Top 25 Ann Arbor Attractions You Can't Afford to Miss

Last Updated on February 24, 2024 by Nikki Jain

To the west of Detroit lies the great city of Ann Arbor. A small town feel mixed with the bustling energy of a college campus creates the Ann Arbor atmosphere. From weekly farmers markets to Saturday game days in the Big House, Ann Arbor attractions will surely keep a tourist entertained.

This city is widely known for being the location of the largest football stadium in the U.S. and the home of the largest juried art fair in the nation. It is evident that there is no shortage of things to do in Ann Arbor, and to prove it check out this list of the top tourist attractions in Ann Arbor.

Things To Do in Ann Arbor

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1: Michigan Stadium

Michigan Stadium
Dreamstime/Steven Pepple

It is no surprise that the University of Michigan's football stadium is at the top of Ann Arbor attractions.

Nicknamed "The Big House," Michigan Stadium is the largest stadium in the United States while being the third largest in the world! The field has a capacity of exactly 107,601 but regularly hosts crowds of over an unbelievable 115,000 people.

There is nothing like experiencing a Michigan game day in football's greatest stadiums.

If you are unable to attend a football game, there are tours and events organized that could give you a peek inside the massive stadium.

The Big House symbolizes American culture and America's most beloved sport, football.

With all things considered, if you are a football fan, you should definitely make time for the Michigan Stadium while visiting Ann Arbor.

Address: 1201 S Main St, Ann Arbor, MI 48104

Also Read: Most Amazing Arenas and Stadiums in America

2: Ann Arbor Art Fair

Ann Arbor Art Fair

Every year since 1960, Ann Arbor has arranged the largest juried art fair in the nation.

The Ann Arbor Art Fair is a gathering of close to 1000 artists from all over exhibiting their artworks on the streets of Ann Arbor.

For three days at the end of July, artists and art enthusiasts alike crowd 30 city blocks in downtown Ann Arbor to view the art.

The public can view and buy artworks ranging from paintings, jewelry, ceramics, mixed media, sculptures, glass art, and much more.

The art fair is split into three juried, nonprofit fairs that run all at once, including the Ann Arbor Street Fair, Ann Arbor State Street Art Fair, and the Ann Arbor Summer Art Fair.

Nonetheless, this fair is more than just art. It features a diverse array of food vendors and food trucks scattered throughout the event. Additionally, there are live musical performances to listen to.

The Ann Arbor Art Fair attracts nearly half a million attendees during the three days making it number two on the list of must-sees in Ann Arbor.

Address: 721 E Huron St STE 200, Ann Arbor, MI 48104

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3: Ann Arbor Summer Festival

Ann Arbor Summer Festival

The Ann Arbor Summer Festival is one of the community's most beloved Ann Arbor attractions.

Locally known as A2SF, the Ann Arbor Summer Festival began back in 1984 to promote community spirit through performing arts and outdoor entertainment.

The months of June and July are packed full of Ann Arbor Summer Festival activities like live music concerts, art exhibits, food vendors, kid's activities, films, and more.

For four weeks, there is a multitude of events with people from the Ann Arbor community.

This nearly month-long festival draws in over 80,000 people, and all are welcome! Families come to the Kidzone to have the kids entertained for hours with tons of fun activities.

The best part of it all is that almost all the activities are FREE for all.

Address: 210 Huronview Blvd, Ann Arbor, Michigan, 48103

4: University of Michigan Museum of Art

University of Michigan Museum of Art
Flickr/Dennis Sparks

The University of Michigan Museum of Art, or UMMA, is one of the nation's oldest and largest university art museums.

Built in 1909 as a war memorial, it was initially used for the University's alumni office and storage for its art accumulation.

With over 150 years of collecting, the University has more than 21,000 total art pieces.

The University of Michigan has even acquired some pieces from world-renowned artists, including Pablo Picasso, Claude Monet, Andy Warhol, Helen Frankenthaler, and more.

Mixed with these ultra-famous artworks, one can find current pieces that attempt to invoke a deeper perspective from the viewer.

Regardless you are an art critic or simply enjoy looking at artworks; everyone should put UMMA on their agenda for places to go in Ann Arbor.

Additionally, UMMA is open Tuesday through Sunday with varying hours, and admission is free for everyone.

Address: 525 S State St, Ann Arbor, MI 48109

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Also Read: Best Art Museums in the USA

5: Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum

Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum

Fuel your child’s curious mind within a few hours at the Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum.

