Wilkommen! to Frankenmuth, Michigan. Wilkomen is German for welcome, an offer to come and join in. Something we don’t hear enough of these days. Frankenmuth, Michigan’s little Bavaria, is a place to find all the things that make time together meaningful. It’s a place of horse-drawn carrriages and covered bridges; of river boat cruises and world famous chicken dinners.
There are loads of things for you and your family to do in Frankenmuth. With festivals year round, the town welcomes visitors with Bavarian hospitality regardless of the season. It’s a great place for a day trip for the family or a weekend retreat with friends. Activities include concerts in the park, indoor and outdoor family fun, and even pet friendly fun.
If you are a shopper, this is your perfect destination. Shops include anything from leather to silk, china to sporting goods, apparel to gifts and much more.
For dining there are breweries, coffee shops, French, German and Oriental cuisines, and plenty of fast food and sweet shops. Lodging includes hotels, motels, B&Bs, and RV/campgrounds for your convenience.
From fantastic food, eclectic shopping and entertainment, to rich historical beauty and culture, Frankenmuth is the ideal departure from the ordinary every day.
There is much to see in the oldest city in North America! The mainland of the North American Continent was first sighted by the Spanish explorer and treasure hunter, Don Juan Ponce de Leon on Easter, March 27, 1513. He claimed the land for Spain and named it La Florida, meaning “Land of Flowers.”
Sometime later, Don Pedro Menendez de Aviles was named governor of Florida. When Menendez arrived off the coast of Florida, it was August 28, 1565, the Feast Day of St. Augustine – that is how St. Augustine got it’s name.
So, St. Augustine was founded forty-two years before the English colony at Jamestown, Virginia, and 55 years before the Pilgrims landed on Plymouth Rock in Massachusettes – making it the oldest permanent European settlement on the North American Continent.
The oldest fort in the US is in St. Augustine – you can visit it – a great place full of history. If you visit on Friday, Saturday, or Sunday you can watch as soldiers in period costume, load one of the many cannons at the fort and set it off! Loud but interesting. Also the oldest school house is located in the old part of St. Augustine. As you walk up and down the old narrow streets it is easy to picture Spanish soldiers and their familes living and working in the area. There are quite a few Bed and Breakfast inns and smaller hotels in the Old section if you want to get the real feeling of Old St. Augustine. There are many tours availabel throughout the city. You can ride horse-drawn carriages, visit the old lighthouse, the Fountain of Youth, Ripley’s Believe It or Not, museums, and of course, there’s a multitude of quaint shops, taverns and restaurants sprinkled in among it all!
The beaches around St. Augustine are some of the best in Florida.All in all it’s a great place to visit whether you are a couple, a family or traveling in a group.
Yellowstone National Park is America’s first national park, established in 1872. It is spread out over three states; Wyoming, Montana and Idaho, and is home to a large variety of wildlife including grizzly bears, wolves, bison, and elk. Preserved within Yellowstone National Park are Old Faithful and a collection of the world’s most extraordinary geysers and hot springs, and the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone.
Of course no trip to Yellowstone would be complete without visiting the most popular geyser in the world, Old Faithful. There are also hundreds of other geysers and hot spring in the park. Hiking, camping, fishing, enjoying exhibits and films, and attending Ranger-led programs are among the many ways to experience Yellowstone.
Be prepared for the weather – the climate is one of cold winters and moderate summers. Accommodations range from rustic cabins to luxury suites. All of the developed areas in Yellowstone offer services such as gas stations, stores, medical facilities and campgrounds. There are an array of restaurants there too. Anything from the Mammoth Hotel Dining Room to the Old Faithful Geyser Grill; full service to light meals and fast food.
Services in the park include: boat rentals and charters, camping inside and outside the park, horseback riding, stores and gift shops, bookstores, daycare and kennels. Fun things to do include: photo tours, bicycling, hiking and backpacking, nature hikes, boating, fishing, and much more.
If you are looking for a great family trip you can’t beat Yellowstone – the kids will love it and so will you!
Well, not really! If you like scenery and unsurpassed mountain views, the mountain village of Zermatt, Switzerland is the place for you. It is one of the great ski and climbing centers of the world. Even if you don’t ski or climb there is much to do in this little village nestled in a deep valley enclosed between steeply scarped mountains. And, of course, the mountains are dominated by the huge and gracefully curved pyramid of the Matterhorn.
In Zermatt there are no cars. So, from the moment you step off the Swiss-red train, catch sight of the cobbled streets and horses with sleighs patiently waiting for their rides, and glimpse the Matterhorn, you will know you are in a special place. The silence and fresh alpine air creates a welcoming atmosphere, amid the pedestrians – locals and visitors alike.
Even though Zermatt is a quaint little village they are equipped with comprehensive emergency service, doctors, dentist, pharmacies and 4 helicopters at their heliport. There are many sports shops with ski, snowboard, mountain bike & climbing equipment sales and rentals. And for those of us only there for the spectacular views there are many restaurants, jewelers, souvenir shops, boutiques and more. The language is German but English is spoken throughout the village too. Have a great trip!
Not far from anywhere in Ohio, there is a small town in Michigan called Frankenmuth. Frankenmuth’s history dates back to 1840, through Frederick Wyneken, a German Lutheran missionary, whose work covered Indiana, Ohio, and Michigan. Frederick Wyneken, noted that the German settlers of the Saginaw Valley lacked pastors, churches and schools. Frederick reqested help from Lutherans in Germany. It wasn’t long before he got an answer. Wilhelm Loehe, a pastor in Neuendettelsau, Mittelfranekn, Kingdom, sent a congregation of 13, mainly farmers, to the Saginaw Valley. Their purpose was to offer spiritual aid to the German emigrants and to bring Christianity to the Chippewa tribes.
The settlement consisted of many farms, and eventually various trades and businesses which included mills such as flour, saw and woolens, and the manufacturing of beer, sausages and cheeses.
In the 1950’s, the people of Frankenmuth saw an opportunity to increase the tourist trade when Interstate 75 was built right next to them. Many of the buildings used German inspired architecture and in 1958 William Zehnder Jr. held the first Bavariam Festival to announce his newly remodeled Bavarian Inn.
Today, Frankenmuth still boasts 53% of it’s population is of German decent. It has become a favorite tourist attraction for over three million people each year. They offer a multitude of entertainment, planned events, tours of sausage and cheese companies, and wonderful shopping areas. For a fun time for the whole family visit Frankenmuth year round.