The Whaleback Inn Innkeepers Guide to Leelanau County – Our favorite food & drinks, hikes, and things to do

Food & Drink (days and times subject to change frequently, please call the establishment)


Trish’s Dishes – Mon-Sat 9am-2pm (breakfast until 11am) Closed Sundays

Breakfast Bistro – Every day 7:30am – 1:30pm

Bogey’s 19th Hole – Every day 12 – 9pm

The Cove – Every Day 11am – 8pm

Village Cheese Shanty – Every day 9am-5pm

Riverside Inn – Every Day 4pm-9pm

Lake Leelanau

Nittolo’s Pizza – Sun – Thurs 11-8 / Fri & Sat 11 – 9

9 Bean Rows – Every Day  7am-3pm

Fiddleheads – Every day 8am – 3pm

Dick’s Pour House – Tues – Sat 12-8pm (Closed Sun & Mon)

Capital Dog – Thurs – Sun 11:30am – 8pm

Suttons Bay

VI Grill – Sun – Thurs  11 – 9pm / Fri & Sat 11am – 10pm

Streetside Grille – Mon – Sat 11:30am – 10pm / Sundays 12 – 9pm

Martha’s Leelanau Table – 5-9pm (Closed Tues & Wed)

Hop Lot Brewing – Every day 12 – 8pm

45th Parallel Café – 8am-2pm (closed Tuesdays)

Boone’s Prime Time Pub – Sun – Thurs 11am – 8pm / Fri & Sat 11am – 9pm

Roman Wheel Pizza and Subs – Sun -Thurs 11am – 9pm / Sat & Sun 11am-10pm

Northport & Omena

New Bohemian Café – Every Day 7am – 3pm

The Tribune Ice Cream & Eatery – Thurs-Sun 9-2pm  (Closed Mon-Wed)

Fingers Crossed – Tues – Sat 5pm – midnight (Closed Sun and Mon)

Northport Pub and Grille – 3pm – 10pm (Closed Tuesdays)

Knot Just a Bar –  Mon-Thurs 11:30am – 9pm / Fri & Sat 11:30am – 10pm / Sun 10am-2pm

Maple City & Glen Arbor

Market 22 – Thursday-Saturday 11-7:30pm /Sunday 9-2:30pm (breakfast 9am-12pm)

Little Traverse Inn – Mon-Fri 3-9pm / Sat & Sun 12-9pm

Cherry Public House – Sun-Thurs 11-8pm / Fri-Sat 11-9pm

The Mill – Every Day 8am-4pm

Art’s Tavern – Every Day 8am – 11pm

Traverse City

Farm Club – Wed-Fri 12-8pm / Sat 10-8pm (closed Mondays & Tuesdays)

The Little Fleet – Mon-Fri 3-10pm / Sat 12pm-11pm / Sun 12-8pm

Taproot Cider House – Mon – Thurs 11:30 – 8:30pm  / Fri & Sat 11:30 – 10pm

Our Favorites


Trish’s Dishes – Great place for take out breakfast. Our favorite is the breakfast burrito! Tip: Bring it back here and have a breakfast picnic on the lawn with a view of Lake Leelanau

Fiddleheads – Excellent breakfast options with a nice little wooded outside seating area.

Leelanau Coffee Roasters Breakfast Bistro – Classic diner right in the heart of Leland. They have over 50 different coffees to choose from!


Village Cheese Shanty – You can’t come to Leland without getting a famous Cheese Shop sandwich. Tip: call it in first because the wait is usually long – it’s worth the wait!

The Mill  Have a coffee and lunch in a beautiful historic building right along the Crystal River in Glen Arbor. They use fresh local ingredients for their food and everything is so thoughtfully designed and sourced. The perfect place to stop before hiking Sleeping Bear Dunes!

Hop Lot Brewing – Have a cold beer in their epic beer garden and grab some lunch too. Our favorites are the Burrito Bowls and the Spicy Chicken Sandwich.

New Bohemian Café – Their sandwiches give Village Cheese Shanty a run for their money. We love the French Ham & Swiss and the LBC. Tip: Get it to-go and take it to the picnic tables at the marina right around the corner!


The Cove – A Leland classic with a great view of Fishtown. Everything is excellent, but we especially love the Garlic Parmesan Whitefish.

Little Traverse Inn – Charming inn and restaurant with good food, friendly staff, and the most lovely outside seating area.

Bogey’s 19th Hole – Great little bar and restaurant inside the Leland Lodge – the beer is cold and the burgers are awesome.

Martha’s Leelanau Table – Excellent farm to table food and a nice date night restaurant. Tip: Get reservations to sit outside on the patio. It’s so cute!

Farm Club – Farm to table restaurant and brewery with a beautiful modern interior and a giant outdoor picnic area overlooking the farm. Everything is made in-house and extremely fresh & delicious.

Casual dining – Dick’s Pour House, Capital Dog, Streetside Grill

Pizza – Nittolo’s, Roman Wheel, Market 22

Wineries & Cideries

Dune Bird, Good Harbor, Aurora Cellars, French Valley, Green Bird Cellars, Mawby Vineyards, Suttons Bay Ciders, Tandem Ciders


Madcap Coffee, Pedaling Beans Coffeehouse, Mundos, New Bohemian Café, The Mill

Breweries & Distilleries

Hop Lot, Mitten Brewing Company, Farm Club, Northern Latitudes Distillery


Whaleback Natural Area  The entrance to this hike is just a few doors down – it’s basically in our backyard! (There’s no entrance from our back woods though) A 45-minute semi – uphill hike that takes you to a nice lookout of Lake Michigan and the Manitou Islands. Don’t skip out on Birch Valley – that’s our favorite part!

Clay Cliffs – Another semi-uphill hike with a view of Lake Michigan – but on your way back down you walk through a beautiful meadow with a view of Lake Leelanau. Only a 10-minute drive from Whaleback Inn.

Pyramid Point – An uphill hike that ends up at a scenic lookout high up over Lake Michigan. The view from the top is lovely! 20-minute drive from Whaleback Inn.

Empire Bluffs Trail – If you can only go on one long hike, we suggest this one. Like Pyramid Point, you end up on a dune overlooking Lake Michigan, but there’s a little more room to spread out to check out the breathtaking views.  40-minute drive from Whaleback Inn. Tip: Call in for some takeout sandwiches or pizza from Market 22 on your way there or back  – it’s right on the way!

Note: You need a park entrance pass to get into Pyramid Point and Empire Bluffs Trail because they are a part of Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. Check their website to see where you can purchase a pass.

A few things we love to do:

Rent kayaks and kayak into town to pick up Cheese Shanty Sandwiches for lunch. You can tie the kayaks up at the boat launch by The Bluebird and then eat at the picnic tables right next to the launch. Don’t forget to call the sandwiches in before you go!

Check out all the art galleries and shops in Suttons Bay and finish by getting an ice cream sundae at Scoops 22 or a beer at Hop Lot. Our favorite shops & galleries: Poppy Things, Blue North Arts, MI Market, Bayside Gallery, The Painted Bird, and Lake & Woods Apothecary.

Go rock hunting at Van’s beach and stay for the sunset.

Have a picnic at Glen Lake Beach Park – the view of Glen Lake from the picnic table area is so pretty! We like to get Cheese Shanty sandwiches (they travel well!) or Market 22 on the way. After the picnic check out the Dune Climb right across the street.

Buy a good book from Leelanau Books, some smoked salmon and turkey jerky from Carlson’s, a nice bottle of wine from Verterra Winery, and spend the afternoon relaxing on the Whaleback Inn front lawn. We love to go out on adventures but there’s just no place like this magical little inn.

Enjoy A Private Cottage

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1757 N. Manitou Trail, M-22
Leland, MI 49654



PO Box 1125
Leland, MI 49654-1125