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35 Best & Fun Things To Do In Kalamazoo (Michigan)

You can be forgiven for not knowing that Kalamazoo is a real place.

It’s been featured in so many songs, limericks and parodies that it’s often given the same mythical status as Atlantis.

Located in southern Michigan, however, Kalamazoo is a thriving city with plenty of entertainment for travelers.

You’ll find museums and movie theaters; you’ll find planetariums and performing arts venues.

There’s even a gigantic shopping mall that takes up multiple city blocks!

If you’re looking for fun things to do in Kalamazoo, you’ve stumbled on the right list.

Read on for lots of cool stuff to add to your bucket list.

Things To Do In Kalamazoo

1. Henderson Castle

You don’t have to fly to Europe to see an old-fashioned castle.

There’s one right in Michigan, and it has a fascinating history!

Henderson Castle was raised in 1895 by a rich married couple that lived an aristocratic lifestyle.

They loved hosting parties, banquets and balls, and rumor has it that they even held meetings for secret societies.

The castle has everything that you’d expect from such a luxurious estate, including gardens, ballrooms, vineyards and more.

Modern amenities include hot tubs and a restaurant for fine dining.

Visitors are welcome to stay the night in B&B-style suites.

You might not expect a place like Kalamazoo to have a genuine, 19th century castle, but it exists, and it’s remarkable.

The Henderson Castle is definitely one of the coolest tourist attractions in the city.

Address: 100 Monroe St, Kalamazoo, MI 49006, United States

2. Kalamazoo Valley Museum

Touch a mummy.

Travel to the stars.

Take in the pulsing movements of a human brain.

It’s all possible at the Kalamazoo Valley Museum, one of the coolest places to visit in Michigan.

Unlike some museums where everything is tucked away behind glass, the Kalamazoo Valley Museum has a hands-on spirit that encourages discovery and creativity.

Many of the exhibits are interactive, including a “Science in Motion” area where you can play around with everything from body scanners to earthquake simulators.

There are also rain gardens, gigantic globes, music stations, animal models and tracks where you can build and race your own miniature cars.

Other features of the museum include a planetarium and an ancient Egyptian mummy that dates back more than 2,300 years.

Whether you’re interested in the relics of the past or the possibilities of the future, you’ll find plenty of ways to entertain yourself.

Did we mention that there’s no charge for admission?

Not only is the Kalamazoo Valley Museum one of the major points of interest in the city, but it won’t cost you a dime.

You can’t beat fun and free!

Address: 230 N Rose St, Kalamazoo, MI 49007, United States

3. Principle Food and Drink

Principle Food and Drink

Principle Food and Drink

Principle Food and Drink is one of the best places to visit in Kalamazoo.

Its chic, trendy atmosphere is perfect for everything from date nights to power lunches with corporate bosses, and it uses fresh, locally-sourced ingredients to create amazing dishes that Gordon Ramsey would envy.

You don’t have to be a foodie, however, to appreciate what this restaurant has to offer.

Anyone with taste buds can appreciate menu items like duck wings smothered in garlic and crushed peanut sauce.

Anyone with eyes and ears can soak in the ambiance of red brick walls and dim lighting.

If you’re eager to taste Michigan cuisine, start with a reservation at Principle Food and Drink.

It might ruin you for other restaurants since it’s so outstanding, but it’ll be worth it.

Address: 230 S Kalamazoo Mall, Kalamazoo, MI 49007, United States

4. Kalamazoo River Valley Trail

Covering more than 22 miles, the Kalamazoo River Valley Trail is an easy way to explore the area without getting lost.

It’ll also let you experience the city and the country all at once: It winds through the hustle and bustle of downtown Kalamazoo before branching out into the hills, rivers and lakes of the surrounding wilderness.

The trail is wide and flat, so it’s suitable for walkers, joggers and bikers of all types.

Take a leisurely stroll along the water; get your heart pumping with a hike through the trees or a climb up the stone steps of local landmarks.

Views can be especially gorgeous at night, so make sure to bring your camera and capture the stars that shine like diamonds away from city lights.

