The ski season in Traverse City is upon us, and there is no better way to celebrate than to explore the après-ski lifestyle in the area. For many people, après ski is the most sought-after part of a true winter experience. It’s a time to embrace the season, unwind, and celebrate a day on the slopes. Whether you prefer more snowy adventures or indulgence in the food and beverage scene, these activities promise to create lasting memories. 

Tubing at TimberLee Hills

Tubing at Timberlee Hills

Can’t get enough of the winter wonderland? Make a reservation for snow tubing at Timberlee Hills starting in late December. Timberlee Hills is nestled in the lovely Leelanau County with a snow tubing run that the whole family can race down. Their handle tow rope system gets you up the hill with ease, making tubing accessible for people of all ages. After your tubing session is over, you can escape the cold and unwind in Timberlee’s Lodge which offers a full-service bar and kitchen.

Brew Bus

A hallmark of après ski is enjoying a libation after hitting the slopes. And, a wonderful way to immerse yourself in the local beer scene and take the planning off of your hands is to book a Brew Bus brewery tour. Your Brew Bus will pick you up and drop you off at your desired location and they will help curate your group’s itinerary. There are over ten breweries in the immediate Traverse City area and during a four-hour tour, you can visit four breweries. Bring food and water and space out your stops, this will be the perfect way to replenish yourself from a day on the slopes.

Crystal Mountain Spa

Crystal Spa

For a relaxing, hands-off après ski afternoon, schedule a massage at the Crystal Mountain Spa. After working your muscles out on the ski hill, your body will thank you for an afternoon at the spa. They offer massage services including Swedish, deep tissue, oncology, prenatal, hot stones, and couples’ massages. Spa amenities include an infrared sauna, a eucalyptus-infused steam room, a hot tub, and a relaxation lounge.

Local Wineries

The Traverse City area is known for its vineyards and winemaking, so a perfect way to après ski in TC would be to visit local wineries. On the Old Mission Peninsula, make sure to swing by Brys Estate and Chateau Chantal for stunning views of Grand Traverse Bay and delicious award-winning wines. At the base of the Leelanau Peninsula Wine Trail, check out Rove Winery at the Gallagher Estate. It sits atop the highest point on the Leelanau Peninsula and in addition to wine, they host live music and exciting events throughout the winter season.  

Food at Vita Bella

Local Eateries

Something you can count on during a day of skiing is working up a hearty appetite. Visit Downtown Traverse City for a wide array of local eateries to satisfy your palate après ski. North Peak Brewing Company is a great option for a larger group with classic, American food and their own selection of craft beer brewed in-house. Sleder’s Family Tavern is iconic and historic, known for being the oldest, continuously operating restaurant in Michigan, established in 1882. For an upscale, elevated dining experience, head to Amical and order from their rotating menu of eclectic, European cuisine. Transition from skiing straight to dinner in your very own igloo at Wild Tomato at Crystal Mountain Resort. Head over to the town of Frankfort to make a stop at Dinghy's Restaurant & Bar to feast on some American classics like the French dip sandwich and of course, the Friday Fish Fry.