Portage is a charming city in Kalamazoo County, located adjacent to the City of Kalamazoo approximately two hours from Detroit's city center. The gorgeous city is known for its extensive historical park network, which offers multi-use walking, cycling, and canoeing trails for visitor use. Over 50 miles of biking trails are showcased throughout the beautiful Portage Bikeway system, creating more than five times the traffic access of the city's freeways. Unique attractions include the Air Zoo Aerospace and Science Museum, one of the United States' most acclaimed non-government aviation museums.
1.Air Zoo Aerospace and Science Museum
© Air Zoo Aerospace and Science Museum
Air Zoo Aerospace and Science Museum is an indoor aviation museum and amusement park located next to Portage's Kalamazoo-Battle Creek International Airport, noted as the home of some of the world's most noteworthy and unique rare aircraft. The museum is best known as the home of the SR-71B Blackbird, the world's fastest air-breathing aircraft. It was founded in 1977 by Women Airforce officials and has become one of the United States' top non-government-operated aviation museums. Its unique name comes from the fact that many of its historic aircraft are named after animals, such as its Wildcat, Bearcat, and Warhawk preserved aircraft. Visitors can view a plethora of aircraft on display and learn about the history and technology of aviation through hands-on exhibits and flight simulator experiences. Indoor amusement rides are also offered, including a 26-foot Ferris wheel styled to celebrate the 20th and 21st century history of modern aviation.
6151 Portage Rd, Portage, MI 49002, Phone: 269-382-6555
2.Airway Fun Center
© Airway Fun Center
Airway Fun Center is a lively family fun action center in Portage, offering activities to entertain the young and young at heart. Visitors can challenge friends to black-light bowling games at the center's bowling lanes, which are set against the backdrop of fog machines, runway and disco lights, and electronic music. Seven escape rooms offer different escape experiences for small groups, while a massive miniature golf course showcases unique obstacles and scenery. Children can also challenge each other to go-kart races, conquer the center's two-level ropes course or interactive laser maze, or try their luck at the center's unique Balladium arena, which challenges participants to shoot foam balls from air cannons at their opponents. A full arcade offers video and redemption games, while a VIP taproom and bar showcases two dozen craft and domestic beer selections for adult visitors to enjoy.
5626 Portage Rd, Portage, MI 49002, Phone: 269-327-7061
3.Bishop's Bog Preserve Trail
Bishop's Bog Preserve Trail is a scenic 1.2-mile trail stretching throughout beautiful Bishop's Bog, a 152-acre holdover natural wonder from the region's terrain during the last Ice Age. The point-to-point trail is located within the beautiful Portage South-Central Greenway, which links five park systems together with six miles of trail and provides nearly 500 acres of outdoor recreational land for Portage area residents. Unique plants extremely rare to the Michigan region are showcased throughout the bog, many of which are too climactically cool to grow elsewhere in the state's terrain. Visitors can view tamarack trees, sphagnum moss, and blueberry bushes on display throughout the trail's route, which also offers day-use picnic sites and public restrooms along the way. Nearby, West Lake Nature Preserve, South Westnedge Park, and Schrier Park link directly to the park's trail system.
9920 S Westnedge Ave, Portage, MI 49024
4.Wings Event Center
Wings Event Center, formerly known as Wings Stadium, is Kalamazoo's primary sports and event venue, serving as the permanent home of the Kalamazoo Wings ice hockey team of the East Coast Hockey League mid-level professional hockey league. The lovely 5,000-seat arena was opened to the public in 1974 and showcases main season games for the Wings throughout the year, along with a wide variety of concerts and public special events throughout the year. Events hosted throughout the year include major pop and rock concert acts and special events presented by the World Wrestling Entertainment federation. Two additional venues showcase hockey, curling, and trade show events throughout the year. Visitors can enjoy delicious snacks from four concession stands at the arena or grab beer, wine, and cocktails to take to their seats from the intimate Underground Sports Bar.
3600 Vanrick Dr, Kalamazoo, MI 49001
© Corelife Eatery
Corelife Eatery opened its first location in Syracuse, New York in May of 2015. Today, the favorite chain operates locations throughout the Great Lakes region, including a location in Portage. All menu items are crafted from whole, real ingredients meant to optimize health and wellness and bring clean eating back to communities across America. Menu selections offer many options for diners with dietary restrictions, including vegan, vegetarian, keto, paleo, and gluten-free options. Diners can choose from creative bowls stuffed with ingredients like sriracha ginger roasted tofu, housemade hummus and falafel, poke ahi tuna, and purple rice. Build-your-own bowl options are also offered, letting diners choose their grain or salad base, protein option, and premium toppings like chickpeas, edamame, pickled jalapenos, beets, and kalamata olives.
6300 S Westnedge Ave, Portage, MI 49002, Phone: 269-324-0995
6.Breakfast at Tiffiny's
© Breakfast at Tiffiny's
Breakfast at Tiffiny's is the vision of restaurateur Tiffiny Manuszak, serving up all-day breakfast fare with delicious Southern flair. The restaurant was originally opened during Western Michigan University's homecoming festivities in 2011 and moved to its current location within a renovated home in 2014. Today, the restaurant serves up eclectic all-day favorites like breakfast stew, available in unique varieties like gyro-infused Greek Stew, chorizo and chipotle Southwest Stew, and hashbrown and egg Hippie Stew. Creative omelettes are prepared with local farm-fresh eggs, stuffed with delicious ingredients like pork carnitas, grilled salmon, and buffalo mozzarella. Other house specialties include Korean chicken and waffles, Cuban-style Benedicts, and raspberry cream cheese French toast.
3271 W Centre Ave, Portage, MI 49024, Phone: 269-324-5111
7.President Brewing Company
© President Brewing Company
President Brewing Company is a unique concept brewery organized around the idea of bringing community members together as part of a democratic-style homebrewer's club. All beers served by the brewery are voted upon by the brewery's cabinet, who choose homebrew recipes as part of a voting system and select brews to be showcased on tap at the brewery's public taproom. Winning homebrewers earn cash prizes for their recipes and have the opportunity to reach a wide audience with their concoctions. Once recipes go on tap at the brewery, visitors can vote on their favorites election-style for beers to become part of the company's regular flagship lineup. A variety of beer styles are kept on tap at all times, including rotating gluten-free ciders. A full gastropub menu highlights creative burgers, sandwiches, and shareable appetizers.
8302 Portage Rd, Portage, MI 49024, Phone: 269-468-9765
The Crossroads is a family-friendly shopping mall in Portage, home to over 100 stores and restaurants for visitors of all ages to enjoy. The mall, which opened in 1980 as Michigan's only bi-level mall outside of Detroit, is anchored by major national retailers JCPenney, Sears, Macy's, and Burlington Coat Factory. Trendy fashion retailers range from upscale clothiers like Gap and Chico's to fast-fashion boutiques such as Francesca's and H&M. Other stores include health and beauty retailers like Bath and Body Works, family-friendly favorites like The Children's Place, and multimedia stores like FYE. The mall's full-service food court offers a plethora of national chains, ranging from Gloria Jean's Coffee to Sbarro.
6650 S Westnedge Ave, Portage, MI 49024
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8 Best Things to Do in Portage, MI