Outdoor Winter Fun – Where to Find Outside Activities around Lansing 2023/24


9 Ways to Make the Most of Your 2023/24 Winter in Lansing

I LOVE that we live in a place with four distinct seasons.

Yes, Michigan winters are freezing (that’s for sure), but because our seasons are temporary, the activities we do for each become even THAT more special.

Some of my family’s best memories are from wintertime – trying cross country skiing for the first time, going tubing at Burchfield Park on a beautiful snowy day, building snowmen together, and the best part: coming inside with rosy cheeks and wet boots to be comforted by hot cocoa.

It makes me think of Tim Allen’s soothing voice reminding us of why we live in this beautiful state!

Warming up at the fire pit at Burchfield Park

Outdoor Winter Fun Activities Around Lansing

Michigan winters are inevitable, so let’s put on the snow pants and go enjoy every last bit of the season!

Our list of Lansing winter activities will have you ready to embrace the chill, get out of the house, and try new things.


Use this bucket and let’s see how many fun outdoor things you can check off before spring break.

1 – Go Tubing or Sledding

Snow tubing and sledding is one of best way to spend a snowy, wintry day. Check out these top Lansing favorites with a few extra tips to help make your experience amazing.


2 – Go Ice Skating

Our Michigan winter is never complete without a family ice skating trip. Luckily Lansing has a few great options:

Granger Meadows Park natural ice skating pond
City of Lansing synthetic ice rink at Reutter Park
Meridian Township artificial ice rink
– Find more Michigan outdoor rinks here

East Lansing Ice Cube
Munn Ice Arena on MSU’s campus
Optimist Ice Arena

Ice Skating at Munn Ice Arena on MSU’s campus

3 – Go Skiing or Snowshoeing

When the snow flies, these places open for business. Please check availability at each location before heading out.

Local Skiing: Did you know you can cross country ski right here in Lansing? Renting skis is super easy, and this is a fun first step in skiing with the fam. Try out the trails at Lake Lansing North Park, Burchfield Park, and Fitzgerald Park.

Local Snowshoeing: For some snowshoeing fun with the fam, head to Lake Lansing North Park, Burchfield Park, Fitzgerald Park, Lincoln Brick Park, or Harris Nature Center.

Skiing Out Of Town: Ready to hit some bigger slopes? Try skiing at Mt. Brighton which is about 45 minutes away from Lansing. This place is perfect for beginners and families.

Other great ski options not too far away are Cannonsburg Ski Area in Belmont, Caberfae Peaks in Cadillac and Pine Knob in Clarkston.

Want more options? We’ve got you covered with our list of 32 Best Ski Resorts in Michigan.

Snowshoeing in Michigan

4 – Take a Hike or a Walk

When I’m cooped up most of the winter, getting outdoors for a little exercise and nature feels so refreshing. Try out the many gorgeous trails and paths in our area where you can hike, run, walk, and explore.

Hiking at Burchfield Park in Holt

5 – Explore Nature Centers

Step away from the hustle and bustle and discover how peaceful, fun, and magical it is to go exploring nature in the cold or snow. Note the wildlife you hear and see and compare it to what you experienced in other seasons. Mid-Michigan is loaded with beautiful nature centers, and not one is the same as the last.

6 – Visit the Zoo

Potter Park Zoo is open 364 days a year and they have fun events in the winter like the Wonderland of Lights. Visit the animals both indoors and outdoors and take advantage of this more quiet time of year. Bonus: Monday mornings from 9am-noon are FREE for Ingham County residents with the exception of holiday Mondays. Parking is $3 during peak months and FREE during winter (off-peak).

potter park zoo, zoo, kids at zoo, lion, lion exhibit
Visiting the lion at Potter Park Zoo in Lansing

7 – Play Outdoors

Playing on playgrounds and at parks in the wintertime is a thing! Experience the familiar parks you love, but add a dash of snow and a pinch of cold! Your kids might actually love it more than you think.

Kids swinging in cold weather at Burchfield Park in Lansing

8 – Visit a Garden

Sounds crazy, right??! But strolling through a garden in the winter can be just as peaceful and inviting as when it’s warm out, just in a different way. When you try out this idea, you may be surprised at how energizing it can be for you.

Lansing Community College’s Shigematsu Memorial Garden is one of downtown Lansing’s best-kept secrets. It’s a sweet little spot right in the heart of LCC’s downtown campus.

The Hunter Park GardenHouse offers year-round farm and garden education. This is part of the Allen Neighborhood Center. You’ll enjoy workshops, plant starts, and more.

Enjoy the Cooley Law School Garden in downtown Lansing. Playing here in the winter is like playing in a winter snow fort; there are lots of bushes for the snow to get caught in!

The MSU Horticulture Gardens offers 14 acres of diverse gardens is a lovely local retreat.

9 – Tour the Capitol

If you live in the Capital City, touring our beautiful state capitol needs to be on your bucket list. Did you know that you can take a self-guided tour any time? If visiting in December, make sure to check out the majestic state Christmas tree.

Visiting the State Capitol Building

Whatever you choose, Lansing, we know you are going to make the most of it. We’d love to hear back from you about how you plan to enjoy winter in Michigan this year. Comment below.

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