Ten fun-filled exhibits will get your child engaged by mixing learning and fun.

Hands-on learning will allow for the introduction of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM), as well as the basic concepts of the functioning world.

A few of the popular interactive exhibits are the featured Legacy Gallery, where you can experiment with Morse code and the Keep Smiling Gallery, which explains how human mouths change throughout people's lives using x-rays and oversized teeth.

The museum is constantly updating its galleries to keep its teachings recent.

For example, the new Steam Park promotes the next set of scientists, technicians, engineers, artists, and mathematicians with its mechanical exhibits.

Teach an old dog new tricks or introduce concepts to a fresh mind because this Ann Arbor attraction allows for discovery for people of all ages.

Address: 220 E Ann St, Ann Arbor, MI 48104

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Also Read: Best Children's Museums in the USA

6: Matthaei Botanical Gardens and Nichols Arboretum

Matthaei Botanical Gardens and Nichols Arboretum

In 1907, the University of Michigan launched a Botanical Garden and Arboretum with 80 acres of land.

More than 100 years later, the University of Michigan Matthaei Botanical Gardens and Nichols Arboretum has expanded into over 700 acres of gardens, research area, and green area throughout Ann Arbor.

Because walking through 700 acres is not within reason, the general favorite of the gardens has to be the large outdoor seasonal bonsai and penjing garden.

More noteworthy areas of the Botanical Gardens are the Gaffield Children’s Garden, Great Lakes Garden, and the Campus Farm.

The MBGNA is a lovely place to walk and be with nature. It is also a beautiful spot in Ann Arbor to take photos.

Do not overlook the Botanical Garden and Arboretum during your time in Ann Arbor.

Address: 1800 N Dixboro Rd, Ann Arbor, MI 48105

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Also Read: Best Botanical Gardens in the USA

7: Zingerman's Bakehouse

Zingerman's Bakehouse

The appeal of freshly baked artisan bread is why Ann Arborites are so loyal to Zingerman’s Bakehouse.

Zingerman’s Deli was first opened due to the overwhelming demand for traditional Jewish foods.

For decades, Zingerman’s has built up a faithful fan base through the help of their bread, which is made with organic flour and baked fresh daily.

Just recently, Zingerman’s swapped to organic flours sourced from Michigan.

They have also consistently used farm-fresh dairy products and locally sourced ingredients.

Their passion for baking is driven by the desire to bake delicious bread and pastries to share with all.

Grab your morning pastry or the ultra-famous Jewish Rye at the most delectable Ann Arbor attractions.

Address: 3711 Plaza Dr, Ann Arbor, MI 48108

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8: University of Michigan Museum of Natural History

University of Michigan Museum of Natural History
Facebook/University of Michigan Museum of Natural History

After exploring the UM football stadium, the next place to visit in Ann Arbor should be The University of Michigan's very own Museum of Natural History.

The museum features permanent exhibits like adventuring through Michigan's diverse ecosystem of the past and present in Exploring Michigan or learning about evolution and the first organisms in Evolution: Life Through Time.

The U of M Natural History Museum also has limited-time exhibits that often change to keep the museum fresh.

The museum is currently showcasing Unseen Worlds, a colorful display of microorganisms.

Going to the museum does not have to be boring, with interactive exhibits like Science at Work: Biodiversity Lab, where you can observe researchers make discoveries about life and how it works.

General admission to the museum is always FREE, but there is a cost of admission to get into additional features like the planetarium.

Address: 1105 N University Ave, Ann Arbor, MI 48109

9: Graffiti Alley

Graffiti Alley
Flickr/Josie Hill

You have heard of the famous Bubblegum Alley in Southern California, but have you heard of the Ann Arbor attraction Graffiti Alley? This creative and colorful lane was started by artist Katherine Cost back in 1999 when she created the piece, Infinite.

Since then, local graffiti artists have covered the backstreet with unique markings and images.

This alley has been the subject of controversy in Ann Arbor because many believe the art is unsightly, but you can decide for yourself.

Located off of East Liberty Street in Ann Arbor, Graffiti Alley is an easy place to find. Simply follow the crowd of people taking fun, edgy photos in this great destination.

Visit 20 years of Ann Arbor art at the ever-changing walls of Ann Arbor's Graffiti Alley.

