We have lived in Michigan our entire lives and neither Gregory nor I have been to Sleeping Bear dunes. So, naturally it is one of the first places we needed to take the Tin Cabin, and it did NOT disappoint. We were incredibly fortunate that the weather was absolutely perfect.
We stayed at the Platte River Campground, which is inside the National Park (fun fact-- you will need a national park pass to get in to any of the places on the national lakeshore). You can buy them online I believe ahead of time, but we got ours when we checked into the campground. We chose to upgrade to the annual pass that gets us into any of the national parks, for around $85.
The campground itself was really incredible. The sites are far away from each other so you definitely don't feel like you are packed in like sardines. We spent a fair amount of time biking around. The campground is organized into 4 loops-- 4 separate areas, and each loop is quite large, and equally beautiful. Loop 4 is non-electric, and they also have rustic "hike and pitch" spots available as well.
We took a little day trip to the dunes via the scenic drive. I highly recommend doing this and take good hiking shoes! I know they are goofy but these shoes are GREAT for hiking. I did not bring mine, so I was bummed that we didn't go hiking, but we did stop at the most breathtaking spot, which didn't require any shoes at all ;)
It is really hard to understand the beauty of the dunes and the shoreline from this photo alone. It is one of those moments where you just feel small and the world so vast.
Gregory took it upon himself to climb the dunes, of course, as he isn't one to pass up a challenge. He made it up in just 17 minutes, which is quite a feat. See that little speck down there? That's him ;)
After we were done with the scenic drive, we took a little e-bike ride from the campground to the lakeshore, which was really incredible because it was desolate. We watched the sunset over Lake Michigan (which was incredibly romantic), and headed back to the campfire to make hobo pies. It was the perfect vacation, just 2.5 hours from home.