Maps of Nichols Arboretum - Ann Arbor, Michigan

Map 1 - Nichols Arboretum and some of its primary trails are shown on Map 1. "Nichols Arcade," along the river, is a figment of's imagination. This is really Nichols Drive, or "the river road." (Nichols Arcade is a mall near campus between State Street and Maynard Street.) This map (and Map 2) shows the four entrances to the Arb, where you can also find parking. Marked 1-4, these entrances are:

Entrance 1 - University of Michigan Medical Center entrance; pay $2/hour to park in the parking structure off E. Medical Center Drive, or after 5:00pm or on weekends, park for free in a lot down by the river (or anytime if you have a Blue Lot permit--and you can find a spot)

The river road, which begins at Entrance 1, is a good way to walk into the Arb.

Entrance 2 - Geddes Avenue entrance; park wherever you can find a spot on any nearby residential street (no meters) south off Geddes and east of the iron entrance gate

There is a 270-foot change of elevation from this entrance down to the river. The path from Entrance 2 to the river is asphalt. All other paths in the Arb are wood chips, grass, dirt, or gravel. The area along the river near the bottom of this path is called "the beach."

Entrance 3 - Washington Heights entrance; near the Peony Garden; primarily a walk-in entrance (i.e., park a long way away and walk); you can park in one of the Medical Center parking structures or, if you have a Blue Lot permit and are very lucky, in one of the few parking spaces near the entrance

The Reader Center (Burnham House) is at this entrance. It has the only restrooms at the Arb. The hours there are M-F, 8:30am-4:30pm, weekends variable.

The Washington Heights entrance is without question the most beautiful entrance to Nichols Arboretum.

Entrance 4 - Riverview Drive entrance (unofficial); park along the curb (no meters) at a turnaround circle at the end of Riverview Drive

You will enter the Arb at its southeast corner at Dow Prairie. A trail goes all the way around Dow Prairie and two trails go across Dow Prairie.

Map 2 - The second map gives a better idea than Map 1 of the trails you will find at the Arb although the resolution is poor. As with most good birding areas, there is no map of Nichols Arboretum that shows all the trails. The best approach to birding the Arb for the first time is probably to start with a good general idea of the layout (and keep a map in your pocket) and start walking! The Arb is not huge, but you'll have a nice walk. Roughly speaking, the Arb is about 0.8 miles long by 0.3 miles wide. If you ever figure out what the total length of all the trails is, let me know! (But you won't want to walk them all, and you probably won't even find them all, your first time there.)

The labeled areas on this map are: School Girl's Glen, Peony Garden, Appalachian Glen, Main Valley, Caretaker's Cottage, Oak-Hickory Forest, Nursery, Field Office, Dow Prairie, and Huron River.

Map 1 - width=1.67 mi
Map 2 - width=0.88 mi