Best Locations Guide

During my recent road trip through Michigan, I was amazed by the diversity of the state’s 1,773 municipalities spread across its 83 counties. As I journeyed from Detroit in the southeast to the remote reaches of the Upper Peninsula in the north, I encountered everything from massive suburban shopping malls to quaint 19th century villages that looked frozen in time.

One of my favorite parts of the trip was exploring the unique character of each little township and village I passed through. Like the bustling college town of Ann Arbor, filled with students, bookshops, and cafés. Or the charming village of Frankenmuth, with its Bavarian-style architecture, old covered bridges, and famous chicken dinners.

In the western part of the state, I stumbled upon Saugatuck, an artsy lakefront town with gorgeous beaches, galleries, and summer cottages. Up north in the UP, I hiked through silent, mystical forests and stayed in a little log-cabin B&B in a township with just a few hundred residents.

With 1,240 diverse townships and over 250 villages, Michigan offered an incredible variety of local communities to discover. As I traveled through the state, I loved immersing myself in the unique character and history of each place I visited along the way. Exploring the municipalities of Michigan was one of the highlights of my unforgettable Great Lakes road trip.


Alcona County

Cities: Harrisville, Rogers City

Villages: Au Gres

Townships: Alcona, Atlanta, Au Gres, Elmira, Harrisville, Houghton Lake, Rogers City, Tawas City

Alger County

Cities: Munising

Villages: Au Train

Townships: Au Train, Champion, Curtis, Deer Park, Epoufette, Field, Grand Island, Grant, Rockland, Springdale, Wolverine

Allegan County

Cities: Allegan, Hamilton

Villages: Allegan, Colon, Douglas, Glenn, Laketown, Martin, Otsego, Saugatuck, Shelbyville, Wayland

Townships: Allegan, Barry, Cannonsburg, Colon, Douglas, Emmett, Ganges, Glenn, Laketown, Martin, Otsego, Plainwell, Saugatuck, Spencer, Wayland

Alpena County

Cities: Alpena

Villages: Alpena Township, Rogers City

Townships: Alpena, Aurora, Clifford, Elmwood Township, Field Township, Hubbard Township, Ivanhoe Township, Lincoln Township, Maple Grove Township, Montmorency Township, Ossineke Township, Presque Isle Township, Rogers City, Thunder Bay Township

Antrim County

Cities: Bellaire

Villages: Glen Arbor, Horton Bay, Lakeside, Mancelona, Maple City

Townships: Antrim, Bear Lake, Central Lake, Crystal Falls, Elmwood, Glen Arbor, Glen Lake, Green Lake, Lake Township, Marion, Mancelona, Maple City, Pellston, Plainfield, Torch Lake, Wellston

Arenac County

Cities: Standish

Villages: Au Gres Township, Omer

Townships: Alcona, Au Gres Township, Bannister, Colfax, Elwell, Fremont, Gladwin, Iosco, Maple Grove, North Star, Omer, Powers, Sherman, Standish, Twining

Baraga County

Cities: L’Anse

Villages: Ahmeek, Baraga, Mohawk, Ontonagon

Townships: Ahmeek, Baraga, Champion, Gogebic, L’Anse, Michigamme, Ontonagon

Barry County

Cities: Hastings, Middleville

Villages: Hastings, Middleville, Plainwell

Townships: Barry, Bellaire, Carlton, Chester, Convis, Hastings, Hastings Charter Township, Middleville, Plainwell, Plainwell Charter Township, Sherman, Tyrone

Bay County

Cities: Bay City, Essexville, Hampton, Linwood, Pinconning

Villages: Bangor, Bay City Township, Essexville Township, Hampton Township, Linwood Township, Pinconning Township

Townships: Bangor, Bay City, Beaver, Edenville, Essexville, Fairhaven, Hampton Township, Kawkawlin, Linwood Township, Monitor Township, Pinconning Township, Thomas Township, Unionville

Benzie County

Cities: Beulah, Frankfort

Villages: Benzonia, Crystal Lake, Frankfort, Honor, Lake Ann, Onekama, Thompsonville

Townships: Benzonia, Crystal Lake, Fairview, Honor, Lake Township, Marion, Mesick, Onekama, Thompsonville, Wolverine

