Known for its 15 miles of sandy beachfront along Lake Michigan's south shore, Indiana Dunes is a popular beach destination for people living in the Midwest.

Indiana Dunes State Park operates kind of INSIDE of Indiana Dunes National Park. The National Park Service-managed portions cost $25 and the State Park $12.

The park is comprised of over 15,000 acres of dunes, oak savannas, swamps, bogs, marshes, prairies, rivers, and forests. Keep in mind the sand dunes have taken thousands of years to form.

Start your day by stopping in the Indiana Dunes Visitor Center on State Road 49 . Enjoy educational displays and grab maps for the miles of trails to make your trip easier.

Hiking The Dunes

Try the 3 Dune Challenge, which entails you climbing the 3 tallest dunes for 1.5 miles. Sand Dunes as tall as 200 ft with shifting sand are not for the faint of heart.

The Dune Ridge Trail is an easy hiking trail through a forest growing on top of a sand dune! This short trail takes you through a beautiful section of forested dune.

The Portage Lakefront & Riverwalk has a small beach, beautiful views, and a long fishing pier. A unique spot where you can enjoy the shores of Lake Michigan.

Go For a Swim

Kamil Beach is below the neighborhood of Beverly Shores and is connected to Dunbar Beach and then Lake View Beach. These beaches seemed to be quieter when I visited.

End your day at the dunes by watching the sun set over Lake Michigan from one of the park's beaches. I suggest bringing a picnic to Porter Beach to enjoy the views.