The outdoor season has finally started! The sun is out. The birds are back. The days are gorgeous, and the kids are getting restless. Entertain your precious balls of energy by taking them out and about the city this Spring and Summer. Rediscover Detroit and create wonderful family memories. Here are 10 fun family things to do in Detroit to get you started.
1Visit the Detroit Zoo
Kick off the season with a roar at the Detroit Zoo. The zoo offers plenty of neat opportunities for kids and adults to discover the wonders of the animal kingdom. Kids will love the variety of animals at the Detroit Zoo. Lemurs, tigers, gila monsters, and king penguins abound! During the zoo’s Wild Summer Nights Concert Series, you can catch unique shows that include the Detroit Children’s Choir and the Michigan Opera Theater.
2Bask on Belle Isle Beach
Ready to hit the beach? Head over to Belle Isle, but don’t forget your Recreation Passport! The Belle Isle Beach is a half-mile long swimming area, and it’s the only public beach in Detroit. Soak up some sun while cooling off in the Detroit River. If you’re more adventurous, try out the Water Slide. During the summer, be sure to stay for Jazz on the Beach, Sundays from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
3Wander Through Greenfield Village
Greenfield Village has officially reopened for the season! Take your family to enjoy some of the niftiest inventions in American history. Wander through seven historic districts and try hard not to wish that you could stay there forever. Be sure to stop at one of the restaurants in the village for some delectable food. There’s even a sweets shop you can try.
4Gape at Marvin’s Marvelous Mechanical Museum
Visit one of World Almanac’s 100 most unusual museums in the U.S. this summer. Marvin’s Marvelous Mechanical Museum has arcade games and rides from every decade. On top of that Marvin’s has other mechanical oddities you won’t find anywhere. Plan to make more than one trip. There are way too many cool machines to see in one trip.
5Get Delicious Ingredients at Eastern Market
Want fresh, delicious, locally grown food? Head to Eastern Market. Every Saturday hundreds of vendors from across the region set up their delicious wares, including fresh fruits and veggies, jellies, and unique crafts. The market gets incredibly busy on Saturdays, but navigating the crowd with a stroller is manageable. Really, it’s kind of advisable. Where else are you going to put all the wonderful food you buy?
Enjoy the beautiful weather by taking a stroll through Mexicantown, one of Detroit’s most vibrant neighborhoods. The communities’ boundaries are often up for debate, but everyone agrees that the main thoroughfares are Bagley Street and Verner Street. While you’re there, stop at a local eatery and have lunch. You can sit on the patio at Los Galanes, or you can grab some of the best tamales in Michigan at Taqueria Lupita’s. Afterwards, head over to Mexicantown Bakery for some authentic tres leches cake.
7Go on a Walking Tour
Think you know Detroit? Find out by going on one of the Detroit Experience Factory’s free walking tours. Take the Downtown Walking Tour (Saturday from 2pm to 4pm) to see downtown in a whole new light. If you want something a little calmer, check out the Riverfront Walking Tour (Mondays from 1pm to 2pm). The DXF also offers bus tours and paid walking tours. A special bus tour, Diego and Frida’s Detroit, will run for a limited time.
8See Fort Wayne
Check out Detroit’s third fort for living history. Plan a day trip and wander around the grounds. If you want to pack a picnic, you can sit out on the lawn and enjoy the warm sun. Just don’t bring any BBQ pits of alcohol. Fort Wayne opens the first weekend in May and is open every weekend during the summer. What are you waiting for? Plan your trip.
9Watch a Tigers Game
It’s baseball season, so head over to Comcerica Park and cheer on the Tigers. The whole family will enjoy the excitement of baseball games. Be sure to grab a hotdog or nachos while you’re there. What’s a baseball game without a hot dog? Check out the Tigers’ schedule to find your perfect game.
10Relax at Campus Martius Park
Campus Martius is one of those places that’s wonderful year-round, but it’s hard to beat the park’s appearance on a sunny summer day. Get the kids out of the house and away from the T.V. Help them rediscover the outside world. You can even do a little shopping while you’re there. If you want, you can stop in the Fountain Bistro for some lunch. While at the park, be sure to find Detroit’s point of origin.
Don’t Forget the Essentials
When you’re out and about this season, don’t forget to take all the essentials with you. Bottled water, snacks, and sunscreen are good to have on hand. They help keep little tummies happy and delicate skin safe. If you’re not using your phone as a camera, be sure to take one with you. You don’t want to miss all the good times you’ll have.