Detroit, Michigan

OK. Hold on. Just hold your horses. I know what you’re thinking. She’s absolutely crazy. Detroit?! No way.

But before you think I’m absolutely insane, hear me out.

As you’ve probably gathered from my previous posts, I’m a native Michigander, and a Metro-Detroiter at that–so I’m partial to my city. And despite the bad things you hear (yes, Detroit has some bad parts, so does every big city), there are a lot of awesome things to see here. Here are the 10 top reasons I think you should visit Detroit.

1) We have a beautiful Riverfront with easy access to Canada.

2) We have three awesome casinos.

3) We have a Mexicantown with awesome food and also a Greektown with awesome food.

4) We have some delicious creperies and bakeries and a barbeque restaurant that is famous around the country.

5) We have an art museum, The Detroit Institute of Arts, that has original work from artists like Monet, Van Gogh, and Degas, ancient Greek art, mummies, and a lot of art work from local artists as well.

6) We have a huge science museum.

7) Detroit is the home of the three largest auto manufacturers in the world.

8) Eminem lives here (even though you probably won’t see him, sorry).

9) Detroit has lots of cool clubs and bars.

10) You can tell all your friends you visited Detroit.

So come visit. Because honestly, we really want you to. No really ever says “Hey! Let’s go visit Detroit!” They’re scared to. The media puts these thoughts in our heads that everything here is bad.  OK, so we’re not New York City. Or Chicago. We can’t compete. But really, if you look beyond the bad things and the stereotypes, and you do your research and know where you’re going, you’ll be OK and you’ll be safe, and you’ll find all the wonderful things Detroit has to offer. You can even stay outside the city and come visit during the day. But I really felt like I had to put in a plug for Detroit.  Because we real Detroiters just want people to recognize us for the good parts, and not the bad.

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The Detroit Riverfront

The Detroit Riverfront

A Detroit creperie

A Detroit creperie

The Detroit Institute of Arts

The Detroit Institute of Arts

Slow's Bar BQ

Slow’s Bar BQ

Providence, Rhode Island

As One of the 13 original colonies, Rhode Island has had many visitors over the last couple hundred years. But for those who don’t get out to the East Coast very often, I would like to recommend highly it as a travel destination.

Rich in history, Providence has a beautiful downtown. I briefly visited at the end of this past December when my boyfriend and I took a whirlwind tour of the East Coast and visited around five states in about a week (not including the ones we traveled to to reach our destinations). We traveled from Niagara Falls, New York to Boston, Massachusetts to Providence to Washington D.C. to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and back home.

While staying in Providence, we stayed at a cute little Bed and Breakfast from the 1800s called Christopher Dodge house. Providence, as I said, is full of history, from the Bellvue Avenue Historic District (late 19th, early 20th century), to the Block Island South East Light (a Victorian-style lighthouse dating back to 1874), to the First Baptist Meeting House, the oldest congregation in the U.S.–this building dates back to 1775 and the congregation was founded in 1638.

If you love history and historic sites as much as I do, and happen to be in the area or want to take a trip out, I think you’ll love Providence. It’s really a beautiful city, full of beautiful sites and rich with history.

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Photos Courtesy of Wikipedia.com and Facebook.com.

Pere Cheney, Michigan: A Ghost Town

Anyone who knows Michigan knows what a rich history it has in a number of things: the lumberjack and railroad industry, lighthouses, and Native American and French culture. Before I get away from Michigan and on to other places, I wanted to talk about another place in Michigan with some spooky history.

Up in Crawford County, named for a Revolutionary War Soldier, Col. William Crawford, who died fighting Native Americans in the state of Ohio, was a small village formerly called Pere Cheney, Michigan, now a grown over Ghost Town. Pere Cheney, which was was a lumbering town established in 1873, is said to have been built on some Native American lands. After the settling of the town, by the mid-1870s, the population of the town had grown to about 1,500 inhabitants, along with a general store, a sawmill, some workers, a doctor, a hotel, a school, and a post office.

