17 Best Things to Do in Oscoda MI
Looking for the best things to do in Oscoda MI?
I’ve spent nearly a lifetime exploring beautiful Oscoda, located on the “Sunrise Side” of Michigan. This northern Michigan vacation parade is set on the shores of Lake Huron, at the spot where the mighty AuSable River meets the lake.
The spectacular natural features of the lake and the river make the area a favorite vacation destination year-round, with visitors flocking to the area for swimming, boating, hiking, kayaking, biking, snowmobiling, fishnig, camping and more.
I’ve put together a list of the 17 best things to do in Oscoda, MI. Read on and start planning your Michigan getaway now.
In search of the perfect beach day, we headed to northern Michigan and one of our favorite vacation destinations: the sandy beaches of Oscoda, MI.
This fun Lake Huron beach town has the perfect setting for all kinds of recreational activities from swimming and kayaking to hiking and biking to fishing and paddle boarding to…you get the picture.
It’s actually the setting that makes Oscoda MI such a great destination for a road trip, romantic getaway or family beach vacation.
You’ve got the Huron National Forest, the Au Sable River and the wide, sandy Lake Huron shoreline combining into a giant play ground offering so many things to do that you’ll have to visit over and over again to do them all.
Actually, that’s what many people do, visiting this pleasant and picturesque Iosco county town year after year for some Michigan beach vacation fun.
About Oscoda, MI
Located just north of Tawas City and East Tawas, this fun beach town is actually a working city and was once home to the now decommissioned Wurtsmith Air Force base.
It’s now the location of the Oscoda Wurtsmith Airport, Wurtsmuth Air Museum, the Robert J. Parks Library and more, and is a fun spot to explore just outside of downtown Oscoda.
If you’re looking for more things to do, you can pickup the River Road Scenic Byway in the center of town.
Follow this national scenic byway west along the AuSable River as it cuts through the Huron Manistee National Forest.
In addition to hiking trail after hiking trail, you’ll also find tourist attractions like the Lumberman’s Monument and scenic overlooks. You can FIND more about planning a trip to in our Ultimate Guide to Oscoda, MI.
Read on to learn more about our perfect beach day in Oscoda, MI.
Oscoda Beach Park
Oscoda Beach Park just might be one of the prettiest municipal beaches in the the state of Michigan, and was the setting for our perfect beach day, and can be for yours, too.
From the wide, white sugar-sand beach that stretches toward endless deep-blue water to the tall, deep-green hardwoods that create a shady canopy over the lawn, it’s a very comfortable spot to stretch out on a beach blanket for the day.
Combine this with a new, ADA-Accessible fishing pier that stretches a few hundred feet into the Lake Huron and an expansive boardwalk; a large playground and a sand volleyball court; picnic tables; benches, an expansive shelter and you’ve got the foundation for a fun beach day.
Family Fun in Oscoda
There’s something for everyone at this beachfront park, and all ages will find something to keep them entertained.
Have a sports enthusiast your group?
They’ll love the volleyball courts, the basketball court (perfect for shooting a couple of three-pointers) and the large skate park for those brave enough to try the half-pipe.
Younger folks will enjoy the splash pad and the playgrounds, as well as the expansive lawns for running and playing.
The tall trees provide leafy coverage if you’re hoping to escape the hot sun, as does the picnic shelter.
It’s worth noting that nothing is overlooked in terms of wheelchair accessibility at this beach: the wooden ramp, boardwalk, and path to the shoreline is very well done and offers a chance for all to enjoy this freshwater coastline.
ADA and Wheelchair Beach Accessibility in Oscoda
Even better is the ADA-compliant wooden boardwalk leading from the parking lot, across the beachfront to the pier (also ADA-compliant) and right down the beach to the water’s edge.
This park does an excellent job of ensuring accessibility not only to the beach but to other amenities as well: the super-clean bathhouses, as well as the splash pad on the boardwalk, are also ADA-compliant.
Want more ADA and Wheelchair Accessible beaches in Michigan?
Things to Do in Oscoda, MI
A perfect day at the beach always includes a visit into a beach town, and that’s very easy to do in Oscoda.
Oscoda Beach Park is just a short walk to the heart of the town’s business district.
It’s a pleasant business district, too: the streets are lined with planters and hanging baskets teeming with bright flowers, and gift shops and restaurants are within easy distance of the beach.
Explore Oscoda’s Downtown Shops
Just steps away from the beach is the Sunrise Kava Coffee Cafe: an unexpected delight of a café that offers homemade baked goods, wraps, healthy juices and a creative array of specialty coffee drinks.
The nearby Parkside Dairy is a treat, too, with gluten-free, lactose-free and hand-dipped ice cream offerings as well as frozen custard and frozen yogurt.
If you stop by, grab a seat and surround yourself with flowers in the little park right next to the shop.
Also, within walking distance of the beach is Enchanted Blooms, a beautiful home and garden shop that is worth a visit.
Teeming with vibrant shrubs and flowers that surround the perimeter, the inside of the store fun: cute home décor items and other fun items.
If you have the time, meander around to the back greenhouse and marvel at the healthy perennials…and get some ideas for your own garden.
Visit the Au-Sable Oscoda Historical Museum
It’s temporarily closed due to COVID-19, but if things change and it is safe to open, be sure and check out this fun spot.
Adults and children alike will enjoy the AuSable-Oscoda Historical Museum – within walking distance of the beach.
It’s a fun way to learn about the origins of this beautiful area.
Peek into the past and learn the history of the commercial fishing and logging industries that were the economic mainstays of the area in earlier days or find out about the shipwrecks that dot this Great Lakes coast.
Fishing Pier at Oscoda Beach Park
The wide, wheelchair-accessible fishing pier extends our into Lake Huron..
Walk to the end of the pier, take a deep breath of fresh lake air and enjoy the blue vista before you.
It’s the sugar-sand beach, however, that’s the main attraction: roomy enough to spread out with your beach umbrella and blanket and enjoy the freshwater coast.
Explore the AuSable River
Head over to the canoe rental – there’s one not far from the beach across from the convention and visitors bureau, and another one just up River Road – and sign up for a trip down the AuSable River by canoe or kayak.
Join others splashing and floating down the river as it moves toward Lake Huron and enjoy the birds-eye view of Oscoda Township and the Huron National Forest from the water.