Molly McArdle
October 12, 2017

The largest of the Great Lakes, Lake Superior spans both the United States and Canada — touching the shores of Ontario, Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Michigan.

Superior is the largest freshwater lake in the world by surface area, and second only to Russia’s Lake Baikal in volume. (Don’t sneeze at second place: Superior can still contain all the water from the rest of the Great Lakes combined — and still have space left over.)

Related: 200-year-old Shipwreck Found in the Great Lakes

With 31,700 square miles of lake surface, over 300 connecting streams and rivers, and more than 400 islands, and the cleanest and clearest water of all the Great Lakes, Lake Superior is an ideal vacation destination. Why not see it all?

Families, couples, friends, and solo adventurers take to the road to best explore all of what Lake Superior has to offer. The 1,300-mile long Lake Superior Circle Tour comfortably takes 10 days, but those pressed for time can choose the sections they like best, and those who want to explore the region in greater depth can slow the route by spending extra time in their favorite spots.

Whether camping or renting a room, stopping off to kayak or enjoying the scenery from behind the dashboard, juggling a big family’s needs or focusing on just your own, there’s a trip for everyone here. Best of all, you don’t really need to consult a map — just follow the water.

Linger over waterfalls and hike up giant dunes, peer down cliffs and climb lighthouses. Lake Superior has stunning scenery, and a wealth of outdoor activities on and off the water. Don’t shy away from Superior’s human settlements either: Check out the Great Lakes Shipwreck Museum in Whitefish Point, Michigan, or Historic Fort William in Thunder Bay, Ontario.

Related: Canadian Passports Will Now Have a Gender Neutral Option

July and August typically have the best weather — but also the heaviest crowds. Book ahead, whether you are reserving a campground or a suite at a charming bed and breakfast. The region is amazing in fall, however peak foliage is often seen early, in the first half of September. For those ready to layer up, the winter offers skiing, snowshoeing, snowmobiling and more.

Travelers planning to cross the U.S.-Canada border (in either direction) need a passport to do so.

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