Holland, Michigan – A Great Place to Visit
Enjoy the scenery of scenic western Michigan with a cruise aboard the Holland Princess, a 65′ Victorian paddlewheel boat. The boat tour combines Lake Macatawa and Lake Michigan, with beautiful views of the city and Windmill Island.
The Holland MI | Builders Community Aquatic Center offers great watery fun with a 50-meter competition pool, a warm-water lap pool, a splash zone and a zero entry pool. It also hosts swim lessons and fitness classes.
Cappon House & Settlers House
Holland’s Dutch heritage defines many of its top attractions. The Holland Museum displays a range of exhibits, including one that highlights 400 years of Dutch History. The Cappon House & Settlers House museums, just a few blocks away, add to the story with the meticulously preserved and restored living environments of a common worker’s family and Holland’s first mayor.
Visitors to the museums are invited into a world that is a time machine – the Italianate home of Isaac Cappon, a tannery owner and Holland’s first mayor, boasts original Michigan-made furniture and exquisite woodwork, while the modest Settlers House is furnished with furnishings and other items from the period. The houses are open for tours from Friday through Saturday and September through May. Nearby Windmill Island Gardens showcases a authentic De Zwaan windmill brought over from the Netherlands, while downtown Holland’s cobblestone streets are lined with unique shops, galleries, restaurants and breweries. The beachfront Holland State Park offers a stunning Lake Michigan experience with foamy white waves and jaw-dropping sunsets.
Van Raalte Farm
The Benjamin Van Raalte House is a historic home located at 1076 Sixteenth Street in Holland, Michigan. It was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1989. It is also known as “The Maples” because of the large and majestic maple trees that surround the property.
The Van Raalte Farm Civil War Muster is an annual reenactment that offers two days worth of impressions, performances, medical scenarios and period-style vendors. It takes place at the farm that was once a Civil War era home built by Reverend Albertus Van Raalte’s son, Ben, in 1872. It was purchased by the City of Holland in 1983.
Holland has a lot to offer. From the beachfront Holland State Park that shelters deer and migratory birds to the garden-filled Windmill Island Gardens with De Zwaan, a century-old windmill, you’ll find plenty of outdoor activities to enjoy. Holland is also home to Hope College, a crowning achievement in Dutch American education.
Holland’s Dutch heritage is celebrated in a variety of ways throughout the town, from its tulip fields to its historic houses and museums. One of the best places to experience the town’s European roots is on Windmill Island, a park that features De Zwaan, the only authentic Dutch windmill still operating in the United States.
While this 36-acre spot is a hub of activity during Tulip Time, it also draws visitors year-round. Guests can tour the mill, learn about its history and see it grind grain to make flour while it spins its blades.
Aside from the working windmill, the park offers other authentic Dutch treasures like a street organ that was gifted by the City of Amsterdam and an antique children’s carousel. The ground flour that’s produced here is available for purchase, which can be used to cook Dutch-inspired dishes at home.
Holland State Park
The Holland State Park is a 142-acre recreational area that features soft sandy beaches, towering sand dunes and prime views of Lake Michigan and the Holland Harbor Lighthouse called Big Red. The park was created in 1926 on lands donated by the city of Holland. It features separate Lake Macatawa and Lake Michigan units as well as a public boat launch, beach, campground and picnic areas.
Swimmers enjoy the lake, kayakers and canoeists use the lake, and hikers head up wooded dune trails to high bluffs for scenic views. Those who prefer to stay on land can relax on the beach, lounge in the sun or take in a lunch or dinner cruise that takes visitors past picturesque lake homes and historic landmarks like the Holland Big Red Lighthouse.
Pets are permitted at the Holland State Park but must be kept on a leash and supervised at all times. A Michigan Recreation Passport is required to enter state parks and is available for purchase at the park office.