To see the best of Kalamazoo, try the Kalamazoo River Valley Trail.

It will take you on a self-guided tour of all of the city’s hot spots, and since it’s marked and maintained every step of the way, you’ll never have to worry about venturing off the map.

Address: Kalamazoo County Park, Kalamazoo, MI 49007, United States

5. Airway Fun Center

Airway Fun Center

Airway Fun Center

You can bowl.

You can play arcade games.

You can climb high on a rope course.

You can go low during a game of laser tag.

These are just a few of the activities offered by the Airway Fun Center, one of the liveliest places to visit in Kalamazoo.

They have both indoor and outdoor facilities, so whether you’re jonesing for go-karts, mini-golf, escape rooms or virtual reality games, you can find them here.

One thing to note about the Airway Fun Center is that it’s technically located in Portage, Michigan, but this is just a five minute drive south of Kalamazoo, so it isn’t a long trip.

You’ll have just enough time to let the anticipation build for your upcoming adventure!

Head to the Airway Fun Center if you want thrills near Kalamazoo.

It’ll definitely be an experience to remember… because the adrenaline won’t let you forget!

Address: 5626 Portage Rd, Portage, MI 49002, United States

Visiting other parts of Michigan? Why not check out some of the top things to do in Detroit & some of the fun things to do in Traverse City?

6. Kalamazoo Mall

Kalamazoo Mall

Simon King / flickr

The Kalamazoo Mall holds an important place in history.

Not only was it one of the first outdoor malls in Michigan, but it was the first outdoor pedestrian mall in the United States.

Covering several city blocks, the Kalamazoo Mall is a massive area where visitors can shop, dine, drink and more.

There are high-end boutiques for luxury goods; there are kiosks and sidewalk sales for thrifty folks.

All that you have to do is turn a corner to experience something new.

Another benefit of the mall is that it sits in the heart of downtown Kalamazoo, so it’s centrally located for all kinds of tourist attractions.

Every time that you’ve visited other pedestrian malls, they were designed from the blueprint of the Kalamazoo Mall.

Check it out when you’re in the city to have a fun time and a historical experience!

Address: N Kalamazoo Mall, Kalamazoo, MI 49007, United States

7. VerHage Fruit Farms and Cider Mill

VerHage Fruit Farms & Cider Mill

VerHage Fruit Farms & Cider Mill

If you enjoy hay rides, candied apples and sugar-topped homemade doughnuts, a trip to the VerHage Fruit Farms and Cider Mill is one of the best things to do in Kalamazoo.

VerHage is a “working farm,” meaning that it’s a real, fully-functioning farm even though it also doubles as a tourist attraction.

When you take a tour, you’ll get to see the barns, mills and crops that are actually used every day by the owners.

When you’re done learning about country life, you can cut loose and have fun with a variety of family-friendly activities.

Options include hay rides, pony rides, zip lines, tractor driving lessons and cider-making demonstrations.

You can also pick apples or eat freshly-baked treats like homemade pies and pastries.

Located on the outskirts of Kalamazoo, the VerHage Fruit Farms and Cider Mill can offer wholesome fun for visitors of all ages.

It’ll be a wonderful way to make memories with your family.

Address: 8619 W Ml Ave, Kalamazoo, MI 49009, United States

8. Kalamazoo Nature Center

Kalamazoo Nature Center

Kalamazoo Nature Center

The birds sing from tall trees.

The butterflies flutter from flower to flower.

The fish dart through streams and brooks that babble over rocks and stones.

This is the Kalamazoo Nature Center, and it’s one of the most beautiful places in the United States.

Covering more than 1,100 acres, the Kalamazoo Nature Center is a haven of natural beauty.

There are ponds, prairies, forests, wetlands and more, and thanks to the walking and hiking trails that criss-cross the area, you can explore all of the wonder at your leisure.

The trails are even marked by difficulty level so that beginners never find themselves on an expert hiking path or vice versa.

Get away from it all with a stroll through Kalamazoo Nature Center.

While there’s nothing wrong with enjoying the sights and sounds of the big city, it can be quite refreshing to escape it for awhile with a trip into the wilderness!

