McGulpin Point Lighthouse & Historic Site
500 Headlands Road
Mackinaw City MI 49701
(231) 436-5860

McGulpin Point Lighthouse and historic site is located adjacent to The Headlands recreational park,
both located about two miles west of downtown Mackinaw City


2014 season has closed

The 2014 season for McGulpin Point Lighthouse is now closed. We'll see you again when we reopen in May 2015!

There is one special holiday weekend planned at McGulpin Point, Dec. 6-7; details are in the news item below.

Thank you for your support of and interest in McGulpin Point Lighthouse and Historic Site!

Sleigh rides and holiday cheer at McGulpin Point & Heritage Village Dec. 6-7


Mackinaw City parks partner to share holiday cheer during ‘Christmas in Mackinaw’ weekend

A magical holiday scene awaits visitors each year to McGulpin Point Lighthouse in Mackinaw City, which reopens for two special days each December to host a holiday open house on the Straits of Mackinac.

The open house at McGulpin Point Lighthouse will take place Saturday-Sunday, Dec. 6-7, in conjunction with “Christmas in Mackinaw” celebrations throughout the village Dec. 5-7 (visit for complete village event information).

Two miles west of downtown at McGulpin Point Lighthouse and Mackinaw’s Heritage Village, several special events for families and visitors are planned on Saturday, Dec. 6: 

From 1-4 p.m., sleigh rides (or hay rides, depending on weather) will take place between Heritage Village and McGulpin Point Lighthouse. There is no charge for the rides. Park at Heritage Village for the sleigh rides.

From 1-2:45 p.m., Santa will be at McGulpin Point for photo opps and sharing Christmas wishes.

Also from 1-2:45 p.m., crafts will be taking place at Freedom School within Heritage Village.

At 3 p.m., the Mackinaw Area Youth Chorale will perform in Heritage Village Chapel, followed by Christmas carols. The village and lighthouse will be decorated in Victorian fashion.

Refreshments will be served at McGulpin Point Lighthouse on both days, and hours Saturday and Sunday are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.  There is no admission charge, though donations are appreciated. For more information, contact Beth Anne Eckerle at (231) 348-1704 or email

McGulpin Point Lighthouse is located at 500 Headlands Road, Mackinaw City. Heritage Village is located on Central Avenue just before Headlands Road.



New: Photo gallery, click here!


To read about McGulpin Point's history, click here.




Big rock, big significance

View from McGulpin Point shoreline

The Mackinac Bridge is seen on a blue-sky day from the shore of Lake Michigan, near the county’s McGulpin Point Lighthouse west of Mackinaw City. The large rock in the foreground is significant; hundreds of years ago, it was under water in the Straits. Through the centuries, it has been used as a marker to determine the rise and fall of water levels in Lake Michigan.

It was described in a letter sent back to France in 1749 as being at times high and dry and at other times completely submerged. That led the letter-writer to conclude that the Straits of Mackinac rose and fell by as much as 8 feet.

The McGulpin Point rock is approximately 33.8 feet in horizontal circumference and 37 feet in vertical circumference. It is about 9 feet tall. An estimate of its weight puts it around 54 tons.

As a reminder, this shoreline and the hundreds of feet of coastline along the county’s parks at the Headlands and Cecil Bay, as well as the lighthouse property, are open for the public to enjoy, along with hundreds of acres of woods and waters.

Read about the Big Rock Challenge by clicking here!