Skip to Content

Unlock the Royal Oak MI Experience: Discover the Best Things to Do and See in Royal Oak

downtown royal oak mi

by Norene Bassin

Top 20 Things to Do in Royal Oak, Michigan

Are you searching for the top things to do in Royal Oak, Michigan?

Look no further! This vibrant city offers a diverse range of attractions and experiences that are sure to captivate locals and visitors alike.

With its eclectic mix of attractions, Royal Oak, Michigan promises an unforgettable experience for all who visit. From exploring wildlife at the Detroit Zoo to indulging in artistic endeavors at Habatat Galleries, and from attending captivating performances at the Royal Oak Music Theatre to immersing in the lively atmosphere of the Arts, Beats & Eats Festival, this city offers endless entertainment, culture, and natural beauty. Pack your sense of adventure and uncover the best of  Royal Oak.

Join us as we explore the 20 must-visit destinations that make Royal Oak a true metro Detroit gem.

Where is Royal Oak? 
Royal Oak is just 20 minute north of Detroit MI, just east of Madison Heights. 

map of royal oak Michigan

Top Things to Do in Royal Oak MI

Detroit Zoo
8450 W. 10 Mile Rd, Royal Oak, MI 48067

Step into a world of wonder at the renowned Detroit Zoo. Home to over 2,400 animals, this family-friendly destination promises an unforgettable experience. Get up close with majestic lions, playful meerkats, and adorable red pandas.

Don’t miss the amazing Polk Penguin Conservation Center or the awe-inspiring Butterfly Garden. Fun fact: the penguin exhibit is the largest penguin facility on the planet! A day at the Detroit Zoo is a perfect blend of education and fun for all ages.

PRO-TIP: One of the top attractions in Oakland County, the Detroit Zoo offers fun holiday events throughout the the year, including Zoo Boo ay Halloween and Wild Lights at Christmas.

Royal Oak Music Theatre
318 W. 4th St, Royal Oak, MI 48067

For an unforgettable night of live entertainment, head to the iconic Royal Oak Music Theatre. This historic venue hosts an array of music events and performances, from acclaimed musicians to stand-up comedians and theater productions. With its intimate atmosphere and stellar acoustics, you’ll be treated to a truly remarkable show.

Royal Oak Historical Society Museum
1411 W. Webster Rd, Royal Oak, MI 48073

Step back in time and discover the rich history of Royal Oak at the Royal Oak Historical Society Museum. This fascinating museum showcases exhibits that bring the city’s heritage and cultural significance to life. From vintage photographs to artifacts, delve into the past and gain a deeper understanding of the city’s fascinating past.

Drag Queen Bingo at Five15
600 S. Washington Ave, Royal Oak, MI 48067

Laugh, cheer, and be dazzled at Five15, where Drag Queen Bingo takes center stage. This unique venue on Washington Avenue combines the classic game of bingo with spectacular drag performances, creating a one-of-a-kind experience that will leave you in stitches. Get ready for an evening filled with witty banter, dazzling outfits and unexpected surprises.

It’s the perfect outing for groups of friends, birthday celebrations or an entertaining date night. Join in the laughter, soak up the vibrant atmosphere and enjoy a hilarious experience at Drag Queen Bingo.

michigan farmers market

Royal Oak Farmers Market
316 E. 11 Mile Rd, Royal Oak, MI 48067

Indulge in a sensory feast at the Farmers Market. This bustling marketplace offers a vibrant array of fresh produce, delectable treats, and artisanal crafts. Stroll through the stalls, savor the flavors, and connect with local vendors. From farm-fresh fruits and vegetables to innovative food trucks, the Farmers Market is a must-visit for all.

Mark Ridley’s Comedy Castle
310 S. Troy St, Royal Oak, MI 48067

Get ready to laugh until your sides hurt at Mark Ridley’s Comedy Castle, one of Michigan’s premier comedy clubs. Featuring top-notch comedians from around the country, this legendary venue has been entertaining audiences for decades. Enjoy hilarious stand-up acts and hilarious moments that will leave you red in the face. Check out their improv classes for a chance to learn the art of on-the-fly comedy and unleash your creativity.

top 10 best mini golf courses in metro detroit

Royal Oak Golf Center
3500 Edgar Ave, Royal Oak, MI 48073

Perfect your swing at the Royal Oak Golf Center. Whether you’re a seasoned golfer or a beginner, this facility offers a driving range, putting greens, and a wonderful mountain-themed mini golf course. Spend a relaxing day on the greens and soak in the beauty of this well-maintained golf center.

Creative Arts Studio
115 W. 4th St, Royal Oak, MI 48067

Unleash your inner Picasso at the Creative Arts Studio. This artistic haven provides a variety of hands-on experiences, including pottery painting, glass fusing, and canvas painting. Let your imagination run wild as you create unique works of art to treasure or gift to loved ones. The Creative Arts Studio is a perfect place to let your creativity run free.

Habatat Galleries
4400 Fernlee Ave, Royal Oak, MI 48073

Immerse yourself in the world of contemporary glass art at Habatat Galleries, the country’s largest glass art gallery. This internationally-renowned gallery features exquisite glass sculptures and artworks from esteemed artists like Michael Behrens and Vivian Wang. Explore the stunning displays that push the boundaries of creativity and craftsmanship, and appreciate the beauty and intricacy of this delicate art form.

