Official Mackinaw City Chamber of Tourism

Original Mackinac Island Butterfly HouseOriginal Mackinac Island Butterfly House
6750 McGulpin Street
Mackinac Island, MI 49757

Located behind St. Anne's Church in downtown Mackinac Island. We fly 800+ live butterflies in a beautiful garden. A must see during your island visit.

Butterfly Garden

Back in 1991, Doug Beardsley of Mackinac Island had the wonderful idea of adding butterflies to his greenhouse and allowing customers to enjoy two of nature’s most beautiful creations, and so originated Michigan’s first live exhibit, The Butterfly House. 

Many years later, the Original Mackinac Island Butterfly House has come a long way – evolving from a dirt floor with potted plants and just a handful of North American butterflies to a beautifully landscaped tropical jungle with hundreds of butterflies from all over the world.

As you walk through the garden our attractive, but subtle, signage allows you to read some basic facts about butterflies, and insects in general – giving you just enough information to further pursue on your own, the wonderful world of insects.

The garden has two ‘feeding stations’ : butterflies most often get their nutrition in liquid form, whether that be from the nectar of a flower, or the rotting carcass of an animal.  They have also been known to feed from feces.  Some of our Central and South American butterfly species enjoy the moisture they can pull from fruit, using their ‘proboscis’, a straw like mouth part made especially for this purpose.  And so we provide them with bananas.  You can sometimes see as many as 6 or 7 species on the banana plates at one time.  A real treat, and perfect for photography.

Insect World

After your visit with the butterflies, walk into the amazing world of insects! See the giants of the tropical regions of the world and read interesting facts about the benefits insects provide to every continent.

The insect world has a large collection of beetles from around the world including the famous Goliath Beetle.

Children can learn about butterflies and other insects while playing with the interactive musical butterfly wall.

Don’t forget to look up, or you’ll miss the sky full of monarch butterflies: Our own version of a monarch migration!

Hours of Operation (Seasonal May-Oct):