Address: E Liberty St, Ann Arbor, MI 48104

10: Michigan Theatre

Michigan Theatre
Dreamstime/Paul Brady

Around the corner from Graffiti Alley, you will find the historic Michigan Theater.

The Michigan Theatre first opened on January 5, 1928, after being designed by Detroit Architect Maurice Finkel to be a grand silent film theater.

Between the years of 1985 to 2002, a fantastic restoration of the auditorium led it back to its glory days of the roaring twenties.

Now, the Michigan Theatre provides a 365-day-a-year film program that attracts roughly 250,000 attendees a year.

Film themes range from classic and contemporary to foreign and silent-era. These movies are accompanied by the theaters' treasured 1927 Barton Theatre Pipe Organ.

Witness a part of Ann Arbor music history at Michigan Theatre.

Address: 603 E Liberty St, Ann Arbor, MI 48104

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11: State Street District

State Street District
Flickr/Chris Rycroft

The State Street District is the downtown area of Ann Arbor, known as the vibrant beating heart of the Ann Arbor community.

State Street has been filled with small businesses, boutiques, restaurants, and more for over fifty years.

The most popular establishments in the State Street District are The Michigan Theater, Slurping Turtle, Arcadian Antiques, and The Getup Vintage.

State Street occasionally holds events if you are visiting at the right time.

State Street celebrations include the Ann Arbor Summer Festival, the Ann Arbor Film Festival, FoolMoon, and occasionally some UM events.

Walk the streets of the most lively places in Ann Arbor during your visit here.

Address: State Street, Ann Arbor, MI

12: Kerrytown


If you stroll a few blocks from downtown Ann Arbor, you might find yourself in the equally charming neighborhood of the Kerrytown District.

A quaint appeal mixed with modern shops shape the most popular retail attractions in Ann Arbor.

Kerrytown District has become locally known due to the Ann Arbor Farmers Market.

Individuals throughout the Ann Arbor community are able to bring their locally produced goods to the markets, which is held almost every weekend.

Kerrytowns streets are also lined with a variety of locally owned businesses that add to the authentic Ann Arbor feel.

In the warmer months, you will catch numerous cafes with music drifting out of them.

Ask any local; Kerrytown is too charming to skip. Make sure to add it to your to do list while in Ann Arbor.

Address: Kerrytown, Ann Arbor, MI

Also Read: Best Places To Live in Michigan

13: Kelsey Museum of Archaeology

Kelsey Museum of Archaeology

There is nothing else in Ann Arbor quite like the Kelsey Museum of Archaeology.

Filled with over 100,000 historic artifacts from around the world, visitors venture through ancient civilizations, including Greece, Rome, Byzantine, Iraqi, and Egypt.

Many of the artifacts that reside in the museum are from excavations sponsored by the University of Michigan.

A large majority of relics were uncovered during archaeological excavations from the twenties and the thirties in Egypt, Iraq, the Mediterranean, and other Middle Eastern regions.

The museum building is a sight to behold.

The ornate stone structure is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and is one of the oldest buildings at the University of Michigan.

Experience the past with one of the most unique places to visit in Ann Arbor.

Address: 434 S State St, Ann Arbor, MI 48109

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14: LEGOLAND Discovery Center Michigan

LEGOLAND Discovery Center Michigan

Legoland Discovery Center is the perfect Ann Arbor attraction for lots of family fun.

Plan a full day of excitement at any of Legoland's interactive attractions.

Let your children's imagination run wild when they rescue the princess with their very own chariot ride during the Kingdom Quest laser ride.

Next, check out Miniland with its miniature versions of featured Detroit landmarks built from over an impressive 1 million Lego bricks.

Sit back and watch an adventure-filled movie that comes to life at the Lego 4D Cinema.

If that was not enough fun, there is Merlin's Apprentice Ride and meeting the Lego Characters.

All these good times will make anyone hungry so make a pit stop in fun to have lunch at the Lego Cafe.

Finish off the day at the Lego Store to browse for Lego products.

It is important to note that parents should book Legoland Discovery Center tickets ahead of time for all-day fun.

Address: 4240 Baldwin Rd, Auburn Hills, MI 48326

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The Great Lakes State has more than 11,000 inland lakes, and there is a spectacular lake right in the middle of Ann Arbor.

Lillie Park is locally known as a respite from the city with its beautiful lake surrounded by a wide open green area.

