The University of Michigan is one of the Michigan's most prominent educational institutions. Located in Ann Arbor in southeastern Michigan, the university is home to over 40,000 students. Visitors to the area often come on university-related business, but there are a number of activities in and around Ann Arbor for the whole family.
1. Catch a football game in the Big House. No visit to the Ann Arbor area is complete without a trip to the University of Michigan's football stadium, affectionately named the "Big House." The stadium is the largest in the United States and holds over 109,000 people. Game days are big events in Ann Arbor, and it is easy to get swept away in the excitement. Get tickets as early as possible, especially for big games like the annual game against Ohio State University. Public transportation is easy to find; alternatively, it is an easy drive to the stadium from any of the hotels near University of Michigan.
2. Visit the Matthaei Botanical Gardens and Nichols Arboretum. Located less than five miles from the Ann Arbor city center, these lush gardens and park lands are the ideal spot for a picnic or a quiet walk. In the spring, check out the botanical gardens for a riot of colorful flowers. The extensive park areas are an excellent escape from the city; hike on the many trails or take a book for a relaxing afternoon by the river that runs through the Arboretum. Birders can spot a variety of birds, while nature enthusiasts will delight in finding the hundreds of different plant species.
3. Take the family to the Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum. Children and adults alike will enjoy this interactive museum, where visitors are encouraged to play with the exhibits. The museum features over 250 exhibits that focus on science and technology topics. Check out the weekend Super Science shows or come on the first weekend of the month for the interactive Sciencepalooza.
4. Support local vendors at the Ann Arbor farmer's market. Held every Saturday from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., this open-air market is popular with locals and students. Vendors sell everything from locally-grown vegetables to handmade crafts. Go around breakfast or lunch and make a meal out of the freshly-made food that is on sale around the market.
5. Delve into history at the Cobblestone Farm Association. Wander around this living history museum for a taste of pioneer life in the Ann Arbor area. The Cobblestone Farm features a 100-year-old log cabin, historic re-enactors, and well-kept farm grounds. Tours are available.