In the early 1890s, diptheria and smallpox epidemic scame through, and killed great number of the town’s population. In the late 1890s, the sicknesses struck again, killing off almost the rest of the population of the Pere Cheney by the early 1900s. It was declared a Ghost Town by 1914.

Many people have claimed strange sightings at the cemetery of where the people are buried and in the area itself, including witches, ghosts, strange glowing lights and orbs, and figures floating and walking around in darkness. There has been a decent amount of vandalism that has taken place at the cemetery. Some say the spookiness has to do with the deaths of the people in the town; some say the town was cursed from the very start.

Below are some pictures and a video I have posted that I found online. Check it out! Also, more to come about ghost towns and haunted places as we get closer to Halloween (although that won’t be for a little while).

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(Photos Courtesy of Google Image Search: Pere Cheney)

Northern Michigan

I’ve always been a fan of Michigan, seeing as I’ve lived here for 24 years and all. That aside, even if I hadn’t, it’s obvious that there are some pretty special things about this state. Sure, it probably has the weirdest climate of any place on earth–last week it was warm and in the 60s and this week it’s below freezing and snowing in the first week of Spring, but I’d like to share a couple awesome places I’ve grown to love while living in my wonderful, albeit somewhat underrated home state.

I’ve often been to Charlevoix, Michigan, and also Traverse City, Michigan, which are small cities situated just about an hour or a little more away from Mackinaw City, which is the city at the very top tip of the Lower Peninsula of Michigan before you cross the bridge to the Upper Peninsula (which, if you haven’t been there, is a surprisingly sparsely populated area so unpolluted and full of nature that you can sometimes actually see the Northern Lights from areas of it on clear nights). We have some family friends in this area, so I’ve visited many times, and Charlevoix and Traverse City are interesting (and beautiful) little towns, right on the water and near the Great Lakes. To be honest, they’re both actually a prime vacation spot for a lot of Michiganders, so if you’re a Michigander, bear with me here while I rave about how great this area is, because chances are you already know.

From Mackinaw City, which is home to the Mackinac Bridge, a five mile long suspension bridge connecting the city to St. Ignace, the southern-most city in the Upper Peninsula, you can take the ferry to Mackinaw Island, a historic Island with horse drawn carriages, old shops, colonial forts, and some of the best fudge in the world.

Traverse City, about an hour and a half south of Mackinaw City, has some beautiful sand dunes, called Sleeping Bear Dunes, the likes of which you will not see anywhere else in the United States. They are absolutely breathtakingly beautiful and look out over the water for miles and miles.

Charlevoix is kind of a quaint little town, with some cool architecture and fun shopping. There are some interesting mushroom type houses right in town built by architect Earl Young in mid 20th century, and the city is right on the coast of Lake Michigan with some historic and beautiful lighthouses.

If you like nature, Northern Michigan is also home to Hartwick Pines, the tallest forest of pine trees in entire the United States, near the city of Grayling.

In my opinion, you can really never visit northern Michigan too many times. In “All Summer Long”, Kid Rock sings about what it’s like to spend summertime in Northern Michigan, and in “The Nick Adams Stories”, Ernest Hemingway tells stories of Michigan summers as well, and neither of them are too far off about how beautiful and wonderful they are. Even Michigan winters are beautiful, although extremely cold.

Below, I have posted some pictures I have actually taken of these places when I visited. Check them out and see what you think. If you have already visited Northern Michigan, you know what I’m talking about, and if you haven’t, and ever visit in the future, I doubt you’ll be disappointed.

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The Traveler’s Dreamblog

Hi everyone! Welcome!

My name is Laura. I’m a 24-year-old college student living in Detroit, Michigan. One of my passions is traveling, and in this blog I’m going to be sharing some places that are the hidden gems of travel–places that you probably never thought about visiting, but that you should definitely check out. I hope you enjoy this journey to unique and special travel destinations as much as I do, and I hope this inspires you to get out there and travel, if you’re not doing that already.

Happy Traveling!

Laura

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