South Haven is one of the Great Lakes’ coastal gems. Home to stunning shorelines and delicious eateries, the sleepy town represents some of Michigan’s most important culture and history. Our 24 hour guide uncovers all the beachside town has to offer— from restaurants to swimming spots. Get ready to experience Lake Michigan like you never have before.
Breakfast at Bunde’s Bakery Cafe
Get energized for the day at this quaint family run bakery. Known for their classic and old fashioned recipes, Bunde’s is a favorite among locals and tourists alike. Their simple yet delicious menu includes warm raspberry coffee cake, a killer egg and ham breakfast sandwich, and a variety of Starbucks beverages. Plus, with its central location, it’s the perfect place to begin your exploration.
Price: $3-7 per item.
Learn about the Great Lakes at the Michigan Maritime Museum
Explore the Great Lakes’ fascinating past at the Maritime Museum. With interactive exhibits, boat rides, and historical monuments, this museum has something for everyone to enjoy. Learn about the critical role Lake Michigan played in World War II, or discover the essentials for building your own boat. Not only will you become more familiar with South Haven’s aquatic history, you’ll have fun too.
Price: $15-50 for boat ride and museum admission, $8 for museum admission only.
Walk the pier to South Haven Lighthouse
Built in 1903, South Haven’s charming lighthouse attracts visitors from across the globe. Known for its stuning beauty in both summer and winter months, tourists flock year round to the quaint red lighthouse on the lake. Stroll the pier to visit the incredible marker and observe a stunning view of South Haven and its harbor— but watch out, a splashing wave might sneak up on you now and then.
Lounge on the shore at North Beach
Walk back to the shore and spend midday on North Beach’s smooth white sand. Known as one of South Haven’s best shorelines, the picturesque beach is the perfect place for relaxing and catching some rays. Lounge on a towel under the sun or grab a milkshake from the concession stand. North Beach is the perfect place to slow down, relax, and take in the lakeside views.
Price: $4-8 for concession stand refreshments.
Grab a beer at South Haven Brewpub
This lowkey brewpub is the perfect place for an afternoon pick-me-up. It’s small yet impressive menu of hand crafted beer boasts some of the finest IPAs and Amber Ales on Lake Michigan. Hungry? You’re in luck, the brewpub is known for its delicious grub. Order an appetizer to snack on alongside your beer— their spicy frickles and caprese flatbread are to die for.
Price: $5-7 per beer, $5-13 per appetizer.
Walk around Van Buren State Park
Escape the urban hustle and embrace nature at Van Buren State Park. Offering some of the best lake views in South Haven, Van Buren’s dunes and wooded trails make for the perfect afternoon exploration. If you’re feeling brave, hop in the lake or jump on a kayak, the park is home to some of the best swimming beaches in town. Don’t forget to check out the park’s campsite before you depart. The 220 site campground will have you planning your next South Haven trip before you even leave.
Dinner and drinks at Taste
This South Haven favorite encourages sharing and exploring with their small plates and family style atmosphere. Order a variety of appetizers and eat your way across the globe; Japanese spicy tuna rolls, Italian caprese, and South American tilapia tacos are a few house favorites. Not to mention their sprawling selection of signature martinis. Be sure to arrive hungry, you won’t be disappointed.
Price: $10-20 per appetizer, $6-30 for two cocktails.
Catch a movie at the Michigan Theater
End the evening with a flick at South Haven’s Michigan Theater. Screening the hottest new releases at the best prices in town, the historical cinema is known for its free popcorn refills and four dollar matinees. Visit on a monday for the ultimate date night— two movie tickets for eight dollars. Popcorn, candy, and a cozy theater, is there a better way to end a vacation?
Price: $4-8 per ticket, $10 for refreshments.
Total price for 24 hours of beachin’: $55-153.
What are your favorite South Haven destinations? Add them to our beach listings here!