Berrien County

Cities: Benton Harbor, Niles, Union Pier, Sawyer, Buchanan

Villages: Benton Harbor Charter Township, Coloma, Dowagiac, Niles

Townships: Benton Harbor Charter Township, Berrien, Cass, Coloma, Dowagiac, Edwardsburg, Fabius, Grant, Lake Township, Lincoln, New Buffalo, Niles, Oronoko, Paw Paw, Ross, St. Joseph Charter Township, Three Oaks, Watervliet

Branch County

Cities: Coldwater

Villages: Bronson, Quincy

Townships: Bronson, Custer, Deerfield, Elmira Township, Liberty, Logan, Quincy, Sherwood, Union Township, Waldron

Calhoun County

Cities: Battle Creek

Villages: Albion, Emmett, Springfield

Townships: Albion, Athens, Bedford, Burlington, Centerville, Emmett, Homer, Homer Township, Marshall, Springfield, Tekonsha, Watervliet

Cass County

Cities: Cassopolis, Dowagiac

Villages: Edwardsburg, Marcellus, Royalton, Vandalia

Townships: Cass, Dowagiac, Edwardsburg, Franklin, Fulton, Grant, Homer Township, Marcellus

Charlevoix County

Cities: Charlevoix, East Jordan

Villages: Boyne City, East Jordan, Elk Rapids, Harbor Springs, Pellston

Townships: Antrim, Forest, Hayes, Jordan, Lake Township, Marion, Otsego, Springvale, Wolverine

Cheboygan County

Cities: Cheboygan

Villages: Cheboygan, Indian River, Onaway

Townships: Cheboygan, Custer, Forest, Glen Arbor, Grant, Indian River, Maple Grove, Onaway, Presque Isle, Porter, Springville

Chippewa County

Cities: Sault Ste. Marie

Villages: Brimley, DeTour Village, Hessel, Sault Ste. Marie

Townships: Paradise, Arenac, Au Gres Township, Brimley, DeTour, Garden, Gwinn, Harrietta, Hull, Inland, Kawkawlin, McKinley, Sault Ste. Marie, Sherman, Sugar Island, Whitefish Point

Clare County:

Cities: Clare

Villages: Harrison, Lakeview

Townships: Athens, Clare, Greenbush, Harrison, Harrison Charter Township, Lake Township, Lincoln, Lowell, New Haven, Roscommon, Sherman, Springdale, Summers, Wells

Clinton County:

Cities: St. Johns

Villages: Clinton, Ionia, St. Johns

Townships: Bath, Clinton, Ionia, Lyons, Unadilla

Crawford County

Cities: Grayling

Villages: Lumberport

Townships: Avery, Evergreen, Hayes, Otsego, Springvale, Woodland

Delta County

Cities: Escanaba

Villages: Escanaba, Gladstone

Townships: Brampton, Delta, Escanaba, Garden, Gladstone, Herron, Hiawatha

Dickinson County

Cities: Iron Mountain

Villages: Iron Mountain, Norway

Townships: Arvon, Aurora, Champion, Crystal Falls, Iron Mountain, Iron River, Norway, Rock, Stambaugh, Upson

Eaton County

Cities: Charlotte, Eaton Rapids

Villages: Charlotte, Dimondale, Eaton Rapids, Fulton, Manchester

Townships: Belding, Chester, Delta, Eaton, Fulton, Green Oak, Homer, Ionia, Olivet, Salem, Seymour, Vestaburg

Emmet County

Cities: Charlevoix, Petoskey, Harbor Springs

Villages: Petoskey

Townships: Bear Lake, Charlevoix, Emmet, Forest, Hayes, Little Traverse, Pellston, Presque Isle, Resort, Walloon Lake

Genesee County

Cities: Flint, Mount Morris

Villages: Atlas, Burton, Fenton, Flushing, Grand Blanc, Holly, Kearsley, Lapeer, Linden, Montrose, Otisville, Swartz Creek, Vienna

Townships: Atlas, Burton, Davison, Fenton, Genesee, Grand Blanc, Hartland, Holly, Montrose, Otisville, Richfield, Swartz Creek, Vienna, White Lake

