Less tourists more fun!

Since, it has been decided that of late I’ve been capable of writing only about going to India, going to other places or about movies that attract painfully long comments, it’s now time to write about the latest vacation I had. Yeah, yeah… all you folks in India are saying not again! But you see, we hard working desis in the land of america, are not lucky enough to get unexpected bandh holidays, or unknown and uncelebrated festival holidays. We get one long weekend per season, and since we do not have to catch a kovai express or a dadar express back home, we usually fill up our gas tanks with a sigh and go in search of some waterbody that has a semblance of a beach.

This time, we went to Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan. It is a quiet place in the upper peninsula (UP) of Michigan on the border with Canada. Even though upper michigan, more specifically Mackinac Island is a place well frequented by desis, this part of UP is probably not as well known or well visited by tourists. Saulte Ste. Marie’s claim to fame is the Soo Locks. Ships of all sizes that travelled from Lake Superior to the lower great lakes had to unload all their goods at Sault Ste. Marie. They were then transported around and loaded into other ships on the other side, until they decided to build the Soo Locks. The Soo Locks then helped ships move across from one side to the other in spite of the 21 ft drop. After a 2 hours boat trip on the Soo Locks, we caught up some sleep and then headed to the local beach at Sherman Park. Sherman park is the town’s only public beach and even though it is not any where in the league of ‘namma Marina beach’, it was a fun place, mainly because it was clean and not crowded. The water here was really shallow, about knee length for about a quarter mile in. So, needless to say we enjoyed ourselves a lot just pushing around each other in the water and wading all the way to a tiny strip of sand some distance in. We also witnessed a beautiful sunset from Sherman park.

Sunset at Sault Ste. Marie
Sunset at Sault Ste. Marie

On our way back from Sault Ste. Marie to Chicago, we decided to take part of the scenic Lake Michigan Circle tour through Wisconsin. We drove along Lake Michigan and had a view of the lake for most of the journey. On the way, we stopped at the sight of a beautiful beach and lighthouse at Manistique, MI. If at Sault Ste. Marie, we had not bothered to take pictures, because we were too busy getting wet in the beach, this place was waiting to be photographed. It was such a peaceful and calm feeling, just looking at the vast expanse of water, the lone red lighthouse and the waves crashing on the rocks.

Manistique Lighthouse
Manistique Lighthouse

In all it was an ideal vacation. We had a good drive, enjoyed the journey, just did what we felt like without having to stand for hours in queues, enjoyed good old nature and came back happy to be home. Definitely makes me believe, that we should look for places like this rather than rushing to the usual NYC or Niagara falls.

11 thoughts on “Less tourists more fun!

  1. done! wen I get married i’ll mail you and you temme all such unheard places to go…

    for now I’ll stick to miami, vegas, veil…..

    Rekha: Haha.. sonna pochu. Which reminds me.. When you get married, remember not to honeymoon in places that have sightseeing spots – my friend and her husband got calls from both sides asking if they are having a nice time, and if they saw that lake and this spot and that point. Orae disturbance, plus waste of time also when you’re newly married.

  2. This time, I know one more person who was there this weekend. 🙂
    The concept of less tourists, more fun is now spreading fast. I remember there used to be a column called Road Less Traveled on the Saturday supplement of Hindu. Had all such places. Now, we need to collect something like that over here.

    Rekha: Yes. that would be really useful. But then, it has to be a desi list. Yesterday I was looking for lakes in the midwest, and many of them only talked about the different varieties of fish that you could go fishing for. So, we should probably compile a desi friendly destination guide in the US.

  3. I had a horrible weekend. Have to post about it soon. Glad you had a great time. We should go to unheard of places wonly I think. Considering am nearly newly married, its a good idea 😉

    Rekha: Aww.. you poor thing. Next time take my advice and go to some god-forsaken place. Just make sure there is at least a taco bell around though, cause a honeymoon without food is no fun either.

  4. ore holiday?ore lourve is happening i see. good good.
    ensoy like vkr said.

    Rekha: Hehe.. ya ya.. Eppo India Holiday nu therilae.. adhukku thaan waiting

  5. Nice pictures. I’ve always wanted to go to the Upper Peninsula. I agree that there are a lot of places much more beautiful than Niagara Falls. Most desis probably start with the usual destinatons like the Falls and then work their way to the less well-known ones..

    Rekha: Guess you have to make that transition..

  6. Me

    nan solla vandhadha maami sollita…NRI Maami orey romance in the air pol irukku…

    I love to have vacations like this. Sitting on a bench overlooking a lake, watching sunrise and sunset. No phones, laptop or relatives. With good food and a nice company it is just heaven on earth.

    Rekha: Vaango Vaango! Romba naala aalae kaanom? Romance in the air elaam illai pa. My daughter has finally grown up from being a baby, and we want to make the most of the good weather before the darned winter arrives. And Appadi ! finally one man who is happy to let go of his laptop!

  7. isn’t that place just beautiful….had been there last year..the beauty is just striking…and yep! fed up with places over-flowing with tourists and ppl. with cameras who want to take a family pic right at the spot you are standing 😀

    Rekha: I think the fact that there were not so many people and also that there were no 101 must-see attractions for which we had to go back and forth and stand in lines, made the trip altogether more fun.

  8. The Lake Michigan Circle tour…is that Door County?

    We (as in a big grad school gumbal) went there for a weekend…and it was awesome 🙂

    Rekha: I’ve heard Door county is fabulous, but haven’t been there. We will probably make a trip there in the fall. This one doesn’t go through Door country, just goes through Oshkosh and Green Bay and Milwaukee from Michigan state down to Chicago along the lake.

  9. prem

    boy…i sure can do with a vacation…sick of working at my college presentation with a bunch of buffoons who dont even know what language i am talking in! a place without people will DEFINITELY be a welcome relief!

    im not big time into poetry…but just looked out of curiosity…and this was appropriate

    And both that morning equally lay
    In leaves no step had trodden black.
    Oh, I kept the first for another day!
    Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
    I doubted if I should ever come back.

    – robert frost

  10. Simbly South

    Hello Maami,
    Came across this post searching for Soo Locks with respect to Desis. Nice post.And you have a nice blog !!
    I had a question about Soo Locks – wondering if u can help me out here. Konjum help venam. The Soo Lock boat tours, which take you thru the locks into Canadian waters – do you know if they need a Canadian visa for this ? Or is a H1 holding desi like me allowed on these boat tours, into Canadian waters ? ethavathu idea irukka … ok thats almost the end of my Tamil vocab
    Tks, Palghat Mallu

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