Belle Isle, 3 mi southeast of the city center on a 1,000-acre island in the Detroit River, is reached by way of East Jefferson Avenue and East Grand Boulevard. Here you'll find woods, walking trails, sports facilities, a 9-hole golf course, and a ½-mi-long beach. Like many other urban parks, Belle Isle is best visited during the day.
Among Belle Isle's other attractions is the Anna Scripps Whitcomb Conservatory, with one of the largest orchid collections
in the country. 313/852–405. Free.
At the far end of Belle Isle, the Belle Isle Nature Zoo offers family nature programs on weekends focused on Michigan flora and fauna. 313/852–4056 Ext. 00. Free.
Also on Belle Isle, the Dossin Great Lakes Museum includes a Gothic Room taken from a 1912 Great Lakes luxury liner, and the pilot house from the S.S. William Clay Ford, a Great Lakes freighter. You can also listen to ship-to-shore radio messages and view the river and city through a periscope. 100 Strand Dr., Detroit, MI, 48207. 313/821–2661. www.detroithistorical.org. Free.
Oct 1, 2004
And that's not all at this awesome aquarium on beautiful Belle Isle! They've been open since 1904 and I truly believe most of the fish there are that old if not older! Each display suits the species it contains, a true aquarists dream! I honestly believe than everyone who comes to this gorgeous aquarium will see at least one creature that they will never forget. From electric and moray eels, a great lakes display containing all the fish found in
the area (fishermen will LOVE this), some beautiful marine displays, a HUGE rift ciclid display, the bamboo sharks, and more! And for only $4 a person (less for seinors and kids) there is no excuse. Oh yeah, and did I mention the 6ft+ Alligator gar?