Although its population just tops 114,000, Ann Arbor offers a greater choice of restaurants, live music venues, and cultural activities than most towns ten times its size. The University of Michigan has shaped the economy and character of the town ever since it was moved here from Detroit in 1837, providing the city with a very conspicuous radical edge.
The best thing to do in Ann Arbor is to stroll around downtown and the campus, which meet at South State and Liberty streets. Downtown's twelve blocks of brightly painted shops and sidewalk cafés offer all you would expect from a college town, with forty bookshops and more than a dozen record stores. Don't miss the huge flagship store of Borders Books at 612 E Liberty St. Though the huge university campus doesn't look particularly appealing, it does engender a sense of excitement, especially around the central meeting place of the Diag (or Diagonal Walkway).