Paws and Play: Plan A Pet-Friendly Vacation in Southwest Michigan

The picturesque shores along Lake Michigan—particularly in Southwest Michigan—offer a serene escape for both vacationers and their furry companions. But it’s not just beautiful and fun here, Southwest Michigan is super pet-friendly~

How do we know that’s true?

Because at Juniper Holiday + Home, we understand pets are part of the family and we design our pet-friendly vacation rental services around the idea! We also, just love animals, and so our team is connected to the local area services and activities available for pets. We’re excited to share our ultimate pet-friendly guide for our Lake Michigan destinations. Come experience a Lake Michigan pet-friendly vacation!

When you’re planning a pet-friendly vacation, finding the right place to stay is crucial. At Juniper Holiday + Home, we offer a selection of charming, comfy, elegantly designed vacation rentals that welcome pets with open arms and wagging tails. From cozy cottages to spacious lakefront homes, our properties provide the ideal backdrop for your vacation getaway. Our pet-friendly accommodations include:

  • Dog-friendly beaches nearby for endless adventures
  • Fenced-in yards for off-leash fun
  • Pet-friendly amenities, such as food and water bowls, dog beds, and treats galore
  • Access to nearby trails and parks for exciting walks
  • Friendly neighborhoods who adore pets almost as much as we do
  • Have pet-planning questions? Contact Us for the skinny on nearly everything pet related.

2. Exploring Nature with Your Furry Friend

Southwest Michigan is a treasure trove of natural beauty, and your pet will love exploring the great outdoors. Here are some pet-friendly activities you can enjoy together:

  • Beach Adventures — The sandy beaches of Lake Michigan are perfect for a game of fetch or a leisurely stroll with your pup. Some local beaches even have designated dog-friendly areas where your furry friend can play in the waves.
  • Hiking Trails — Explore the area’s lush forests and scenic trails. For example, Warren Dunes State Park offers pet-friendly hiking trails that wind through diverse landscapes, from sand dunes to woodlands. (And there are many other similar places in the region for you & your dog to roam together!)
  • Pet-Friendly Wineries – Yep, believe it or not, some wineries in Southwest Michigan are super pet-friendly! You can sip on local wines, while your pet lounges in the sunshine. (Be sure to check ahead for pet policies and outdoor seating.)
A Long Coated Australian Shepherd Outdoors

3. Pet-Friendly Dining

After a day of exploring, it’s time to refuel, right? It turns out Southwest Michigan has a growing number of pet-friendly dining options where you and your dog can dine together on outdoor patios.

Cavapoo Dog Sitting on a Dining Chair

Here are links to 20 more pet-friendly restaurants & bars in the region to check out!!

4. Pet Safety and Etiquette

Cute Pug Pet Dog

While enjoying your vacation with your pet, it’s important to be a responsible pet owner. Here are some tips for ensuring a safe and enjoyable experience for everyone:

  • Keep your pet on a leash in areas where it’s required.
  • Clean up after your pet and dispose of waste properly.
  • Be respectful of other guests and their pets.
  • Familiarize yourself with local pet regulations and restrictions.

A little online research can go a long way to ensure a smooth and safe time out with your pup.

5. Relax and Unwind

After a day of adventure, return to your cozy Juniper Holiday + Home vacation rental for some well deserved R&R. Our pet-friendly properties are designed to make you and your pet feel totally at home while out on vacation. Whether you choose to snuggle up by the fireplace or enjoy a glass of wine on the porch, your pet will be right there with you, making memories together.

Yorkshire Terrier Relaxing at the Dog Grooming Spa

Bringing your pet to Southwest Michigan for a vacation, with pet-friendly accommodations, stunning natural beauty, and a warm welcome from the local community, your pet will enjoy the trip as much as you do!

Book your pet-friendly getaway with us today and embark on an unforgettable adventure in Southwest Michigan. We can’t wait to welcome you and your beloved pet to our slice of paradise by the lake!

Happy travels, y’all!

The Wineries of Southwest Michigan: A Guide for Wine Lovers

Enjoying summer at a vacation rental in Southwest Michigan has some perks many out-of-state visitors may not be aware of… not the least of which is the wide variety of amazing, award-winning wines being grown locally at vineyards and wineries both new and old! In fact, this part of the country has not only become recognized and celebrated in the wine world—with Lake Michigan “blessing” the region with longer, warmer, more temperate growing seasons, allowing vineyards to flourish—a collection of 21 distinct wineries and vineyards have been sanctioned the Lake Michigan Shore AVA/American Viticultural Area, or more commonly known as The Lake Michigan Shore Wine Trail.

