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Getting to Isle Royale in Three Easy Steps

 
Map of Isle Royale National Park showing its location in Lake Superior and the regional area.

Planning a trip to Isle Royale may feel complicated. All is well, traveling to the island can be broken down into three steps.

1. Travel to Michigan or Minnesota

  • Isle Royale is an island in Lake Superior.
  • Transportation options are for people only.
    • Your vehicle remains on the mainland.
 
Map of Isle Royale National Park and surrounding area. Seaplane and Transportation options from Michigan and Minnesota are labeled.

2. Catch Your Island Transportation

3. Where Will You Arrive on the Island?

  • East End: Rock Harbor
  • West End: Windigo
 

Departing From Michigan

 

Departing from Houghton, Michigan Aboard the Ranger III or Isle Royale Seaplanes

Step 1: Travel to Houghton, Michigan

  • Vehicle: Houghton is located in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. It is 200 miles north of Green Bay, Wisconsin, 400 miles north of Chicago, Illinois, and 250 miles west of the Mackinac Bridge. Houghton is located off US-41 at the base of the Keweenaw Peninsula.

  • Airplane: United Airlines provides daily flights to the Houghton County Memorial Airport, located eight miles north of Houghton on US-41.

  • Bus: Indian Trails offers daily service to Houghton, Michigan.

Step 2: Travel to Houghton Transportation Departure Location

Step 3: Arrive at Isle Royale National Park

  • Arrive at Rock Harbor via Ranger III or seaplane.

    • Ranger III travel time: 6 hours

      • Outbound Departure at 9:00 am eastern time/8:00 am central time

      • Arrive to Rock Harbor at 3:00 pm eastern time/2:00 pm central time

    • Seaplane travel time: about 40 minutes

  • Continue to Windigo via Voyageur II or seaplane from Rock Harbor.

 

Departing from Copper Harbor, Michigan Aboard Isle Royale Queen IV

Step 1: Travel to Copper Harbor, Michigan

  • Vehicle: Copper Harbor is located at the tip of Michigan's Keweenaw Peninsula, in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. It is located off US-41 just 52 miles north of Houghton, Michigan.

  • Airplane: United Airlines provides daily flights to the Houghton County Memorial Airport, located 44 miles south of Copper Harbor on US-41.

  • Bus: Unavailable

Step 2: Travel to Copper Harbor Transportation Departure Location

Step 3: Arrive at Isle Royale National Park

 

Departing From Minnesota

 

Departing from Grand Portage, Minnesota Aboard the Voyageur II or Sea Hunter III

Step 1: Travel to Grand Portage, Minnesota

  • Vehicle: Grand Portage, located in Minnesota's northeastern section, is 150 miles north of Duluth, Minnesota. It is located off US-61 50 miles southwest of Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada.

  • Airplane: The closest airport, Thunder Bay International, is 50 miles northeast of Grand Portage. The Duluth International Airport is located 150 miles south of Grand Portage.

  • Bus: Arrowhead Transit offers service between Duluth and Grand Marais with stops along the North Shore of Minnesota on Tuesdays. Shuttles then run between Grand Marais and Grand Portage every weekday.

Step 2: Travel to Grand Portage Transportation Departure Location

Step 3: Arrive at Isle Royale National Park

  • Arrive at Windigo via Voyageur II or Sea Hunter III.

    • Voyageur II travel time: 2 hours.

      • Outbound Departure at 8:30 am eastern time/ 7:30 am central time

      • Arrive to Windigo at 10:30 am eastern time/9:30 am central time

    • Sea Hunter III travel time: 1.5 hours.

      • Outbound Departure at 9:30 am eastern time/8:30 am central time

      • Arrive to Windigo at 11:00 am eastern time/10:00 am central time

  • Continue to Rock Harbor via Voyageur II or seaplane from Windigo.

    • Voyageur II travel time: 5 hours.

      • Arrive to Rock Harbor at 4:00 pm eastern time/3:00 pm central time aboard Voyageur II.

 

Departing from Grand Marais, Minnesota with Isle Royale Seaplanes

Step 1: Travel to Grand Marais, Minnesota

  • Vehicle: Grand Marais, located in Minnesota’s northeastern section, is 110 miles north of Duluth, Minnesota. It is located off US-61 80 miles southwest of Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada.

  • Airplane: The closest airport, Thunder Bay International, is 80 miles northeast of Grand Marais. The Duluth International Airport is located 110 miles south of Grand Marais.

  • Bus: Arrowhead Transit offers service between Duluth and Grand Marais on Tuesdays with stops along the North Shore of Minnesota.

Step 2: Travel to Grand Marais Transportation Departure Location

Step 3: Arrive at Isle Royale National Park

 

Transportation Options

 

Last updated: April 6, 2021

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

800 East Lakeshore Drive
Houghton, MI 49931

Phone:

(906) 482-0984

Contact Us