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Winter Destination: Miller Beach

You’re looking for a winter getaway. You’re thinking Florida, or California, Colorado, or even Chicago. But, did it ever dawn on you to stay right in the dunes?

Miller Beach is the western-most beach town along Dunes Hwy. 12 in Gary, Indiana. Only 40 minutes from Chicago, it’s the perfect destination. The South Shore Line stops right at it’s gates. Step off the train and walk to Tequila and Tacos or 18th Street Brewery. Have a drink and some eats and we’ll tell you what to do next!

First off, it’s a must to check out Miller Beach Vacation Rentals. These gorgeous homes start at two bedrooms and go all the way up to nine bedrooms, making Miller Beach the perfect destination for a family vacation, a family reunion or even a business retreat. Prices are much more reasonable in the winter and you get many, many amenities. All the houses are located on, or are very close to the beach.

Photo credit: Miller Beach Vacation Rentals. Villa Santorini addition.

Many don’t know it, but one of the area’s most beautiful trails is located in Miller Beach. Miller Woods located off of Lake Street is a short loop and then an out and back trail that goes through Oak Savanna, prairie, lagoons and dunes. Take it all the way out and your feet will hit the shores of Lake Michigan. At the entrance of this trail is the Paul H. Douglas Center for Environmental Education. This hidden gem is full of all sorts of fun things for kids and the whole family. It also has free snow shoe and cross country ski rentals. Perfect for your winter adventure!

Also in Miller Beach is the Marshall J. Gardner Center for the Arts. They put on a number of different exhibits all year long. On December 7 there will be a Lou Reed Retrospective in conjunction with the Nelson Algren Museum (also located right on Lake Street!). This is big city fun in a small town.

Fine dining and shops also line Lake Street. Art, coffee, clothing, beach goodies, juice bars and more can be found on both Lake Street and Shelby Square. A full list of restaurants and shops can be found here. Just 5 minutes east is West Beach with a number of trails for the avid hiker. This hiking is perfect in all seasons.

A train ride west will take you into Chicago for the day. Head east and stop at the Indiana Dunes State Park for sledding and winter hiking, or keep going to Michigan City to check out a variety of shops, dining and entertainment!


Want to learn about more places and things to do in the dunes? Be sure to sign up for the Dig the Dunes e-newsletter today!

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