If you did not think it could get more picturesque, the lake has a boardwalk perfect for fishing or enjoying the water.

Get fresh air while walking, hiking on a trail, or playing soccer on the sports field.

Along with these, Lillies Park has numerous features, including a bike rack, grill, picnic area, pavilion, and restrooms.

If you are not already convinced, the autumn leaves look marvelous in the park and are a must-see in Ann Arbor during the fall season.

Address: 4365 Platt Rd, Ann Arbor, MI 48108

16: Yost Ice Arena

Yost Ice Arena

Second, only to football, the University of Michigan loves its ice hockey team. The energy during a hockey game matches the enthusiasm of the game day.

The University of Michigan Wolverines men's ice hockey team plays in the iconic Yost Ice Arena.

Located centrally on the university campus, the Yost Ice Arena is an indoor ice hockey rink that allows for year-round access to the ice for students and the public.

Originally constructed in 1923, the Yost Ice Arena has had many renovations to accommodate its current capacity of 5,800.

If you are near the campus during hockey season, one of the most exciting things to do in Ann Arbor is to go to a hockey game at the Yost Ice Arena.

As well as hockey Yost offers public skating, skate rental, learn-to-skate classes, and birthday party space.

Do not miss your opportunity to skate in a Big Ten rink or check the University of Michigan's hockey schedule to catch a game while in Ann Arbor.

Address: 1116 S State St, Ann Arbor, MI 48109

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17: University of Michigan Tour

University of Michigan Tour
Dreamstime/Paul Brady

With consistent rankings in the top 30 national schools, a fantastic undergrad program, and one of the finest athletic programs in the country, there is no doubt that the University of Michigan is one of the best colleges in the United States.

The perfect way to experience this beautiful campus is during an afternoon walk.

Notable features around campus include The Big House, the Yost Ice Arena, the University of Michigan Museum of Art, and the University of Michigan Law Library.

The university is at its peak during the fall when the semester has begun, and the autumn leaves frame the elegant stone buildings where the classes take place.

In all, you will not have completed the best of Ann Arbor attractions without touring the magnificent University of Michigan.

Address: 500 S State St, Ann Arbor, MI 48109

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Also Read: Most Beautiful College Campuses in the USA

18: Hill Auditorium

Hill Auditorium

Generally, it is not well known that a historic performing arts presenter is right on the University of Michigan's campus.

Hill Auditorium, U of M's largest performance hall, is currently celebrating its 144th season.

Each season since the auditorium's opening in 1913, the auditorium presents around 60 to 75 music, dance, and theater performances.

In addition to that, it hosts over 100 free educational programs.

Although not widespread, Hill Auditorium is praised in the performing arts community as a "monument to perfect acoustics." Complete your Michigan trip with cultural attractions in Ann Arbor.

Immerse yourself in appreciating the performing arts as you attend a performance at one of the oldest performing arts presenters in the country.

Address: 825 N University Ave, Ann Arbor, MI 48109

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19: Border-to-Border Trail

Border-to-Border Trail
Facebook/Border to Border Trail

If you are looking for things to do in Ann Arbor that are outside, walk the Border-to-Border Trail.

Washtenaw County has linked rural and urban areas with an outside walk away.

With thirty-five miles of walkable paths, the B2B Trail is the perfect way for citizens of the community to remain active throughout the year.

During the warmer months, people can walk, run, bike, and rollerblade with well-maintained stretches.

On the flip side, when snow falls, the Border-to-Border Trail allows for winter activities, such as snowshoeing and cross-country skiing.

The Border-to-Border Trail is the perfect way to get a little exercise no matter the time of year.

20: Domino’s Farms Petting Farm

Domino’s Farms Petting Farm

Domino's Farms Petting Farm, also known as The Petting Farm, is where the country meets the city of Ann Arbor.

The founder of Domino's Pizza, Thomas S. Monaghan, bought the farm in the early 80s to make room for the home of his pizza empire.

He relocated the barn and set aside 20 acres for a new property. Monaghan then named this new property Domino's Farms.

In 1996 Domino's Farms became a nonprofit organization that is open to the public. The petting farm is home to dozens of animals, each one cuter than the last.

Animals that currently reside at the farm are alpacas, barn cats, cattle, chickens, ducks, horses, goats, llamas, pigs, rabbits, and sheep.

Domino's Farms Petting Farm is a great way to spend an afternoon, plus it is one of the most iconic things to do in Ann Arbor.

