Michigan’s Least-Populated Island Only Has 35 Residents

Have you ever dreamed of moving to an isolated island in the Great Lakes and living off the grid? While it may not be simple, there are indeed islands in Michigan’s Great Lakes where you could make that dream a reality.

Out of the estimated 35,000 islands in the Great Lakes, Michigan boasts 420 named ones, with only 30 inhabited year-round. Interestingly, 19 of these are in Lake Erie, and nine are within Michigan’s borders, each with its own unique population.

The most populated island in Michigan is Grosse Isle in the Detroit River, home to over 10,000 residents. In stark contrast, the least populated is Grand Island in Lake Superior, just north of Munising, with a modest population of 35, according to the 2020 Census.

Despite its small population, Grand Island Township isn’t the least-populated municipality in Michigan. That title belongs to Pointe Aux Barques Township in Huron County, which has only 15 residents.

Most of Grand Island is part of the Grand Island National Recreation Area, covering 13,500 acres of pristine wilderness. The township of Grand Island spans 49.1 square miles.

To reach this remote island, you need to take the Grand Island Ferry from Munising to Williams Landing, a short 1.5-mile trip. Upon arrival, you’ll notice the island lacks paved roads and prohibits vehicles, making it a true camping and wilderness escape.

Life on Grand Island offers unparalleled privacy. Aside from Census data, there is little information available about its residents. If you ever find it feasible to call this island home, you’ll enjoy a serene and secluded lifestyle amidst the natural beauty of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.

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