There are so many things to do in Grand Rapids, Mi! Every time we visit this great city in Western Michigan we are amazed at all of the great things to explore, eat, and drink! It is truly amazing how many fun things to do there are in Grand Rapids! From trying a local brewery to visiting a world-class museum you can easily spend many days exploring the city.
Things to do in Grand Rapids
Grand Rapids is filled with amazing public art! As you drive around the city it feels like everywhere you turn there is a new piece of artwork. Grand Rapids holds an annual art event called Art Prize that brings hundreds of artists to the city and helps showcase amazing artwork!
Public Art can be seen all over the city. We spent a couple of hours just driving around searching for cool murals and sculptures and had so much fun!
Grand Rapids Culture Pass
If you plan on spending time in Grand Rapids then you should definitely check out the Grand Rapids Culture Pass! We loved using the Culture Pass to visit many local museums and exhibits. It is really easy to download the pass on your phone and use it at each location. A three day Grand Rapids Culture Pass is currently only $24 and includes entrance to the following museums and exhibits.
Gerald Ford Museum
Grand Rapids African American Museum and Archives
Grand Rapids Art Museum
Grand Rapids Children’s Museum
Grand Rapids Public Museum
John Ball Zoo
Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts
You can also get discounts at
Actors Theater Grand Rapids
Broadway Grand Rapids
Devos Performance Hall
Grand Rapids Art Museum Store
Grand Rapids Ballet
Opera Grand Rapids
River City Improv
TreeRunner Grand Rapids Adventure Park
Van Andel Arena
You can purchase a Grand Rapids Culture Pass here.
Frederik Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Gardens
A visit to Frederik Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Garden should be top of your list of things to do in Grand Rapids! Every time we visit the gardens we are in awe of all of the displays and the sheer size of the gardens. Even after visiting multiple times I feel like every time I look up Grand Rapids and the Frederik Meijer Gardens on Instagram I am seeing a new sculpture or part of the park that we have missed. If we lived closer to Grand Rapids we would visit the sculpture gardens all the time. Check out our full blog post and more photos from the Frederik Meijer Gardens!
Address: 1000 E Beltline Ave NE, Grand Rapids, MI 49525
Phone: (616) 957-1580
Grand Rapid Public Museum
The Grand Rapid Public Museum opened in 1854 and showcases great events in Grand Rapids history and a ton of really cool exhibits. Don’t let the name Public Museum keep you from visiting this great world-class museum. We planned to spend an hour or two at the museum and looked up and realized we had been there all morning. We had so much fun with the interactive displays and learning more about Grand Rapids history and the Great Lakes.
Address: 272 Pearl St NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504
Phone – (616) 929-1700
Gerald R Ford Presidential Museum
Gerald Ford was the 38th President of the United States and grew up in Grand Rapids. The museum does an amazing job detailing not only President Fords presidency but also his life in Grand Rapids. Check out our full blog post on the Gerald R Ford Presidential Museum
Address: 303 Pearl St NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504
Beer City USA
Download the Beersader Grand Rapids Beer USA App and explore the amazing local breweries this city has to offer. If you check in to eight breweries during your visit you can earn a Brewsader T-shirt! This is a great way to explore Grand Rapids and check out the amazing beer scene! Check out the post we wrote on having a Beer Vacation in Grand Rapids.
Meyer May House by Frank Lloyd Wright
Frank Lloyd Wright built the Meyer May house in 1909. This house is special because the furniture inside was also designed by Frank Lloyd Wright.
Tours are available on Sundays from 1-4 pm and Tuesdays from 10 am to 1 pm. Make sure and check for holidays and days that tours are not offered. You can see the house from the outside at any time.
Meyer May House Address – 450 Madison Ave Se, Grand Rapids
Grand Rapids Art Museum
From May 19th to August 26, 2018, the Grand Rapids Art Museum has a truly amazing exhibit called Intersections by Anila Quayyum Agha! This is a must see if you are looking for fun things to do in Grand Rapids. We could have spent hours looking at this exhibit and photographing it.
The Grand Rapids Art Museum has an evolving gallery of displays including paintings, photographs, and structural art. Every visit you will find something new and interesting to enjoy.
Make sure and check out the lunch and learn series which gives you the chance to bring your lunch to the GRAM and enjoy an array of topics related to art and the creative industry each month. The GRAM also offers fun for all ages with drop-in studio time which gives you the opportunity to get hands-on with art-making and gallery activities.
Address – 101 Monroe Center, Grand Rapids, MI 49503
Fulton Street Farmers Market
Opened in 1922, Fulton Street Farmers Market is the longest-running farmers market in the Grand Rapids area. There are 118 outdoor booths and an additional 9 indoor booths at the Fulton Street Farmers Market. The market has an amazing assortment of fruits, vegetables, meats, dairy and hand-crafted foods each market day + year-round!
