Start downtown on Washington Avenue for the best variety of boutiques, speciality stores and gift ideas. Glik’s has been around since 1897 and sells apparel and accessories from familiars such as Hurley, Quiksilver, North Face and Billabong. The brands sold here may be big, but Glik’s still maintains its small-town feel.
Keep your eyes peeled for Down to Earth, Michigan Rag Co. and Lee & Birch for more one-of-kind apparel and gift items. Be sure to enter the reading realm of The Bookman. This store exudes attitude and thinks of books as children. Browsing as well as buying is recommended. Stop by Buffalo Bob’s and check out his boards — skate, snow and skim. Even if you’re not into a board sport, a chat with the staff here is refreshing and educational. When you see the colorful sign of Mackinaw Kites & Toys, run toward it. Kids, and adults, can test-play with toys before purchase.
Sure, we’re not California, but we do have surfers and paddle boarders here. Lake Michigan has been known to kick up some pretty good swells for the adventurous and can be smooth as glass for the paddlers. If either are your thing, stray off Washington Avenue, make your way to North Harbor Drive and visit the Surf Shop or Wet Mitten for all the latest SUPs (stand up paddle boards) and surf accessories.
When you’re ready for a break from your retail therapy, you can immerse yourself in a little bit of Grand Haven history at the Tri-Cities Historical Museum, located in the Akeley Building on Washington Avenue. Admission is free.
If you’ve still got afternoon time on your hands, fit in a Wind Dancer Charters sail. The double gaff-rigged schooner departs daily from Chinook Pier on the boardwalk. Enjoy breathtaking views of Lake Michigan from the 52 foot deck where you can relax and soak it all in or join the action and help hoist a sail with the crew of the 65 foot vessel. We recommend sampling the boat drinks. Afternoon sails last about 1.5 hours.