I am going to drive from the area north of Detroit towards Chicago to meet a good friend from Wisconsin half way. This is going to be some time around Easter or right after. We looked up the half way point (met in Chicago, South Haven and St Joseph before) and that seems to be about Michigan City. None of us are too keen to drive very far (girl friends) since we only have 24 hrs to spend. I was always a bit skeptical about meeting in northern Indiana since the area around Gary is soooo unattractive driving thru but then, most areas are not attractive driving thru. The Indiana Dunes National Lake Shore sounds great and we love long beach walks. We are looking for long walks, long talks, a coffee in between and a decent place to overnight and have dinner (OK, we are a little bit spoiled but not hopelessly). I see hotels in Chesterton, Portage and Michigan City. Are all of those areas about the same or are some areas more attractive than others? Does anybody have advice for a nicer hotel?