Address: 7000 N. Westnedge Avenue, Kalamazoo, MI 49009, United States

9. Kalamazoo State Theatre

Kalamazoo State Theatre

Kalamazoo State Theatre

The Kalamazoo State Theatre is one of Michigan’s oldest and most beloved institutions.

On top of that, it’s one of the last remaining “picture palaces” in the country.

Built during the film boom of the 1920s, the Kalamazoo State Theatre offers old-fashioned charm in a new-world way.

Though it’s been renovated over the years, it still retains a lot of its vintage architecture and decor, including a massive pipe organ that used to be played during silent movies.

Today, the Kalamazoo State Theatre has shifted its focus from movies to live performances, but it’s still a bustling location and an important landmark for the locals.

If you’re looking for cool, unusual things to see in Kalamazoo, try an original picture palace.

Address: 404 S Burdick St, Kalamazoo, MI 49007, United States

10. Homer Stryker Field

Homer Stryker Field

Homer Stryker Field

Take me out to a ball game…

Home of several state teams, Homer Stryker Field is one of those tourist attractions that everyone will recommend when you ask about what to do in the area.

It was built more than a century ago, and it’s home to all of the local players.

Everyone loves it.

It’s a small stadium, so don’t expect anything fancy.

Its charm lies in its old-fashioned design and its comfortable, up-close-and-personal atmosphere.

You’ll be able to chat with the guys strolling through the stands and selling popcorn, and you’ll be close enough to the players to see the dirt particles flying in the air when they slide onto home plate.

Maybe you like the classic American baseball experience.

Maybe you’re just looking for unique things to see and do in Kalamazoo.

Whatever your reason for considering Homer Stryker Field, let it lead you to a great game on the green.

Address: 251 Mills St, Kalamazoo, MI 49048, United States

Have more time? Why not check out some of the things to do in Ann Arbor?

11. Markin Glen County Park

Markin Glen County Park

Markin Glen County Park

Did you know that “Kalamazoo” is an old Native American name?

Historians are divided on its exact etymology, but they think that it’s probably related to kikalamezo, which means “beautiful water” or “reflecting water” in the Potawatomi language.

Another possibility is that it comes from the Ojibwa word giikanaamozoog, which means “smoked” or “cured” and references the cloudy nature of the river.

Either way, water has been one of the defining features of Kalamazoo since it was first populated in the 1800s, so you’ll definitely want to go for a swim while you’re in town.

One option for summertime fun is Markin Glen County Park.

Unlike some parks where the water is only for sightseeing or birdwatching, Markin Glen County Park has a swimming area where you can splash to your heart’s content.

There are also campgrounds, walking trails and sports fields, so you can work up a nice sweat before you dive in.

If you want to experience nature while you’re in Kalamazoo, check out the Markin Glen County Park.

It’s one of the most popular parks in the area, and there are lots of cool things to do in its grassy fields and sparkling waters.

Address: 5300 N Westnedge Ave, Kalamazoo, MI 49004, United States

12. Art Hop

Art Hop

Michael Deemer / Shutterstock

The “Art Hop” is a tradition in Kalamazoo.

It’s usually held on the first Friday of the month, and it involves dozens of local businesses coming together to provide food, art, music and culture for guests who “hop” from one location to the next.

There’s no telling what you’ll see during an Art Hop.

There could be gallery openings from prestigious museums; there could be outdoor concerts from indie grunge artists.

You might even stumble across cool and unusual things like glass-blowing demonstrations!

The best places to visit in Kalamazoo don’t always have a physical location.

Sometimes, they can be mobile and flexible, and they can be fueled by nothing more than the spirit of celebration.

Such is the way of the Art Hop.

Leave some free time in your schedule this weekend and check it out!

13. Union Cabaret and Grille

Union Cabaret & Grille

Union Cabaret & Grille

There are many things to do in downtown Kalamazoo, but one of the highlights is undoubtedly the Union Cabaret and Grille.

Located within the mall, it’s a popular nightlife destination for people from all walks of life.

