Trader’s Point – Manistique’s Best Kept Secret
You see, I recently stumbled upon a little spot in Manistique I never knew existed. This surprised me, because I’ve driven through the town nearly 200 times. (I went to college at CMU and Manistique was on the way.)
The good people of Manistique aren’t trying to hide this place by any means. They’ve even got signs out with big arrows pointing you toward some really cool stuff.
The problem is that the signs are all a little bit off U.S. 2, and as you pass by them unknowingly you’re most likely eyeing up the Shell station ahead and glancing at your fuel gauge because you know it could be miles before the next signs of civilization. (And you’d be right about that.)
For more nearly 200 trips through Manistique, I was that guy.
Don’t be that guy.
Here’s what you do:
Just after you go over the bridge for the Manistique River (if you’re coming from the east) or just before you go over the bridge (if you’re coming from the west), turn south (that’s toward Lake Michigan if you’re directionally challenged like me) onto Trader’s Point Drive.
You’re now on a road that looks like it goes absolutely nowhere. Keep driving. Turn right on the first paved road, which also looks like it goes nowhere, and all of a sudden you’ll very much be somewhere. You’ll be at Trader’s Point.
So what the heck is Trader’s Point?
Trader’s Point is location on the Manistique River that houses a few cool small businesses. Among them are:
- The Upper Crust Café & Deli
- Trader’s Point Antique Mall
- Tamarack Books & Toys
- The Lake Effect Art Gallery
When I visited Trader’s Point I had lunch at the Upper Crust Deli and the moment I walked in I began kicking myself for not knowing about this place on my countless car rides between the central U.P. and CMU. It’s awesome.
I also spent a few minutes perusing the wares at the Lake Affect Art Gallery and was really impressed by all the cool stuff. Everything was reasonably priced, too!
I’ll have more on those places soon, but for now just know that when you’re driving along the seemingly endless stretch of road that is U.S. 2 between the Mackinac Bridge and Escanaba, Trader’s Point in Manistique is an excellent place to get out, stretch your legs and grab a bite to eat if you’re in the mood.
Bottom Line: The shops (and restaurant) at Trader’s Point in Manistique make an excellent stop on that long stretch of U.S. 2 between Escanaba and the Mackinac Bridge.
Other Things to Note:
The Mackinac Trail Winery is directly across the river from Trader’s point, and also well worth checking out if you’re at all into wine.
Address and phone for The Upper Crust Café & Deli: 375 Traders Point Drive Manistique, MI 49854 (906) 341-2253
How to get there? Just west of the Manistique River, turn south onto Trader’s Point Road then take the first right.