Gladwin County

Cities: Gladwin

Villages: Beaverton, Gladwin

Townships: Beaverton, Beaver Creek, Colfax, Gladwin, Gladwin Charter Township, Gwinn, Lumberport, Ogemaw, Norway, Twining

Gogebic County

Cities: Bessemer, Ironwood

Villages: Bessemer, Ironwood

Townships: Bessemer, Ironwood, Wakefield

Grand Traverse County

Cities: Traverse City

Villages: East Bay Township, Interlochen, Kingsley, Maple City, Traverse City

Townships: Blair, East Bay Township, Fife Lake, Garfield, Grant, Grand Traverse, Kingsley, Leelanau, Maple City, Peninsula, Pine River, Resort, Silver Creek, Traverse City

Gratiot County:

Cities: Ithaca, St. Louis

Villages: Breckenridge, North Star, Riverdale, Wheeler

Townships: Athens, Breckenridge, Custer, Elmira Township, Forest, Georgetown, Gratiot, North Star, Sumner, Wheatland

Hillsdale County

Cities: Hillsdale, Jonesville

Villages: Litchfield, Pittsford, Waldron

Townships: Allen, Ash, Cambria, Campbell, Camden, Clear Creek, Jefferson, Jonesville, Litchfield, North Adams, Pittsford, Reading, Spring Arbor, Waldron

Houghton County

Cities: Houghton

Villages: Lake Linden, South Range

Townships: Calumet, Chocolay, Edenville, Ewen, Hubbell, Lake Linden, Maple Ridge, Naubinway, Ontonagon, Portage, Shelldrake, South Range, Winthrop

Huron County

Cities: Bad Axe, Harbor Beach, Caseville

Villages: Kinde, Port Austin

Townships: Austin, Bad Axe, Bay Port, Elkton, Exeter, Forest, Harbor Beach, Huron, Jackson, Kinde, Lake View, Maple Valley, Norway, Paris, Pigeon, Port Austin, Sanilac, Sebewaing, Sigel, Ubly

Ingham County

Cities: Mason, Okemos

Villages: Charlotte, Dansville, Leslie, Williamston

Townships: Bath, Clinton, Delhi, Emerson, Lansing, Meridian, Ovid, Perry, Stockbridge, Webberville

Ionia County:

Cities: Ionia, Lake Odessa

Villages: Belding, Saranac

Townships: Berlin, Belding, Clinton, Forest, Ionia, Lyons, Muir, Olive, Orleans, Portland, Saranac, Saranac Township, Springport, Trufant

Iosco County

Cities: Tawas City

Villages: Au Gres

Townships: Au Gres, Colfax, East Tawas, Glenn, Iosco, Maple Grove, Oscoda, Tawas City

Iron County:

Cities: Iron Mountain, Iron River

Villages: Crystal Falls, Caspian, Stambaugh

Townships: Amasa, Crystal Falls, Caspian, Crystal Falls Township, East Tawas, Ewen, Iron River, Island Lake, Iron Mountain, McMillan, Norway, Rock, Stambaugh, Vulcan

Isabella County

Cities: Mount Pleasant

Villages: Shepherd, Spring Arbor

Townships: Athens, Barbour, Clinton, Columbia, Maple Rapids, Spring Arbor, Wisner

Jackson County

Cities: Jackson, Summit Township

Villages: Clarklake, Concord, Horton, Napoleon, Parma, Pleasant Lake, Rives Junction, Spring Arbor, Springport, Brooklyn

Townships: Blackman Township, Columbia Township, Grass Lake Charter Township, Hanover Township, Henrietta Township, Leoni Township, Liberty Township, Norvell Township, Napoleon Township, Sandstone Charter Township, Springport Township, Tompkins Township, Waterloo Township

Kalamazoo County:

Cities: Kalamazoo, Portage

Villages: Comstock, Galesburg, Mattawan, Richland, Schoolcraft

Townships: Alamo Township, Augusta Township, Comstock Township, Galesburg Township, Kalamazoo Township, Mattawan Township, Oshtemo Township, Portage Township, Richland Township, Schoolcraft Township

Kalkaska County

Cities: Kalkaska

Villages: East Jordan, Wolverine

Townships: Bear Lake Township, Clear Lake Township, Forest Township, Glen Arbor Township, Long Lake Township, Maple City Township, Melrose Township, South Boardman Township, Wolverine Township

