Blossom Tour (1 Day)

Southwestern Michigan is a treat for your senses in the spring. All across our countryside verdant orchards and vineyards explode in pastel blossoms and sweet scents. Our markets reopen, with trays and baskets of ready-to-plant flowers in a brilliant array of colors. You'll find jars of tantalizing jams and jellies, bunches of just-snapped asparagus, creamy chocolates and palate-pleasing wines and cheeses along the way.

Finding blossoms is as easy as going east from Lake Michigan and exploring Berrien, Cass and Van Buren Counties. Here's one of our favorite routes:

Piggott's Farm Market & Bakery, 3824 E. Napier Ave., Benton Harbor
(1 hour on site)

piggotsStart your tour at this market in the heart of Berrien County's orchards. It's open May through December 24, every day of the week except Tuesdays. Stop in for the jams, jellies, in-season fruits, vegetables and flowers, fresh-made cookies and doughnuts, or a ready-to-bake pie in your favorite fruit flavors.

From Piggott's Farm Market, drive north 5 minutes to:

12 Corners Vineyards, 1201 N. Benton Center Road, Benton Harbor
(1/2-1 hour on site for tasting)

12CornersThese vineyards are planted on slopes that bring a distinct and pronounced terroir to the wines served here. Come sample winemaker Glen Greiffendorf's passion for making Riesling, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Chardonnay and Traminette. Five tastings are $6 per person and include a chocolate and 12 Corners glass. On weekends in May-June, you also can join other wine aficionados for live music and art classes.

From 12 Corners, go northeast 10 minutes to:

Bob's Barn Farm Market and Bakery, 4858 Coloma Road, Coloma
(1/2 hour)

Take a leisurely drive through blossom country to this market that in spring offers gourmet honey, jams, salsas and dessert and muffin mixes.

From Bob's go southeast 5 minutes to:

Contessa Wine Cellars, 3235 Friday Road, Coloma
(1/2-1 hour on site for tasting)

ContessaTony Peterson carries on his family's winemaking tradition in this winery nestled in the fertile hills of northern Berrien County. Enjoy spectacular vistas of blossoming orchards from the European-style terrace overlooking the Coloma Valley. Wine tasting is $5 per person.

From Contessa Wine Cellars, drive south 2 minutes to:

Jollay Orchards, 1850 Friday Road, Coloma
(drive by or stop 15 minutes at the farm market)

Jollay Orchards 1Roll down the windows as you cruise by the orchards in late April through May and breathe in the air perfumed by cherry, peach and apple blossoms. The Jollay Market (3401 Friday Road) is open daily year round and is a great place to pick up gourmet treats for a spring picnic — jams, jellies, mustards, BBQ sauces and salsas.


Complete your aromatherapy tour by driving south on Friday Rd, turning left on N. Branch and viewing more orchards. Then circle back to I-94 to make your way home or to your lodgings. There are more blossom-scented roads to explore tomorrow.