Young folks like the trendy, lounge-like atmosphere of tables surrounding a center stage where musicians serenade everyone.

Foodies appreciate the gourmet menu items like lobster fondue and goat cheese pasta.

The budget-minded appreciate the discounted happy hours; the rich and fabulous just like to see and be seen in a local hot spot.

Regardless of why you want to visit the Union Cabaret and Grille, it’s definitely a must-see while you’re in downtown Kalamazoo.

Make your plans today and you could be sipping on a cocktail and listening to a live pianist tonight!

Address: 125 S, Kalamazoo, MI 49007, United States

14. Confections with Convictions

Confections with Convictions

Confections with Convictions

Confections with Convictions is one of the best places to go if you have a sweet tooth.

It’s a gourmet chocolate shop that offers mouthwatering truffles, caramels, barks, bites and fudges, and they’re all made by young people working for a better future.

You see, the founder of the shop was a youth counselor before he was a chocolatier, and he saw many kids in crisis.

When he decided to change careers, he didn’t want to leave them behind, so he decided to offer them fair, honest work in a new field.

Today, Confections with Convictions is a thriving shop in Kalamazoo, and it offers some of the finest desserts to be found in Michigan.

You can also sign up for tours, tasting, classes and other special events hosted by the staff.

Indulge your sweet tooth.

Help a good cause.

Confections with Convictions will let you do both at the same time.

Address: 116 W Crosstown Pkwy #101, Kalamazoo, MI 49001, United States

15. Ramona Park

Ramona Park

Ramona Park

Some people don’t want to leave a destination once they’ve arrived.

Others are willing to venture beyond the city limits if enough adventure awaits them on the other side.

If you’re in the latter category, you might enjoy a trip to Ramona Park.

It’s located a few miles south of Kalamazoo in Portage, Michigan, but if you’re willing to make the trip, it can offer a great experience for you and the kids.

Its defining attraction is a beach.

While Michigan has plenty of beaches, a large number aren’t suitable for swimming and sunbathing, so it’s a treat to find one like at Ramona Park.

Other features and amenities include playgrounds, ball fields, tennis courts, picnic pavilions and more.

If you’re wondering what to do near the Kalamazoo area, a trip to Ramona Park can provide plenty of options!

Address: 8600 S Sprinkle Rd, Portage, MI 49002, United States

16. Leila Arboretum

Leila Arboretum

Leila Arboretum

With more than 25,000 plants, the Leila Arboretum is one of Michigan’s grandest destinations for flowers, trees, shrubs and succulents.

It’s described by its caretakers as a “horticulturist’s dream come true,” and it certainly tries to live up to that title.

The landscapes are both beautiful and bountiful.

Walk the trails; frolic in the gardens; enjoy picnics under shaded tree groves.

If you like wildlife, there will be plenty of birds to catalogue in your birdwatching journal, and small mammals can always be observed scurrying up trees or diving under bushes.

There are other activities to enjoy as well.

You can play disc golf; you can fire up a grill.

You can even rent a bike and take it along one of the many trails that winds through the park.

If you’re looking for attractions near Kalamazoo that celebrate nature, it’s hard to beat the Leila Arboretum.

Simply put, there are more than 25,000 reasons to visit!

Address: 928 W Michigan Ave, Battle Creek, MI 49037, United States

17. Air Zoo Aerospace and Science Museum

Air Zoo Aerospace and Science Museum

Air Zoo Aerospace and Science Museum

Known to locals as the “Air Zoo,” this educational facility will delight visitors of all ages.

It’s frequently voted as one of the top places to go in the entire state of Michigan for science buffs.

As you might expect from the name, it’s dedicated to air and space flight.

Its most well-known attractions are the rides and flight simulators that will rattle your teeth like a real pilot, but there are many other activities to enjoy as well.

The exhibits include everything from engines and artifacts to historical videos of mankind’s first trips to the sky, and the floors are dominated by real, life-sized models of planes, gliders, rockets, fighter jets and hot air balloons.

The Air Zoo Aerospace and Science Museum is one of those Kalamazoo attractions that you won’t want to miss.

