While Grand Rapids may be located in the Midwest, mid-way up the state of Michigan, there is nothing middle of the road about this beautiful bustling city. Known as “Beer City USA,” Grand Rapids has a bevy of mouthwatering microbreweries, but it is also home to an abundance of tasty restaurants and innovative art exhibitions, making it the perfect place to play. Here is how to eat, drink, and be merry in the great city of Grand Rapids, Michigan.


Fast Facts: Grand Rapids Michigan

Where to Fly Into: Grand Rapids, MI – direct flights from major U.S. cities like New York City, Chicago, Denver

Best Time to Go: Summertime or September during Art Prize

Who It’s For: Foodies, Beer Lovers

Where to Eat in Grand Rapids Michigan

  • The Søvengård: This Scandinavian restaurant specializes in fresh, seasonal produce served in a beautiful outdoor space overlooking the city. On a warm summers night in Grand Rapids, The Søvengård is the place to be.
  • The Butcher’s Union: The Butcher’s Union is one of the most popular establishments in Grand Rapids, serving its customers on a first-come, first-serve basis. We recommend arriving early to secure a seat where you can enjoy an extensive collection of whiskey and delicious meats all sourced by local farmers.
  • San Chez Bistro: San Chez is a laid-back Mediterranean and Tapas restaurant in Grand Rapids. We enjoyed brunch at San Chez and highly recommend the chicken and waffles!
  • Donkey Taqueria: If you’re feeling spicy, head to Donkey Taqueria for the best Mexican food and margaritas in all of Grand Rapids. Located towards East Hills, it’s about a 5-10 minute Uber from downtown.

Where to Drink in Grand Rapids Michigan

  • Madcap Coffee Company: But first, coffee. Before venturing out into the delicious craft brew scene in Grand Rapids, travelers need to first head to Madcap Coffee Company to fuel the fun.
  • Rockwell Republic: Rockwell Republic is a tasty gastro pub specializing in crafty cocktails and boozy weekend brunches. We highly recommend heading to Rockwell Republic on the weekend when you can order from their extensive Bloody Mary menu.
  • Founders: If there is one place that you have to visit when you’re in Grand Rapids, it’s Founders. This microbrewery singlehandedly made Grand Rapids the beer city that it is today. If it’s a nice day, sit outside on their outdoor patio and enjoy a flight of beers accompanied by their famous beer cheese!
  • Jolly Pumpkin: If you’re a sour beer lover like us, then you’ll love the Jolly Pumpkin. Head over to the Jolly Pumpkin for a delicious selection of sour beers, pizzas, and salads.
  • Atwater Brewery: Atwater Brewery was originally started in Detroit, but now beer lovers can enjoy its Grand Rapids location. Serving German style lagers and boutique ales, Atwater Brewery is located in the renovated Rowe Hotel.
  • Reserve Food & Wine: While Grand Rapids may be known as beer city, Reserve Food & Wine holds it down for those vino-lovers. Reserve Food & Wine has over 100 types of wine by the glass and over 200 bottles to choose from.
  • Brewery Vivant: Brewery Vivant serves delicious Belgian Beers in a former funeral home. If you love a tasty Belgian, then you’ll absolutely love Brewery Vivant.

Where to Stay and Play in Grand Rapids Michigan

  • Grand Rapids Art Museum: Located in downtown Grand Rapids, the GRAM, or Grand Rapids Art Museum, has an extensive collection of European and American art. While we were visiting, we were lucky enough to view the traveling “Intersections” exhibit by Pakistani artist, Anila Quayyum Agha.
  • 8th Day CrossFit: Grand Rapids is filled with way too many yummy places, therefore we highly recommend starting your trip out with a CrossFit WOD at 8th Day CrossFit. After you hit your 5th brewery in the week, you won’t feel so bad knowing that you burned all of those calories at the box.
  • Amway Grand Plaza Hotel: The Amway Grand Plaza Hotel is an icon in Grand Rapids. This five-star hotel is located in the center of Grand Rapids MI making it the perfect jumping off point for every adventure around the city.
  • Frederik Meijer Gardens: For those looking to enjoy the great outdoors, head to Frederik Meijer Gardens. Not only do the gardens boast the largest outdoor sculpture collection in the Midwest, but they also have dozens of nature trails to walk on.