The winter months are full of hustle and bustle here in Motor City and its surrounding areas. Even when Christmas has passed, shopping centers are packed with belated gift-buyers, folks returning those ill-fitting holiday sweaters, and eager young people spending their gifted money. If you’re hoping to avoid large crowds, long lines, and seasonal stress, here are seven must-visit winter attractions in Detroit and its neighboring towns.
1. Ice skating at Campus Martius Park
Nothing says winter like a magical evening of ice skating, and it’s no secret that Campus Martius Park houses Detroit’s best skating destination. Known as the Rink at Campus Martius, this festive spot is typically open until early March and offers guests of all ages the chance to marvel at the surrounding city lights while gliding across the ice. Admission is $9 for children and $11 for adults, with skate rental at $5.
2. A winter stroll along the RiverWalk
If you’re lucky enough to reside in the Motor City, you might not think to spend cold days along the banks of our beautiful Detroit River – but this iconic walking space is magnificent in every season. When temperatures drop, bundle up and head out for a family stroll along our nationally acclaimed RiverWalk, which winds past everything from ice formations on the water to public art to a gorgeous lighthouse.
3. Snow tubing at Rolling Hills Park
Ready to make your way down the snowy hillside? Rolling Hills Park in Ypsilanti can be reached by car from Detroit in only 40 minutes and the memories you’ll make here are absolutely priceless. Tubes can be rented on-site, so you don’t have to worry about bringing your own when you head out for a day of excitement. As you make your way down the 275-foot hill, you’ll feel your wintertime troubles melting away.
4. A day of learning the DIA
There’s always educational fun in store at the Detroit Institute of Arts, which genuinely offers a little something for everyone. On a frigid winter day, we can’t imagine a more warm and welcoming place to experience world-class art and other exhibits – just be sure to make an appointment before stopping by. Younger guests can even take part in a self-guided scavenger hunt throughout the museum.
5. Family fun at Valade Park
Through the end of February, Valade Park in Detroit will come to life every weekend with its Winter at Valade series. This unique event is meant to build community while offering unbeatable fun for locals and out-of-town visitors alike. Activities at the park include a space to make s’mores, sledding, cozy fires, ice curling, access to a variety of hot beverages, and so much more. Be sure to bring along your camera.
6. Movies at the Monroe Street Drive-In
In the mood for a truly unique movie-going experience? You’re in luck, as the Monroe Street Drive-In will offer films for the whole family all winter long. There are even cozy heating pods that can be snagged on a first-come, first-served basis for groups of one to four visitors. Pay $20 per vehicle and load up on snacks at the concession stand before appreciating a one-of-a-kind viewing adventure.
7. Sledding at Balduck Park
Nothing says wintertime like a trip to the sledding hill, and Balduck Park might just be the best spot in the city to get your seasonal thrills in. Bring along your own sled for a straightforward yet truly unforgettable day on the hillside, which sits just a stone’s throw from the suburb of Grosse Pointe and regularly attracts young folks and the young at heart with its wonderfully playful atmosphere.
Have you and your loved ones explored any of these wholesome and fun winter attractions in Detroit? Did we leave any of your favorites off our list? We always appreciate hearing from you, so share your thoughts with us in the Facebook comments or recommend another seasonal outing in the Motor City by completing our official nomination form here.