Even if you aren’t a big “plane person” before your visit, you’ll be one by the time that you leave.

Address: 6151 Portage Rd, Portage, MI 49002, United States

18. Kalamazoo Public Library

Kalamazoo Public Library

Kalamazoo Public Library

You might not expect the local library to be one of the most exciting places to visit in a city, but the Kalamazoo Public Library isn’t like others of its kind.

For starters, it really engages with visitors.

There are classes, lectures, workshops, reading events and more.

This isn’t a library where old ladies with pinched faces are always shushing you.

This is a place where they hold a “Booktoberfest” every fall.

Other forms of entertainment at the library include book nooks, history rooms and state-of-the-art computer labs.

One of its best and most famous attractions is The Hub, a digital media lab that does everything from broadcasting podcasts to preserving old vinyl records.

Don’t let old library stereotypes stop you from visiting the Kalamazoo Public Library.

It’s a very fun, energetic place, and since it’s all publicly funded, it’s also a great example of free things to do in Kalamazoo.

Address: 315 S Rose St, Kalamazoo, MI 49007, United States

19. Blush Salon + Spa

Blush Salon + Spa

Blush Salon + Spa

If you’re wondering what to do in Kalamazoo on a rainy day, why don’t you pamper yourself a little bit?

The weather might be awful, but you don’t have to feel awful along with it.

Services at the salon include facials, massages, manicures and more.

You can get your hair done; you can beautify your nails or detoxify your skin.

Complementary beverages are included with most services, so you can literally just sit back and sip on a drink while other people make you gorgeous.

Another nice thing about the salon is that it accepts walk-ins, so if it starts raining quite suddenly, you can still salvage your day.

You can even take the kids along!

They offer manis and pedis for children, and they’ll even give your little one a lollipop when they’re done.

Don’t let a sudden storm ruin your time in Kalamazoo.

Visit somewhere like the Blush Salon + Spa and get beautiful for the next day.

Address: 100 W Michigan Ave, Kalamazoo, MI 49007, United States

20. Asylum Lake Preserve

The Asylum Lake Preserve is a dazzling destination.

Photographers, you’ll want to have your cameras ready.

Everyone else, you might become a photographer once you see the lush green fields that surround the open skies and sparkling waters of the landscape.

One thing to note about the area is that it’s unfinished.

The walking and cycling trails are still in progress, and there are no bathrooms or other amenities like you might expect from a fully-developed tourist area.

To be honest, however, the rustic feeling at the Asylum Lake Preserve is part of its appeal.

It’s still untouched and unspoiled by man.

If you’re looking for solitude while in Kalamazoo, you’ll probably enjoy the quiet, calm serenity to be found here.

Address: 3836 S Drake Rd, Kalamazoo, MI 49008, United States

21. Kalamazoo Farmers Market

Kalamazoo Farmers Market

Kalamazoo Farmers Market

If you’re looking for the best low-cost stuff to do in Michigan, put on your walking shoes and head to the Farmer’s Market.

It runs from May to November every year, and vendors from all around Michigan come to sell their goods.

There’s more than just food and drink at the market, however.

There are also plants, crafts and homemade trinkets in addition to special events and activities hosted on the lot.

There’s even a night market if you can’t make it during the day!

The Farmer’s Market is a long-standing tradition in the area, and it’s a great way to have fun, meet people, see the sights and learn about local culture.

Best of all, since you don’t have to spend any money, it’s an option in terms of free things to do in Kalamazoo.

Spend an afternoon at the market without spending a dime!

Address: 1204 Bank Street, Kalamazoo, MI 49001, United States

22. Lawton Ridge Winery

Lawton Ridge Winery

Lawton Ridge Winery

Did you know that even wine is being outsourced these days?

Some “wineries” don’t even have their own vineyards; they just buy wine from other vendors and resell it.

Lawton Ridge Winery isn’t like that.

They have a vineyard, and their family has been tending to it for decades, harvesting grapes and bottling reds and whites.

You can take a tour of the grounds to see everything for yourself, or you can just take their word for it and relax on the veranda during a tasting event.

