20 Reasons to Add The D to Your Summer Bucket List

Modified: July 08, 2022 | Story by Lizzie Taylor

In November 2017, Detroit was named the most exciting city in America by The New York Times. Brett Keller, CEO of Priceline, was quoted in a recent interview saying, “There’s a lot of interesting new culture happening, new restaurants, breweries, night scenes…” I have to tell you – it’s all true. If you weren’t planning on visiting Detroit this summer, here’s 20 reasons why you should:

  1. Traveling to Detroit is simple.
    Detroit Metro Airport is a major hub with thousands of international and domestic flights a day and is only about 20 miles from downtown Detroit. If you want to drive it, there’s a ton of different ways, so if one interstate is under construction or backed up, it’s easy to jump on a different route to the city.
  2. The lodging possibilities are endless.
    There are so many hotels in and around Detroit! From boutique hotels to family-friendly hotels,you’ll be able to find somewhere that’s perfect for your budget.
  3. It’s easy to navigate the city.
    We’ve got the Detroit People Mover, an elevated and automated light-rail system that makes a 13-stop loop around the city. The QLine streetcar opened to the public just last year and it travels a 6.6 circulating loop on Woodward Avenue. There’s also bike rentals, busses, ridesharing, and of course the traditional taxis available.
    Let’s be honest, you were looking forward to this part. With Detroit’s diversity, there’s something for everyone. Take your pick from Detroit-style pizza, Coney dogs, Greek, Chinese, Italian, Polish, Mediterranean, burgers, or exquisite filet mignon. You name it, we’ve got it. Check out the Detroit restaurants guide for a full run-down.
  5. There’s an infinite number of breweries, bars, and pubs.
    It’s impossible to recommend just one, so check out our guide to Detroit breweries and find bars and pubs to fit your fancy.

    Atwater Brewery beer, Detroit breweries

    Photo courtesy of Atwater Brewery.

  6. The fun doesn’t stop when the sun goes down.
    Live music, speakeasies, comedy shows, clubs, gaming, I could go on. Pick your poison and party the night away! Check out Visit Detroit’s list of nightlife locations to see where all the cool kids hang out.
  7. There’s plenty to do with the kids.
    The Detroit Zoo
    and Belle Isle Park are perfect for the whole family. No kid will be bored at the Michigan Science Center. Only a few miles outside of Detroit is Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation and Greenfield Village.
  8. The city tours are excellent.
    Whether you’re with family, friends, or just traveling on your own, these are worth considering. Even Michiganders living only minutes from Detroit enjoy these and learn something new. Check out these Detroit tour companies.
  9. The Detroit International RiverWalk is a reason all its own to visit Detroit.
    Enjoy the scenic view, casual family fun, restaurants and shops along the river, and Detroit landmarks – perfect backdrops for a travel selfie or family photo!
  10. The neighborhoods are unique.
    “Downtown Detroit” is made up of a number of neighborhoods. Probably the most well-known are Downtown, Greektown, Corktown, and Midtown. But Eastern Market, Hamtramck, Mexicantown, Indian Village, and New Center are also worth a stop.
    Enjoy downtown Detroit in Greektown, one of Detroit's points of interest
  11. Try your luck at the casinos.
    You can’t mention Greektown without bringing up the casinos: Greektown Casino, MGM Grand Detroit and MotorCity Casino. These three are all located in the heart of downtown Detroit.
  12. Through thick and thin, Detroiters support their home teams.
    Watch a Tigers game at Comerica Park, or take a tour of Ford Field, home of the Lions.
  13. Step back in time at an antique car show.
    Detroit can’t be the historic Motor City without a passion for vintage cars. The Old Car Festival and the Woodward Dream Cruise are two annual Detroit classic car shows that anyone can enjoy! You can also see historic cars year round at the Ford Piquette Plant and even ride a Model T at Greenfield Village.
  14. Catch a performance at one of Detroit’s many venues.
    Enjoy concerts, Broadway shows, musical events, opera, dance performances, and more in beautiful settings around Detroit including the new Little Caesars Arena.
  15. Come celebrate both internationally-recognized and home-grown festivals in Detroit and throughout the area.
    We have festivals for food (even tacos!), music, culture, pride, and more.

    Arts Beats & Eats Michigan Festivals

    Arts Beats & Eats Festival

  16. You can shop ’till you drop!
    Detroit is home to a wide range of retail options, from boutiques to department stores, brand names to Detroit swag.
  17. Detroit welcomes people of all genders and sexual orientations.
    There are LGBT-owned and friendly businesses in downtown Detroit and in neighborhoods all around the city.
  18. There is so much history to explore!
    There are several large museums, like the Detroit Historical Museum, but there are also many smaller specialized museums — the Motown Museum, the African Bead Museum, the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit and the Tuskegee Airmen National Historical Museum.
  19. Join Detroit’s green movement, even if just for a day.
    With an Office of Sustainability and the support of local companies and organizations, Detroit is really making strides to create a healthy and sustainable urban environment. You can visit urban gardens, support local green spaces like the Detroit Zoo and Eastern Market, and use eco-friendly public transportation during your stay.
  20. There’s art, and then there’s street art.
    Detroit has a number of public art sculptures, like the Spirit of Detroit and the Monument to Joe Louis (Joe Louis Fist), but there’s also a lot of beautiful murals and graffiti. The Detroit Free Press published a great digital tour of some street art a few years ago, but you have to check them out in person.
    Joe Louis Fist statue Detroit

We can’t wait to welcome you to Detroit!

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Mentioned Attractions And Venues

  1. 1
    Detroit Metro Airport
    2500 World Gateway Place, I-94 at Merriman Road, Detroit, MI 48242
    734-AIR-PORT (24
  2. 2
    Detroit People Mover (Detroit Transportation Corp.)
    535 Griswold St., Suite 400, Detroit, MI 48226
  3. 3
    Detroit Zoo
    8450 W. 10 Mile Road, Royal Oak, MI 48067
  4. 4
    Belle Isle State Park
    99 Pleasure Drive, Detroit, MI 48207
  5. 5
    Michigan Science Center
    5020 John R St., Detroit, MI 48202
  6. 6
    The Henry Ford
    20900 Oakwood Blvd., Dearborn, MI 48124
  7. 7
    Detroit RiverFront Conservancy
    600 GM Renaissance Center, Ste. 1720, Detroit, MI 48243
  8. 8
    Comerica Park
    2100 Woodward Ave., Detroit, MI 48201
  9. 9
    Ford Field
    2000 Brush St., Detroit, MI 48226
  10. 10
  11. 11
    Little Caesars Arena
    2645 Woodward Ave., Detroit, MI 48201
  12. 12
    Motown Museum
    2648 W. Grand Blvd., Detroit, MI 48208
  13. 13
    Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (MOCAD)
    4454 Woodward Ave., Detroit, MI 48201