Blake Walsh

15 Best Things to Do in St. Clair County, MI

  • Published 2023/04/08

St. Clair County is the base of Michigan’s “thumb” region, where serene freshwater meets lush greenery.

If you’re looking for the perfect balance of water activities and land-based outdoor adventures, this county may be for you.

With a variety of recreational opportunities and natural resources and wonders, the area attracts plenty of visitors and potential residents year-round.

It is also home to the annual Port Huron-to-Mackinac Sailboat Race, considered the world’s largest freshwater sailing event.

Among the most remarkable spots you can visit in the county is the St. Clair River, which boasts the longest freshwater boardwalk in the world.

The famous boardwalk serves as an international border between the state of Michigan and the province of Ontario in Canada.

The county has so much to explore, so you may want to consider it for your next destination in the Great Lakes region.

Before planning your itinerary, read this list of the best things to do in St. Clair County, Michigan!

Hang Out at the St. Clair Boat Harbor

Bird's eye view of the St. Clair Boat Harbor

Serafim Mazurs /

The St. Clair Boat Harbor is known as one of Michigan’s top recreational harbors.

The 132-slip harbor is located on the majestic St. Clair River at the mouth of Southeastern Michigan’s Pine River.

You may access it at 902 S. Second Street in St. Clair.

The place features a ramp for canoes and kayaks and offers rentals for riding these boats down the river.

You may also go fishing at the launch ramp and bring your catch to the fish cleaning station.

While here, take the time to stroll the famous boardwalk and enjoy the beautiful sights, including the freighters.

The harbor is conveniently located near local restaurants and shops, so feel free to explore these during your visit!

If you like camping, you may also want to stay at the harbor’s campground, which offers nine sites, all with electricity and water hookups.

The St. Clair Boat Harbor has plenty of amenities beyond the natural features surrounding it, so add it to the list of places you can’t miss when you’re in the area!

Learn Local History at St. Clair Historical Museum

Step back in time when you visit St. Clair Historical Museum.

It is located at 308 South 4th Street in St. Clair.

Here you’ll learn about the early days of the locality, including its transition from being a British Fort to a brick and lumber manufacturing hub.

Eventually, it became a center of the salt purification and shipbuilding industries.

The museum features different artifacts and historic photographs of the area through the years.

Don’t miss the chance to discover stories from the community’s past, records, directories, old newspaper clips, and other documents!

Besides the standard displays, you may also get to try the interactive exhibits housed in the museum.

History buffs will indeed be satisfied by the overflowing information at St. Clair Historical Museum.

See the Peche Island Rear Range Light

The Peche Island Rear Range Light is a historical structure in St. Clair County.

Built in 1908, the lighthouse is at 303 S. Water Street in Marine City.

It was initially constructed off Peche Island in Ontario, where the Detroit River meets Lake St. Clair.

It guided vessels passing through the lake for about 75 years.

By 1982, the Peche Island Rear Range Light had officially ceased operation and was relocated to Marine City.

What used to be a weathered tower now stands fully restored at 60 feet tall.

It is frequented by visitors who wish to see and learn about an essential part of the Great Lakes’ history.

Don’t miss the opportunity to see the Peche Island Rear Range Light!

Book Tee Time at Pine Shores Golf Course

Play golf at Pine Shores Golf Course when you visit the area.

It is located at 515 Fred W. Moore Highway in Saint Clair.

Designed by Fred Hunter, the executive-level nine-hole golf course opened in 1930.

Here you’ll find well-maintained greens for the best golfing experience!

The place also has an easy course you can finish in an hour or two, perfect for those looking for a quick game.

You may ask about Pine Shores Golf Course’s banquet room rental if you want a private area to hold an event.

Pine Shores Golf Course isn’t just exclusively for golfing but also for your important celebrations!

Spend the Day Outdoors at Nautical Mile Park

Signage of the Nautical Mile Park

Brooke Turner /

Visit the Nautical Mile Park if you’re looking for an outdoor area to stay and breathe in the fresh air.

The park is located at Union Street in Marine City.

If you enjoy fishing, bring your equipment, as the park has access to water and allows fishing.

You may also find a spot on one of the benches and relax by taking in the nature surrounding you.

The park displays a ship propeller, both a decorative and meaningful piece of the park.

If you want to stay active, a paved walkway is free for you to use!

Nautical Mile Park also serves as a venue for some of the city’s annual events, so be sure to check in advance if there are any scheduled occasions in the area.

Try Local Food at the Vintage Tavern

Try a local favorite at the Vintage Tavern when you’re in the area.

You may find it at 103 Michigan Street in Port Huron.

The building that houses the restaurant was the original F.W. Woolworth and S.S. store in the city until 1937.

It also became the site of one of the city’s most popular women’s clothing stores from the 70s to the 90s.

Today, the place offers an upscale dining experience while surrounded by a casual atmosphere.

You may choose from various drinks, including wine, draft beer, single-malt scotch, and martinis.

You shouldn’t miss the place as it features a roof deck with majestic views.

The original brick walls, tin ceiling, and hardwood floors remain the same, giving the restaurant a vintage and cozy ambiance.

The Vintage Tavern is a must-visit restaurant in Port Huron!

Enjoy the Outdoors at Marysville City Park

Marysville City Park is a popular area among the local community and visitors.

It is located at 801 E. Huron Boulevard in the city of Marysville.