Kent County:

Cities: Grand Rapids, Wyoming

Villages: Caledonia, East Grand Rapids, Kentwood, Northview, Plainfield

Townships: Ada Township, Alpine Township, Cannon Township, Cedar Springs Township, East Grand Rapids Township, Gaines Township, Grand Rapids Township, Kentwood Township, Plainfield Township, Rockford Township, Sparta Township, Walker Township, Wyoming Township

Keweenaw County

Copper Harbor

Towns: Calumet, Laurium, Ontonagon

Lake County

Villages: Baldwin, Millington

Townships: Idlewild, Baldwin Township, Branch Township, Fremont Township, Long Lake Township, Millington Township, Springvale Township, White Cloud Township

Lapeer County:

Cities: Lapeer, Metamora

Villages: Dryden, Elba Township, Goodrich, Lapeer Township, Metamora Township

Townships: Attica Township, Dryden Township, Elba Township, Goodrich Township, Lapeer Township, Metamora Township, Sylvan Township, Warwick Township

Leelanau County

Cities: Glen Arbor, Leland, Suttons Bay

Villages: Lake Leelanau, Northport, Empire

Townships: Bingham Township, Centerville Township, Glen Arbor Township, Glen Haven Township, Maple City Township, Northport Township, Omena Township, Suttons Bay Township

Lenawee County

Cities: Adrian, Tecumseh

Villages: Blissfield, Clinton, Hudson, Onsted, Sand Creek

Townships: Blissfield Township, Clinton Township, Franklin Township, Hudson Township, Jefferson Township, Lenawee Township, Onsted Township, Raisin Township, Sand Creek Township, Wheatland Township

Livingston County

Cities: Howell, Pinckney

Villages: Brighton, Hartland, Tyrone

Townships: Addison, Brighton, Hamburg, Howell, Marion, Oceola, Putnam, Tyrone, Unadilla

Luce County

Cities: Newberry

Villages: Newberry, Twining

Townships: Au Gres, Glens, Gwinn, Newberry, Norway, Presque Isle, Rose Township, Tawas City

Mackinac County

Cities: St. Ignace

Villages: Mackinac Island

Townships: Mackinac Island

Macomb County

Cities: Clinton Township, Eastpointe, Mount Clemens, New Haven, Romeo, Sterling Heights, Warren

Villages: Armada, Center Line, East China, Fraser, Harrison Township, Lenox Township, Macomb Township, Mount Morris, New Baltimore, Richmond, Romeoville, Utica, Warren

Charter Townships: Clinton Charter Township, Eastpointe Charter Township, Fraser Charter Township, Harrison Charter Township, Macomb Charter Township, Mount Clemens Charter Township, New Haven Charter Township, Romeo Charter Township, Sterling Heights Charter Township, Warren Charter Township

Manistee County

Cities: Manistee

Villages: Onekama

Townships: Bear Lake, Bear River, Colfax, Filer, Mesick, Onekama

Marquette County

Cities: Marquette

Villages: Big Bay, Ishpeming, Negaunee, Republic

Townships: Alger, Au Train, Chocolay, Crystal Falls, Escanaba Township, Fairview, Gwinn, Ishpeming Township, Marquette, Negaunee Township, Republic, Sands Township, Skandia, West Branch

Mason County

Cities: Ludington

Villages: Custer, Scottville

Townships: Amber Township, Edenville, Freesoil, Grant, Lake Township, Mecosta, Mason, Pentland, Scottville, Sherman, Silver Creek, Summit, White Cloud

Mecosta County

Cities: Big Rapids

Villages: Mecosta

Townships: Brookfield, Chippewa, Forest, Mecosta, Morley, Osceola, Pine River, Sherman, Turner

Menominee County

Cities: Menominee

Villages: Menominee

Townships: Carney, Menominee

Midland County

Cities: Midland

Villages: Midland, Sanford

Townships: Edenville, Midland Township, Midland Charter Township, Sanford

Missaukee County

Cities: Lake City

Villages: Custer, Lakeview, Mesick, Wolverine

Townships: Amber Township, Beaver Creek Township, Central Lake Township, Echo Township, Elmira Township, Lake Township, Marion Township, Mesick Township, Plainfield Township, Silver Creek Township, Wolverine Township

