Fun Things to do in Frankenmuth Michigan

Frankenmuth MI can be described as like walking into your own Bavarian fariy-tail.

Others say it’s similar to stepping into your own Christmas snow globe.

Frankenmuth is a mid-Michigan village that’s rich in lederhosen and German heritage. It also offers chicken dinner and Santa Claus.

You can instantly be transported to your own Hallmark Christmas movie by just taking a short trip to Frankenmuth. It’s true: the Hallmark holiday movie “A Christmas Movie Christmas”, which is now in its fourth year, was actually shot here.

Charming Frankenmuth, Michigan’s Little Bavaria

Frankenmuth MI is an ideal place to escape during the holidays. However, it’s also a great destination for any season. Couples and families flock to the town for day trips, vacations, romantic getaways and many other reasons.

You won’t find a better place to find the largest Christmas store in the world, family-style chicken dinners, or a carriage ride on horseback through beautiful Bavarian architecture with castles and fortresses.

Add in the Michigan’s oldest winery, craft breweries and indoor waterparks and you have everything you need to have fun.

Continue reading to learn more about Frankenmuth in Michigan.

Frankenmuth MI Rich German Heritage and Christmas Wonderland

Frankenmuth’s rich German history sets the tone for this friendly town. Frankenmuth is located in Michigan’s Thumb Region, in Saginaw County. It has been a popular tourist spot since 1928 when William Zehnder, a local pioneer, opened a hotel. Soon after, a restaurant was opened.

In 1945, Frankenmuth was able to celebrate Christmas in its own way. Wally Bronner, a local resident, opened a Christmas shop to sell Christmas ornaments. His shop quickly became ” Bronner’s Christmas Wonderland.”

It is now the largest Christmas store in the globe, with more than 2 million visitors each year (we’ll talk more about this in a moment).

Frankenmuth, Michigan’s Christmas Wonderland is

You’ll feel Santa Claus walking around Frankenmuth. It’s a great place to visit for all ages and is a must-see holiday destination.

The warm glow of holiday lights reflecting off snowy roofs to the amazing Christmas shopping, Frankenmuth is the place with the most Christmas cheer.

You will find everything you need to make Christmas even more festive.

What are the Things to Do in Frankenmuth?

Frankenmuth offers so many things to do that it’s worth planning your return trip.

Frankenmuth is a place we make a point of visiting at least once a year, during Christmas season, to enjoy the warm hospitality and holiday cheer all year.

This is our list with 18 top things to do in Frankenmuth (MI), in no particular order.

Bronner’s Christmas Wonderland: Do some Christmas Shopping

It has seven acres of Christmas decorations, ornaments and twinkling fun. A giant Christmas store, housed in an Alpine-themed building, is filled with animated figures, Santa Claus, and snowmen.

Bronner’s Christmas Wonderland is the largest Christmas store in the world and home to the Christmas ornament headquarters. Allow yourself extra time if you plan to visit. It’s easy for people to spend hours looking at the Christmas decorations and wandering around the store. The huge shop is open all year round and never loses its holiday spirit, even during the summer.

Enjoy a World Famous Chicken Dinner

You can’t go wrong when you choose Zehnders’s or The Bavarian Inn for your chicken meal_. You can’t go wrong with either Zehnder’s or The Bavarian Inn for generous portions of freshly fried chicken, creamy whipped potatoes and gravy and a variety of delicious side dishes.

Hardee’s Driving… Driving…

Orders placed through the Hardee’s app or website will not incur a delivery charge of $0 Get your order now

After your chicken dinner is over, you will join the legion of famous politicians and celebrities who always make it a point that they stop by for home-cooked meals on their campaigns and tours. Michigan should not be without these places.

This post will contain more information about these mouthwatering restaurants.

Take a Selfie under the Glockenspiel Tower at Frankenmuth MI

This bell tower, standing at 50 feet tall and featuring 35 bells, is located outside The Bavarian Inn. It is more than 50 year old. You’ll find the bells as well as an illuminated clock, and a lovely figurine movement telling the story of The Pied Piper from Hamelin.

The bells were imported from Germany and can be heard miles away when they chime. This is a beautiful sight, so bring your camera.

Take a look at a real-life Hallmark Movie Set

It is true, there is a Michigan Christmas town. And it is truly magical with a joyful spirit all year.

Frankenmuth’s reputation for being a North Pole outpost was so well-known, that “A Christmas Movie Christmas” by Hallmark was shot at Frankenmuth’s River Place Shops, along with the Bavarian Inn, and Rupprecht Vacation Haus.

The covered bridge, Cheese Haus, Cass River and other prominent spots around Frankenmuth will all be visible to viewers.

Visit the River Place Shops

This cute, German-themed shopping area has 40 shops! Unique shops and attractions are available at the River Place Shops in downtown Frankenmuth.

This isn’t just cookie-cutter kitsch. You’ll also find unique gifts and cafes: top Michigan wineries offer tasting rooms, and even a Cherry Republic.

You should plan accordingly. There might be a fair or festival happening here, in addition to shopping. It is also the boarding point for the Bavarian Belle Riverboat.

Enjoy a Riverboat Ride

After all the excitement, you need to unwind. You can take a guided tour of Frankenmuth as the riverboat cruises along the Cass River. The experience is comfortable and lasts for one hour.

Tickets cost $15 for children aged 12 and below; $5 for children aged 4 and younger. The ticket kiosk is located in the River Places Shops near the Waterfall.

