What's the best route from California to Michigan?

My wife’s family lives in Detroit, but we currently live in central California. There’s a family reunion coming up, but we want to take our time casually driving out there. What’s the best driving route from California to Michigan?

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Answer provided by
Eric Schad
Answered on May 18, 2022
Michigan just might be one of the most underrated states in the country, offering tons of things to do in Detroit and the surrounding area. However, driving from central California covers approximately 35 hours and covers about 2,500 miles, so get ready for a long haul! Here’s the best route from California to Michigan:
  • Hop on I-80 East out of California and take it all the way until you reach the southern suburbs of Chicago.
  • Right around the Illinois-Indiana border, I-80 will turn into I-294 and then I-94.
  • Stay on I-94 up into Michigan.
  • Continue on I-94 across the entirety of the state until you reach Motor City.
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