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Bay City State Recreation Area, Bay City
(3.7/5 based on 120 reviews on the web)
Bay City Recreation Area or Bay City State Recreation Area is a 2100acre state park located near Bay City, Michigan in Bay County, Michigan, on the shore of Saginaw Bay. The Tobico Marsh, one of the largest remaining freshwater, coastal wetlands on the Great Lakes is located in the park. Other natural features of the park include a mile of sandy beach, over 2000acre of wetland woods, meadows, oak savannah prairies, and cattail marshes. The park is a haven for migratory birds and wetland wildlife.Facilities and activitiesSaginaw Bay Visitor Center - 10,000 sq. ft. building features an exhibit hall with interactive natural history displays, a 100-seat auditorium and a gift shop. Environmental education programs are offered year round for the public, school groups and other groups.Hunting - The park is open to hunting during open seasons.Wildlife viewing from three observation towers, boardwalks, viewing platforms and shoreline spotting scopesSwimmingPlaygroundSpray Park BikingCross-country skiingFishing in the Tobico LagoonPicnickingPicnic AreaPicnic Shelter Metal Detecting - Metal detecting is recognized as a legitimate recreation activity when it is conducted in ways that do not damage the natural and cultural resources in Michigan State Parks nor violate applicable state statutes. Use a map that shows clearly where this activity may take place. Any items found must be reviewed by park staff and may be retained for further investigation.
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  • Beautiful long beach, not crowded, good place to take the kids or grandkids. Must stop by to walk or run along the shore! 
  • Great Park for camping. Has lots of hiking biking and wetland to explore also great for bird watching. Nice beach but located too far from parking area. Need to clean entire beach in front of picnic a...  more »
  • We camped there for first time. What a blast all the tricker treaters dressed in costumes and the parents to. Contests and Movies all weekend. Everyone was totally family oriented. We will go again ne...  more »
  • Its ok. they have all the facility. convenient and the park has variety of programs. children's play area in nice, water splash park is OK. but the Beach the primary reason we went here. it was bad, lot of Bugs, in the sand, bushes and the water... access to the water is bad, with moldy unclear water. I would go some where else next time. :)
  • This is one of our favorite places to visit and wade in the lake. Never seems to be overcrowded,but we always come in the afternoons, and the water is so nice and warm. The swimming area is huge and shallow, so worrying about the kids is not terrible. The water park near the beach is super fun for the little ones and there's a jungle gym lark near there for when they are done being wet. Love this place
  • For those who said the water is grungy recently they obviously have not actually been on the beach, or they were trying to swim in the marsh. After stepping in the water you will immediately notice an enormous difference. A few years ago the beach was very mucky, and not a place I would enjoy swimming. This year the sand is extremely clean, and now it is one of the nicest and cleanest beaches in the state congratulations for all the hard work Bay City it shows and everyone around the state should know the great progress that has been made.
  • Spent last weekend of October in a cabin. The facilities (toilets/showers) were already closed for winter so can't comment on those but the cabin is nice, can host 4 people and has a fire pit and a bbq. Lots of space for trailers. A few nice trails nearby.
  • I was very excited to go to this park. After so many people saying the muck had been cleaned up (this was my first time there, so I wasn't sure what to expect) it sounded really nice. Unfortunately, 2 weeks is long enough for this beach to get gross again. BIG dead fish everywhere, and muck lining the entire beach. The water was cloudy with greenish/brown algae. I wouldn't even wade my feet it. The campground however was fantastic and the trails were great. Its sad that there doesn't seem to be much that can be done about the muck, because the view of the bay is really nice!