Michigan’s Largest Covered Wooden Bridge – Drive or Walk

The Holz-Brucke bridge, a covered two-lane bridge entirely made of wood, spans the Cass River. This charming bridge is a Frankenmuth landmark, and it can be crossed at night or day.

If you are interested in unusual bridges, then head on over to Midland (about forty minutes away) and check out the Tridge. This is a three-legged bridge.

Enjoy Winter at Zehnder’s Snow Fest

This Frankenmuth tradition, which dates back to 1930, features impressive ice sculptures and a warming tent. There is also a fireworks display, a petting zoo, and other children’s activities.

Visit Grandpa Tiny’s Farm

This working, historic petting farm is also known as the Frankenmuth Bavarian Inn Heritage Farm. It offers an excellent opportunity to get up close and personal with farm animals. You can pet and feed bunnies, goats and lambs and take a horse-drawn wagon tour around the farm.

Chocolate Cheese at Frankenmuth Cheese Haus

Did you say Chocolate Cheese? It’s true, there are many kinds of imported and domestic cheeses. But you can also find homemade chocolate cheese. It was delicious! It’s quite tasty. If you’re looking to take the experience to the next level, it comes in peanut-butter and chocolate-mint flavors.

Take a horse-drawn carriage to see Frankenmuth

One way to see the city is to take a bike ride through Frankenmuth. This will give you a good overview of the area before you choose which spots to visit. You can also ride around the streets in the evening, under the lights of the moon or lamp-it streets.

Enjoy a splash around in an indoor water park

There are two options available here, and both are equally amazing. Zehnder’s Splash Village, as well as The Bavarian Inn & Waterpark, offer plenty of waterslides, lazy streams, and splash pads for children of all ages to keep them entertained for hours!

Find more indoor water parks in Michigan by clicking here.

Frankenmuth Historical Museum

This unique spot is located in downtown Frankenmuth in a 1900-era hotel. It highlights the area’s culture and history, as well as details about the German immigrants who moved here.

Ultimate Mirror Maze

It takes 10-15 minutes to walk through the maze of thousands mirrors. Have fun getting lost, and then finding your way back.

Zak and Mac’s Chocolate House

If you are like us, it is possible to spend hours watching the fudge-makers transform rich, creamy chocolate into delicious fudge. You can also see the candy-makers at work and sample some delicious hand-crafted chocolates.

Frankenmuth Brewery

The 150-year-old Cass River brewery’s Buffalo Chicken Rolls will make you feel like you have lived a long time. This is America’s oldest microbrewery. It also serves great food and stunning views from the Cass River.

Since 1862, the brewery has perfected the art of great beer. The brewery offers at least 15 taps to enjoy all year.

You want to drink more Michigan craft beer? Our guide to the top craft breweries of Michigan.

Play the Links at Fortress Championship Golf Course

This 72-hole, 18-hole golf course is located in Frankenmuth. It offers 6,800 yards of playing for golfers.

Birch Run Outlets

You don’t have to look far for what you are looking for in the River Place Shops. There are also Premium Outlets located nearby at Birch Run. A larger range of brands and stores is just a 15-minute drive away. There is something for everyone here.

Frankenmuth MI Christmas

Apart from endless holiday shopping opportunities, slowing down and simply exploring the town can be a great way to spend your time.

Downtown looks magical in wintertime thanks to the bright lights. If enough snow is piled up, it reflects the lights, creating a warm glow that brightens any night. Frankenmuth’s Christmas spirit isn’t just about holiday shopping. It is a part of the town, especially during holiday season.

Frankenmuth MI: Where to Eat

Bavarian Inn Restaurant

Michigan’s Little Bavaria is known for its authentic German food options. Breakfast at Oma’s Restaurant in Frankenmuth is the best way to start your day. Oma’s Restaurant offers a variety of Sunday breakfast options, including individual plates of potato pancakes and Belgian waffles. It makes you feel like Oma (Grandma) is cooking a delicious meal.

Zehnders Restaurant

Experience the family-style chicken dinners at Zehnder’s of Frankenmuth for dinner. The elegant dining room offers a wonderful setting for a meal, while the waitresses serve exceptional service in checkered frocks. After you are done, make sure to stop by the market downstairs to pick up something delicious. Station 100 is another option for gourmet food and wine pairings. It’s an experience that can’t be beat.

Frankenmuth MI: Where to Stay

There are many options for lodging in Frankenmuth. Each has its own charm. Many hotels have suites that can accommodate large groups. This is something to consider when you plan your trip to Michigan’s largest indoor pool and other attractions.

Bavarian Inn Lodge

It is a beautiful place, right at the Cass River. The Bavarian Inn Lodge offers 7 acres of fun for the whole family, including indoor pools, water slides, minigolf, restaurants and many other activities.

Zehnder’s Splash Village hotel

Michigan’s most popular family destination, it boasts more than 50,000 feet of aquatic fun, including a family pool, water slide, raft ride, and an action-packed waterpark.

The Drury Inn

This charming hotel is located on Main Street and has a Tudor-like design. It puts you right in the heart of holiday celebrations.

Marv Herzog Hotel

This smaller accommodation has only 38 rooms. Its home-away from-home feel and beautiful location on the riverfront is undeniably charming.

Frankenmuth Motel

This cozy spot is the most affordable in “Little Bavaria”; it’s also walking distance to many Frankenmuth gems.

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