Southwest Michigan Water Trails

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Here are the water trails in the Southwestern Lower Peninsula:


Trail 1: Bangor to South Haven Heritage Water Trail Bangor to South Haven Heritage Water Trail

The Bangor/South Haven Heritage Water Trail along the Black River weaves through Van Buren County from Bangor to South Haven. The 21-mile trail highlights historic American Indian sites, an old sawmill and a grist mill. 

Trail 2: Galien River Marsh Water Trail Galien River Marsh Water Trail

The Galien River Marsh Water Trail meanders through woodlands, protected wetlands, an 86-acre Galien River County Park Preserve, and a number of privately owned residential properties before arriving at New Buffalo’s busy harbor and, ultimately, Lake Michigan.  

Trail 3: Kalamazoo River Water Trail Southwest Kalamazoo River Water Trail

The Kalamazoo River is 130 miles long from the junction of its north and south branches near Albion to its mouth near Saugatuck.

Trail 4: Lake Michigan Water Trail Southwest Lake Michigan Water Trail Southwest

The southwest portion of the Lake Michigan Water Trail is from the Michigan/Indiana state line to Holland, Michigan. You will paddle along spectacular sand dunes, wilderness areas and quaint beach towns providing many opportunities to eat, shop, play and rest. Most of the beach towns are marked with historic lighthouses.  Beach towns include New Buffalo, Bridgman, St. Joseph, Benton Harbor, South Haven, Saugatuck/Douglas and Holland.  

Trail 5: Paw Paw River Water Trail Paw Paw River Water Trail

The Paw Paw River is 62 miles long.  Its headwaters are in Waverly Township in northeast Van Buren County. It flows through Van Buren and Berrien Counties and joins the St. Joseph River just above its mouth at Benton Harbor.

Trail 6: St. Joseph River Water Trails St. Joseph River Water Trails

The St. Joseph River runs across southwestern Michigan. Its mouth runs through St. Joseph, Michigan. Trails include paddles on the St. Joseph River, the Dowagiac River, the Portage River, and the Nottawa Creek.