If you're one of those coastal types, when you think of the Midwest you probably imagine vast open fields, a crapload of corn, and maybe Chicago. In one strictly geographical respect, you'd be mostly accurate (they grow plenty of other crops out there, too).

But in almost any other, you'd be way off the mark. That's because the Midwest has something none of the other states in America can offer up—the Great Lakes.

Expansive, crystal clear, and brimming with opportunities for aquatic fun, no one should overlook the states of the Great Lakes region—and we've got plenty of reasons why. On this trip you'll find yourself kayaking through dowtown Chicago, camping on Lake Michigan in the "Most Beautiful Place in America," and even parasailing off the shore of Lake Erie. And if you think that sounds good, just wait until see what else we've got mapped out. 

Here's the Men's Fitness guide to road-tripping through the Great Lakes region.