Patch Passport: How About a Day Trip to Rochester?
Here's a things-to-do guide for Rochester and Rochester Hills.
We wrote this little daytrip guide to Rochester and Rochester Hills for a summer series called Patch Passport. Other Patch sites in Michigan — from St. Clair Shores to Dexter and two dozen in between — have done the same.
All summer long, we'll offer up a weekly daytrip guide to another southeast Michigan destination. Here's what you should know if you're planning a trip to Rochester.
You may have heard of the Main Street Makeover, otherwise known as the summerlong rebuilding of the main road through downtown Rochester.
Regardless of what your friends have told you, we're here to report that downtown Rochester is still open for business. Parking is free and plentiful, most businesses have back entrances to bypass the construction out front, and many shops and restaurants are offering "construction deals."
Here are some spots you won't want to miss, according to Patch readers:
- Catching Fireflies, a whimsical gift shop inside a historic train depot.
- Fieldstone Winery, which features local wines and wine slushies.
- Froggy's Toy Stop, with books and toys for all ages.
- Give Thanks Bakery, a real European bake shop with must-try almond croissants.
- South Street Skate Shop, which sells skateboards, shoes and clothing.
For more about Rochester's downtown, visit the Downtown Rochester page on Patch.
Find the creek
Put on your walking shoes — or helmet, if you brought your bike along for the day trip — and pick up the trail behind Rochester Mills Brewing Company (where you can buy home-brewed beer to go).
How about lunch?
When you resurface from the short stroll, walk a few steps to one of the most-often-recommended downtown dining suggestions: Lipuma's Coney Island. Order a coney and fries and grab a picnic table by the water (but watch out for ducks.)
Not in the mood for a hot dog? There are more than a dozen downtown restaurants. Browse some menus and read reviews in our Patch directory.
After lunch, keep heading down the trail into Rochester Municipal Park for playgrounds, a fishing pond, sand volleyball or tennis.
Where to have dinner?
Here are the restaurants that consistently receive thumbs up from Patch readers; click on the links for in-depth reviews and more:
- Kruse & Muer (try the bread)
- Rochester Chop House (for more casual dining, try Kabin Kruser's, an oyster bar in the front of the restaurant)
- Silver Spoon (Italian fine dining)
- Mr. B's (check out the rooftop dining)
- Penny Black (with a great outdoor patio)
Did you see?
- Ewe Revue 2: You may notice sheep scattered all around town. It's a public art show, featuring two dozen movie-themed sheep on display throughout summer. Here's a guide and map.
- The Downtown Farmer's Market (if you happen to visit on a Saturday morning) or Movies in the Moonlight (if you happen to visit on a Saturday night).
- The Rochester Hills Museum at Van Hoosen Farm. It's open on Friday and Saturday afternoons and features a children's garden and creekside picnic area, as well as various museum displays.
- Dinosaur Hill Nature Preserve (wooded hiking trails near downtown Rochester).