11 best things to do in Detroit

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By David Em
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Learn about the things you need to see and do when you visit Detroit. It’s known as the Motor City, but there’s more to see than cars.

Buildings in downtown Detroit on a cloudy day.

1. Detroit Institute of Arts

Exterior of The Detroit Institute of Arts with a statue in front of it.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

Address: 5200 Woodward Ave, Detroit, MI 48202

Having one of the largest art collections in the United States, the Detroit Institute of Arts (DIA) is a must-visit.

It has more than 65,000 works of art that date from the earliest civilizations to the present day. It’s a world-class museum that you need to see.

2. Motown Museum

Address: 2648 W Grand Blvd, Detroit, MI 48208

If you love music and history, you need to make a stop at the Motown Museum. Motown made its mark on the music industry, and you can visit its first headquarters, Hitsville U.S.A, which is now called the Motown Museum. It’s where Berry Gordy lived and recorded the top hits.

3. Belle Isle

Aerial view of a dock at Belle Isle.
Photo courtesy of Amazon.

Belle Isle is an island park in Detroit where you can relax and enjoy the outdoors. The sunsets are beautiful, and you’ll have to catch them at least one time during your visit. The aquarium and glass house are also great sights to see in Belle Isle.

4. The Henry Ford

Address: 20900 Oakwood Blvd, Dearborn, MI 48124

The Henry Ford has something for everyone. The museum focuses on authentic objects, stories, and innovation. Plan to spend several hours there because it has 3 main attractions covering 250 acres.

5. Fox Theatre

Address: 2211 Woodward Ave, Detroit, MI 48201

Fox Theatre is a performing arts center in Detroit that’s an amazing place to see shows and concerts. Being one of the most iconic theatres and music venues in the world, you need to watch a Broadway musical and movie there.

6. Eastern Market

For food, restaurants, art, business, culture, and vendors selling unique items, visit Eastern Market. You’ll get a different experience depending on the day that you go.

The Sunday Market is filled with local artists, cooks, jewelers, and musicians, while the Tuesday Market offers fresh produce, baked goods, and meats.

7. Campus Martius Park

Address: 800 Woodward Ave, Detroit, MI 48226

Campus Martius Park is a beautiful city park in downtown Detroit. It’s known for The Rink, which is a family-friendly outdoor skating rink. You can also enjoy a delicious meal at several of the dining options at the park.

8. Guardian Building

Address: 500 Griswold St STE 1600, Detroit, MI 48226

The Guardian Building is a landmark skyscraper in Detroit’s Financial District. Inside, you’ll find stunning tile work, artworks, murals, and unique art-deco styling. It has also been designated a National Historic Landmark.

9. Watch a sunset during dinner at Iridescence

Address: 2901 Grand River Ave, Detroit, MI 48201

Iridescence is an elegant restaurant where you can enjoy a modern American meal with a breathtaking view of the sunset. It’s also the only AAA 4 Diamond Award-winning restaurant in Detroit and is located in MotorCity Casino Hotel.

10. Detroit Zoo

Address: 8450 W 10 Mile Rd, Royal Oak, MI 48067

The Detroit Zoo is home to more than 2,100 animals and 230 species. The exhibits are impressive and some have won several awards.

One of the newest and most extraordinary is the Polk Penguin Conservation Center. It’s a 33,000 square-foot center where you can see more than 75 penguins of four species.

11. Fisher Building

View of Fisher Building in Detroit from below.
Photo courtesy of Unsplash.

Address: 3011 W Grand Blvd, Detroit, MI 48202

Fisher Building is a landmark art-deco skyscraper in downtown Detroit. It was first opened in 1928 and also containers the historic Fisher Theater inside. If you love architecture, Fisher Building is a sight you need to see.


Being the birthplace of Motown Records and known as the Motor City, there are many sights to see and things to do in Detroit. Some will take you half an hour, while others may take all day. Be sure to carve out a few days for your stay.

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Featured image courtesy of Unsplash.

Portrait of David Em.

About David Em

David Em is the founder of Nola & Luna Travel, the destination for travel advice and inspiration. He launched Nola & Luna Travel to share expert advice, useful tips, unbiased reviews, and inspiration about destinations across the globe.