View of Lake Michigan sunset from the Looking Glass Beachfront Inn deck

The Best of Grand Haven State Park

View of Lake Michigan sunset from the Looking Glass Beachfront Inn deck
View of Lake Michigan sunset from the Looking Glass Beachfront Inn deck

We get a lot of questions about the Grand Haven State Park and beach since we are located directly across the street. We are here to help with some answers. In this blog, we will tell you what you need to know about the Grand Haven State Park including location, cost, flag information, beach, and more!

Grand Haven Map of State Park in comparison to Downtown
Grand Haven Map of State Park
  • Where is the Grand Haven State Park? The state park is located less than a mile from downtown Grand Haven and directly on Lake Michigan. It is also adjacent to the Grand River and within sight of the Grand Haven lighthouse, pier and boardwalk. It is located about 35 miles west of Grand Rapids, MI. The address is 1001 Harbor Ave, Grand Haven, MI 49417.
  • What does the Grand Haven State Park offer? The park consists of 48 acres of beach, playgrounds, campsites, pavilion, and plentiful parking. The beach is the main attraction and the reason so many people enjoy the park. Its proximity to downtown also appeals to the masses.
  • What is the Cost? The only cost is parking. Parking for Michigan residents is free if you have the Resident Recreation Passport, which is $11 annually. For Non-residents, it’s $9 per day pass or $33 for an annual pass. There is limited free street parking available on Harbor Drive. Parking is included in the price of guestroom rental at the Looking Glass Beachfront Inn. Most advantageous is the short walk across the street to the beach.
  • Are pets allowed at the beach? Yes and no. Pets are allowed anywhere in the State Park except on the beach and must be kept on a 6-foot leash. Animals must not be left unattended, and owners must clean up after their pets. For those wishing to take their pets to the beach, they may visit the Grand Haven City Beach, just south of the State Park. The City Beach allows pets during certain hours of the day. These times should be verified before visiting.
  • How do you stay safe in the Lake? Any body of water comes with its own risks and Lake Michigan can be extremely dangerous if people do not exercise caution. Due to the positioning of the beach in relation to the south pier, there are elevated risks of riptides. Each year, several people perish due to a lack of attention to the swim flags. A green flag indicates it is safe to swim, a yellow flag means you should exercise caution, and a red flag means it is high risk and swimming is not recommended. A double red flag means nobody can be in the water. You can be fined! Flag conditions can be found at Please observe the flags and treat the lake with respect the lake!
  • What are the typical water and air temperatures? The answer is, “it depends and varies.” The average water temperatures for Lake Michigan in Grand Haven during the summer are 68-70 degrees. The water temperature can vary dramatically depending on the air temperature and whether the lake has recently “turned over.” This natural phenomenon is known as “the lake turning over” can drop water temperatures by 15-25 degrees in a 24 hour period.

    Grand Haven Michigan Average Temperatures
    Grand Haven Michigan Average Temperatures

Air temperatures during the summer average between 75-79 degrees.

  • Is there a local webcam reporting the most up-to-date conditions? There is a local webcam providing live feeds of the beach and pier as well as current weather.

We hope this additional information has given you a better idea of what to anticipate for your visit to the Grand Haven State Park. We also hope you enjoy these “Best of Grand Haven State Park” tips. Please feel free to reach out with any additional questions you may have about the park or other topics you would like to discuss. We can be contacted via email at


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