One of the most beautiful and interesting places in the world to vacation or retire is Antrim County, in the heart of northern Michigan.
Within Antrim County are the towns of Bellaire and nearby Mancelona.
Dozens of crystal clean lakes and rivers make the Bellaire/Mancelona area prime for boating and fishing.
In addition, Shanty Creek golf and ski resort spreads across three hilly and tree filled villages, and plenty of shops and restaurants are available.
What's really exciting about this area is that great deals can be found on resort property that is perfect for vacationing, retirement, or earning extra rental income.
The best part about Antrim County is Shanty Creek Resort. The three villages in this large resort are Schuss, Cedar and Summit. Across the resort are all types of housing, and dozens of homeowners associations.
Schuss Village is the center of the resort's winter activity, but there are ski hills in all of the villages. Summit Village features Lakeview Hotel and Restaurant, which recently underwent a multi-million dollar renovation.
In addition to great downhill ski hills, the resort offers cross country trails and tubing in the winter. Also, four golf courses, indoor and outdoor pools, trails for hiking and biking, and numerous other activities abound in all four seasons.
Lake Bellaire, a few minutes from Shanty Creek Resort, is connected to a chain of lakes including the famous Torch Lake.
Lake Bellaire has a boat launch and small beach off Fishermen’s Paradise, which is off M-88 towards Bellaire.There is also a boat rental and bait store on Lake Bellaire. In addition, the nearby Jordan River offers canoeing and kayaking.
Fishing is excellent on the chain of lakes, where walleye, perch, bass and other lake fish are plentiful. Salmon and trout can be caught on the river and in nearby Lake Michigan. A 58 pound muskellunge caught on Lake Bellaire recently set a world record!
The Grass River Natural Area, a “Northern Michigan Haven for Plant and Animal Life,” offers recreational and environmental educational opportunities.
Downtown Bellaire Fun
Bellaire is the Antrim county seat, so downtown Bellaire is able to offer unique shops and restaurants.
Several gift stores in downtown sell gifts, clothes, toys and other delights. There is also the Bellaire Smokehouse, which in season offers the best ribs and other smoked meats, as well as locally caught fish.
The Bellaire Movie Theatre shows current movies nightly. There is also a bowling alley in town that is being upgraded to open in the spring, and a unique indoor putt putt golf course inside Papa K’s Pizza Shop.
Don’t forget Mancelona
Mancelona is not as vibrant as Bellaire, but it is very beautiful as well.
In addition to a Subway, McDonalds, ice cream store and bakery, Mancelona also offers a grocery store, hardware stores, a bowling alley, and some good restaurants and bars.
Our favorite restaurant in Mancelona is Shirley’s, where long-time resident Shirley prepares her homemade recipes and mingles with the customers. Next door to Shirley’s is Iron Skillet, which is also excellent.
If you are interested in more information about exploring Bellaire as a place to live, vacation, or invest, please see this website.
Author Donna Gundle-Krieg is a realtor in Bellaire, Michigan, home of beautiful Shanty Creek Resort. Please see donnagundlekrieg.com for more information.