Another notable thing about the winery is that they emphasize pairing the right foods with the right wines, so whether you’re planning a wedding or cultivating a new menu for your restaurant, you can ask the experts and probably get some nice samples while you’re at it.

Kalamazoo attractions come in all shapes and sizes, but if you’re looking for one with a bit of a buzz, try the Lawton Ridge Winery.

Address: 8456 Stadium Dr, Kalamazoo, MI 49009, United States

23. Plainwell Kayak Company

Plainwell Kayak Company

Plainwell Kayak Company

A canoe ride can be one of the most romantic things to do for couples in Kalamazoo.

You’ll cozy up to your loved one in a small, two-person canoe, and you’ll see all kinds of amazing sights on the water.

Do you want to start the day with a little magic?

Get on a canoe in the early morning and watch the sun rise over the horizon.

Do you want to see the moon rippling on the reflection of the water?

While nighttime canoeing is prohibited in some parts of Michigan for safety reasons, you can stay out until dusk and share a special twilight with your sweetheart.

All things considered, there are a lot of ways to be romantic when you’re in a shared canoe.

Rent the right equipment from a place like Plainwell Kayak Company and “wow” your loved one during your travels!

Address: 211 N Main St, Plainwell, MI 49080, United States

24. Kalamazoo Institute of Arts

Kalamazoo Institute of Arts

Kalamazoo Institute of Arts

Art lovers, this one is for you.

The Kalamazoo Institute of Arts (KIA) is one of the top art institutions in the state.

Not only does it serve the public as a nonprofit museum, but it’s also a school, library, gallery and cultural center all rolled into one.

The exhibits showcase more than 5,000 works from around the world.

The activity roster includes everything from watercolor classes and ceramic workshops to homemade jewelry sales and lectures on digital media and art.

Do you want to create pottery in a kiln?

Have you always wanted to learn how to use a loom or a spinning wheel?

Are you just looking for fun things to do in Kalamazoo?

The Kalamazoo Institute of Arts offers all of these opportunities and then some.

There’s a reason why it’s one of the major points of interest in Michigan.

Check it out for yourself and decide if it’s worth the hype!

Address: 314 S Park St, Kalamazoo, MI 49007, United States

25. James W. Miller Auditorium

James W. Miller Auditorium

James W. Miller Auditorium

Located on the Western Michigan University campus, Miller Auditorium is one of the largest venues in Kalamazoo, and it’s played host to a variety of plays, musicals, concerts and graduations over the years.

Notable guests have included everyone from Broadway performers to the Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra.

It’s also been the venue of choice for many musicians and comedians, including Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen and Dave Chappelle.

You’ll want to check the auditorium’s schedule before you arrive in Kalamazoo.

The performers this weekend might be very different from the performers last weekend, and this versatility is exactly why it’s such a fun place to visit!

Buy a ticket for Miller Auditorium.

It’s one of the best places to catch a show in Kalamazoo, so you won’t regret it.

Address: 2200 Auditorium Dr, Kalamazoo, MI 49008, United States

26. Bell’s Brewery

Bell's Brewery

Bell’s Brewery

Family owned and operated, Bell’s Brewery has the distinction of being one of the largest independent breweries in the United States.

If you like to support local businesses, this is one way to crack open a cold one and do a good deed.

Craft brews are available with fun, dynamic names like “Arabicadabra” and “Blackbeard’s Bear Hug.”

If you’re interested in where they came from, you can tour the factory before hitting up the cafe or the beer garden with its outdoor patio.

There’s also a general store if you’d like to take any bottles home.

Other events at the brewery include dinners, concerts, “chili trails” and more.

Make sure to check the schedule before you head to Kalamazoo.

You never know what exciting things will be happening this weekend at Bell’s Brewery!

Address: 355 E Kalamazoo Ave, Kalamazoo, MI 49007, United States

27. Milham Park Golf Course

Golf is one of the most popular things to do in Michigan, and like most destinations in the state, Kalamazoo has a place where you can tee off.

The Milham Park Golf Course is a state-of-the-art facility.

