Ann Arbor is a suburb of Detroit that retains the feel of a small town while providing access to urban conveniences and attractions.
The city of Ann Arbor, home to the University of Michigan (U-M), is filled with young, educated, and diverse people, and as a result, it has a thriving cultural and culinary scene, including world-class museums and a revival of farm-to-table dining.
This hidden gem in the United States is called Tree Town because of the fifty thousand trees that line its streets. This city in Michigan has something for every kind of traveler. Enjoy the fragrant peonies at the Arboretum, go kayaking, see a live performance, or just take a stroll down the lively Main Street.
What is Ann Arbor Best Known For?
The Ann Arbor Art Fair and Michigan football are two of the city’s most well-known annual events. Ann Arbor’s downtown streets become an outdoor gallery for the month of July during the annual Ann Arbor Art Fair, which has won numerous awards over the years.
Why is Ann Arbor so Special?
The University of Michigan’s Ann Arbor Activities, Specials, and Promotions | Ann Arbor is a pure university town, culinary mecca, and tech hub with a compact, easily navigable downtown area.
Visit the University of Michigan, enjoy international cuisine, shop at one-of-a-kind boutiques, and take in world-class art and culture. Here, in the realms of events, retail, food, nightlife, art, and music, creative ideas are given form.
What is the Average Cost of Living in Ann Arbor?
Ann Arbor, Michigan, United States, Cost of Living Summarized Without housing costs, a family of four can expect monthly expenses of $4,185. Without housing, a single person can expect monthly expenses of $1,147.9. Without factoring in rent, Ann Arbor is 24.7% cheaper than New York.
Does Ann Arbor have Good Food?
There are more than 400 restaurants in the Ann Arbor area, serving everything from authentic Ethiopian cuisine and delicious Eastern European fare to award-winning Italian restaurants and hearty American comfort food.
Best Places to Visit in Ann Arbor
Our top things to do in the Ann Arbor guide will help you plan the perfect Midwest vacation.
1. Go to a game at the Michigan Stadium
Football fans flock to “The Big House,” as the University of Michigan Stadium is affectionately known because it is the largest stadium in the country and the second largest in the world.
When more than 100,000 fans in maize and blue of the Wolverines gather on a fall weekend, the iconic stadium that has stood since 1927 takes your breath away. One of the most popular things to do in town is to catch a game at this venue.
2. The Hands-On Museum of Ann Arbor
Those with young children will appreciate the Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum, which features several exhibit halls designed to foster learning through play. A country store from the 1930s has been transformed into a STEAM Park where children can explore the properties of light and water, learn about dental hygiene, and exercise their imaginations.
Free admission to the museum’s nature trails through Black Pond Woods and the raptor enclosures are provided by the Leslie Science and Nature Center, which is affiliated with the museum.
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On Sundays, guests can also observe numerous reptiles, amphibians, and reptiles at the Critter House.
3. Visit the University of Michigan
Many of the city’s best museums and theaters can be found on the campus of the University of Michigan (or U-M for short), along with beautiful parks and buildings.
The Law Quadrangle is a beautiful section of the campus due to the neo-Gothic design of the law library, Hutchins Hall, and the surrounding residence halls. If you’re into music, you should check out the shows at Hill Auditorium, which is famous for its excellent acoustics all over the world.
4. The Nichols Arboretum and Matthaei Botanical Gardens
The dog-welcoming There are tropical, temperate, and arid houses in the conservatory at Matthaei Botanical Gardens. Bonsai and penjing (Chinese) trees make up a sizeable portion of the temperate collection.
Leafy greens and other produce are grown in the student-run campus garden. Visitors to the botanical gardens can stroll along winding paths that pass by stunning flora and fauna. Please remember that dogs are not permitted on the hiking paths.
5. The University of Michigan Museum of Natural History
The University of Michigan Museum of Natural History has exhibits that will fascinate and educate people of all ages, from the smallest parts of DNA to the farthest reaches of the universe.
Evolution: Life Through Time is a popular exhibit because it features fossils and skeletons of the earliest inhabitants of Earth, some of whom are our distant ancestors. Giant mastodons and even extinct whales can be found alongside dinosaurs like the Majungasaurus.
6. The Museum of Art at the University of Michigan
In the United States, the oldest university museum collection can be found at the University of Michigan Museum of Art. There are over twenty thousand works of art in this museum, which is located right on campus.
Among the many notable artists represented are Picasso, Kline, Monet, and Whistler. The museum’s outdoor sculpture collection is equally impressive, featuring the work of artists like Richard Hunt and Mark di Suvero.
7. Get Out and See Kerrytown
Kerrytown, a charming area just blocks from downtown Ann Arbor, is home to a farmer’s market on Wednesdays and Saturdays from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. and a variety of one-of-a-kind shops.
You can spend all day at Kerrytown Market & Shops looking at wares and trying out samples.
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Olive oils and vinegars from all over the world can be sampled and cooking classes can be taken at Fustini’s. Stop by Ann Arbor Spice Merchants and try some rare spices, teas, and herbs.
8. Watch a Show at the Michigan Theater
Any true cinephile should make a point of visiting this historic theater, which retains an air of opulence and refinement that is missing from most modern cinemas.
The Michigan Theater shows new releases from all genres, so even if you’re not a fan of foreign or arthouse films, you can still enjoy the latest offerings. They also show old classics like The Wizard of Oz, The Princess Bride, and The Rocky Horror Picture Show during Halloween and other nostalgic times of the year.
9. Library of Former President Gerald R. Ford
The Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library annex was constructed on the grounds of his alma mater, the University of Michigan, on the North Campus, apart from the museum and birthplace in his hometown of Grand Rapids. The small but informative library of Gerald Ford, the 38th President of the United States, is a must-see for history buffs.
The library also features a replica of his Oval Office and more than 20 million pages of archival documents, audio recordings, and videos relating to his presidency from 1974 to 1977 and the Cold War era. The Watergate burglary of 1972 and President Ford’s controversial pardon of Nixon are detailed in one of the exhibits.
10. Museum of Archaeology at Kelsey
Founded in 1928 as a research museum, the University of Michigan’s Kelsey Museum of Archaeology now houses over 100,000 artifacts from civilizations as diverse as Ancient Greece and Mesopotamia. This is one of the best free activities in Ann Arbor and is open to the general public.
Among the approximately 1,500 artifacts permanently displayed at this world-class museum are spices that have been preserved for over 2,000 years, amulets from the Near East, pottery, Greek and Roman sculptures, and a watercolor reproduction of the Villa of the Mysteries murals from Pompeii by Maria Barosso.
The University of Michigan is home to over 16 museums ranging from the Museum of Natural History to the Museum of Art, providing a wide variety of options for museum-goers.
Alternatively, the university-affiliated Matthaei Botanical Gardens and Nichols Arboretum offer photogenic forest views and rugged trails for those who prefer a more natural form of beauty. Kerrytown, with its farmers market, boutiques, and delicious dining options, is worth a visit beyond campus.
The Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum is a hit with families with young children. There’s also the vintage Michigan Theater, where you can catch a black-and-white film, and the historic Nickels Arcade, a shopping district that has been around since 1918.