You don’t have to travel too far to find fantastic seafood in Michigan. After all, our state’s location along the beautiful Great Lakes makes way for plenty of deliciously fresh fish and shoreline eateries with unbeatable views. Whether you’re partial to fish and chips, smoked whitefish, chowder, or a finely imported item prepared with care, these seven coastal seafood restaurants in Michigan will have you returning time and time again to satisfy cravings.
1. Sindbad’s Restaurant and Marina
Situated along the shores of the Detroit River, this harbor spot features fun nautical decor, friendly service, and some of the best seafood in all of Michigan. Since 1949, this waterfront hotspot known as Sindbad’s Restaurant has drawn in local boaters and out-of-town visitors alike who want to enjoy a hearty meal after exploring the riverfront. From shrimp to fried perch to clam chowder made with care, there’s plenty of tasty seafood awaiting inside.
2. Scalawags Whitefish & Chips
If you find yourself near the Mackinac Bridge, which leads travelers into the beautiful expanse of the Upper Peninsula, be sure to stop in for a meal at Scalawags. This Mackinaw City treasure is just a stone’s throw from the Straits of Mackinac and typically opens its doors in April for seasonal service. As its name implies, the eatery serves some of the freshest and tastiest Great Lakes catches around – typically prepared in the form of fish and chips. Other menu items include fish tacos, chowder, and a whitefish sandwich.
3. The Cabbage Shed
When you’re looking for a delightfully rustic and welcoming restaurant that sits just moments from the shoreline of both Lake Michigan and Betsie Lake, the Cabbage Shed is a must-visit. This down-to-earth spot is the perfect place to unwind, relax, and enjoy a laid-back meal with loved ones – particularly during the warmer months. As you dig into dishes like blackened fish tacos or parmesan and panko-crusted fish sandwich, you might even have the opportunity to enjoy live music.
4. Noto’s at the Bil-Mar
Get up close and personal with the beauty of Lake Michigan when you venture to Grand Haven for a meal at Noto’s, a bright and comfortable restaurant that truly offers a little something for every diner. Gaze out upon the shoreline or time your visit around a world-class Lake Michigan sunset, which is sure to take your breath away. If that weren’t enough, the food options are top-notch, with offerings ranging from Michigan perch to shrimp and scallop pasta.
5. Dogpatch Restaurant
It’s no secret that the town of Munising offers incredible access to Lake Superior and its accompanying Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore. But some visitors might not be familiar with the area’s dining scene, which includes gems like Dogpatch Restaurant. This quirky eatery pays homage to the vintage comic “Li’l Abner,” even including references to characters throughout the restaurant. Seafood favorites at the Dogpatch include fresh Upper Great Lakes catches fried to absolute perfection and served with tasty sides.
6. Timbers Steak and Seafood
Ludington is a real dreamland for those who love being close to the waterfront. Timbers Steak and Seafood provides hungry visitors the chance to indulge their cravings while appreciating a decidedly informal atmosphere – and it’s all situated just a skip and a hop away from both Pere Marquette Lake and Lake Michigan. With flavorful offerings like clam linguini and Norwegian salmon, this spot will surely draw seafood fans back for repeat visits.
7. Harbor Haus Restaurant
It might take you a solid chunk of time to venture northward to Harbor Haus in Copper Harbor, but this unbeatable spot in the far reaches of the Keweenaw Peninsula is so worth checking out. While the restaurant is open on a seasonal basis, it packs a major punch that will have you daydreaming about its fare all year long. Menu selections include imported ahi tuna from Hawaii and plenty of fresh catches from our beloved Great Lakes. What’s not to enjoy?
Have you dined at any of these awesome coastal seafood restaurants in Michigan? Which of our favorites did (or didn’t) make the list? We always love to hear from our readers, so drop us a line in the Facebook comments or recommend another unique place to eat in Michigan by completing our nomination form.