Not only does it offer 18 holes on vibrant, picturesque landscapes, but it’s also home to bars, clubhouses, snack bars, accessory shops and other amenities that will ensure a comfortable and convenient time on the green.

When you’re done with the nine iron, consider driving around the Milham Park region to enjoy more attractions like malls and movie theaters.

The golf course is very centrally located, so you’ll be near all kinds of tourist attractions.

You could definitely do worse than a trip to Milham Park Golf Course.

Address: 4200 Lovers Ln, Kalamazoo, MI 49001, United States

28. Al Sabo Preserve

Hikers, bikers and cyclists have a common home in the Al Sabo Preserve.

It’s one of the most gorgeous places to visit in Michigan, and it offers such a wide range of biodiversity that it’s almost like multiple parks rolled into one.

Part of this is due to its size.

The preserve covers more than 700 acres, and depending on where you go, you can see everything from open fields and streams to densely-packed forests and wet, marshy lowlands.

There are separate trails for hiking and cycling, so whether you’re exploring on foot or by bike, there will be paths for you.

You can also go off the beaten paths and wander around the hills and woods with no particular destination in mind.

The sightseeing will be amazing either way.

Are you ready to unplug for awhile and enjoy the sights and sounds of the natural world?

Let your travels take you to the Al Sabo Preserve.

It’s one of Michigan’s top destinations for pure, unfiltered nature.

Address: 6310 Texas Dr, Kalamazoo, MI 49009, United States

29. Lawson Ice Arena

Lawson Ice Arena

RonaldL / Shutterstock

Another one of the Kalamazoo attractions located on the Western Michigan University campus, the Lawson Ice Arena is the training grounds for many state champions in skating, swimming, diving and ice hockey.

That said, you don’t have to be a student at the university to enjoy a fun afternoon on the ice.

It’s open to the public, and there’s a place to rent skates if you don’t have your own.

Depending on when you visit Michigan, you might also be able to catch special events at the arena.

These include the usual ice skating shows and performances as well as surprising events such as concerts and boxing matches.

Ice skating is one of the top things to do in Kalamazoo, so before you pack your bags and leave, make sure that you’ve taken advantage of the year-round rink at Lawson Ice Arena.

You wouldn’t want to miss out on a classic Michigan winter activity!

Address: Recreation Drive, Kalamazoo, MI 49008, United States

30. Gilmore Car Museum

Gilmore Car Museum

Steve Lagreca / Shutterstock

Located a few miles northeast of Kalamazoo in Hickory Corners, Michigan, the Gilmore Car Museum is one of the largest auto museums in the United States.

It has more than 300 vintage and classic cars on display!

Models include a 1927 Ford Model T, 1913 Rolls Royce and 1958 Edsel Pacer Four Door Hardtop.

There are also replicas of fun, old-fashioned vehicles like pedal cars and checker taxis.

If you remember Happy Days, you can see the real 1952 Triumph Trophy TR5 motorcycle ridden by the Fonz.

When you get hungry, you can head over to the Blue Moon Diner, an on-site restaurant that’s been frozen in time in the 1940s.

You can also sigh wistfully over the recreation of a 1930s Shell Gas Station where gas only cost 18 cents per gallon.

It’s only fitting that Michigan, the home of the automotive industry, is also home to its largest collection of classic cars.

If you’ve always wanted to see a ’60s-era Firebird up close, the Gilmore Car Museum is your chance to make it happen.

Address: 6865 W Hickory Rd, Hickory Corners, MI 49060, United States

31. Farmers Alley Theatre

Farmers Alley Theatre

Kozlik / Shutterstock

Who says that you have to travel to New York City to see a show?

The Farmers Alley Theatre puts on rip-roaring performances for a fraction of the cost, and you won’t even need to leave Kalamazoo to enjoy them.

Productions include everything from big-name plays to small-time cabaret shows and children’s events.

The venue is small, so everything has a cozy, intimate feeling.

After the final curtain drops, the actors might even venture into the crowd to say hello.

Food and drink is sometimes served to provide guests with dinner and a show.

There are also special events like their annual holiday performance that includes coffee, cookies and hot chocolate with the price of admission.