Address: 1145 Fulton St E, Grand Rapids, MI 49503
phone – (616) 454-4118
Eat all the good food!
Grand Rapids has some seriously amazing food! If you leave Grand Rapids hungry I would be shocked! We always have a hard time deciding which Grand Rapids Restaurants we want to visit first. There are truly so many amazing restaurants in Grand Rapids it is hard to choose a favorite. Honestly, one of our favorite things to do in Grand Rapids is explore the restaurant scene.
Take a cooking class
During our first trip to Grand Rapids, we took a pasta making class at The Local Epicurean and loved it! They offer classes on making gelato, Asian noodles, Chocolate, Mozzarella making and so much more. If we lived closer to Grand Rapids we would be taking a cooking class at least monthly at the Local Epicurean.
Cooking classes are also offered at The Downtown Market.
Visit Robinette’s Apple Haus and Winery
Robinette’s is located on the Beltline near the Frederik Meijer Gardens and offers wine tasting and tons of fun family activities. If you are in Grand Rapids in the Fall than this is the place to visit! Check out our full blog post on Robinette’s Apple Haus
Address: 3142 4 Mile Rd NE, Grand Rapids, MI 49525
Phone – (616) 361-5567
Grand Rapids Children’s Museum
The Grand Rapids Children’s Museum offers hands-on fun and learning experiences. The displays are perfect for kids from the age of two to ten. The children’s museum is a great family adventure!
Address: 11 Sheldon Ave NE, Grand Rapids, MI 49503
Phone: (616) 235-4726
Urban Institute of Contemporary Arts
Located in Downtown Grand Rapids the Urban Institute of Contemporary Arts also known as UICA features regional, national and international artists. You can find exhibits that stretch your mind, educate you on a current issue or make you think. They also feature movies, studio nights and family events.
Address: 2 Fulton St W, Grand Rapids, MI 49503
Phone: (616) 454-7000
African American Archives
The African American Archives celebrate and preserve the African American and connected peoples in the Greater Grand Rapids Michigan community.
Address: 2931, 87 Monroe Center St NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49503
Phone – (616) 540-2943
John Ball Zoo
John Ball Zoo has over 2000 animals that may be on exhibit. Highlights include the tigers, living shore aquarium, wild way trail, African and South American Species and so much more
Address: 1300 Fulton W, Grand Rapids, MI 49504
Pick up a copy of the Grand Rapids Music Trail Guide for great info on local live entertainment venues! There is always something happening in Grand Rapids.
Catch a local sporting event
Check out some of the amazing local sporting events that happen in Grand Rapids! The West Michigan Whitecaps are a Class A Minor League Baseball team, affiliated with the Detroit Tigers, that plays in the Midwest League. Their home games are played in Comstock Park, Michigan, a suburb of Grand Rapids. The Grand Rapids Griffins are a professional hockey team in the American Hockey League. They play in Grand Rapids at the Van Andel Arena.
Day trips outside of Grand Rapids
Take a trip to Grand Haven to check out the lighthouse, breweries and Lake Michigan! Check out our post on visiting the Grand Haven Lighthouse and why we fell in love with the area.
Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore
Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore is located approximately two and a half hours north of Grand Rapids on Lake Michigan. The park features miles of walking trails, a scenic drive and the opportunity to dive into Lake Michigan history. If you look at the pic above you can see people making the long hot trek back up the dunes from Lake Michigan. If you plan on hiking the dunes please visit the park prepared for the elements!
The rivers near Grand Rapids were integral to the history and growth of the city and outlying towns. There are three covered bridges in the vicinity of Grand Rapids that you can still visit. The one pictured above is the Ada Covered Bridge.
Check out these great covered bridges near Grand Rapids, Mi
Ada Covered Bridge – Spans the Thornapple River. The Ada Covered Bridge is a 125-foot span Brown truss covered bridge erected in 1867 in Ada, Michigan
Fallasburg Covered Bridge – One of only three covered bridges open to vehicle traffic in Michigan, it spans 100 feet across beautiful Flat River. Fallasburg Bridge is a 100-foot span Brown truss covered bridge, erected in 1871 in Vergennes Township, Michigan, 5 miles north of Lowell on the Flat River.
Bowen’s Mill Bridge – A quaint scale replica of the covered bridge that once crossed the Thornapple River. A 17-foot water wheel and 1864 Grist Mill can be viewed from the bridge, which is about 20 miles south of Grand Rapids.
There are so many great things to do in Grand Rapids, Michigan it is hard to put all of them in one list. Let us know if you have any suggestions on things to do that we missed!