Grand Rapids is an amazing city that flows to it’s own youthful beat. It is located in West Michigan and is Michigan’s second largest city. Grand Rapids is constantly growing and developing new ways to make this city great! There is something fun and exciting for everyone in the family to enjoy. If you’re looking for a place to escape for the weekend, Grand Rapids is your destination!
If you still aren’t convinced that Grand Rapids is the city to visit, I’m going to tell you 17 ways to spend 24 hours in Grand Rapids.
A weekend vacation goes by pretty quickly, so it’s important that you plan out what you want to do before you get there. That way you don’t waste time doing so.
(7:30 A.M.) Start Your Morning Right with Ferris Coffee
What better way to start your day in Grand Rapids than with a cup of joe that’s made right here. Along with their excellent coffee, Ferris has three locations in Grand Rapids that all offer different services. They have a retail and training facility and they offer tours, tastings and training so you can brew premium coffee right at home. Their westside location just opened their patio for the season and their downtown location has just started selling beer and wine and have altered their hours, so this stop is no longer just for the morning, but for any time of day!
To learn more about Ferris or their classes, please visit https://ferriscoffee.com
(8:30 A.M.) Get a bite at Sundance
If you’re visiting the downtown Ferris coffee location, slide across the street for a delicious breakfast. Sundance is one of the best breakfast places in town! They have an amazing menu with a southwest twist on your everyday meal which is very unique. They also have the biggest Bloody Mary’s and cinnamon rolls that are each a meal on their own!
To see their menu, check out https://sundancegrill.com
(10:00 A.M.) Frederik Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park
For the first site to see in Grand Rapids of the day, head to the East side to check out the Frederik Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park. This is Michigan’s second most visited exhibition. Their season mostly starts in the Spring with their butterfly exhibit. During the summer, they have a concert series that starts on June 6 this year. Their concerts features people like the Steve Miller Band and Foreigner. If you’re visiting on a day that there isn’t a concert don’t worry, the park itself is definitely worth checking out and should be at the top of your list!
To purchase tickets for the concert series, please visit StarTickets.com
(11:30 A.M.) Lunch at Robinette’s
After visiting the Frederick Meijer Garden’s, head north on Beltline Ave to Robinette’s Apple Haus & Winery. This has been a staple in Grand Rapids for 100 years. Although fall is their busiest time, they are open year round and offer wine tasting for their own made wine. They host different events and have a huge play area for children. They have a cider bar, where they sell baked goods, sandwiches, and of course cider. You cannot visit Grand Rapids without a trip to Robinette’s!
To find out more about their events, visit their website https://robinettes.com/
(1:00 P.M.) John Ball Zoo
The zoo is a very fun, family friendly venue. They have many different types of animals from all over the world. During the day, they have different shows where the animals show off their tricks and how they eat. The zoo is best to visit in the warmer months, because most of their animals are seasonal due to Michigan’s chilly climate.
For their hours and admission prices, please visit https://www.jbzoo.org
(3:00 P.M.) Check Out One of Grand Rapids Amazing Museums
Grand Rapids has some of the best museums in the state of Michigan. There is a museum that can fit anyone in the family’s fancy. There is the Grand Rapids Public Museum, where they have the Toys exhibit right now. They are also opening a new exhibit on May 25 called Changing America.
The Grand Rapids Art Museum is home to so many beautiful artworks, and also features traveling exhibits like the Grand Rapids Public Museum. There are fun things to do and see for all ages, like yoga nights, a creative studio and Sunday night concerts.
If you’re looking for a fun location to take the children, look no further than Grand Rapids Children’s Museum. There is so much to explore here that the kids will be begging to come back. This museum hosts many different expos and exhibits throughout the year, and I recommend checking out their upcoming events before scheduling a trip.
The Gerald R. Ford Museum takes you back in America’s history. This museum tells a lot about President Ford and his life through artifacts, a library collection and digital collections.
(4:30 P.M) Local Shops
Grand Rapids is home to hundreds of small businesses. Many of these are little shops that locals have opened, like Woosah and Outside Coffee Co. This is a business started by a local artist that encourages people to get outside and explore. Although Outside Coffee Co. is outside, it is open year round and they have warming igloos set up so you stay warm!
You can check out their merchandise at https://www.spreadingthewoosah.com/
(5:30) Downtown Market
Something unique that Grand Rapids has is the downtown market. This market includes twenty little shops and eateries all under one roof. Places like Fish Lads and Aperitivo give unique flavors that you can’t get anywhere else in the city. Most of the restaurants have glass windows in their kitchen so you can see exactly how they’re making the food. This is the place to try different foods and get some things to take home to remember your trip. The downtown market even has a teaching kitchen and a beautiful wedding venue upstairs.
To find out more about their shops and upcoming events http://downtownmarketgr.com/
(6:30) Have Dinner at One of Grand Rapids Best Restaurants
Grand Rapids is home to many wonderful restaurants. It can be somewhat overwhelming to try to find a place to eat when there are so many options and it all sounds so good. San Chez, Hopcat, and Charley’s Crab are some of the best restaurants that downtown Grand Rapids has to offer. Whether it is seafood or craft beer, you will be able to find something you enjoy! Make sure you make a reservation, these spots can get pretty busy, especially around dinner time.
(8:30) Grab a Craft at Founders Brewery
Grand Rapids is home to over 40 breweries and is known as Craft Beer City, USA. Founders is one of the most popular breweries in the city. They have a wide variety of beer that is brewed right here in Grand Rapids at their facility. They also offer tours of their brewery and classes and host many event throughout the year.
For updates on their events and classes check out their website https://foundersbrewing.com/
(10:30) Walk on the Blue Bridge
No trip to Grand Rapids is complete without a stroll across the Blue Bridge. The Blue Bridge is located right next to Grand Valley State University and is a staple monument of Grand Rapids. The bridge is lit up of all sorts of colors at night which is the perfect Instagram worthy photo to show off your trip.
(11:00) The B.O.B.
There’s only one way to end your night in Grand Rapids and that is at The B.O.B. Visit the nine different venues inside The B.O.B. First, check out their game room in the basement and then as the night goes on, climb up the stairs until you get to the nightclub at the top, Eve. If you’re visiting on a night that they have a comic check out Dr. Grins comedy club or even a concert at 20 Monroe Live.
For more information on their venues and events visit http://www.thebob.com/