreation Passport provides a great opportunity to enjoy Belle Isle while supporting state and neighborhood parks,” said Jason Fleming, chief of the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Parks and Recreation Division’s resource management section.

If you’re interested in purchasing a Recreation Passport, there are three options available to you:

  • Buy a passport through the Secretary of State office during your regular registration renewal.
  • Purchase a window sticker at Michigan state parks
  • Buy it online at www.michigan.gov/estore (click on State Park and Recreation Passport in the left-hand menu)

If you plan to purchase a Recreation Passport at Belle Isle, you can do so between 8 a.m. and 4 p. m. at the administrative building, the White House, on Inselruhe Avenue. The passports are valid until the vehicle’s next registration renewal date.

Buying a Recreation Passport also gives holders access to the Passport Perks retail discount program in addition to entry to state parks like Dodge 4 State Park, Maybury State Park, Proud Lake Recreation Area, and Bald Mountain Recreation Area. If you’re interested in learning more about the Michigan Recreation Passport, visit www.michigan.gov/recreationpassport.

Shelter Reservation Changes

In addition to the Recreation Passport requirement, another change is coming to Belle Isle in February. All Belle Isle shelter reservations are now handled through the Michigan DNR’s Central Reservation System. Visitors can make reservations up to one year in advance by visiting www.midnrreservations.com or by calling 1-800-44-PARKS.

If you’re interested in learning more about Belle Isle, you can visit the park’s website at www.BelleIslePark.org or you can keep up with the latest park developments by following @BelleIsle_Park on Twitter and use the hashtag #AllinforBelleIsle as well as here on Daily Detroit.

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