15 exciting escape rooms in michigan

The Great Escape Room Royal Oak
301 W. 4th St, Suite LL110, Royal Oak, MI 48067

Put your puzzle-solving skills to the test at The Great Escape Room. Gather your friends and work together to decipher clues, solve riddles, and unlock spooky mysteries before time runs out. This thrilling and immersive experience will challenge your wits and provide an adrenaline rush like no other. Don’t get trapped!

Arts, Beats & Eats Festival
Downtown Royal Oak

Experience the magic of the Arts, Beats & Eats Festival, an annual event that celebrates art, music, and culinary delights. This lively festival features live performances by renowned musicians, stunning art displays, carnival rides and a wide range of cuisines from local restaurants. Join in the festive atmosphere and immerse yourself in the vibrant cultural scene.

picnic basket in royal oak

Centennial Commons Park
Downtown Royal Oak

Discover the serene oasis of Centennial Commons Park. This picturesque park offers peaceful green spaces, meandering pathways, and beautifully landscaped gardens. It’s a top spot for outdoor activities in Royal Oak.  Enjoy a leisurely stroll, have a picnic on the manicured lawns, or engage in friendly outdoor activities like checkers. With its convenient location near downtown, Centennial Commons Park is the perfect celebration for 100 years of unique city culture.

Stagecrafters Baldwin Theatre
415 S. Lafayette Ave, Royal Oak, MI 48067

Be enthralled by the captivating performances at the Stagecrafters Baldwin Theatre. This community theater showcases a variety of plays, musicals, and performances throughout the year. This season’s shows include Disney’s Frozen Jr, Little Shop of Horrors, Clue, and Singin’ In The Rain. From classic productions to contemporary works, the talented actors and dedicated crew will transport you into the realm of storytelling and theatrical magic.

Gusoline Alley
309 S. Center St, Royal Oak, MI 48067

Experience the vibrant nightlife at Gusoline Alley. This trendy bar and music venue is known for its live bands, energetic atmosphere, and extensive drink selection. Whether you’re a music lover looking for a great show or seeking a lively spot to unwind with friends, Gusoline Alley is the place to be.

starr jaycee park

Starr Jaycee Park
1101 W. 13 Mile Rd, Royal Oak, MI 48073

Embrace the outdoors at Starr Jaycee Park, a park nestled on 13 Mile Road. This spacious park offers amenities such as sports fields, walking trails, and picnic areas, making it a perfect destination for family outings or active pursuits. Breathe in the fresh air, soak up the sunshine, and create lasting memories in one of Royal Oak’s 50 scenic parks. 

Modern Skate & Surf Park
1500 N. Stephenson Hwy, Royal Oak, MI 48067

This one’s for the skaters out there. Modern Skate Park is a hotspot for young skaters in the metro Detroit area. This state-of-the-art skate park offers a variety of ramps, rails, and obstacles, providing an exciting and challenging environment for riders of all skill levels. Whether you’re just learning to ollie or hitting Casper slides, Modern Skate Park is the place to showcase your skills, connect with fellow skaters, and witness the excitement of the sport in a supportive community.

woodward dream cruise

Woodward Dream Cruise
Woodward Avenue, Royal Oak

Step back in time and witness the automotive extravaganza that is the Woodward Dream Cruise. This annual event takes place along the historic Woodward Avenue and celebrates Detroit’s rich automotive history. The traffic may be a pain if you get stuck while traveling to a nearby city, but it’s a lovely display of hot rods if you’re not.

Whether you want to see classic Camaros or ahead-of-their-time Deloreans, the Woodward Dream Cruise is a must-visit event that captures the essence of Detroit’s automotive culture.

Ewenique Knits
515 S. Lafayette Ave, Royal Oak, MI 48067

Calling all knitting enthusiasts! Ewenique Knits in Royal Oak is an arts-and-crafter’s heaven. This cozy yarn shop offers a wide selection of high-quality yarns, knitting needles and accessories for all your knitting needs. Its location makes you feel like you found a hidden gem every time you enter. From soft and luxurious fibers to vibrant colors and unique patterns, you’ll find everything you need to create beautifully ewenique creations.

craft beer at the jolly pumpkin

Jolly Pumpkin Bar
419 S. Main St, Royal Oak, MI 48067

Treat yourself to unique craft beers at this renowned brewery and gastropub. With a rustic yet modern vibe, enjoy artisanal beers brewed in-house at this downtown delight. Pair your brew with amazing dishes, including wood-fired pizzas and juicy burgers. If you’re a beer enthusiast looking for a memorable dining experience, check out the Jolly Pumpkin.

Emagine Theater
200 N. Main St, Royal Oak, MI 48067

Witness movie magic like you’ve never seen before at Emagine Royal Oak. This state-of-the-art theater provides a lovely cinematic experience coupled with luxurious amenities. Sit back and relax in their plush, reclining seats as you enjoy the latest blockbusters on the big screen. But that’s not all — Emagine Royal Oak goes above and beyond by offering a full-service bar, allowing you to sip on your favorite beverages while enjoying the movie. With its comfortable seating and top-notch hospitality, Emagine sets the stage for a wonderful movie-watching experience.

More Amazing Things to Do in Michigan

ultimate guide to Kensington Metropark
Keweenaw Peninsula Guide
guide to pyramid point
Discover the top Michigan Resorts

About The Author-

Norene Bassin is a content writer from Royal Oak, MI. This past spring, they graduated from Michigan State University’s School of Journalism. They’ve previously written for Impact 89FM with a focus on alternative and indie music. When not writing about travel destinations across the state, Norene can be found listening to punk rock, building decorative Lego sets, or playing with their pet hamster Milton.