Monroe County

Cities: Monroe

Villages: Dundee, Ida, Lambertville, Milan, Petersburg

Townships: Berlin Township, Frenchtown Township, Ida Township, Raisinville Township, Summerfield Township, Temperance Township, Wheatland Township

Montcalm County

Cities: Greenville

Villages: Edmore, Greenville Township, Lakeview, Sidney, Stanton

Townships: Albee Township, Carson City Township, Crystal Township, Eureka Township, Evergreen Township, Ferris Township, Greenville Township, Howard Township, Lakeview Township, Logan Township, Montcalm Township, Pine River Township, Sidney Township, Stanton Township, Vestaburg Township, White Cloud Township

Montmorency County

Cities: Atlanta

Villages: Blanchard, Lewiston, Twin Lake

Townships: Atlanta Township, Blanchard Township, Elmira Township, Evergreen Township, Hayes Township, Long Lake Township, Moran Township, Ogemaw Township, Otsego Township, Silver Lake Township, Springvale Township, Woodland Township

Muskegon County

Cities: Muskegon, Norton Shores, Whitehall

Villages: Casnovia, Montague, Northport, Ravenna, White Cloud

Townships: Fruitland Township, Holton Township, Ravenna Township, Spring Lake Township, White Cloud Township

Newaygo County

Cities: Newaygo

Villages: Fremont, Newaygo Township, White Cloud

Townships: Croton Township, Fremont Township, Grant Township, Newaygo Township, White Cloud Township

Oakland County

Cities: Auburn Hills, Berkley, Birmingham, Clawson, Farmington Hills, Ferndale, Hazel Park, Huntington Woods, Keego Harbor, Lake Orion, Lathrup Village, Livonia, Madison Heights, Oak Park, Pontiac, Rochester, Royal Oak, Troy, Novi

Villages: Addison, Groveland, Oxford, Sylvan Lake

Townships: Addison Township, Avon Township, Berkley Township, Birmingham Township, Bloomfield Township, Clarkston, Commerce Township, Farmington Township, Franklin Township, Hazel Park Township, Huntington Woods Township, Keego Harbor Township, Lathrup Village Township, Livonia Township, Madison Heights Township, Milford Township, Oxford Township, Pontiac Township, Sylvan Lake Township

Oceana County

Cities: Hart

Villages: Hesperia, New Era, Shelby, Pentwater

Townships: Mears, Custer Township, Hart Township, Hartland Township, New Era Township, Shelby Township

Ogemaw County

Cities: West Branch

Villages: Au Gres, Ogemaw Heights

Townships: Au Gres Township, Crystal Falls Township, Hayes Township, Ogemaw Township

Ontonagon County

Cities: Ontonagon

Villages: Bruce Crossing, Rockland

Townships: Arvon Township, Bruce Township, Champion Township, Grant Township, Ontonagon Township, Rockland Township, Silver City Township

Osceola County

Cities: Reed City

Villages: Hersey, Rose City

Townships: Acme Township, Bear Lake Township, Elmira Township, Fremont Township, Green Township, Hersey Township, Lake Township, Osceola Township, Reed City Township, Springfield Township.

Oscoda County

Cities: Harrisville, Rogers City

Villages: Au Gres

Townships: Alcona, Atlanta, Au Gres, Elmira, Harrisville, Houghton Lake, Rogers City, Tawas City

Otsego County

Villages: Johannesburg, Otsego

Townships: Gaylord, Bagley, Bear Lake, Central Lake, Inland Lakes, Johannesburg, Otsego, Plainfield, Roscommon, Silver Creek, Wolverine

Ottawa County

Cities: Allendale, Holland, Zeeland

Villages: Coopersville, Ferrysburg, Grand Haven, North Ottawa, Spring Lake, West Olive

Townships: Allendale, Casco, Coopersville, Ferrysburg, Grand Haven, Jamestown, Laketown, Nunica, Olive Township, Spring Lake, West Olive

Presque Isle County

Cities: Rogers City

Villages: Onaway, Presque Isle

Townships: Presque Isle, Rogers City

Roscommon County

Cities: Roscommon

Villages: Roscommon

Townships: Au Gres Township, Bannister, Colfax, Elwell, Forest, Fremont, Glen Arbor, Harrisville, Lake Township, Luther, Mesick, Omer, Powers, Roscommon, Seeley, Sherman, Standish, Twining, West Branch

