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Living Here

Lakeshore Area

Allegan County Lakeshore Area PhotoWhile the "Lakeshore Area" portion of Allegan County is dominated both by miles of picturesque Lake Michigan shoreline as well as the recreational opportunities of the "beach towns" of Saugatuck, Douglas, and South Haven, it is also known for its agricultural production and even its manufacturing base. More diversified than it may appear on first glance, the Lakeshore Area is a major draw for those looking to live, work and play in the region.

Of course, as its name implies, the "Lakeshore Area" is centered on the 25 miles of scenic Lake Michigan shoreline stretching from South Haven in the south to Lake Macatawa and the City of Holland on the north. About two-thirds the way up the coast from South Haven are the twin "beach towns" of Saugatuck and Douglas, long known for both their recreational activities as well as their creative and artistic offerings. A large swath of sand dues and pristine shoreline have been preserved in the Saugatuck Dunes State Park, a popular focal point for outdoor activities year-round.

View of Saugatuck and Douglas, Allegan County, MichiganWhile the entire Lake Michigan shoreline in the Allegan County area is picturesque, the major sandy beaches and public parks are concentrated in the South Haven area and from Saugatuck north to Holland, with West Side County Park in between. Saugatuck, Douglas, South Haven and Holland are all well-known for their shopping and dining offerings, with Saugatuck/Douglas also a mecca for those with an artistic or creative bent, with galleries, shops, performace groups, and even a longtime summer arts school. Because of these reasons (and more), the Lakeshore Area is also home to many summer and vacation homes, both for West Michiganders as well as many from nearby Indiana and the Chicagoland area of Illinois.

As much as Lake Michigan and the area's "beach towns" immediately draw your eye, the area also bustles with both agricultural and manufacturing activities as well. The entire West Michigan coast has long been known for its fruit production, with Allegan County situated smack in the middle of the activity. Orchards and vineyards dot the landscape with full-scale wineries in operation as well. Most of the manufacturing activity, however, is concentrated from Saugatuck north through Holland, with several large corporations operating plants and other facilities in the area.

Allegan County Lakeshore Area orchardThe Lakeshore Area's recreation and relaxation possibilities may seem endless, but agricultural and manufacturing help to give the area a broad base to support anyone looking to reside, start or expand a business, or just visit and soak in the relaxing vibe.

The major communities in the Lakeshore Area include, from north to south:

Map of Allegan County Communities Lakeshore Area Inland Area Allegan State Game Area

Visit the other two "areas" of Allegan County by following the links below or clicking on the map above.