Featured image for Isle Royale National Park

Isle Royale National Park

Quick Navigation

Isle Royale National Park is located in the furthest northwest region of Michigan in the waters of Lake Superior, United States. The park covers an area of 894 square miles (2,320 sq km).

The boundaries of the park are comprised of 209 square miles (540 sq km) of island landmasses and 685 square miles (1,770 sq km) of the neighboring waters.  These islands and surrounding waters are recognized by UNESCO as an International Biosphere Reserve.

The park features around 400 islands including Isle Royale which is the largest. The Great Lakes Spruce, Great Lakes fir, and Northern Conifer are leading forest species.  Other species include black spruces, white spruces, red oaks, paper birches, red maples, sugar maples, and mountain ash.

The thick rich vegetation is home to some exciting wildlife.  Some of the favored species include the moose and timber wolf.  The number of these species varies year to year. The park is more known for bird species versus traditional wildlife.  There are over 200 species of birds scattered across the islands and wetlands.

The remoteness of this national park and challenges to accessing it makes it the least visited national park in the lower contiguous 48 states.  Gates of the Arctic, Kobuk Valley, and Lake Clark in Alaska are the only parks with fewer visitors.


Hiking and kayaking the islands are the primary draw to the park.  Visitors that make the journey to this remote part of the world are looking for the tranquility and uniqueness the park has to offer.

Isle Royale

Isle Royale is the largest island in Lake Superior and the largest island in the national park.  The island measures 45 miles (72 km) long while reaching a width of 9 miles (14 km).

Isle Royale is a large enough island with elevation changes that have allowed for streams and inland lakes separate from Lake Superior.

Isle Royale National Park Trails

Although the park is comprised of a series of islands, there are over 165 miles (266 km) hiking trails to explore the area. Several of the campgrounds are only reachable by hiking or kayaking.

Isle Royale Highlights

Isle Royale

Park Map