The 58-acre park has plenty of shade trees where people can hang out with friends or relax.

It is also the perfect venue for picnics!

During summer, the splash pad is trendy for beating the heat.

The playground, baseball diamonds, and fitness areas are also available!

Marysville City Park holds various events, including the annual car show, art fair, and a summer music series!

The park also displays a full-size train engine and coal car from the Detroit Edison Company, perfect for exploring and climbing.

There are many things to do at this park, so add it to your list of places to visit in St. Clair County!

See Local Art and Culture at McMorran Place

McMorran Place is known as the heart of downtown Port Huron.

You may find it at 701 McMorran Boulevard.

Since 1960, the civic center has become the gathering place for locals seeking arts and entertainment.

The place houses an ice arena, a theater, and rental rooms.

It also serves as the venue for live entertainment and special events in the city.

A full bar is also available, serving wine, beer, and mixed drinks.

McMorran Place’s theater has a 1,135 seating capacity with excellent lighting, sound equipment, and dressing rooms for live performances.

The ice arena, meanwhile, can accommodate up to 3,000 people for all sorts of events.

Don’t pass up on McMorran Place if you’re looking for fun recreation in the city!

Take the Algonac Riverwalk Trail

Beautiful view of the Algonac Riverwalk

Fsendek /

The Algonac Riverwalk is part of a wider trail along the St. Clair River.

When you’re in Algonac, you may take this trail and have a peaceful walk or bike to the river’s edge.

The trail passes by Riverfront Park, where you may watch the freighters that pass by from the boardwalk.

Wooden benches at Algonac Riverwalk

Fsendek /

You will truly experience what it’s like to live near a port while exploring the Algonac Riverwalk.

You may also stop by the park’s pavilion, benches, or boat launch.

It is also conveniently near local restaurants and shops, so take the chance and grab snacks while enjoying the beautiful views of the river.

Take a Swim at Lakeside Beach and Park

Go swim or bask in the sun at Lakeside Beach and Park.

You may access the beach at 3870 Gratiot Ave in Port Huron.

The beach features the clear waters of Lake Huron with clean and sandy shores.

It also features a variety of fun amenities, including a splash pad, playground facilities, and picnic areas.

It’s the perfect place to spend quality time with family or friends!

A beach volleyball court is also available for sporty individuals.

You may also notice boats anchored on the shore, illustrating life and culture in a waterfront city like Port Huron.

Add the Lakeside Beach and Park to your list of places to visit in the area!

Tour the Pride and Heritage Museum

Your visit to Marine City will not be complete without exploring the Pride and Heritage Museum.

It is situated at 405 S. Main Street in Marine City.

The museum is housed in Michigan’s register of historic places.

Constructed in 1947, the building was originally a schoolhouse named Newport Academy.

Today, the museum has artifacts and archives about the city’s history and heritage.

It features three unique galleries: the Lifestyle Gallery, the Maritime gallery, and the Business and Commercial gallery.

You can also find a diorama that depicts the Belle River in 1885, 150-year-old rooms and furnishings, and a blacksmith shop.

Pride and Heritage Museum offers tours that you may book in advance.

Check Out the Clay Township Park

Duck walking on the march land at Clay Township Park

James W. Thompson /

Bring your friends or family to Clay Township Park.

It is located along Pte Tremble Road in the civil township of Clay.

The park is a popular spot in the local community for its various recreational opportunities.

You’ll find a splash pad and a playground, both children’s favorites.

To stay active, you should utilize Clay Township Park’s walking path.

The basketball court becomes an ice rink and a walking trail in winter.

Restroom facilities and a concession building are also available here.

Try Golf at Rattle Run Golf Course

Book tee time and enjoy a day outdoors at Rattle Run Golf Course.

You may find it at 7163 Saint Clair Highway in China Township.

Lou Powers originally designed the newly renovated 18-hole course in 1977.

From the back tees, it plays up to 6,900 yards.

Experienced golf players will enjoy a game here as it has 78 bunkers and water hazards.

You won’t just enjoy the game but also the surrounding nature at Rattle Run Golf Course.

Taste Local Wine at Vinomondo Winery

Vinomondo Winery is among the county’s go-to spots for wine and beer lovers.

It is located at 4505 Lakeshore Road in the charter township of Fort Gratiot.

The winery, with years of experience in winemaking, is one of the oldest spots in the area that offer wine tastings.

Today, Vinomondo Winery offers drinks, food, and supplies for making beer and wine.

The place also has a rustic and cozy ambiance to complete your wine-tasting experience.

If you’re a wine lover, add this to your list of places to visit in Fort Gratiot.

Catch the Sunset at North River Road Park

Whether you want to stay active or lay back and watch the sunset, North River Road Park is the place for you.

It is situated at 3055 North River Road in Fort Gratiot Township.

It has many active pastimes amenities, including tennis courts and baseball and softball fields.

A playground is also available, perfect for kids!

The park has access to the Black River, so water activities like canoeing and kayaking are allowed.

Don’t forget to pack a picnic at North River Road Park after a long adventure.

Final Thoughts

If you want to travel somewhere with plenty of access to water, you should visit St. Clair County in Michigan.

You will explore water activities, historical sites, and cultural centers.

Before planning your trip, review this list of the best things to do in St. Clair County, Michigan!

© All rights reserved.