Wine Barrels stacked

So besides the truly charming beach towns running up and down Lake Michigan’s magnificent stretch of sandy shores, there are also fabulous opportunities to be had for those who savor the thought of a fine glass of wine, some excellent food to accompany it, and the joys to be had from live music, trail walks, or simply reclining in the serenity which a summer day or night affords you.

We’ve gathered here a number of the most popular local Southwest Michigan wineries and vineyards in the vicinity of many of Juniper’s vacation rentals—FYI: some provide winery or vineyard tours, events and tastings—in the hope you’ll take advantage of what they have to offer… since where you’re staying isn’t the only “Piece of Paradise” in the area you can enjoy!

And BTW: Even if you’re new to the world of wine, consider planning a trip to a winery for a tasting tour, not just for exposure to the wide variety of different wine styles each is known for, but also to get out and have some fun! (Mingling at one of the wineries listed below has become one of the favorite summertime experiences Southwest Michigan has to offer, according to many vacationing Juniper guests.)

One last note: Fruitful Vine Winery Tours provides a safe, relaxing and informative
way to visit some of the wineries in Southwest Michigan. You can travel in their luxury 14-passenger coach for a 3-stop tour with lunch or opt for a private party. For details, check out their website: Vino Coach Tour Options – Fruitful Vine Tours

Sampler tray of red and white wines in glasses at winery

Some of Our Favorite Southwest Michigan Wineries

Lemon Creek Winery

Lemon Creek Winery – Tasting Rooms, Vineyard, U-Pick Fruit
533 East Lemon Creek Rd.
Berrien Springs, MI
Tel.: 269-471-1321

Wine Cork From a Lemon Creek Berrien Springs, MI Bottle

Comprising 170 acres of wine grapes and another 60 acres of a variety of fruits, Lemon Creek Winery in Berrien Springs is built on 160 years of grape and fruit growing experience. Set upon rolling clay loam hills and enjoying the moderating effect of Lake Michigan, this winery grows some of the best grapes in Michigan. In fact, the Lemon family established the first commercial planting of Cabernet Sauvignon in the state of Michigan. Their most recent addition is a Cabernet Sauvignon Ice Wine, which complements their rich and diverse wine selection. Also, their farm-fresh produce is available seasonally — whether you pick your own or shop at their farm market, they’re open daily during fruit season. And yes, both the farm market and Lemon Creek Winery are open seven days a week (see website for times). One more feature: They have live music every Friday night!

Tabor Hill Winery

Winery & Vineyard | Tabor Hill Winery
185 Mt. Tabor Road, Buchanan, MI
Tel.: 269-422-1161

Taborhill Logo

Offering pre-selected flights of wine, an extensive Lake Michigan Shore wine list and cocktail menu, and tasty snack foods (charcuterie boards, chips & dips, etc.) and reserved vineyard seating on Friday – Sunday, Tabor Hill Winery in Buchanan is an excellent choice for your summer “escape from the crowd”! They also feature regular live music events, free trail and vineyard walks, and Vineyard Picnics and Couples Packages. (See website for details.)

White Pine Winery

White Pine Winery
Tasting Room: 317 State Street, St. Joseph, Michigan
Tel.: 269-281-0098

White Pine Winery Logo

Sourcing their award-winning wines from vineyard grapes grown locally in Van Buren and Berrien Counties, White Pine Winery in St. Joseph features some of southwest Michigan’s finest wines and warmest hospitality. Besides their delicious range of reds and whites, which grow particularly well given the lake effect, White Pine recently released a new “summer sipping” wine, a dry rosé called Ladyslipper Blush. BTW, membership is free to join their Wine Club, which provides you with first access to new releases, limited releases and other special wines. Members also get 10% off all club wines and any bottled wine purchases, plus complimentary tastings for themselves and up to 2 friends.

Vineyard 2121

Vineyard 2121 – Winery, Restaurant, Tasting
4110 Red Arrow Highway, Benton Harbor, MI
Tel.: 269-849-0109

Vineyard 2121 Logo

Having established Vineyard 2121 in Benton Harbor in 2015, Jeffrey and Deborah Pallas are proud of the swift success of their “destination getaway,” which invites wine lovers to relax and enjoy a delicious wine tasting experience nestled in a quiet and serene natural environment surrounded by hardwoods and pines. Besides the vineyard, there’s a raspberry farm and three duck ponds (perfect for hosting an outdoor wedding or event). Check out their weekly calendar that includes live music, karaoke and regular Happy Hours, as well as a selective menu of superb wines, as well as tasty ciders and sangria!

An anonymous server pouring a glass of wine to be served to a guest at a restaurant.

Luxury Homes Close to the Wineries

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