- If you can dream it, you can do it. Walt Disney
Campus Martius Park
Yep, this is the new Detroit: vibrant, creative and full of smile-inducing surprises like this relaxing beach smack in the middle of the city.
Campus Martius Park — a 2.5-acre public square — becomes an ice skating rink in the winter and features free entertainment all year round. It's become the community gathering place for locals, tourists and, through Canine to Five-sponsored events, even dogs.
It’s the perfect representation of a city built on diversity and innovation.
Detroit Experience Factory
Founded by Jeanette Pierce, the city's most enthusiastic advocate, this nonprofit offers insider tours by locals who are passionate and deeply knowledgeable about their hometown. They are full of fun facts, and their itineraries are just plain fun.
Pierce knows that whether you’re into architecture, food, culture or sports, she and her team can take you to places that will make you a staunch supporter of Detroit — especially if you get to taste some of April Anderson’s Good Cakes and Bakes just like Oprah Winfrey requested when she visited the city!
With interior walls covered in eye-popping murals from 27 artists from around the globe, this 10-story parking garage built by Dan Gilbert's Bedrock Real Estate Services is a destination in itself — even if you don't have a car.
Named for its shape, the award-winning space has become so popular that Bedrock, with the help of fine art gallery Library Street Collective, has extended the artwork into the Z's alley, now called "The Belt."
Check out the contributions by Shepherd Fairey, who recently painted his largest mural ever in Detroit. No wonder there's a lookupDetroit hashtag.
The Avenue of Fashion
Livernois Avenue used to be the shopping district in the pre-mall days, and it still boasts landmarks that have stood the test of time, like Jo’s Gallery and Baker’s Keyboard Lounge — the oldest jazz club in the world.
It’s also attracted some soon-to-be landmarks, including the simply delicious 1917 American Bistro and the deliciously simple Kuzzo’s Chicken & Waffles.
While you’re there, check out the gorgeous neighborhoods — Palmer Woods and Sherwood Forest — and Detroit’s only Frank Lloyd Wright house.
It would be sacrilege to visit Detroit and not spend time at the Motown Museum. Standing in the studio where history was made and an 11-year-old Stevie Wonder indulged in Baby Ruths, you can't help humming the songs of musical legends Marvin Gaye, The Temptations and Diana Ross.
Sure, there are other great museums you should check out — like the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History and the Detroit Institute of Arts.
But this is the only one that will make you feel like dancing in the streets.