When you've got only hours to spare, here's what you should see in The D
Short on time, yet longing to experience the best of Detroit? Squeeze in any one of these one-and-done activities to get a flavor for the city fast.
1. MUST-SEE IN DETROIT
Get Lost in the Detroit Institute of Arts
The DIA has been a beacon of culture for the Detroit area for well over a century, with more than 658,000 square feet including more than 100 galleries. The DIA’s collection ranks among the top six in the United States and is a must-see when visiting, particularly the stunning Rivera Court, featuring Detroit Industry murals by artist Diego Rivera, painted from 1932-33. Take a quick jaunt across the street for a visit to the Detroit Public Library’s main branch and view the spectacular entrance and mural halls
in this stately Italian Renaissance structure.
Spend Time at The Henry Ford
Connect with America’s history at this national historic landmark. Consisting of three unique venues — Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation, Greenfield Village and Ford Rouge Factory — on 200 acres.
Stop “In the Name of Love” at the Motown Museum
Go back in time by standing in the original recording studio, Studio A, where Motown’s greatest hits were recorded by legends like Diana Ross and the Supremes, Smokey Robinson, The Temptations and Marvin Gaye. See original stage uniforms worn by famous Motown artists, sheet music, early promotional materials, rare photos and other significant Motown artifacts.
Feast Your Eyes on Eastern Market
If you’re in town on a Saturday, don’t miss Eastern Market — a six-block public market that attracts thousands and has been feeding Detroit (literally and culturally) since 1891. Hundreds of open-air stalls offer fruits, vegetables, flowers, locally produced specialty food products, meats and more. The surrounding shops and restaurants provide gourmet goodies, antiques and items by local and Michigan artisans.
Cruise the Detroit River Aboard a Diamond Jack Riverboat
Enjoy a two-hour narrated Detroit River sightseeing tour and cruise between Detroit and Windsor, Ontario, Canada, aboard a Diamond Jack vessel. Experience the sparkling waters of the world’s busiest international waterway. Entertaining for all ages, cruises give passengers the opportunity to learn the history and historic sites of the Detroit River. Drift among giant freighters and get picture-perfect views of the Detroit and Windsor skylines as well as the mighty Ambassador Bridge, which links the U.S. and Canada, as you pass beneath. Special group tours are available for senior and school groups.
Spend the Evening at One of Three Downtown Vegas-style Casinos
MGM Grand Detroit
Ignite your senses at the city’s first and only urban gaming and resort destination built from the ground up. Featuring a signature eatery from celebrity chef Wolfgang Puck as well as TAP sports pub, pouring Michigan craft beers. MGM is home to the only resort-style spa in southeast Michigan and offers exciting gaming, five unique bars and lounges and a 400-room hotel.
MotorCity Casino Hotel
Try your luck at the 2,900 slot machines and 59 game tables and take a break from the outside world at MotorCity Casino. Hit the D.Tour Spa for your adventures away from gaming. Dine at award-winning Iridescence or take in a concert at Sound Board. Book one of the hotel’s 400 rooms, all loaded with amenities.
Greektown Casino-Hotel is located in the heart of Detroit’s most bustling restaurant districts. New Super Pit table games and a new video poker lounge, The Fringe, are among the updates at Greektown; a luxury 400-room hotel and plenty of dining and entertainment options round out the offerings at this unique location.
Take a Tour By Bus, Bike or Foot
Get a taste for the city with Motor City Brew Tours, which gives tours by bus, bike and on foot in downtown and Midtown Detroit, Royal Oak and Pontiac, among other locations. Detroit Experience Factory and City Tour Detroit also have a number of guided tours, including the factory’s ever-popular bar-hopping tour, Taste of Detroit, and City Tour Detroit’s See The D. Eastern Market is the inspiration for several tour company options, including a Wheelhouse Detroit bike tour highlighting the area’s growing urban agricultural industry and Feet on the Street’s strolling brunch tour.
For a group experience, a number of pedal pub companies operate downtown as well, including Michigan Pedaler. Here, you climb aboard and help keep the contraption moving while a designated guide points out the city’s sights.
Mentioned Attractions And Venues
Detroit Institute of Arts5200 Woodward Ave.
Detroit, Michigan 48202