Drummond Island: Family Vacation in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula


When we first decided to leave San Francisco to travel this year, one of our top priorities was to see and spend time with family as much as we could. We are lucky to spend the first month of our travels doing just that. Our first adventure took us on a cruise through the Baltic Sea, beginning in Stockholm and ending in Copenhagen, with Jeff’s dad, stepmom, brother, and sister.

After that, we flew back to the United States to spend two weeks in two of our favorite places in the world, both of which happen to be in Northern Michigan. The first is Drummond Island, a small island in the Eastern Upper Peninsula, where my family has been coming every summer for years. I was five years old the first time we traveled here, and my sister and I still reminisce about sleeping in the bunkbeds in the cottage we rented and riding our bikes to the H & H general store to buy rock candy.

Drummond Island is beautiful, but there is nothing particularly glamorous about it. Its beauty comes from its natural simplicity: the calmness of Lake Huron, the abundance of Black-eyed Susans and daisies popping out of gravel roads, the rugged yet serene landscape where we’ve made years of memories…We remember eating ice cream cones at The TeePee, painting rocks we found at the beach, riding our bikes to Nate’s Marina, learning to fish with my dad (and rowing the boat back when the motor broke – funny now, not then), tubing and paddle boating with our cousins across Sturgeon Bay, playing games with Grandma on the porch, jumping in the lake, picking wildflowers, making smores, etc. etc. etc.

In the nearly ten years that I’ve known Jeff, this was his first time here. Busy work schedules, difficulty flying here from the West Coast, and summer weddings of family and friends scattered around the country have prohibitted us from spending time together here over the past few years. Luckily, my teaching schedule has allowed me to make visits to Drummond a regular part of my summer travels.

Although it was a short trip, we had a wonderful and relaxing time with my family. We took a boat ride through Lake Huron to the De Tour Lighthouse, had a picnic at Big Shoal Beach, had a fish fry, made a bonfire, played Rummikub (mom’s favorite!), and enjoyed slow mornings on the dock drinking coffee.

We will miss our family so much while we’re away, but it was nice to visit them and make memories to carry with us. When we arrived here, my mom gave us a little care package in a bag that said “See the world. Come home for love.” We can’t wait to come back here again and again.



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