If you’re wondering what to do on a dull or dreary night in Kalamazoo, buy a ticket to the Farmers Alley Theatre.

This warm, family-friendly venue might be just what you need to have a good time.

Address: 221 Farmers Alley, Kalamazoo, MI 49007, United States

32. West Michigan Glass Art Center

West Michigan Glass Art Center

Michael Deemer / Shutterstock

Also known as Glass Art Kalamazoo, this destination is for folks who like being fun and creative.

Classes will teach you how to make things like bowls, candles, lanterns, necklaces and glass flowers.

Galleries will offer mesmerizing looks at 3D art pieces made with glass and beadwork.

Special events include tours, shows, demonstrations and more.

Another nice thing about the center is that only some of the classes and activities charge for admission, so if you’re looking for free things to do in Kalamazoo, this could be an option for you.

All things considered, an afternoon at the West Michigan Glass Art Center can provide a lot of entertainment in Kalamazoo.

Not only will it teach you new and exciting skills, but it’ll give you a great story to share with your friends when you’re back home.

Address: 326 W Kalamazoo Ave #100, Kalamazoo, MI 49007, United States

33. Kalamazoo Book Arts Center

Kalamazoo Book Arts Center

Kalamazoo Book Arts Center

A trip to the Book Arts Center is one of the most fun things to do in Kalamazoo.

This is because it specializes in a very rare and specific kind of art: book art!

Also known as “paper art” or “print art,” this art form revolves around the manipulation of paper.

It’s often but not always carved from the contents of a real book in order to rise from the pages in 3D splendor.

As you might imagine, creating book art can be a very painstaking and time-consuming process.

It takes a lot of precision and attention to detail, and many attempts go wrong.

When artists get it right, however, book art can be an amazing thing to behold.

Visit the Book Arts Center in Kalamazoo and see for yourself!

Address: 326 W Kalamazoo Ave # 103A, Kalamazoo, MI 49007, United States

34. Theo and Stacy’s

Theo & Stacy's Downtown

Theo & Stacy’s Downtown

Theo and Stacy’s is one of the most popular restaurants in downtown Kalamazoo.

Not-so-incidentally, it’s also one of the best places to get authentic Greek and American cuisine.

Greek food is definitely its main attraction.

There are pita and tortilla wraps; there are gyros, kabobs and pastitios.

You can also have your dishes modified to be vegan or vegetarian.

There are also American classics to be had at the restaurant, however, including all-day breakfast options like corned beef hash and biscuits and gravy.

If you ever find yourself craving steak and eggs at 6PM, this is a great place to get ’em.

It’s easy to work up an appetite when you’re exploring the vibrant streets of downtown Kalamazoo.

To satiate your stomach, grab a table at Theo and Stacy’s.

Address: 234 W Michigan Ave, Kalamazoo, MI 49007, United States

35. River Villa and Jan Schau Wildflower Walk

River Villa and Jan Schau Wildflower Walk

Daria Vasilyeva / Shutterstock

Tucked behind the Comstock Community Center, the River Villa and Jan Schau Wildflower Walk is one of the most gorgeous places in Kalamazoo, and it’s also something of a hidden gem.

Even some of the residents don’t know that it exists.

To be fair, it isn’t marked in any way, and it requires you to shoulder through a woodsy, secluded path before the flowers finally emerge like water in the desert.

It isn’t an easy destination to find.

If you’re willing to put in the effort, however, you’ll be treated to rows upon rows of wildflowers blooming in their natural habitat.

It’s truly a sight to behold.

Maybe you’re a gardener or a florist with flowers in your heart.

Maybe you just have a thing for beautiful and secret places.

Either way, you’ll love the sights at the River Villa and Jan Schau Wildflower Walk.

Address: 6712 E Michigan Ave, Kalamazoo, MI 49048, United States

Start Planning Your Trip To Kalamazoo

These are just a few of the best things to do in Kalamazoo.

As a city that prides itself on its art, culture and tourism, you’re sure to enjoy yourself as you explore the various tenets of its history and identity.

Have fun!

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