We are open tomorrow from 9:00 am. Call 020 7590 0636
Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada

Great Lakes

True wonders of nature

Visit the Great Lakes


The Great Lakes are home to more than one in five Americans – and a fifth of the entire world's freshwater. Truly part of the American heartland, and straddling the border between the US and Canada, these vast lakes are framed by iconic cities like Toronto, Chicago and Detroit. Of course, this vast region also offers excellent surf beaches, windswept lighthouses and characterful islands – making it the perfect place for a unique getaway.

Five Great Lakes

Remnants of the Ice Age, the Great Lakes are a true geographic wonder. Comprising Lake Superior, Lake Huron, Lake Michigan, Lake Erie, and Lake Ontario, they cover an area that spans eight states; Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin as well as the Canadian province of Ontario. Carved by ancient glaciers, they offer spectacularly diverse topography and beautiful scenery across all five lakes.

A cove in Lake Superior, Minnesota
Lake Superior, Minnesota

Spectacular Scenery

This region is ideal for boat trips – particularly scenic are Lake Michigan and Lake Superior, all rugged sandy shores and jutting rocks, while big-name Lake Ontario is, of course, home to the famous Niagara Falls – a must in any Great Lake itinerary. Lesser known are the charming islands of Manitoulin, home to the largest population of First Nations people in continental North America and perfect for a little lakeside R&R. Among the many unspoilt national parks, a visit to the 50ft Tahquamenon Falls is a highlight, as well as Palms Book, where you can travel across mirrored waters on a glass-bottomed cable raft.

Niagara Falls in New York State
Niagara Falls, New York State

Cities on the Lakes

Lakeside cities here offer everything from centuries-old canals, historic city landmarks and charming 19th-century architecture. Chicago makes the perfect starting point for a self-drive around three of the five lakes – Michigan, Superior and Huron. Detroit is another bustling big city, with plenty to entertain the cosmopolitan crowd, from its excellent cuisine to lively music and theatre scene. And, the smaller towns are just as attractive – like Mackinac, all weatherboard houses and quaint churches. 

Chicago, Illinois on the lake
Chicago, Illinois


Read more

Top itineraries in Great Lakes

Cruise the Great Lakes with Ponant

11-day luxury cruise

Please enquire for the latest prices

Taking in Niagara Falls, Mackinac Island and more, this is your chance to explore the Great Lakes of Canada and the United States with Ponant on a Smithsonian Journeys expedition.

Top places to stay in Great Lakes

Landmark Inn

Landmark Inn, Marquette, Michigan

Traditional hotel

Overlooking the rocky shores of Lake Superior in downtown Marquette, there are 62 rooms and suites offering a comfortable place to stay, and many rooms have lake views. With an English-style pub, art deco Lounge bar and an Italian restaurant, the Landmark has been the social hub of Marquette.

Covington Inn B&B

Covington Inn B&B, St Paul/Minneapolis, Minnesota

Small & intimate hotel

This quirky, floating bed and breakfast is housed in a restored 1946 3-story tug boat containing four cosy suites, a salon, and a panoramic rooftop deck. Buoyed and buffered by the Mississippi, the riverside setting is peaceful yet central within easy reach of all that St Paul has to offer.

Alexander Mansion B&B

Alexander Mansion B&B, Winona, Minnesota

Small & intimate hotel

This charming, turn of the century Victorian mansion in Winona has been restored to its former glory and offers a comfortable and atmospheric place to stay. With just five guest rooms and a 4 course gourmet breakfast served each morning, guests are made to feel very welcome here.

The Thompson

The Thompson, Chicago

Contemporary hotel

This boutique hotel is set in one of Chicago’s hippest neighbourhoods, having won several Condé Nast awards.

See all places to stay

Where to go in Great Lakes


More than 100 lighthouses and many historic military fortifications from the American Revolution and Civil War line Michigan's shoreline, while offshore numerous maritime museums ...


The 'windy city' of Chicago got its nickname from its unique politics, not the weather, so you can expect a laid back city built for all seasons, with world-class museums, miles of lakefront vistas, award-winning restaurants and luxury hotels.

When to go to Great Lakes

Average temperature (℃)
Average rainfall (mm)
  • 30
  • 20
  • 10
  • 0
  • -10
  • 120
  • 90
  • 60
  • 30
  • 0













Max temp Min temp Rainfall

With the Great Lakes region sharing its northern borders with Canada, winters are unsurprisingly cold affairs. Temperatures plummet and there are plenty of opportunities to try winter sports. In contrast, summer can reach highs of 30° meaning beer gardens open up and city folk head to the beaches to cool off. For quieter crowds, along with a temperate climate, autumn and spring are both worthy of consideration.

See regional weather

Great Lakes articles

Chicago Skyline

Illinois: The ultimate introduction to Route 66

Home to the most Route 66 national historic sites of any other state, learn why Illinois is the perfect introduction to the Mother Road.

Meet our Great Lakes experts

Speak to a tailor-made specialist on 020 7590 0636

Meet the team

Why book with Wexas Travel?

At Wexas, we specialise in bespoke travel experiences. Our itineraries are just samples of what we can arrange, and can be changed depending on your precise needs, finances and ideas by our experienced destination specialists.

Contact one of our consultants on 020 7590 0636 to discuss how we can tailor your holiday.

Learn why Wexas is the leader in creating luxury holidays. What is tailor-made travel?

Expert advice & support

Visit us in our London office

Let our travel specialists curate the perfect holiday:

  • Inspirational ideas based on experience
  • Established for over 50 years
  • Tailor a holiday to your precise requirements
  • Personalised quotes and documentation

Every step of the way

Every step of the way

Our services are with you from start to finish:

  • Dedicated personal consultants
  • Free airport lounges on qualifying bookings
  • Care and guidance pre, post and during holiday
  • Full financial security: ABTA & ATOL protected