Day 1 You'll See:
Day 2 You'll See:
- The Henry Ford
- Lunch at Lamy’s
- Charles H Wright Museum
Explore everything that makes Detroit the city it is with this quick 2-day cultural retreat. You and your group will get to see the most iconic local culinary hotspots, learn about regional history, and take in all the culture you can at DIA and Motown!
Eastern Market - Welcome to one of the most culture-filled spots in all of Detroit, the Detroit Eastern Market. Located along Russell Street, this conglomerate of local vendors holds over 125 years of local history, claiming the title of ‘one of the oldest and largest year-round markets in the U.S’. The Eastern Market goal is to ‘build on the rich history to make a healthier, wealthier, and happier Detroit’, something it has done quite nicely over the past century. Once inside the market your senses may overload at all the tantalizing sights and smells from all around, but we think a good place to start is with a Detroit Eastern Market Tour, filling you in on local tidbits from history like the sites use of the Underground Railroad and evolution of regional farming. The Saturday Market happens all year and is considered to be an ‘undeniably Detroit’ thing to do, with over 225 vendors and 40,000 guests in the busy season (April - November)!
Detroit Institute of Art - ‘One of the largest and most significant art collections in the United States’ makes up your next Midtown Michigan stop, the Detroit Institute of Arts, or DIA. Founded in 1927, this Beaux-Arts and Renaissance Revival building is considered to be a ‘beacon of culture for the Detroit area’, a Woodward Avenue complex that holds over 100 different galleries, a stunning 1,500 seat auditorium, a 350 seat lecture hall, an art reference library, and a state of the art ‘conservation services lab’ all within it's 658,000 square feet. Inside the DIA you will find a ‘multicultural and multinational survey of human creativity from prehistoric times to the 21st century’. This spans across so many different art forms and time periods that it is certain you will find some type of artistic expression you will appreciate inside! If you work up an appetite after touring/browsing the galleries head over to CafeDIA or Kresge Court Coffee Stop for some mid-day snacks and refreshments!
Motown Records - Of course you’ve heard by now (or you already knew) that this is the city where Motown Magic started, a cultural mecca for musicians across the U.S (and the world) holding some of the most historic and meaningful musical tidbits from America’s past. The Motown Record Museum, otherwise known as ‘Hitsville USA’, was first founded in 1985. Hitsville USA is the nickname that easily formed for this spot, the first headquarters for Motown Records in history. Inside you will see a collection of the labels most popular artifacts, memorabilia, costumes, and photos, not to mention the onsite extras like Studio A and the upstairs flat in which this museum's (and labels) founder, Berry Gordy, lived with his family for so long. Before you go definitely make time to stop at the Motown Museum Store, a hip little shop full of Motown apparel, CDs, DVDs, and tons of educational and historic information. You can also pick up authentic Motown sheet music and songbooks here!
Slow’s BBQ - For some of the most unexpectedly delicious food in Detroit head to Slows BBQ, the BBQ mecca in town that several locals consider to be the best in town, even the state, depending on who you ask! This tiny, wood-beamed 1880’s space is located on Michigan Avenue, the first Slows to ever be established (2005). Inside you will find a ‘meticulously designed interior paired with a gourmet spin on bbq. . . a love of craft beer and a dedication to the community’ (Slows BBQ). Try the fried catfish, beef brisket, fresh jambalaya pulled pork, or chicken breasts while here, or go classic and try the unbeatable slab of ribs. The Yardbird and Sleeper sandwiches are definitely worth trying, and the side dishes are all so delicious with their bbq meet southern comfort approach. The 5 different sauces served with the bbq are what really make the plate, though, your choices including Sweet, Apple, Spicy, SC Mustard, and NC.
The Henry Ford - This iconic, historic, and culturally impressive local landmark may be one of the most fun places to visit in Detroit, the sprawling complex located on Oakwood Boulevard. This tourism and education hotspot is located in one of the Detroit suburbs of Dearborn technically, first founded here in 1929. Guests typically spend 2.5 to 3 hours total here exploring the life and ideas of Henry Ford, and of Americans in general. The sprawling space takes up a total of 250 acres, a seriously impressive Detroit education complex. Inside you can see the Rosa Parks bus, JFK limo, and Henry Ford’s favorite personal autos, the entire complex broken into four different, and very distinct, sections: Henry Ford Museum, Greenfield Village, Ford Rouge Factory Tour, and Giant Screen. There will be so much for you to do, learn, and see while here, you may even want to plan a second visit during your Detroit stay!
Lunch at Lamy’s - There will be several different places to eat while visiting The Henry Ford, three full-service eateries in the Henry Ford Museum alone! Try Michigan Cafe (11 am - 4 pm) for your classic lunchtime fare (soups, salads, sandwiches), or Lamy’s Diner for a more retro diner style meal. At Lamy’s the soda fountain and dessert refreshments are probably more popular than the food. There is also the American Dog House, serving up, well, great hot dogs! In Greenfield Village you can choose to eat at the Eagle Tavern, a living history stagecoach stops for hungry, weary travelers, or Sir John Bennett Sweet Shop, the onsite store with the winning ‘cornucopia of classic confections’. These two eateries are highly historical and meant to be enjoyed in the ‘step back in time’ sort of way, authentic artifacts and historic architecture abound!
Charles H Wright Museum - The Charles H Wright Museum of African American History is one of the most educationally and historically iconic in the city, the center holding the world’s largest permanent exhibit on African American culture. Located near Wayne Street University in the Detroit city cultural center, this 1965 founded museum displays very important information for guests of any age. Spend 2-3 hours here learning all about African American history and culture, particularly subjects such as the Middle Passage and Underground Railroad. It won’t be hard to find this massive museum, the spot adjacent to both the Detroit Institute of Arts and Michigan Science Center. As the director of the museum Juanita Moore says, this is an ‘experience you won’t forget, and a history you’ll always remember’. The over 35,000 artifacts inside help ‘open minds and change lives’, each exhibit taking careful measure to explore and celebrate the African-American heritage, as well as various hardships throughout history.