My wife and I are counting down the days until we take our next summer vacation. We plan on taking our vacation time at the end of June or the middle of July.

We decided on Ludington, here in West Michigan, as our go to vacation destination. We love it there for so many great reasons.

One of those reasons is at least 7 miles of beaches along Lake Michigan in Ludington. It's so clean and there's lots to see and do.

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My wife and I always hang out at the beach and go swimming in lake Michigan, and we also find some time to play miniature golf.

We play at the Ludington area Jaycees Mini Golf Course which is right next to Steams Park.

Visitludington.com tells us about Steams Park:

Stearns Park has become the focal point of Ludington. The beautiful, clean beach, wide breakwall and North Breakwater Light  have always been a big attraction, but now there’s so much more. You can play a game of volleyball, mini golf, or shuffleboard, with food by Sunset Side Concessions and restrooms at the north and south ends of the beach.

You can always find something to do in Ludington. Another thing my wife and I like to do is go to the House of Flavors.

The House of Flavors has the best ice cream around and it's always packed after dinner time. We go there several times during our vacation getaway.

By the way, the Ludington State Park is absolutely fantastic. And you might even want to rent a boat and take it out on Hamlin Lake which isn't to far from downtown Ludington.

visitludington.com adds:

Two highlights of the Ludington State Park are the Hamlin Lake Dam and the Big Sable Point Lighthouse. While you’re at the Lake Michigan Beach be sure to visit the Beach House for concessions and a great view or head over to Hamlin Beach and rent a canoe, kayak, paddleboard, or paddle boat for hours of fun.

LOOK: Stunning vintage photos capture the beauty of America's national parks

Today these parks are located throughout the country in 25 states and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The land encompassing them was either purchased or donated, though much of it had been inhabited by native people for thousands of years before the founding of the United States. These areas are protected and revered as educational resources about the natural world, and as spaces for exploration.

Keep scrolling for 50 vintage photos that show the beauty of America's national parks.