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Top Activities in Kalamazoo

See all 4 things to do in Kalamazoo

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Kalamazoo Attractions

An unforgettable city with an unforgettable name, Kalamazoo is a destination for both nature and local culture. The city is the proud home of a strong brewing culture and an abundance of delicious eateries, and is the site of the Kalamazoo Mall, the nation's first outdoor pedestrian shopping mall. With a number of lush parks and rivers right at its doorstep, Kalamazoo is a hub of outdoor recreation and wildlife. The city celebrates the arts and education through interactive museums and the engaging Kalamazoo Nature Center, making it family-friendly vacation stop.

Areas & Neighborhoods in Kalamazoo

Kalamazoo's charm comes from its small-town appeal that puts a focus on community. The city constantly works to better its vibrant downtown, quaint neighborhoods, and lush parks.

Downtown

Kalamazoo's Downtown is the living heart of the city. Visit the Kalamazoo Mall, the first outdoor pedestrian mall opened in the United States. Nearby, the historic Arcadia district is home to the Kalamazoo Valley Museum and the Arcadia Creek Festival Place, which hosts the city's most beloved events like the annual Ribfest and the Kalamazoo Blues Fest.

l Sabo Preserve

Composed of marshes, forests, streams, and rolling hills, the Al Sabo Preserve is full of recreational opportunities just outside the city. Hiking and mountain biking trails wind through the 741-acre (300-ha) preserve, with numerous outlooks providing panoramic views of the landscape. The preserve's defining natural feature is the Atwater Millpond, a tributary of the Kalamazoo River fed by Portage Creek. Explore the lush paths and look for wildlife like sandhill cranes and beavers.

What to See in Kalamazoo

The Kalamazoo Valley Museum offers visitors of all ages the opportunity to discover something new. With permanent and rotating exhibits and a planetarium, the museum covers everything from the origins of Kalamazoo to the origins of the universe. Stop by the Kalamazoo Institute of the Arts, which houses a permanent collection of 20th-century American art as well as several traveling galleries by contemporary artists. For a look into history, stop by the Air Zoo to see historic aircrafts like the SR-71B Blackbird.

Sightseeing in Kalamazoo

Kalamazoo is a mix of local culture and engaging activities. Get a taste of the city's rich beer culture by following the Give a Craft Beer Trail, which highlights 13 local craft breweries, or by visiting the annual Kalamazoo Beer Week, where you can meet local brewers and sample their unique creations. In summer, weekly farmers markets let you sink your teeth into local produce and homemade treats. Immerse yourself in nature at the Kalamazoo Nature Center, which features live animals, an indoor tropical forest, an arboretum, and plenty of outdoor trails to explore with the family. The Nature Center is an official Michigan Wildlife Viewing Area, designed to bring you closer to the natural world. Families can find both history and excitement at the Air Zoo, an aviation museum and indoor amusement park which houses historic and rare aircrafts as well as flight simulators. Stay active in the city by taking to the Kalamazoo River Valley Trail, a wide and paved path made for recreation like running and biking that winds through Verburg Park, Mayors' Riverfront Park, and downtown Kalamazoo.

Things to Do in Kalamazoo with Kids

You'll find plenty of fun things to do with the kids in and near Kalamazoo. Keep the gang entertained with our family friendly experiences.

Free Things to Do in Kalamazoo

Leave your wallet in the hotel. It's easy to entertain yourself in Kalamazoo without surrendering a cent.

Kalamazoo Valley Museum - Crammed with thought-provoking displays and objects, this gallery is heaven for minds that burn with curiosity.

Kalamazoo College - Architecture connoisseur or not, prepare to be impressed by this landmark's modern design.

Bank Street Farmer's Market - If you'd like to explore some of the more important or unique places in the community, this is a good place to start.

Portage Creek Bicentennial Park - Arrange a picnic date and enjoy a leisurely stroll around the gorgeous plant life.

Explore The Neighborhoods of Kalamazoo

Central Business District

If you're spending some time in Central Business District, Kalamazoo Institute of Arts and Kalamazoo State Theatre are top sights worth seeing.

Crossroad Park

While visiting Crossroad Park, you might make a stop by sights like Crossroads Park Shopping Center and Portage Creek Bicentennial Park.

Vine

Vine might not have many top sights, but Kalamazoo Institute of Arts and Kalamazoo State Theatre are two attractions nearby that you can check out.


Frequently Asked Questions

What can you do in Kalamazoo for free?

Your escape to Kalamazoo doesn't have to cost a fortune with free things like these to discover:

  • Western Michigan University
  • Kalamazoo College
  • Kalamazoo Valley Museum
  • Allegan General Hospital