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Centrally located on the bustling Woodward Avenue, Campus Martius Park is part of Detroit's efforts to reconstruct the downtown cityscape. Filled with botanical gardens and expansive lawns, this park is a welcome change from the high-rise buildings in the area, and draws hundreds of visitors in search of some sun and relaxation. The surrounding area has also grown to reflect the new spirit of downtown, with restaurants and cafes catering to families and business people alike. The park also houses monuments and artwork celebrating the history of the city, and features multiple stages for music concerts and performances. If you find yourself in Detroit during the winter months, be sure to bring your skates and head to Campus Martius' outdoor rink.
This promenade in Downtown Detroit runs along the Detroit River from the Joe Louis Arena to Rivard Plaza. The RiverWalk is a popular destination for various activities including walking, jogging, and rollerblading. The RiverWalk passes through and by a number of area landmarks, including the Tri-Centennial State Park Lighthouse, the Detroit River and Hart Plaza with its Underground Railroad Memorial. It's a great destination for the whole family, and even includes a spouting fountain for kids and people of all ages to play in on a hot day.
The apartments within this park and residential area were designed by famous modern architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe. Considered a gem among the more run-down area of downtown Detroit to which it borders, entering the park is like stepping into a quiet oasis. The buildings show off Mies van der Rohe's signature architectural style, exposed steel frames, glass walls, and open interiors. Three main areas make up the park. To the east sit two twin towers, to the west one high-rise and 21 townhouses, and 13 acres (5.2 hectares) of landscaping in between. It's the largest collection of Mies van Der Rohe's buildings in the world, yet probably his least known, so architecture fans shouldn't skip out on a drive or stroll through the neighborhood.
For those looking for a break from their urban surroundings, the Anna Scripps Whitcomb Conservatory offers visitors a beautiful little slice of nature not easily found in Metro Detroit. One of Belle Isle Park's multiple attractions, this conservatory — first built in 1904 — spans over one acre (0.4 hectare) and features an 85 foot (25 meters) high dome. Five distinct sections house a diverse and colorful collection of tropical plants, flowers, cacti, fernery and more, making it an excellent destination for photographers. From the Japanese water garden to the outside sculpture garden, there is an ethereal magic flowing throughout these grounds, which is why it makes for a great day visit for couples, families or just solo-explorers looking for some quietude and natural beauty.
Few cities have anything as splendid as this nearly 1000 acre (404.68 hectare) island park. Accessible by the MacArthur Bridge, Belle Isle has been a favorite place for relaxation and recreation, plus it's a great spot to watch the ore freighters gliding down the river. Around the island, there is a beach, a conservatory, formal gardens, an old lighthouse, the Dossin Great Lakes Museum, lagoons, picnic areas and much more. The Scott Fountain, with its imposing gargoyles, provides a great evening light show. Entry to the park itself is free, however there is a fee for vehicles entering the park.
Heritage Park is a popular destination, especially in the spring and summer. This huge park features many activities that would entice you to visit again and again. Go swimming in the pool, enjoy the beautiful garden, try your luck at the catch-and-release fishing pond, or go on a hike. Kids will love the playground and the moderately priced petting farm where they can get up-close-and-personal with animals.
Sitting on 41 acres (16.5 hectares) of land, the Raintree Park provides playground facilities as well as a forested area to enjoy nature. A baseball diamond, soccer field, and sand volleyball court are just a few of the facilities and amenities in the park. There's also a great disc golf course if you want to play a round of Frisbee golf.
Cranbrook House is one of the oldest manor homes in Southeastern Michigan, and has amazing gardens to go along with it. Guests interested in visiting the historic home can partake in guided tours, conducted several times a day, where they can learn all about the history of the house. To visit the gardens, guests can give themselves self-guided tours and explore to their hearts' content. The garden greenhouse is also open for visits and has all kinds of special features like 'living walls' and 'demonstration gardens' so you can draw inspiration for your own.
George George Park in the Clinton Township was opened in 2008. This beautiful park is a favorite place for all types of people on nice days, from teenagers to families with children. The park has a large play area for children, fountain, covered pavilion and a large space for walking, biking and jogging. George George Park is a popular location for special events like birthday parties and weddings.