Saginaw County

Cities: Buena Vista, Chesaning, Saginaw

Villages: Bridgeport, Buena Vista, Carrollton, Frankenmuth, Freeland, Hemlock, Merrill, St. Charles, Thomas Township, Zilwaukee

Townships: Albena, Atlas, Bridgeport, Buena Vista, Carrollton, Cass City, Chapin, Chesaning, Frankenmuth, Fremont, Gagetown, Galesburg, Gladwin, Goodrich, Grayling, Hemlock, Hoyt, Maple Grove, Merrill, Millington, Morley, Oakley, Saint Charles, Saline, Spaulding, St. Patrick, Thomas Township, Valley, Zilwaukee

St. Clair County

Cities: Port Huron, Port Huron Township

Villages: Fort Gratiot, Kimball Township, Marine City, Marysville, St. Clair, Yale

Townships: Algonac, Clay Township, Columbus, Fort Gratiot, Kimball Township, Marine City, Marysville, New Haven, Port Huron, Port Huron Township, Saint Clair, Sandusky, Yale

St. Joseph County

Cities: Benton Harbor, Niles, Sturgis

Villages: Benton Harbor Charter Township, Coloma, Dowagiac, Niles

Townships: Benton Harbor Charter Township, Berrien, Cass, Coloma, Dowagiac, Edwardsburg, Fabius, Grant, Lake Township, Lincoln, New Buffalo, Niles, Oronoko, Paw Paw, Ross, St. Joseph Charter Township, Three Oaks, Watervliet

Sanilac County

Cities: Sandusky

Villages: Deckerville, Marlette, Sandusky, Watertown Township

Townships: Lexington, Almont, Applegate, Brown City, Deckerville, Forest, Fremont, Gagetown, Greenbush, Kingston, Marlette, Melvin, Minden City, New Haven, Richland, Sandusky, Sebewaing, Watertown Township, Worth

Schoolcraft County

Villages: Manistique

Townships: Big Bay, Curtis, Florence, Ingalls, Manistique, Norway, Schoolcraft

Shiawassee County

Cities: Corunna, Owosso

Villages: Corunna, Morrice, Owosso, Perry, Shiawassee

Townships: Barbour, Byron, Corunna, Fremont, Green Oak, Homer, Jefferson, Lennon, Morrice, Owosso, Perry, Shiawassee, Vernon

Tuscola County

Cities: Caro, Reese

Villages: Indian River, Reese

Townships: Akron, Almer, Arcadia, Berlin, Denmark, Fairgrove, Fremont, Grant, Indian River, Juniata, Maple Valley, Millington, New Haven, Tuscola, Watertown, Wisner

Van Buren County

Cities: Bangor, Paw Paw, South Haven

Villages: Bangor, Lawton, Paw Paw

Townships: Bangor, Columbia, Elkton, Hartford, Lawrence, Martin, Paw Paw,

Washtenaw County

Cities: Ann Arbor, Chelsea, Saline

Villages: Dexter, Manchester, Milan, Ypsilanti

Townships: Ann Arbor, Augusta, Barton Hills, Chelsea, Dexter, Franklin, Green Oak, Milan, Pittsfield, Scio Township, Superior Township, Ypsilanti

Wayne County

Cities: Dearborn, Detroit, Inkster, Livonia, Melvindale, Northville, Plymouth, Redford, Southfield, Taylor, Warren, Belleville

Villages: Ecorse, Garden City, Hamtramck, Inkster, Lincoln Park, River Rouge, Wyandotte

Townships: Brownstown, Canton, Dearborn, Detroit, Eastpointe, Garden City, Grosse Ile, Hamtramck, Highland Park, Inkster, Lincoln Park, Livonia, Melvindale, Northville, Plymouth, Redford, Romulus, Southfield, Taylor, Westland, Wayne, Wyandotte

Wexford County

Cities: Cadillac

Villages: Manton

Townships: Beaver Creek, Forest, Greenwood, Haring, Mecosta, Newaygo, Osceola, Sherman, Springvale, Wexford