Address: 3001 Earhart Rd, Ann Arbor, MI 48106

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21: Hudson Mills Metropark

Hudson Mills Metropark

Explore the Huron River during your visit to the Hudson Mills Metropark.

This park allows the public to spend time at some of the most scenic spots on the Huron.

With several hundred miles of trails, the Ann Arbor community has the opportunity to stay active.

The Metroparks have a wide range of amenities, including picnicking, fishing, swimming, boating, hiking, biking, golf, and disc golf.

When winter comes around, there are plenty of winter activities like cross-country skiing, sledding, and snowshoeing.

The occasional event is hosted in the park, from nature hikes to fireworks or movies in the park.

If you need nature and fresh air, head to one of the prettiest spots in Ann Arbor, the Hudson Mills Metropark.

Address: 8801 N Territorial Rd, Dexter, MI 48130

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22: Ann Arbor Ice Cube

Ann Arbor Ice Cube

Many come to Ann Arbor in search of some winter fun, but sometimes the snow just does not cooperate.

Don't let fickle weather ruin your winter fun. Go check out the Ann Arbor Ice Cube.

This indoor ice rink is a local favorite because it can be enjoyed all year round. Activities like speed skating, figure skating, and hockey are offered throughout the year.

The rink offers open skating that boasts fun for all skill levels and ages.

If you live near Ann Arbor, you can even schedule birthday parties at the ice rink.

Just because it is winter does not mean there are no things to do in Ann Arbor. Head over to the Ann Arbor Ice Cube for a guaranteed fun time for kids and parents alike.

Address: 2121 Oak Valley Dr, Ann Arbor, MI 48103

23: Ann Arbor Film Festival

Ann Arbor Film Festival

Next on the list of Ann Arbor attractions is the oldest innovative film festival in North America, The Ann Arbor Film Festival.

This world-renowned event is six days of movie debuts produced by independent filmmakers.

Each year the festival exhibits 40 programs containing over 180 films from 20 different countries.

The movies presented vary in length and genres, including animation, fiction, documentary, experimental, and performance-based.

The Ann Arbor Film Festival has been a stepping stone for many well-known filmmakers like Andy Warhol, Gus Van Sant, Chick Strand, and George Lucas.

Filmmakers even have the chance of a cash award for their work.

Enjoy ground-breaking cinematic experiences while you explore the Ann Arbor Film Festival.

Address: 230 Collingwood Dr, Suite 160B, Ann Arbor, MI 48103

24: Pedal Saloon Ann Arbor

Pedal Saloon Ann Arbor
Facebook/Pedal Saloon Ann Arbor

Biking and drinking are usually a recipe for disaster, but not with this eccentric attraction in Ann Arbor.

Pedal Saloon Ann Arbor is a bar on wheels. You can enjoy a bike bar tour around the city and pedal to the best bars in the area.

Pedal Saloon is a perfect activity for bachelorette parties, exploring a new town, or if you're just looking to have a good time.

On your Ann Arbor bar crawl, a few places you can expect to go to are the Heidelberg, Beer Grotto, Hopcat, Garage Bar, Arbor Brewing Company, and more.

Book a tour for this unique pedaling experience.

Address: 200-300 N Main St, Ann Arbor, MI 48103

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25: Chateau Aeronautique Winery

Chateau Aeronautique Winery
Facebook/Chateau Aeronautique Winery

You will be flying high with this next Ann Arbor tourist attraction. An activity unique to the Ann Arbor area is located at the Chateau Aeronautique Winery.

The owners of this establishment have cultivated a quirky experience for wine enthusiasts.

This winery holds tasting in an airplane hangar. That’s right!

An international airline pilot has created a tasting room on an airpark overlooking a grass runway.

The winery has a wide range of handcrafted wines made from Michigan grapes.

If wine is not your thing, they also serve beer. They even offer weddings at the winery.

Be sure to make time in your schedule for wine tasting in a special location.

Address: 12000 Pentecost Hwy, Onsted, MI 49265

Plan your trip to Ann Arbor soon!

Whether you are in town for a day or a few days, there are tons of things to do in Ann Arbor. Although Ann Arbor may be known as the UM campus, there is so much more, like fine dining, museums, and festivals. You are bound to find numerous Ann Arbor attractions that could keep anyone entertained for days. Your only problem is going to be choosing which ones to pack into your schedule!

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