Located in southern Michigan, Kalamazoo is a thriving city with plenty of entertainment for travelers. You’ll find museums and movie theaters along with an abundance of planetariums and performing arts venues.
If you’re looking for fun things to do in Kalamazoo, you’ve come to the right place! Here are our top 10 things to do in Kalamazoo, whether you’re just visiting or making this city your new home.
1. Henderson Castle
You don’t have to fly to Europe to see an old-fashioned castle. There’s one right in Michigan!
The castle has everything that you’d expect from such a luxurious estate, including gardens, ballrooms, vineyards and more. Modern amenities include hot tubs and a restaurant for fine dining. Visitors are welcome to stay the night in B&B-style suites.
2. Kalamazoo Valley Museum
Unlike some museums where everything is tucked away behind glass, the Kalamazoo Valley Museum has a hands-on spirit that encourages discovery and creativity.
Many of the exhibits are interactive, including a “Science in Motion” area where you can play around with everything from body scanners to earthquake simulators. There are also rain gardens, gigantic globes, music stations, animal models and tracks where you can build and race your own miniature cars.
3. Principle Food and Drink
Principle Food and Drink is one of the best places to visit in Kalamazoo.
Its chic, trendy atmosphere is perfect for everything from date nights to power lunches with corporate bosses, and it uses fresh, locally-sourced ingredients to create amazing dishes that Gordon Ramsey would envy.
You don’t have to be a foodie, however, to appreciate what this restaurant has to offer.
If you’re eager to taste Michigan cuisine, start with a reservation at Principle Food and Drink.
4. Kalamazoo River Valley Trail
Covering more than 22 miles, the Kalamazoo River Valley Trail is an easy way to explore the area without getting lost.
It’ll also let you experience the city and the country all at once: It winds through the hustle and bustle of downtown Kalamazoo before branching out into the hills, rivers and lakes of the surrounding wilderness.
The trail is wide and flat, so it’s suitable for walkers, joggers and bikers of all types.
Views can be especially gorgeous at night, so make sure to bring your camera and capture the stars that shine like diamonds away from city lights.
5. VerHage Fruit Farms and Cider Mill
If you enjoy hay rides, candied apples and sugar-topped homemade doughnuts, a trip to the VerHage Fruit Farms and Cider Mill is one of the best things to do in Kalamazoo.
VerHage is a “working farm,” meaning that it’s a real, fully-functioning farm even though it also doubles as a tourist attraction.
When you take a tour, you’ll get to see the barns, mills and crops that are actually used every day by the owners. When you’re done learning about country life, you can cut loose and have fun with a variety of family-friendly activities.
Options include hay rides, pony rides, zip lines, tractor driving lessons and cider-making demonstrations. You can also pick apples or eat freshly-baked treats like homemade pies and pastries.
6. Kalamazoo Nature Center
The Kalamazoo Nature Center is one of the most beautiful places in the United States.
Covering more than 1,100 acres, the Kalamazoo Nature Center is a haven of natural beauty.
There are ponds, prairies, forests, wetlands and more, and thanks to the walking and hiking trails that criss-cross the area, you can explore all of the wonder at your leisure.
The trails are even marked by difficulty level so that beginners never find themselves on an expert hiking path or vice versa.
7. Kalamazoo State Theatre
The Kalamazoo State Theatre is one of Michigan’s oldest and most beloved institutions. On top of that, it’s one of the last remaining “picture palaces” in the country. Built during the film boom of the 1920s, the Kalamazoo State Theatre offers old-fashioned charm in a new-world way.
Though it’s been renovated over the years, it still retains a lot of its vintage architecture and decor, including a massive pipe organ that used to be played during silent movies. Today, the Kalamazoo State Theatre has shifted its focus from movies to live performances, but it’s still a bustling location and an important landmark for the locals.
If you’re looking for cool, unusual things to see in Kalamazoo, try an original picture palace.
8. Art Hop
The “Art Hop” is a tradition in Kalamazoo. It’s usually held on the first Friday of the month, and it involves dozens of local businesses coming together to provide food, art, music and culture for guests who “hop” from one location to the next.
There could be gallery openings from prestigious museums; there could be outdoor concerts from indie grunge artists.
You might even stumble across cool and unusual things like glass-blowing demonstrations!
9. Confections with Convictions
Confections with Convictions is one of the best places to go if you have a sweet tooth.
It’s a gourmet chocolate shop that offers mouthwatering truffles, caramels, barks, bites and fudges, and they’re all made by young people working for a better future.
You can also sign up for tours, tasting, classes and other special events hosted by the staff.
10. Leila Arboretum
With more than 25,000 plants, the Leila Arboretum is one of Michigan’s grandest destinations for flowers, trees, shrubs and succulents.
It’s described by its caretakers as a “horticulturist’s dream come true,” and it certainly tries to live up to that title. The landscapes are both beautiful and bountiful. Walk the trails; frolic in the gardens; enjoy picnics under shaded tree groves.
You can even rent a bike and take it along one of the many trails that winds through the park.
Are You Moving to Kalamazoo?
Now you know the history of Kalamazoo, we bet you’re eager to get settled in here. And Big Lake Movers can help you do it.
We all know how challenging it can be to move home. But you can avoid the struggles of Kalamazoo’s early settlers. In modern times, our team at Big Lake Movers can take the strain from your shoulders.
We offer residential and commercial moving services in Kalamazoo, Michigan. We are a fully-licensed, highly-experienced moving service. And we insure all your possessions for your peace of mind.
Request a quote from us today.