Travel to the Great Lakes region of the U.S. for the first time and you’ll be amazed at how much the sights and sounds of the great lakes have changed over the past two centuries.
Here are a few ways to get your bearings.
How to get to the lakes in the first place: The Great Lakes, also known as Lake Superior, are an international freshwater body that extends from the Mississippi River in the north to the Gulf of Mexico in the south.
It’s home to many of the world’s great lakes and is the source of one-fifth of the freshwater supply in the United States.
The lakes are among the most pristine in the world and can be found in the northern hemisphere, from Alaska to the Canadian Arctic.
They were discovered in the mid-1700s, when Europeans first set foot on the North American continent.
Since then, the Great Lake has evolved as the largest body of freshwater in the Northern Hemisphere, surpassing the Great Atlantic and Great Lakes in size and water quality.
The Great lakes have been home to at least 3.3 billion people, including some 1.6 billion people in Canada, and the majority of them are located in the U-M, Michigan, and Minnesota communities of Lake Superior and Lake Huron.
(The Great Lakes account for about 20 percent of the United Nations’ land mass.)
The Great Lake’s diverse flora and fauna is remarkable and has attracted the attention of the public since its discovery.
Many of the lakes are home to unique species of plants and animals that are unknown to most of the rest of the planet, including the blue mussel, a species of jellyfish that lives in the lake’s estuary.
The blue mussels are so distinctive that the lake has named them after them.
There are more than 1,600 lakes in Minnesota, and some have more than 100 species of fish and birds.
But for some, the lakes offer a much more tangible experience: The lakes are popular destinations for sightseeing and recreational boating, and are among several of the country’s top destinations for weddings and other special events.
Learn more about the Great lakes in a few places: If you’re interested in seeing the Great Rivers, you’ll want to head to the North Dakota and Minnesota Rivers, which stretch from the Canadian border in Minnesota to the Mississippi in the Dakotas.
Both rivers have some of the longest navigable rivers in the country, and they connect to the Missouri River, which flows into the Mississippi.
The Missouri River connects to the Grand Trunk of the Mississippi, which connects to Lake Michigan.
The Grand Trunks also bring the waters of Lake Michigan to the Minnesota, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Ohio Valley regions.
While the Grand Banks and North Dakota Rivers can be seen from anywhere in the state, the Grand Canyon is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the Great Plains, where you can enjoy a panoramic view of the Great Basin and the Rocky Mountains.
The canyon itself can be reached from all of the other Great Lakes except Lake Superior.
A short drive from the Grand Bands of the Midwest is the Illinois River Gorge, which is the longest in the western United States, at 4,844 miles.
The gorge is the only one of its kind in the contiguous United States and the largest in the continental United States outside of the Rockies.
(It also has a much longer stretch of its banks that cross the Mississippi.)
There are about 9,000 miles of bridges across the river, with the longest span in the Western United States at about 2,000 feet.
How do you get there?
A quick trip to Chicago is a good place to start.
The Chicago River flows from Lake Michigan through the city of Chicago to the Illinois border.
You can take a ferry or boat to the lake or take the Chicago River boat tour.
There are a lot of different water taxis that are often available that are cheaper than a cab or car rental.
The best option is to use a ferry.
If you do have to take the ferry, it will cost about $15.
It can take up to two hours to get from one end of the lake to the other, so be prepared to wait.
Want to see more?
Check out our top 25 state parks and rivers: