Holland, MI: Sand Dunes

Tucked down a long road in what felt like the middle of nowhere, behind a small parking lot and a nondescript hill that stands between you and Lake Michigan, are some of the coolest sand dunes you'll ever see. Eric found this place, Laketown Beach, when he was an undergrad doing an REU at Hope College and was really excited to show it to me on our trip around Lake Michigan this past summer.

First you have to walk over that hill. It doesn't look too bad in this photo, but it's at least 125 steps to the top...and then another 14 stories down. The view from the top of the stairs is simply breathtaking. Before this trip, I had only seen Lake Michigan from Chicago...and let me tell you, there is no comparison.

We were in Holland to see the professor Eric did research with, Tim Pennings, and Tim's dog Elvis, the dog who did calculus. Here they are playing Frisbee in the "shortcut" you can take instead of taking all the stairs:

And here are the stairs and the shortcut as viewed from the water.

We were only in Holland for the night and it was the best weather we had all trip. I could stay on a warm beach forever. We played Frisbee with Tim along the beach and enjoyed the sunset while making our way to what is known as the Bowl Dune.

The Bowl Dune involves hiking up and over another dune (this one pictured below), then taking a steep path down and into it. It was so awesome I forgot to take pictures of it. (I googled and found someone else with the presence of mind to take photos of it; click here and scroll mostly down to the bottom and look at the GIANT dune shaped like a bowl - that's the one!)

Climbing to the entrance was gorgeous, too, even if I failed to get a photo of Eric throwing a Frisbee really, really far and then running down a steep hill to the bottom. Dunes are a great workout.

I have been all over the world and rarely visit the same place twice. I could go back to these sand dunes (and Lake Michigan in general) over and over and still never want to leave (well, as long as it's July or August).

Have you been to these dunes or other dunes around Lake Michigan? Climbing dunes turned out to be a recurring theme on our trip :)
Holland, MI: Sand Dunes Holland, MI: Sand Dunes Reviewed by Maria on 10:00:00 AM Rating: 5

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