Tunnel of Trees motorcycle route guide: Michigan's iconic ride

Tunnel of Trees Michigan
Tunnel of Trees Michigan
Author Michael Milbourn
Product Manager – Dairyland
March 27, 2024

Experience stunning Great Lake shorelines, seasonal foliage, and many memorable stops along the way—more about those later—when you ride Michigan’s Tunnel of Trees. This 20-mile stretch of road is canopied by lush trees that are beautiful in the spring and summer and breathtaking in the fall. It’s definitely a must-ride in Michigan.

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Tunnel of Trees route map

Illustrated Michigan state outline

Those who visit the Tunnel of Trees tend to return, as each season brings a new experience and ever-changing scenery. 

As you ride along the 20-mile stretch of M-119, you'll hug Lake Michigan's scenic coast. Start in Harbor Springs, head north to Good Hart, and end in Cross Village—or keep going to enjoy more of this stunning area.

Check out the map to plan your route.

Weather along the Tunnel of Trees

The Tunnel of Trees follows the northwest coast of Michigan—just south of the Mackinac Bridge, which links lower Michigan to the Upper Peninsula. This far north, you’ll want to be aware of temperature and possible precipitation during your trip.

You’ll typically find the best riding weather in the seven months from April to October—though you can still get snow and ice storms in the late spring and early fall. Check out monthly averages for Cross Village, MI in the chart below.

Climate data for Cross Village, MI

Motorcycle safety tips

The Tunnel of Trees is a relatively winding route with over 135 distinct curves. It’s suitable for riders of all experience levels—as long as you take safety precautions and ride according to road conditions. This route has narrow stretches, many trees close to the road, and sand or gravel on corners.

The time of year you visit matters, especially concerning traffic and weather. Here are some tips: 

  • If you prefer a slower-paced cruise with less traffic, head out on a weekday. 

  • If you visit the Tunnel of Trees for the fall colors, be mindful of wet leaves on the road. The same is true in the spring when conditions are wet, as loose gravel is more common following rainfall. 

  • There is a section of the route where the trees part briefly approximately halfway through the route, following the dense forest. Deer tend to graze in this area, so be mindful of this stretch.

Motorcycle front view illustration.
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Stops to make along the Tunnel of Trees

You can pack in a ton of fun and adventure along the Tunnel of Trees for a relatively short route. If you love small-town shopping, unique food, and the great outdoors, you can really make a day of it. 

Explore Good Hart, Michigan

Good Hart is the only town officially on the Tunnel of Trees motorcycle route—home to the historic Good Hart General Store and two public beaches. 

The must-see store has been selling goods since 1934 and remains the hub of this stunning area, serving as a local bakery, grocer, post office, and more. From its homemade pizza and pot pies to apparel and souvenirs, there's a reason why this general store is the talk of the town. 

If you're visiting during the hot summer months, find the path next to St. Ignatius Mission Church. It takes you to Middle Village Park Beach, a great swimming spot. You can also access the lake and picnic areas via Readmond Township Park.

Tunnel of Trees Restaurants

Before you ride the tunnel, enjoy lunch and snacks in Petoskey and Harbor Springs. As you pass through Good Hart and Cross Village at the northern end of the tunnel, more opportunities exist to try everything from homemade beef pot pies to authentic Polish food. 

  • Crooked Tree Breadworks is known for its artisan bread, homemade pastries, and granola. 

  • Toski Sands Market and Wine Shop is famous for its homemade jerky and smoked whitefish spread.

  • Pond Hill Farm offers fresh produce, homemade preserves, and a cafe serving brick-oven pizza, rainbow trout, and pepper jelly dip.

  • Legs Inn is a historic site and landmark dining destination. Stay in one of the seasonal lakeside cottages or enjoy a memorable meal of homemade Polish dishes and locally sourced Great Lakes whitefish. 

Continue north to enjoy parks along Sturgeon Bay

To keep the fun going, carry on about 16 miles north following the Tunnel of Trees. You could take a dip in Lake Michigan, hike trails throughout Wilderness State Park, or book a cabin to experience the designated dark sky region.

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*Data accuracy is subject to this article's publication date.