Scenic USA - Michigan

Point Betsie Lighthouse

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Point Betsie Lighthouse - Frankfort, Michigan

Photo by Merrill Miller

     The Lower Peninsula of Michigan is surrounded by the waters of Lake Michigan and Lake Huron, and you can bet there are plenty of historic lighthouses spaced out along the coastline. In fact, Michigan may be the lighthouse capital of the world, with more lighthouses (116) than any other state.
     One of the most photogenic lighthouses in the United States, Point Betsie Lighthouse lies on a narrow strip of land between Lake Michigan and Crystal Lake. Marking the southern entrance of Manitou passage, Point Betsie Light is located in one of western Michigan's most scenic settings along coastal Route 22. You'll find the lighthouse just south of the Most Beautiful Place in America, receiving 100,000 votes on ABC's Good Morning America.
     Here the land juts out into Lake Michigan, leading early French trappers and explorers to call it Sawed Beak Point (Point Aux Bec Scies). The lighthouse was built to mark the point in 1858 and remains operational, although it's fully automated today and requires no light keeper. An agreement among Benzie County officials, the U.S. Coast Guard and Friends of Point Betsie Lighthouse, has these groups working together for the operation and preservation of this historic treasure. Open for tours on weekends from late May until mid October, the lighthouse is recognized with its listing on the National Register of Historic Places. If you haven't been to this section of Michigan, it's one more place to add to your bucket list.

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