What To Do In Belleville, MI

Belleville is a lovely small community located in Wayne County, the center of Van Buren Township. Nestled on the peninsular shores of Belleville Lake, it’s a picturesque setting with tree-lined neighborhoods, and beautiful parks. The sister city to Machynlleth, Wales, in the United Kingdom, Belleville is a diverse community with approximately 400,000 residents.

Founded in 1847, the city of Belleville was named for a local landowner, James Bell. Belleville comes from the French word meaning “beautiful town.” Home to Oakland County’s largest inland lake, the city lives up to its name. The area’s main thoroughfares — Main, Liberty, and High Streets — are still popular roadways today.

The village had long been a growing center for the lumber trade, and many saw mills were located along the shores of the river, which served as a natural trade route. The area’s early economy was heavily dependent upon the Huron River to help transport lumber.

An act of State Legislature establish Belleville as a village in 1905, when it separated from Van Buren Township. The railroad brought travelers from the region and across the country to the village. With the growing population came increased industry, more farmland, and a decrease in the natural woodlands.

In 1925, the Detroit Edison Company built the French Landing Dam on the river, east of Belleville, which helped create Belleville Lake. Belleville Lake stretches over 6 miles in total, covers 1200 acres, and is the largest inland lake in Wayne County.

By the 1930’s Belleville was known as a resort community where getaway estates were maintained by Detroit’s upper class. The neighborhood of Harmony Lake was once the summer escape for both Charles Lindbergh and Henry Ford.

Belleville has come a long way since the lumber days, growing into a city in 1946 and modernizing both its services and industries. Belleville now boasts a full mile of lakefront property, with a charming downtown area, unique shopping and dining, and pristine parks.

Our mini-guide to Belleville will help you discover more about this delightful community.

Our Favorite Things to Do in Belleview

Our mini-guide to Belleville will help you discover more about this delightful community. Explore some of our favorite places, or let us know yours!

Arts & Culture

Must See-ums

Belleville, Michigan takes great pride in its history and the vast array of city parks. Belleville offers an assortment of museums with engaging exhibits and interactive activities.

Family Fun

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Food & Drink

Something Sweet

You may need to log an extra 30 minutes on the elliptical machine, but if you are craving a home-made treat, these Belleville bakeries are family traditions, and considered some of the best in the state.

Dining Out

Belleville’s charm and tranquility also extends to its casual dining options. Known for small, family-owned and operated restaurants, Belleville is all about making you feel like family.

Outdoor Activities

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