On social media, ‘The Wandering Michigander’ brings subscribers on trips to the state

Despite the weather, spring has officially arrived in Mid-Michigan, but you may already be planning your summer vacation.

Taylor Dustin short The Wandering Michigan social media blog where she documents her travels across the state.

Dustin joined WKAR’s Sophia Saliby to talk about some of her recommendations for your next trip to the Mitten or Upper Peninsula.

Interview Highlights

Why she started posting her travels across the state

I really wanted to learn more about TikTok and the platform itself because I work in corporate social media. So I decided to get on TikTok because everyone was, even though everyone thought it was like teenagers dancing. Turns out it’s not just that. So I started thinking about how I could create a brand on TikTok that is different from anyone else. And I haven’t seen anyone post anything about Michigan or travel as much as I’ve seen other random stuff. So I thought, “Okay, maybe I have a chance to grow something here.” And so I kind of started experimenting.

On her favorite places to visit

My all time favorite place is Sleeping Bear Dunes in the Traverse City, Leland area, all that really pretty watery area in northern Michigan. But I also always want to tell people that they should go to the Upper Peninsula somewhere, anywhere. There is so much to do there. So, it’s hard to pick just one, so it’s either the Lower Peninsula or Sleeping Bear Dunes. Upper Peninsula Anywhere Pictured Rocks I guess I’d choose for a summer adventure in the UP

On some of the places she wants to take trips to this year

I really want to do more of the east side, more exploring, like the Thumb area and Lake Huron because I’ve been to Alpena which I think is another hidden gem, which is in the northeast of the peninsula lower. And the area was super cool and very much like a hidden gem. Lots of people go to Traverse City, but not many people go that way, and the water is just as good there. So I really want to touch this area.

Interview Transcript

Sophie Saliby: Spring has officially arrived in Mid-Michigan, but you may already be planning your summer vacation.

Taylor Dustin short The Wandering Michigan social media blog where she documents her travels across the state.

Taylor Dustin runs The Wandering Michigander blog on social media.

She joins me now to talk about some of her recommendations for your next trip to the Mitten or Upper Peninsula. Thanks to be here.

Taylor Dustin: Thank you for.

Salibi: Can you tell me a bit about how you got started creating travel content here in Michigan?

Dustin: So I started creating content in 2020, right after the hit of COVID. There’s a mix of reasons why I started creating content, but one of them is that I really wanted to learn more about TikTok and the platform itself because I work in media corporate social.

So, I decided to get on TikTok because everyone was, even though everyone thought it was like teenagers dancing. Turns out it’s not just that. So I started thinking about how I could create a brand on TikTok that is different from anyone else. And I haven’t seen anyone post anything about Michigan or travel as much as I’ve seen other random stuff. So I thought, “Okay, maybe I have a chance to grow something here.” And so, I kind of started experimenting.

I also had the idea that me and my roommate, at the time, were going to do something cool in Michigan every weekend to hang out because it was safe during COVID, and that was a way which we didn’t have to be trapped in our house.

And then I also had the idea that me and my roommate, at the time, were going to do something cool in Michigan every weekend to hang out because it was safe during COVID, and that was a way that we didn’t have to be trapped in our house. And that’s how it all started, and it took off from there, and I kept traveling.

Salibi: If you had to recommend just one place to our listeners this summer, what would your list be?

Dustin: My all time favorite place is Sleeping Bear Dunes in the Traverse City, Leland area, all that really pretty watery area in northern Michigan. But I also always want to tell people that they should go to the Upper Peninsula somewhere, anywhere. There is so much to do there.

So, it’s hard to pick just one, so it’s either the Lower Peninsula or Sleeping Bear Dunes. Upper Peninsula Anywhere Pictured Rocks I guess I’d choose for a summer adventure in the UP

Salibi: Would you recommend experiences that are good for families?

At Pictured Rocks in particular, they offer glass bottom boat tours which are really cool and safe for the family. I would recommend kayaking for seniors.

Dustin: At Pictured Rocks in particular, they offer glass bottom boat tours which are really cool and safe for the family. I would recommend kayaking for seniors. I loved kayaking. I think it’s an awesome thing to do at Pictured Rocks.

But with a family, it’s a bit dangerous. It can be dangerous on Lake Superior, it would just be a lot of work. So I would recommend taking the boat tour as then you can see all the water and the beautiful rocks pictured from the boat.

Salibi: You know, Michigan is full of rivers, lakes, of course, the Great Lakes. Do you have a favorite spot by the lake?

Dustin: Oh, that’s hard too. I have a fondness for Lake Michigan. Lake Michigan or Lake Superior are my favorite Great Lakes. But I think my favorite place because I’m local to the area is Rosy Mound in Grand Haven. It’s just a really beautiful area, and it’s kind of a hidden gem. So I really like it to be the hike and the beach and the sand dunes so I think that’s my favorite place.

Salibi: So, we talked about where you would recommend other people go, what’s on your personal list for traveling in the state this summer?

Dustin: I try to go places I’ve never been. So, I’ve been a lot of places in Michigan, but I haven’t seen it all yet. And I really want to do more of the east side, more exploring, like the Thumb area and Lake Huron because I’ve been to Alpena which I think is another hidden gem, which is in the northeast of the lower peninsula.

I also want to go to Isle Royale in the Upper Peninsula, which is our only national park in Michigan. So, it’s always been on my to-do list.

And the area was super cool and very much like a hidden gem. Lots of people go to Traverse City, but not many people go that way, and the water is just as good there. So I really want to touch this area.

And then I also want to go to Isle Royale in the Upper Peninsula, which is our only national park in Michigan. So that’s always been on my bucket list, and I really want to do it this year.

Salibi: You can follow Taylor Dustin on social media by searching for her handle, The Wandering Michigan. Thanks for joining me.

Dustin: Thank you very much for having me.

This conversation has been edited for clarity and conciseness.

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