Day Trip: Ann Arbor

Sometime last week I got an itch… an itch to travel… and that can only mean one thing: DAY TRIP!!

The GF and I have been doing some serious hard-core shopping for the home lately and we wanted to try our luck at Ikea. However, Ikea is quite a drive and I didn’t want to run all the way out there just for some store. So we decided to kill two birds with one stone and spend the day in Ann Arbor just to get away from the every day blah.

Our first stop was the University of Michigan Museum of Natural History.

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Parking in the area was interesting to say the least. After driving in circles a few times we landed on a spot that wasn’t labeled “permit parking only”. Mistake or not we decided to chance it and headed inside.

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The building was very impressive, some of the displays… not so much. Many of the exhibits were little plastic-looking dinosaurs with little dusty plastic trees and some not-so-well-done painted backgrounds. Interesting to look at yes, but so very much in need of some updating.

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On the other hand, they had bones… and LOTS of them! For such a small little museum they really do have a good selection of skeletons.

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The whole museum didn’t take very long to get through. We’re not the type to go sit and study each and every display and ponder the little secrets of it all… we get in, see it, and go. But we kinda expected more to see so we severely over estimated the time we would need to be there, I believe our visit wasn’t more then 45 mins or so.

After that we decided to head to the Matthaei Botanical Gardens. Yes I know it’s the middle of winter but their website said there were still things to see so we decided it was worth a stop. We found that all of the outdoor areas were pretty much inaccessible without some pretty big boots on as none of the paths were cleared of snow. We didn’t actually plan on walking around outside anyways so this was a non-issue but it would have been nice to get some outdoor snowy landscape photos real quick.

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The indoor portion, as it turns out, was also much smaller then we had anticipated. We had paid an hour and a half for parking and made 3 laps of the place in a half hour. It was nice, very warm, and somewhat peaceful. We both agreed it was nice to soak up some imaginary tropical warmth on such a cold wintery day.

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After the gardens we decided to head to lunch. We asked social media what the best “must-eat-at” places in Ann Arbor were and more then any other the name “Zingerman’s” came up.

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Zingerman’s Deli is, without a doubt, THE most popular sandwich shop I have ever seen in my life. When we got there we found a pretty long line of people waiting to place an order. We were a little confused but luckily they had illustrations to help guide you lol

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The menu is HUGE and all of the sandwiches have crazy names so for a first-timer it was pretty intimidating. Normally I do my homework and check out menus ahead of time but on this occasion I went in unprepared. No matter, the GF and I couldn’t decide between two sandwiches so we decided to each get one and swap halves.

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The food here is SO good albeit VERY expensive! 2 small sandwiches and 2 fountain drinks ran us $30 and in case you’re wondering, this is what 30 bucks worth of sandwich looks like:

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Was it worth it? Yes, for the experience. I get the feeling that outside of this college town such a place wouldn’t do very well. It seemed more like “the place to be” then a really good restaurant. Either way it was a damn good sandwich and I have no regrets lol.

After lunch I decided to scrap the rest of our Ann Arbor day as it wasn’t living up to what I had thought it would be. I traveled, experienced something new, ate somewhere exciting, and finally had something to blog about so I was satisfied with the day.

From there we hit Ikea on the way home. Wowza! I had never been there before that place is a mad house!! A freakin’ AWESOME madhouse! We very easily found a ton of stuff we liked… but that is a story for another day.