Is your family getting together over the holidays in Ann Arbor, Michigan – and you’re at a loss for great activities to do all together, suitable for all ages? Wondering how to pass the time between Christmas and New Year’s, especially with the pressure to live up to the holiday cheer? Worry no more – we’ve got you!

 Ann Arbor is actually a great weekend destination. It has well-curated museums, beautiful parks, great sports venues, cafes and restaurants offering wonderful food, a vibrant live show culture – and even some hidden tricks up its sleeve! 

 So read on to find out about the best that Ann Arbor has to offer.

1. Check out some cool art and artifacts

University of Michigan Museum of Art 

University of michigan museum of art

The majestic University of Michigan Museum of Art houses more than 19,000 pieces spanning 150 years! These include works by painters ranging from Claude Monet to Kara Walker, and sculptors like Randolph Rogers. It also has lots of tours and art events for visitors, and even programs, workshops, and classes visitors can attend. So it’s the perfect introduction to a rich cultural history for the whole fam.

University of Michigan Museum of Natural History

University of michigan museum of natural history

This sprawling museum has permanent exhibits for Anthropology and Geology, and Evolution. It also has a Wildlife Gallery, a “Butterfly and Pollinator Garden” in which you watch the colorful insects flying amongst beautiful blossoms, and  a planetarium to boot! What better way to spend time together as a family than with a tour through its halls?

Kelsey Museum of Archaeology, University of Michigan

Kelsey museum of archaeology university of michigan

This one’s for fans of Indiana Jones – the museum has a vast collection of over 100,000 ancient and medieval artifacts! It houses a collection of Egyptian mummy masks, ancient Greek coins, Roman brick stamps and, most impressively, the largest collection of Parthian pottery outside Iraq. We can’t imagine a better way to learn more about our world than a visit here.

2. Watch Some Live Performances

Watch some live performances

Michigan Theater 

This movie palace is nearly a hundred years old. It’s been restored to its former glory, and houses the Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra. Concerts and plays are held here, along with independent film screenings and the Ann Arbor Film Festival!

And for the kids, we’d suggest you head to the children’s live acts called “Not Just for Kids.”

3. Try Your Hands at Some Science

Try your hands at some science

The Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum

Let your kids get messy this holiday season at this museum! Here they can learn about science, technology, and art by taking part in interactive classes and tours. There are displays they can play with (some of which have robots!), exhibits they can visit – like ‘The World Around You’ that will teach them to be curious about the extraordinary things all around them – and walking tours they can hike on, like ‘Michigan Nature’, in which you can go fish in a lake. 

4. Pet some Adorable Animals

Pet some adorable animals

The Petting Farm

This one’s for the animal lovers! The Petting Farm lets children (and their families) meet all sorts of farm animals. You have your usual fair cows, cats, horses, goats and sheep, and fowl chickens and ducks. But they also have alpacas, llamas, and peacocks. You can meet and pet the animals, interact with them and feed them – and end the day with a pony ride.

5. Head Into the Outdoors

The Leslie Science & Nature Center

The leslie science nature center

We LOVE this outdoor space, with its hiking trails and enclosures in which you can see various rare birds, reptiles and other creatures. The center even offers overnight visit.  Head out here with the fam to get the thrill of a safari close to home.

The Creature Conservancy

The creature conservancy

This animal rescue organization has exhibits that are both fun and educational. You can visit apple snails, African clawed frogs, macaws, kangaroos, and vultures, and go on trips through Africa, Australia, and even a tropical rainforest. 

Hudson Mills Metropark, Ann Arbor, Michigan

Hudson mills metropark ann arbor michigan

This beautiful park is situated on the banks of the Huron river. It’s huge and filled with woods, meadows and wetlands. It’s home to a huge variety of wildlife and birds. You can go canoeing and kayaking, shoreline and fly fishing, shuffleboarding, hiking, biking, and trekking, and even picnicking and camping. There are skiing trails in the winter as well. 

And for those not too big on the outdoors, there are golf courses, and places to play basketball, volleyball, softball and soccer.

On that note…

6. Take A Stab at Some Sports and Games

Stonebridge Golf Club

Stonebridge golf club 1

This 18 hole championship golf course offers challenges for experienced golf players to beginners. There’s a driving range, a putting green, and a chipping bunker for all your veterans and mini golfers-in-training from professionals. And of course there’s an on-site bar and grill.

Buhr Park, Ann Arbor, Michigan

Buhr park ann arbor michigan

This massive play park has dedicated spaces to play basketball, soccer, tennis, and baseball for both adults and kids. You can take out a picnic or take a dip in an outdoor pool. The kids, meanwhile, could go to the wading pool, or the play area. You can also sled, ski, skate or play hockey in winter. That’s quite the selection of activities!

Ann Arbor Breakout Rooms

Ann arbor breakout rooms

And last but certainly not least, you could come visit us – at the Ann Arbor Breakout rooms! We specialize in fun, brilliant, clever, imaginative escape room experiences. 

What’s an escape room, you ask? Well, it’s a puzzle-based part scavenger hunt. You will be locked into a supervised room, in which you have to find clues, solve riddles and complete challenges to ‘break out’ or ‘escape’. The rooms can be both physical and virtual, and you can pick them based on theme, group size & experience level. Currently, we have 6 rooms – Zombie Roadhouse, Heart Of A Pirate, Ringmaster’s Den for both groups and one-on-one, Ghost Zone and Chamber Of Illusions- so there’s something for everyone! The games are fully Immersive and a host will guide you through them. 

It’s the perfect activity for the whole family.  You can book your slots here.

And there’s our list of things to do as a family in Ann Arbor! Why not write in and tell us which was your favorite?