Basic Information

9922 Front Street
Empire, MI 49630

From the south (Detroit or Chicago areas) :Take US-31, US-131, US-27 to M-115 & M-37, I-75 and M-72 North to Traverse City, then west on M-72 to the Village of Empire. You will see the visitor center as you enter Empire on your right. You may also get to Empire from the south via US-31 to Ludington and then north to Manistee. You can follow either US-31 or M-22 from north of Manistee. From the north (Michigan's Upper Peninsula), take I-75 to Grayling and follow M-72 to Traverse City or take US-31 south

Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore

The Lakeshore is open 24 hours a day. Campgrounds, visitor centers, and facilities have separate hours, however, please see descriptions of those facilities elsewhere.

Standard Hours

  • Sunday: Open 24 hours
  • Monday: Open 24 hours
  • Tuesday: Open 24 hours
  • Wednesday: Open 24 hours
  • Thursday: Open 24 hours
  • Friday: Open 24 hours
  • Saturday: Open 24 hours

Spring: Tenperatures usually range from 40 F to 70 F. Rain is common. Summer: Temperatures usually range from from 50 F to 83 F. Rain and sun are equally common. On very sunny days, be prepared with plenty of water--heat exhaustion is common, especially when hiking on the dunes. Fall: Temperatures range from 40 F to 70 F. Fall foliage is at its peak around mid September. Winter: Temperatures range from 15 F to 40 F. Snow is common and is on the ground for most of the winter. Dress in warm layers.

Entrance Fees:

Park Entrance Pass - $20.00

Per private vehicle (valid for 1-7 days from date of purchase)

Park Entrance Pass - Motorcycle - $15.00

Per motorcycle (valid for 1-7 days from date of purchase)

Per Person Entrance Pass - $10.00

Visitors 16 years of age or older who enter on foot, bicycle, or as part of an organized group not involved in a commercial tour.

Entrance Passes:

Annual Park Entrance Pass - $40.00

Admits pass holder and all passengers in a noncommercial vehicle. Valid for one year from month of purchase.

Philip A. Hart Visitor Center

The Philip A. Hart Visitor Center is located on M-72 just east of the intersection with M-22 in Empire, MI. You will find a wealth of information about the park and the natural and human history of the area. Park passes, brochures, and maps are available at the Information Desk. If you have questions, rangers and volunteers are available to assist you.

South Manitou Island Visitor Center

The former general store for the island now serves as a visitor venter. It houses an interesting collection of photos and artifacts that tell the story of what life was like for the loggers, farmers, and members of the Life-Saving Service who made the island home.

The Milky Way glows over a North Manitou Island Barn
The Milky Way glimmering over North Manitou Island.
Welcome to Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore!
Sleeping Bear Dunes offers many excellent opportunities for adventure, exploration, wildlife viewing and just plain having fun. Start planning your visit by using the links below. Also, remember the key to a great visit is staying safe.

Sleeping Bear Dunes is always open, although the availability of services changes by season (spring, summer, fall, winter).

Find out about entrance fees to the park and options for annual passes.

Do you need a permit? Learn about required permits for recreational activities including fishing, boating, and backcountry visits; commercial use including film, photography, and sound recording; and special use such as weddings and First-Amendment activities.

Check the latest news on park roads, campgrounds, wildlife, weather, and more.

Join the conversation: Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore is on Facebook, Twitter, Youtube and Instagram.

Learn where you can take your pet in the park. And always keep your pets on leash!

Help keep the Lakeshore's forests healthy. Don't bring firewood to the park.

Last updated: March 3, 2016

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

9922 Front Street
Empire, MI 49630


(231) 326-4700

Contact Us